Tick off some of WA’s top tourist attractions on a new seven-day Cosmos tour.
New Cosmos tours catering specifically to Aussies have been launched in time for summer, and one of the signature experiences is the Western Australian Discovery. The seven-day tour showcases a few of the state’s most popular attractions in and around Perth. Here’s what you can expect:
Get off on the right foot with your new travel buddies by satiating your caffeine craving on a Coffee, Culture & Art Tour of Perth. This vibrant city is a hub of museums, galleries, street art, fascinating architecture, boutiques, and small bars, so pull your phone out and get snapping as you learn about its history and characters.
Participants on the Perth tour will then enjoy free time to explore more of the city: a great optional excursion is to Western Australian Botanic Garden at Kings Park. It’s easy to while away an hour exploring this 17-hectare garden, with the Banksia Garden and its uniquely Australian collection a highlight. You also don’t want to miss the “giant boab” tree transported from the Kimberley to Perth in 2008.
Soak up some Vitamin D on one of the famous beaches in Perth, known as Australia’s sunniest capital city. There are 19 on the city’s doorstep; our pick is Cottesloe, where you can swim, snorkel, surf, cycle and jog. When night falls, head to Northbridge to dine at one of the city’s many busy, buzzy restaurants; look up the funky Lucky Chan’s Laundry and Noodlebar where walls are lined with old ironing boards and plates are filled with bao buns.
Home to the longest timber-piled jetty in the southern hemisphere, Busselton is a popular spot to take a break south of Perth. While the star attraction in Busselton is undoubtedly the 155-year-old jetty, the photogenic (freshly spruced up) foreshore is the perfect place to grab a bite to eat or a mid-morning ice-cream. The 1.8-kilometre-long jetty juts out over the sparkling Geographe Bay, leading travellers to an “underwater observatory”. Save your energy and reach the end onboard the solar-powered jetty train.
Margaret River rendezvous
With sun and salt ticked off your list (for now), it’s time to head to WA’s famous wine-growing region, Margaret River. Before you start sampling chardonnay, your Cosmos guide will introduce you to craft beer and cider at Cheeky Monkey Brewing Co. Afterwards, wander the streets of the town at your own pace.
Kick-start your next morning with breakfast overlooking the Indian Ocean, before learning all about how coffee is grown and roasted at Yahava KoffeeWorks. After enjoying your morning brew, it’s time to add some sweetness to the mix with a special wine and nougat pairing at Bettenay’s Margaret River Nougat Company. Of course, no visit to Margs, as it’s known locally, would be complete without calling into a winery and your Cosmos tour guide has chosen well. Established in 1977, Xanadu is one of the region’s pioneering vineyards and where you’ll enjoy a wine tasting and special lunch.
The afternoon is at leisure so why not check out the town’s cool boutiques? Margaret River Collaborative is a stylish space housing homewares, loose-leaf tea, and bits and bobs from local creatives; it’s a top spot to pick up a few souvenirs. If you’d rather be active, hire a bike and hit up the nearby mountain biking trails.
Before farewelling Margaret River, enjoy a visit to Wilyabrup Dreaming Pottery. There, artist Bill Meiklejohn will show you how his gorgeous ocean-inspired masterpieces are made. Save some space in your luggage for a piece of pottery.
The return trip north includes a detour to Gnomesville, a wonderfully quirky collection of garden gnomes that have been left by locals and tourists over the years. Situated on a bend in a country road, it’s worth joining other curious road-trippers for a walk around in the “village” of Gnomesville, which is populated with about 5000 gnomes.
By nightfall, you’ll find yourself in Fremantle, and the best way to familiarise yourself with this creative community is on a walking tour of the historic centre. You can also join a torchlight tour of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Fremantle Prison, or stop by iconic Little Creatures Brewery for a craft beer.
A visit to Rottnest Island is one of the highlights of any visit to the West Coast and it’s the final stop on this carefully curated itinerary. Famous for its resident smiling quokkas, Rottnest Island has been a playground for families for generations. You’ll catch the ferry over from Fremantle and tour the island to discover stunning coves of white sand and turquoise seas. With the afternoon free, hire a bicycle to explore further (although the island isn’t as flat as you might expect) or relax with a beverage at the popular Hotel Rottnest overlooking the water. Or you can simply pass your remaining hours enjoying one of state’s hottest new properties, Discovery Rottnest Island (This isn’t your average holiday park; it’s tucked behind the dunes of Pinky Beach and you’ll be staying here in style, in a luxury eco-tent with ensuite bathroom.
Cap off your week-long WA taster with a farewell dinner with your tour director and new friends, before returning to your glamping and falling asleep to the sound of the sea. In the morning, you’ll have the chance to soak up more of the island before hopping back aboard the ferry and returning to Perth.
*If you’ve already discovered these WA highlights, Cosmos has six more signature itineraries created with Australians in mind.
– Cosmos tours are all Covid-safe, with measures such as pre-trip health screenings, social distancing, and regular temperature checks. Learn more here.
– You may be sharing your experience with other travellers but rest assured these tours are aimed at like-minded Aussies, so expect to make plenty of friends.
– The itinerary allows for free time, so you can make your own discoveries and enjoy some downtime, too.
– Guests can cancel their tour and get a full refund up to 30 days before departure with the free inclusion of Travel Protection with SafetyNet
– Transport includes a private first-class motorcoach with air conditioning. Headsets provided.
– Meals include breakfast daily, two lunches and one dinner.
Take the hassle out of touring by joining a local guide on a new Cosmos Australian tour.
WA Discovery at a glance
Day 1 Arrive Perth: Meet and greet
Day 2 Perth: Coffee, Culture & Art Tour of Perth; afternoon at leisure.
Day 3 Perth – Busselton – Margaret River: Stop at Busselton Jetty; visit Cheeky Monkey Brewing Co. in Margaret River; evening at leisure.
Day 4 Margaret River: Learn how coffee is grown at Yahava KoffeeWorks; enjoy a wine and nougat pairing at Bettenay’s Margaret River Nougat Company; experience a wine tasting and lunch at Xanadu; free time in the afternoon.
Day 5 Margaret River – Fremantle: Meet a local artist at Wilyabrup Dreaming Pottery; stop for a photo at Gnomesville; go on a walking tour of Fremantle.
Day 6 Fremantle – Rottnest Island: Travel to Rottnest via ferry; enjoy a tour of the island; afternoon free to explore; farewell your group at a special dinner; overnight at the new Discovery Rottnest Island.
Day 7 Rottnest Island – Perth: Morning at leisure before returning to Perth.