Don’t miss our Spring Wildflower Tour of 2017 – it will be a great holiday!
First, we fly to Perth to commence our Western Australia Wildflowers and Indian Pacific tour. Once in WA, we have a stunning program featuring the wineries and forest regions of the South West of Western Australia – (Busselton, Margaret River and Augusta), the Walpole National Park, Albany and Wave Rock – and at this time of the year we should see plenty of wildflowers. Western Australia is one of the richest wildflower areas in the world.
It is generally agreed that there are just over 7,000 native plants in Western Australia with another 830 introduced from interstate or from overseas. Of the known species up to 85% can be found in the South West region of the State. Many of these wildflowers are truly unique, Kangaroo paws, Christmas Tree, Pitcher plant, Dryandras, and many of the Banksias, Featherflowers, Triggerplants and Grass trees are botanical curiosities. Finally, we travel across the Nullarbor on the Indian Pacific in Gold Service.
Thursday 5 October, 2017
Welcome to Rail Holidays Australia’s tour to South West Region of WA and the Indian Pacific! This morning we make our way to Sydney Airport to connect with our non-stop flight to Perth. Our local touring coach will be there to meet us and transfer us to our overnight motel.
Friday 6 October, 2017
PERTH AND FREMANTLE
We embark on a sightseeing tour of the Perth and discover its unique charm. Featuring the main city block with its unusual combination of skyscrapers and colonial architecture, including Parliament House, St Mary’s Cathedral, Government House, Barrack Arch, London Court and the Perth Mint. We then head to the parklands and the spectacular views over the city and river from Kings Park; hopefully we may see some wildflowers! Late morning, we join Captain Cook Cruises for a cruise down the Swan River to Fremantle. A full commentary is included as we pass Kings Park, the Swan Brewery, the Royal Perth Yacht Club and Point Walter Spit. On arrival in Fremantle our coach is there to meet us; we have some free time to purchase lunch before being shown the sights of this historic port town.
Saturday 7 October, 2017
SOUTH WEST REGION OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA
We leave Perth this morning on our way to the Western Australia Wildflowers region of the South West. We head into Mandurah to join our short “fish n chips’ luncheon cruise along the canals and water ways of the Mandurah Estuary and the Peel Inlet. Dolphins can often be seen on this cruise. This afternoon we travel through Bunbury then onto Busselton. The Busselton Jetty, at approximately 2 kms long, is one of the longest in the world. We spend some time here looking at the displays in the information area. After a great day, we check into our motel for the next two nights.
Sunday 8 October, 2017
THE MARGARET RIVER REGION
We have an early start today so we can make the most of our time in the Margaret River area. A rich dairy cattle and timber region, with a reputation for fine wines and surfing. This morning we drive south along the scenic Caves Road which will take us past the Margaret River mouth to Mammoth Cave, which is an impressive, gothic-like cave.
Early settlers to the region knew of this cave from around 1850, but it wasn’t actually explored until 1895. After a guided tour here we stop at the Cave Works Interpretive Centre where we will learn more about the formation and history of caves within the region. Our stop is the historic Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse is situated at the most south westerly tip of Australia, standing at the point where the Indian and Southern Oceans meet. The awesome force of the fierce Southern Ocean and powerful Indian Ocean crashing against the Cape makes a visit to the Cape a unique experience.
Of course, a visit to Margaret River is not complete without some wine tasting so we visit a local winery. We continue through the township of Margaret River completing our day with a visit to the Natural Olive Oil Soap Factory. The Factory is nestled amongst vine covered slopes and National Parks. Products can be tried and tested, delighting our senses with beautiful fusions of the finest extra virgin olive oil and pure essential oils from around the world. After a fantastic day we return to our motel!
Monday 9 October, 2017
BUSSELTON TO PEMBERTON
We have a more leisurely start to the day. This morning, we drive through Nannup to Pemberton, a town established in 1913 as a State saw mill. We stop at the famous giant Gloucester Tree at Pemberton – reputed to be the tallest tree-mounted fire lookout in the world. After some time to purchase lunch, we transfer to the Pemberton Railway Station. All aboard the Pemberton Tram as this unforgettable 1¾ hour service shuffles out of Pemberton, past the Saw Mill and descends deep into the Karri forest. Keep an eye out for Western Australia Wildflowers as the tram meanders through the forest, crossing six bridges, stopping at the Cascades and at the Warren River Bridge where the Lefroy Brook joins the Warren River.
Tuesday 10 October, 2017
PEMBERTON TO ALBANY
We make our way through virgin karri forests to Walpole. Here we join WOW Wilderness Eco-Cruises. This fascinating tour takes us through the wilderness areas of Walpole’s National Parks. Just east of Walpole is an area known as the “Valley of the Giants” in the Walpole NP.This dense forest of hardwood tingle trees where we are booked for a Tree Top Walk. We explore the world famous forest of gigantic tingle trees from 40 metres up in the canopy! The Ancient Empire boardwalk (on the forest floor) meanders around and, sometimes through, a grove of veteran tingle trees. It’s a peaceful experience with quiet spots to sit and reflect on the special nature of the tingle forest. Later this afternoon, we continue onto Albany where we settle into our motel for the next two nights.
Wednesday 11 October, 2017
Albany was WA’s first settlement. Today Albany is known as the birth place of the Anzac story and the home of the National Anzac Centre. We visit the centre this morning – it is a state of the art museum. Walk with the ANZACs and experience the Great War through their personal stories. This afternoon, we travel to nearby Frenchman Bay – the location of the old whaling station. Discovery Bay, which now records the history of whaling in Albany, is our next stop. On the way back to Albany this afternoon we make a couple of stops to view the southern coast line of the Torndirrup NP, including the Salmon Holes and the Blow Hole.
Thursday 12 October, 2017
ALBANY TO HYDEN
As we head north this morning chasing Western Australia wildflowers, our first stop is the Mount Barker Banksia Farm. It boasts the world’s only full collection of all Banksia species growing on the property. The Banksia Farm has 5 hectares of well-established display gardens. We continue north through the stunning Stirling Ranges NP for great views of Bluff Knoll, the highest and one of the most spectacular peaks in south Western Australia. This afternoon we continue to Hyden where we check into our motel for the night.
Friday 13 October, 2017
HYDEN TO PERTH
Following breakfast, we meet our local guide who will show us one of WA’s most famous landmarks – Wave Rock. We see “Hippos Yawn” which is 1 kilometre from Hyden. Returning to Wave Rock, which has been sculptured and coloured by chemicals over 2,700 million years to take on its wave like character. Keep an eye out today as Western Australia Wildflowers can be plentiful in the area.
Our afternoon stop is in York, the first township in the Avon Valley. This quaint village is full of really beautiful old buildings. There is little doubt that it is one of the best preserved and restored nineteenth century towns in Australia. There is the wonderful Court House and Police Station, located in Avon Terrace, which was built and extended over a 60 year period from the early 1840s until the end of the century. It’s here we visit the York Motor Museum, recognised as one of the finest private collections of Veteran, Vintage, Classic and Racing Cars in Australia.
Saturday 14 October, 2017
PERTH – FREE DAY
We have a totally free day for personal shopping & sightseeing or an optional day trip like the Western Australia Wildflowers day tour. Which heads just out of Perth a dedicated day trip just in search of Western Australia Wildflowers.
Sunday 15 October, 2017
DEPART PERTH ON THE INDIAN PACIFIC
What better way to finish this amazing West Australia Wildflowers holiday than by travelling to Sydney in Gold Class comfort on the Indian Pacific (upgrades to luxurious Platinum class available). This iconic Australian passenger train is named after the two great oceans it links. Be pampered with superior day and night sleeper accommodation. Including a dedicated Cabin Steward, stylish dining restaurant car and delicious freshly prepared meals. While relaxing on the Indian Pacific enjoy the unique scenery, an array of wildlife and see some of our most famous outback towns. Today includes an Off Train experience at Kalgoorlie.
Monday 16 & Tuesday 17 October 2017
INDIAN PACIFIC & OFF TRAIN EXPERIENCES
A journey of true contrasts. Cook – The world’s most isolated outpost. Adelaide – Australia’s City of Churches – and compare this metro beauty with the iconic outback mining town of Broken Hill in the afternoon. Australia’s Silver City uniquely blends industry and art cultures.
Wednesday 18 October 2017
Arrive Bathurst early morning or Sydney mid-morning.
Our Western Australia Wildflowers tour has come to an end but full of wonderful memories and photos of the magnificent Western Australia Wildflowers and other natural wonders along the way.
This tour, including quality accommodation & 32 meals, priced at $5,900 twin share or $6,400 single.
1 Gold Service Twin Cabin Available
Coach Tour also available without the Indian Pacific (Perth to Perth) priced at $2,900 twin share or $3,700 single plus airfares.
Rail Holidays Australia
Po Box 1430, Bathurst, NSW. 2795
Ph: 0418 337 263 or 02 6331 1128