Rottnest Island (#lovemyrotto) is all about discovering the simple pleasures in life. Welcome to an island that has roads without cars and is swarming with what we would consider the happiest animal on the Planet.....the Quokka.
The easiest access to the island is via ferry, leaving from either North Fremantle (Rous Head), Fremantle (Victoria Quay) or Hillarys Boat Harbour in Perth’s north. It took us only 25mins to make the journey from Fremantle with minimal sea sickness experienced. Once on the Island, there is such a variety of things to see and do such as Golf, Joy flights, Segway Tours, Guided walks, Museums and even an aqua fun park. However, we decided to do none of these. Instead we headed to Rottnest Island pedal and flipper hire to sort out all our biking and snorkel needs. This really is a mandatory stop for anyone visiting because other than walking, bikes are your only way around the island.
We found it easy to fill the day pedalling our way around the island. Stopping along the way to sun ourselves on the beach, snorkel with the fish and of course trying to take the near impossible quokka selfie (#quokkaselfie).
There are two food hubs on the Island, Thompson bay Settlement and Geordie Bay. Be careful to attend to your food needs prior to 3pm because most eat in places will close around this time. Don’t despair if you miss closing time because there is an IGA to prevent you from going without.
A lot of people clear off the island on the last ferry, however we decided to get the full experience and stayed the night. Accommodation on the Island varies, we went for one of the ocean view villas (#geordiebay). Although nothing pretty to look at, it was comfortable/functional and all we needed. Our last stop was a night time walk to the Hotel Rottnest (#getourdrinkon), which was almost a little eary, as it felt like we were the only people left on the Island. We managed to drink just enough to make the walk home more of a night time wilderness adventure. Our advice is too always remember the ferry ride home. This can become a whole lot more unpleasant depending on the number of drinks you have the night before......whoops.
During a trip to Perth for a tour of Lawson’s home town, Rottnest island was recommended to me as a must see place. I would definitely have to agree. Being a slightly stereotypical girl, it’s hard not to love a place where I can sun tan and be in the presence of by far the cutest animal on the planet. I remember losing my mind when I first saw one of these little guys and I became obsessed with chasing them around the island in search of the perfect quokka selfie. Of course the longer you stay, the quicker the novelty wears off and you start to realise that these things are actually pests with no fear of humans at all. I was nervous about the bike riding in the beginning because it had literally been about 10 years since I last rode and I wasn’t too confident in my fitness ability either. But as the saying goes “it’s like riding a bike, you never forget”. Plus the Island is predominantly flat which eased my second concern. Rottnest Island is beautiful and instantly relaxing. A highlight would be the amazing amount of fish that can be seen when snorkelling in the almost clear water. A low light would be having to, sheepishly leave a piece of myself behind, after discovering way too late that the toilet I was using didn’t flush.
The timing of our Perth trip could not have worked out better. My best friend Jaxon was also heading home, so we were all able to go together. There is nothing better than when your best friend and your girlfriend get along. With an already jam packed week planned there was a decision to be made: go down south or head to Rottnest. This time we chose Rotto. You can stay on Rottnest for a good week but we didn’t have that luxury with so much planned for the trip so opted for an overnight stay. I’m more of a fly by the seat of my pants kind of guy so we got on the ferry without any accommodation. We decided just to play it by ear. I wouldn’t normally recommend this, it just worked out for us because it was mid-week and during a quieter period. Last time I rode the ferry I was hungover as hell and that negative memory was weighing on me, I didn’t want to get sea sick. Poseidon must have been happy that day, because there wasn’t a wave in site, crystal clear skies and blue seas, the perfect weather for an island getaway. A massive draw card for the island are the Quokkas, probably one of the cutest animals around and not a care in the world. I knew they were literally everywhere on the island but I kept that to myself because I didn’t want to ruin the excitement for Cat seeing the quokkas for the first time. Rottnest is such a beautiful island, It’s hard to believe it’s in Australia. The place makes you feel as if you are in some tropical destination. We locked down some bikes and I grabbed my long board, some snorkel gear and headed for the basin (A famous snorkelling spot with beautiful coral and sea life to look at). As the sun set, we finished off a couple brewskis while fishing off the rocks. It really is moments like these that I realise how lucky I am to be able to do the things I do and with the people I do them with. I loved Rottnest growing up and to be able to show such a beautiful place to Cat makes me happy. After a couple of drinks the conversation always starts to get more interesting and we were discussing the history of the island, it raised a few questions. I think it was something about the island not having cars and being very basic that had an effect on us because we didn’t want to google the answers. Instead we set off on an adventure across to the other side of the island, in the dark, to the museum, where i knew I had seen information plaques earlier in the day. How much more interesting would it have been in the days before internet where you had to go and discover things. Yes it would have taken a lot more time but how much more rewarding would it be. That adventure just happened to lead us to the Rottnest hotel just in time for last drinks. It was all we needed for the walk back home. We passed Pinkies which is a beach with a lighthouse which became famous for having teenage parties. I remember the first time I went I tagged along with my brother who ended up kissing like 50 girls and I kissed none.
Rottnest was and is an amazing place to recharge the batteries no cars just bikes, beaches, beers and the best company.