Rottnest Island and The Quokkas

by Kate Moran

I think it is safe to say, and with out doubt- Rottnest Island is incredibly beautiful.

Rottnest Island may even be my favourite island I have ever visited, (to be fair, I haven’t visited many islands). However we have attached a little video of our journey on the island for you to see yourself.

Ive always wanted to go to Rottnest Island, as you can see its on our bucket list! We’ve only heard great things about the island plus its home to the Quokkas. 

Quokkas are little hamster type animals that live on Rottnest, in fact, its the reason why Rottnest is called Rottnest! 

Rottnest Island was discovered in 1696 by Willem de Vlamingh, a Dutch explorer. Who named the island Rats’ Nest due to the many large rats that he found on the island, which were actually Quokkas.

Quokka eating leaf

Charles and I visited Rottnest midweek, in hope that the island may be a little quieter. (The price of the ferry and bike hire doesn’t change much when booking a weekday to weekend, FYI.)

The morning arrived, Charles and I woke early and drove down to Fremantle, one of three places you can catch the ferry, depending on the company you book through. 

Top Tip: When booking, its worth noting the cost of car parking at the port, as well as the location closest to home, if you are trying to stick within a budget. 

We boarded with ease and made our way to the lower deck (top deck and outside was full). We watched the waves roll by as the island got closer and closer, its only a short 30 minute ferry ride. 

At this point, I was very excited (and had drunk two coffees all before 10am).

We landed on Rottnest Island

The island was full of like-minded tourists all hoping to take a Quokka selfie and admire this beautiful island.

Charles and I headed to ‘Pedal and Flipper’, the only bike hire shop in Rottnest. You don’t have to hire a bike for the day, but the island is car free, so no chance of Uber. 

I would recommend hiring a bike and touring around the island. You can walk, but I think its better to escape the crowds and find your own private beach.

There are many chances to collect a map of Rottnest Island prior to your visit, Charles and I being super organised printed off our own. 

We planned our route and researched into the best beaches on the island. We also packed the drone but we are aware of the restricted fly areas, so headed straight to the west side of the island for a short drone flight.

The west side, took us three hours to get there. Three hours. On a bike. Three. 

(This does include frequent stops on the way, we saw wild dolphins- highlight) 

Side note: Im not a fan of dolphins, after a little google search about horror stories with ‘swimming’ with dolphins, kinda puts me off… but seeing a pod jumping out of the water actually made me say ‘wow’ out loud. 

Mary Cove is incredible. I don’t think I have EVER seen the sea so clear, it was literally Instagram in real life. 

After taking a short drone video, we jumped on our bikes and headed back. Charles and I read great reviews about Pinky Beach, however when we arrived it was closed due to a private event… gutted. 

We sunbathed on The Basin beach, and ate our pre packed subway sandwich (insert crying face emoji) and enjoyed the sounds and view. 

I was enjoying myself so much, (and as previously mentioned, the sea was so clear) I went for a dip. BIG NEWS, because I don’t think much of the sea but this experience might of changed my mind a little! 

Pro tips and my advice: 

  1. Take a towel or padded cushion for the bike seat. You can hire them in addition to your bike for $5 at Pedal and Flipper. My bum was so sore, during the seven hour bike tour and the following couple of days.
  2. If you don’t fancy the hard bike ride up and down the hills (theres a lot), spend a little and hire an electric bike- thank me later. We were very jealous of the electric riders passing us by, when I was literally pushing my bike up one huge hill. 
  3. Pack a lunch, there aren’t any shops or cafes when you head out of the main port. Although saying this, our subway sandwich got very warm after sitting in our bags for 5 hours before eating it. 

I loved it, I loved this day and I loved the island.

Australia, can you top this? OR do you have any recommendations of another island or beach I’m missing out on? 

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Hannah Herbert June 10, 2019 - 11:25 am

We loved Rottnest Island too! But I totally agree, waaaay too many hills for my poor little legs!

Great Post! 👏☺️

The Australian Bucket List • When Wandering • A Couples Travel Blog • January 28, 2020 - 6:32 am

[…] Ok, it may not be a selfie, but our trip to Rottnest Island was a dream! Click here to see our full blog about how you can experience Rottnest Island too. […]

Wen Schange June 19, 2020 - 5:33 pm

Just wanna say that you have a very nice web site. I like the layout too, it actually stands out.

Kate Moran July 13, 2020 - 6:08 am

Thank you, what a lovely message to read! 🙂

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