Must Do Margaret River

Mar 04, 2022

When planning your trip to the Margaret River Region in Western Australia, the first things that spring to mind are award-winning wineries, towering karri forests and whale watching on a journey somewhere between the Indian ocean and the rolling hills. The Margaret River is much more than an idyllic surfie town, so you’ll want to map out some of the hidden gems and local favourites and base yourself central to it all.

Ever-popular, you’ll want to plan your Margaret River accommodation in advance as places can fill up fast, especially over spring and summer. For those seeking a private, stylish and sophisticated retreat, and yearning to discover outstanding food and wine, Cape Lodge offers luxury accommodation and a gourmet establishment. Ideally positioned close to natural parks, Cape Lodge is centrally located between the town sites of Margaret River, Dunsborough and Yallingup – a three hour drive or one hour flight from Perth.

How To Spend A Day In Margaret River

Venture out for a day of exploration with a Margaret River travel guide. Spend a day (or two) wine tasting and sampling craft beers at the surrounding wineries and cellar doors such as Voyager Estate, Vasse Felix, Mandoon Estate, Cullen Wines, Leeuwin Estate or Cowaramup brewing company. In the town’s centre, check out Margaret River Brewhouse or take a wander through the famers markets or browse designer furniture at JahRoc gallery. There’s local produce to sample such as Olio Bello and Vasse Virgin olive oil, goodies from Margaret River Chocolate Company or take something home from Margaret River Distilling Company.

If you’re fond of sand dunes and salty air, stretch your legs at Hamelin Bay, Eagle Bay, Sugarloaf Rocks or Granny’s Pool. For those with a little more time and a little more stretch, the rewarding seven-day Cape To Cape walk skims the Indian Ocean between Cape Leeuwin lighthouse and Cape Naturaliste lighthouse, taking in the naturally beautiful coastal views dotted with dolphins and whales and laced with wildflowers in the spring. Cape Lodge can arrange a day trip with a select local tour operator, such as Cape To Cape Explorer to walk a section of the track and potentially a swim in the pristine ocean shallows and when the timing is right, Cape Lodge can also arrange whale watching tours.

Deep History

You may find yourself curious about the Aboriginal history and culture of the region and start to see the flora and fauna, rugged beauty of the coastline, fecund soil and intricate cave systems through a new lens, a lens connected to Country. Broaden your Margaret River experience by taking time to visit Ngilgi cave and discover the local Aboriginal Noongar Boodja significance on a guided tour with Koomal Dreaming. Soak up the sounds of didgeridoo reverberating deep underground in the cave system while you marvel at the glistening stalactites and stalagmites that grow 1cm every 100 years.

Surrounds

Visit Margaret River WA   offers surf breaks, horse riding, rock climbing, or a full day on a chartered yacht – all at your fingertips. One of the best things to do is experience the Boranup karri forest. The towering karri trees strike up from the forest floor, some over 60m in height. Time amongst these iconic WA giants is sure to humble and inspire you together with the wildflowers, orchids and fungi and sounds of native birds and the fresh smell of eucalypt. Mc Clouds Tours provide an array of wine tours and brewery tours, experiencing the regions distinctive food, wine and culture. Or take a self-guided journey through Mammoth Cave.

 Cape Lodge, Margaret River Luxury Accommodation

Located just off caves road on Noongar Boodja Country, Cape Lodge is a quiet oasis offering 40 acres of manicured estate, award winning restaurant, massage room, private vineyards, tennis court, swimming pool and sun lounges. Old cypress trees anchor the lodge grounds along with the flowering Agonis trees skirting the verges of the lakes, which are home to Australian wood ducks and the odd dragonfly. The short walking trails around the lake help to familiarise with the surroundings, and offer a moment’s peaceful reflection looking out over the water.

Cape Lodge is the perfect destination for guests seeking a luxury base from which to explore one of the world’s finest wine regions. Cape Lodge is at the epicentre of world-class vineyards, boutique breweries and artisanal chocolate makers as well as a rich array of art galleries. Dining at the coveted Cape Lodge restaurant is guaranteed to be a highlight of every guest’s itinerary. The innovative menu is curated daily by Executive Chef Tony Howell, utilising the finest local produce from the kitchen garden as well as the fruits of the Western Australia sea and local farms. This private country estate is home to twenty-two secluded rooms and suites, a four-bedroom private residence and its own eight-acre vineyard, producing some of Margaret River’s finest handcrafted sauvignon blanc and shiraz.

Inside tips

  • Harness your culinary skills with a signature Cape Lodge cooking class or indulge the senses with one of the lodge’s sought-after wine dinners or musical experiences.
  • Discover the diversity of Margaret River, from an exclusive behind-the-scenes cellar door tour to a breathtaking coastline hike or a snorkel in nature’s aquarium.  
  • Connect to Country with a mesmerising private Twilight Didgeridoo and Cave Tour to learn about the Dreaming Spirits and bush food of the Traditional Owners, the Wardandi people.
  • The massage treatment room is located in the Main Lodge or opt to be pampered in the privacy of your room with a Swedish Massage, Huna Massage or revitalising facial.

Food & Wine At Cape Lodge

While the region’s 60 plus wineries produce less than one per cent of Australian wine, they are responsible for over 15 per cent of the country’s premium wine. If you’re looking to sample some of the greats on a winery tour – this luxury lodge has its own private vineyard. Guests can gain exclusive insight into the history of Cape Lodge Estate and delve into their viticulture practises that produce renowned Margaret River wine such as Sauvignon Blanc and Shiraz on a tour and tasting of the vines.

As you enter the Cape Lodge Lakeside Restaurant, the wooden dining room doors open to a view of the kitchen – a glimpse into the heart of the lodge, and the assuring sound of the busy inner workings of a well-respected kitchen. Ranked in the Top Ten Restaurants of the World (Conde Nast Traveller Gold List), Cape Lodge showcases the best of Margaret River’s produce sourced from local farms and the kitchen garden, and the freshest of seafood from nearby pristine oceans.

Dinner is of course a highlight, and you almost needn’t go further than the homemade sourdough and truffle butter. But do press on because chef Tony Howell and his team are preparing a gamut of signature seasonal dishes. Choose a 4 Course Chef’s Harvest Menu or 6 Course Tasting Menu and prepare to be satiated. After chefs tasting dinner and a bottle of Cape Lodge wine, it’s time to retire for the night with the peaceful sound of frog calls to accompany the short walk back to your guest house.

“Easily one of the best meals we’ve had. Ever. Anywhere. A Margaret River must” -The Robb Report.

Breakfast overlooks the lake, where you can savour your coffee and watch as the breeze ripples silver-blue refractions across the water. Start with fresh seasonal fruit, house baked pastries, freshly squeezed orange juice, and the signature home-made Bircher muesli with compotes, followed by a cooked country breakfast selected from the a la carte menu.

Inside Tip: For longer stays, why not pre-order the Vineyard Dinner Hamper of local charcuterie, house-smoked salmon, cheeses, pickles and bread to enjoy as a picnic in the privacy of your room, or book a table at one of the favourite close by restaurants. Cape Lodge also recommends Yarri Restaurant + Bar and Blue Manna in Dunsborough, Lamonts at Smiths Beach Resort or something a little more casual at Settler’s Tavern in Margaret River or Caves House on Yallingup Hill. For those wanting to brush up on some gourmet skills, you can even try your hand at a Cape Lodge cooking class.

Cooking Classes

Whether you’re a well-seasoned cook or simply curious to know a bit more about the local seasonal produce, you can discover some kitchen tips and recipes during a wildly popular cooking demonstration with Executive Chef Tony Howell. You can get seriously focused and roll up your sleeves with a hands-on private cooking class with, available for groups of 4-10 people. Chef Tony will provide step by step tuition in the making of a seasonal meal, featuring entrée, main and dessert that involve basic techniques for you to utilize in many other recipes.

Just a three hour drive south west of Perth, the river region is a place of natural contrasts, a booming food and wine scene and all the adventure or tranquillity you could ask for.

On your journey back to Perth, carve out time to explore the abundant marine life, relax on the shore or swim in tranquil calm, clear waters of Eagle Bay. Busselton Jetty is the longest timber-piled jetty in the southern hemisphere and hosts un underwater aquarium at the end of the pilons. Gnarabup Beach is a long, popular swimming beach in Prevelly and worth a dip.

For further information on Margaret River, visit or to book your stay at Cape Lodge, visit.

 


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