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Visitor Centres

Visitor Centres

Rottnest Island Visitor Centre
T: 61 8 9372 9732
Located at the end of the Main Jetty, Rottnest Island

WA Visitor Centre
T: 61 8 9483 1111 or
1800 812 808 55
William Street, Perth

Rottnest Island

Rottnest Island

Just 19 km off the coast of Perth, but an entire world away, lies the sunny holiday island of Rottnest - Western Australia's very own island paradise.

Rottnest Island is blessed with a casual atmosphere, picturesque scenery, dazzling marine life and some of the world's finest beaches and pristine bays.

Rottnest Island earned its curious name when in 1696, Dutch explorer, William de Vlamingh, mistook the island's unusual marsupial population for common rats and named it Rottnest - literally translating to 'rats nest'. Today, having a photo taken alongside the 'rats' - known as Quokkas - is one of the main highlights for visitors to the island.

Rottnest Island is only a short ferry ride from Fremantle or Perth with Rottnest Express and from Hillarys Boat Harbour with Rottnest Fast Ferries. Or fly over with Kookaburra Air, Rottnest Air Taxi, Air Charter West, Rotorvation Helicopters or Ozwest Aviation.

THINGS TO DO ON ROTTNEST ISLAND

  • JOIN one of the many free guided walking tours of the Island.
  • FOLLOW your own path along the Wadjemup Bidi.
  • HIRE a bike and snorkel gear from Rottnest Island Pedal & Flipper
  • SWIM and relax by the stunning waters - you have 63 beaches and 20 bays to choose from
  • DISCOVER the underwater snorkel trails at Little Salmon Bay and Parker Point.
  • LEARN about the island's history at the Rottnest Island Museum, Lomas Cottage, Pilot Boat House, Vincent Way and Salt Store.
  • ENCOUNTER a variety of wildlife including birdlife, quokkas and dolphins.
  • EXPLORE the world beneath the waves on the Underwater Explorer (September – May).
  • JOIN a 90 minute adventure cruise (November – April).
  • CLIMB the Wadjemup Lighthouse for the ultimate views across the whole island.
  • RIDE the train to view the maze of tunnels beneath the WWII gun emplacement on Oliver Hill.

GETTING AROUND

On Rottnest Island, bikes are the transportation of choice and can be hired or you can bring your own by ferry from the mainland for a small fee. The island is only 11km long and 4.5km wide making it easy to explore with a number of great trails to follow.

If traversing by bike doesn't appeal, you can also enjoy the journey by air-conditioned coach on the Island Explorer. This hop-on/hop-off service runs daily and with 18 stops on the agenda, takes you to many of the secluded bays and secret hideaways located around the island. Day passes for this service can be purchased from the Rottnest Island Visitors Centre.

Or combine 'Bike and Bus' – bike until you are tired and leave it at a bus stop and enjoy the bus ride back to the settlement. Ideal for families or beginner cyclists. The visitor centre is also a great place to book a number of tours. Choices range from historic train journeys, lighthouse tours, underwater explorations, segway tours, skydiving, and glass bottom boat rides. Visit rottnestisland.com for more.

A WATER PLAYGROUND

Not surprisingly, water activities play a major role in island life - from snorkelling and diving to fishing, surfing, boating, kayaking, sailing and swimming!

With just over 135 species of vibrant tropical fish and 20 species of coral, heading below the surface is a truly worthwhile experience. Rottnest Island boasts the world's most southerly corals seasoned divers will be happy to know that just off the coast slumbers a vast graveyard of over 13 shipwrecks waiting to be explored. Informational plaques can be found alongside the wrecks and are complemented by onshore plaques indicating their location for those that don't want to brave the depths.

Rottnest Island is also renowned for surfing with some of the best breaks in the world found at Strickland Bay. Surfing season is at its best from May to October and boards are available for hire from Rottnest Island Peddle & Flipper. Also during the warmer months, families can climb, slide and jump on the inflatable, floating Just 4 Fun Aqua Park in North Thomson Bay.

ROTTNEST ISLAND FUN

Rottnest Island also offers endless fun on land. Kids can challenge friends and family to a round of mini golf, jump on trampolines and play arcade games at the Family Fun Park or watch the latest release blockbuster movies at the Picture Hall. Adults can play a round of lawn bowls or golf at the newly renovated Rottnest Island Country Club before relaxing at the Rottnest Island Karma Spa.

When it comes to food and drink, you'll be spoilt for choice. From sweeping ocean views and fresh seafood at Aristos Waterfront Restaurant and Hotel Rottnest; great coffee at The Lane, Dome Café and Geordie's Café; delicious pub grub at Govenor's Bar and Riva Restaurant and Courthouse Bar to casual bites from Subway, Rottnest Bakery and The General Store are more.

WALKING TRAILS & TOURS

Explore Rottnest Island's following one of the many bike and walk trails that criss-cross the island (pick up a map from the visitor centre), explore the Wadjemup Bidi or join one of the free guided walking tours run by the Rottnest Island Volunteer Guides which start from the flagpole south of the Visitor Centre - look for the guide in a yellow shirt!

Bike & walk trails

  • Bickley Battery Heritage Trail (Military)
  • Oliver Hill Heritage Trail (Military)
  • Rottnest Ship Wrecks Heritage Trail – Land and Water
  • Colonial Buildings Heritage Trail
  • Parker Point Loop Environmental Trail
  • Signal Ridge Heritage Trail

Wadjemup Bidi

The Wadjemup Bidi will take you across spectacular coastal headlands, past stunning lakes and natural and man-made attractions. Wadjemup Bidi is 45 kilometres of trails made up of 5 sections, each boasting culturally and environmentally significant landmarks to interpret and experience.

ROTTNEST ISLAND FREE GUIDED WALKS

  • Reefs and Sailors Tour
  • Vlaming Lookout and Salt Lakes Walk
  • Bickley Battery Walk
  • Quokka Walk
  • History of the Settlement

WHAT'S ON AT ROTTNEST ISLAND

Check out some of the great events coming up on Rottnest Island.
  • Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim

    Rottnest Island | Dates: 25 – 25 Feb, 2017
    Highly regarded worldwide and one of Western Australia's iconic events, the Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim is a 19.7km open water swim from Cottesloe Beach to Rottnest Island, taking place in 2017 on 25 February.
  • Swim Stars Champs of the Bay

    Rottnest Island | Dates: 26 – 26 Feb, 2017
    Give your kids the opportunity to try open water swimming in the pristine waters of Thomson Bay, Rottnest Island, with the Swim Stars Champs of the Bay on Sunday 26 February, 2017. Run by Swimming WA's Open Water Swimming Series, the event will be held the day after the Rottnest Channel and elite Champions of the Channel swims.
  • John Farnham Concert on Rottnest Island

    Rottnest Island | Dates: 12 – 12 Mar, 2017
    Don't miss John Farnham with special guest Daryl Braithwaite on Rottnest Island on Sunday 12 March, 2017. What better place to enjoy a Sunday session with John Farnham and special guest Darryl Braithwaite, than at the iconic Hotel Rottnest, overlooking the stunning Thomson Bay! Purchase your tickets today!
  • The Hotel Rottnest Port to Pub

    Rottnest Island | Dates: 25 – 25 Mar, 2017
    The Hotel Rottnest Port to Pub swim celebrates its second event on 25 March 2017. The Port to Pub swim commences at Leighton Beach in Perth and concludes in front of the Hotel Rottnest on Rottnest Island. The event is open to solo swimmers, and teams of two, four and six swimmers.

PLAN YOUR TRIP TO ROTTNEST ISLAND

Click the icons below to see Rottnest Island accommodation, Rottnest Island dining and attractions, Rottnest Island tours and events from around the region.

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WATCH ROTTNEST ISLAND

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