The most Instagrammable spots around Albany and the Great Southern

Western Australia Great Southern Albany The Gap
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Those partial to a tipple will know WA’s Great Southern as Australia’s largest wine producing region, so it’s no surprise the area is as scenic as it is delicious. Famous for breathtaking national parks and mountain ranges, award-winning wineries and some of the country’s best beaches, the region is no stranger to a picture-perfect photo opportunity. 

The Great Southern region encompasses the towns of Bremer Bay, Kojonup, Katanning, Broomehill Village – Tambellup, Cranbrook and Frankland River, Gnowangerup and Stirling Range, Porongurup, Pingrup, Albany, Mount Barker and Denmark. We’ve done the leg work, so you don’t have to. Here are 12 of the most Instagrammable spots in the Great Southern.

Misery Beach, Albany

Renowned for taking out the title as Australia’s Best Beach by Tourism Australia in 2022, Misery Beach is characterised by its 200-metre coastline, sugar-white sand and massive granite outcrop. While origins of the name stem from Albany’s notorious whaling history, the beach is now appreciated for its natural beauty – and a place to admire humpback whales on their migration.

Bluff Knoll, Stirling Range National Park

For those with a taste for adventure paired with magnificent outlooks, Bluff Knoll is the South West’s highest point and a rite of passage for countless West Australians. Located within the Stirling Range National Park, 4.5 hours south of Perth and 1.5 hours from Albany, the 6.8-kilometre return trail delivers climbers to the top of the peak via a steep path (a humble 1098 metres above sea level). While the Grade 4 track isn’t for the faint of heart, the summit views are spectacular and well-worth the effort.

The Gap & Natural Bridge, Torndirrup National Park

Best known for its impressive collection of natural wonders and situated only 10 kilometres south of Albany, Torndirrup National Park is home to coastal rock formations like the Natural Bridge, The Gap and The Blowholes – three spots well worth adding to the bucket list.

Western Australia Great Southern Albany The Gap

Greens Pool & Elephant Rocks, Denmark

It would be rude not to mention two of WA’s most iconic swim spots: the illustrious Greens Pool and Elephant Rocks. Settled on the edge of William Bay National Park, approximately 15 kilometres from the town of Denmark, the coastline is perfect for all to enjoy their various pursuits, whether that be a swim, snorkel, explore or beach walk. Greens Pool is a turquoise watered wonderland, framed by large granite boulders that protect it from the wind and waves of the Southern Ocean. A short 10-minute track takes travellers to Elephant Rocks, a sheltered bay characterised by huge granite boulders that resemble a heard of elephants striding out to sea. The opal ocean, intriguing rock formations and white – and sometimes squeaky – sand make for a spoiling when it comes to sea-inspired photo opportunities.

Valley of the Giants

Perched between Demark and Walpole, a visit to The Valley of the Giants region, is a must for anyone with a taste for nature and exploration. The celebrated Tree Top Walk is 40 metres high, in the canopy of the ancient tingle forest. It sits within the Walpole-Nornalup National Park and Walpole Wilderness, offering sensational views over the forested hills. Punters can also explore the boardwalks below to experience the Ancient Empire Walk, a grove of veteran tingle trees, some of which have been standing for over 400 years. 

Valley of The Giants

Castle Rock Granite Skywalk, Porongurup National Park

Castle Rock is located within the Porongurup National Park, just a 45-minute drive north from Albany. Renowned for its flora and fauna, there is a walk trail to the apex, which boasts 360-degree views, 570 metres above sea level from the Granite Skywalk. The suspended walkway spirals around the huge granite outcrop of Castle Rock to the summit, where remarkable views will consist of undulating farmland to Albany on the south coast, the Stirling Ranges to the north and Mount Gardner and Mount Manypeaks to the south-east.

Great Southern Wine Region 

Touted as the most ancient, isolated and largest wine region in the world, the Great Southern Wine Region covers more than 1.7 million hectares and is up to 2.8 billion years old. Known for its scenic diversity and dramatic contrasts, the vines sit amongst tall timber forests, swathes of rich agricultural land, dramatic peaks, mountain ranges and rivers. There’s a bounty of gorgeous wineries worth a gander, a few cult favourites include Rockcliffe Winery, The Lake House, Estate 807, Forest Hill Wines and Castelli Estate. The Great Southern wine region features five sub-regions, characterised by distinctive geomorphic and climatic conditions. According to distinguished wine critic, James Halliday, Albany, Porongurup, Mt Barker, Denmark and Frankland River, each produce distinctive wine styles and subregional flavours.

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Bald Head Walk Trail, Torndirrup National Park

With the Southern Ocean on one side and King George Sound on the other, Bald Head Walk Trail is famous for its duo of breathtaking views. The challenging 12.5-kilometre hike set within the picturesque Torndirrup National Park, requires 4-7 hours of perseverance. If you’re down for a dose of adrenaline-pumping adventure (and you’re fit enough to manage it), there’s no doubt the hike is worthy of the bucket list.

Western Australia Great Southern Bald Head Walk Trail

Bremer Bay

Branded by its white squeaky sand, crystal-clear waters and rugged landscapes, Bremer Bay is one of WA’s most isolated, yet scenic holiday destinations. Perched between Albany and Esperance, the town lies 500 kilometres south west of Perth (5-hours and 15-minutes by car). Beach hopping is by far best way to while away the hours. Blossoms Beach is wildly popular with families for its super shallow water, Native Dog Beach is a great option for those looking to tackle the tides on a surfboard and Back Beach is 4WD only and another spot worth a gander.

Native Dog Beach, Bremer Bay
Image credit: Alexandra Casey

Wildflower Season

WA is home to one of the largest wildflower collections on Earth, with over 60 percent of the 12,000 species, unique to the area. For all things wildflowers in the Great Southern region, check out Torndirrup National Park, Stirling Range National Park and Porongurup National Park.

Two Peoples Bay (Little Beach & Waterfall Beach), Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve

Located around 40-minutes east of Albany, Two Peoples Bay reached the peak of its notoriety via Instagram. Perfect for swimming, diving, canoeing and fishing, the breathtakingly beautiful Little Beach and the adjacent Waterfall Beach are separated by a short walk. And if you’re keen to get your pulse pumping, check out the 5-kilometre return Baie des Deux Peuples Heritage Trail, which begins at the Visitor Centre and leads you through native flora before arriving for a refreshing dip at the coves.

Albany Wind Farm, Albany

Known by locals as Sand Patch, Albany’s Wind Farm has become more than a sustainable energy source. The 12 giant wind turbines, each standing at 100 metres, are now a popular tourism attraction, thanks to their sweeping vistas across Torbay, West Cape Howe National Park and the city of Albany. There’s also a massive clifftop staircase (even bigger than Jacobs Ladder), that leads to the ocean if you’re feeling like a little exercise!

Western Australia Great Southern Albany Wind Farm