Busselton, Western Australia
2019 Best Grey Nomad
Attraction or Tour
"A visit is like entering a marine Disneyland with meeters and greeters, smiling faces, souvenirs and treats, a train ride where you seem to float on water and an underwater observatory where you can watch ocean creatures in the wild glide by unaffected by your presence."
That is what one assessor remarked about this 154-year-old heritage listed Jetty which stretches 1.84 kilometres across the Indian Ocean. It is officially the longest tourist jetty in the southern hemisphere and visitors often spot wildlife including dolphins, stingrays, sea lions and whales.
shermen; there are also several interpretive signs along the Jetty
That underwater observatory, it is one of only six in the world and transports visitors eight metres below the ocean surface into a rarely-glimpsed world. Our tip: Download the WA Department of Fisheries Recreational Fishing Guides before you go.
And the train, it is solar powered, fast, quiet, efficient and saves your legs when you are feeling a little tired.
The jetty is a unique attraction adjacent to the Busselton Visitor Centre and beach-side restaurants.
Experiences: In addition to the above, you can enjoy:
The iconic blue building on the Jetty houses the Interpretive Centre, which is home to the ticket office, gift shop and Museum. Learn about the colourful history through two interactive on-wall touch screens with three centuries worth of images, videos and stories. A touch table enables users to select and see the visual changes to the Jetty structure and length from the 1800’s to 2000’s. The Museum is open 7 days a week and entry is free.
An underwater helmet walk without scuba-diving equipment. The Busselton Jetty Undersea Walk is the first of its kind in Australia and one of the first seabed walks in the world to operate without a compressor or air hoses. Instead you wear a dive helmet and self-contained backpack. So you are free at the bottom of the sea, truly able to experience the underwater world for yourself.
With an estimated 35,000 humpbacks, southern right and sometimes blue whales migrating from the Antarctic each year, two tour operators run daily whale watching excursions which depart from the Jetty (weather dependent) between mid September and mid December.
At other times, check out the life-size whale murals by local artist Ian Mutch adorn the jetty's platform far out to sea. These murals were painted with the assistance of the community and are the only fully-scaled painted representations of Australia's most common whales.
A free self-guided history audio app can be donwloaded from margaretriver.com allowing you to listen to the Jetty’s story as you walk, with beacons situated every 150m or so, activated by Bluetooth enabled phones.
A Bollard Quiz Trail that includes questions and answers all the way along the Jetty about it’s shipping and timber history. An interactive Direction Dial, where visitors scan a QR Code to see their distance from home, provides an interesting insight into the Jetty’s location relative to other international destinations and highlights that the Bermuda Triangle is on the opposite side of the earth, under the Jetty!
Location: Busselton beachfront (beach end of Queen St), Busselton (The Busselton Caravan Park No 1 is only a five-minute walk and is located in the street directly behind the Busselton Jetty.)
Facilities: Booking office, gift shop, toilets, free car parking.