Rottnest Island was first discovered by an European in 1658. The island is well known for the marsupial “Quokkas” – the happiest animal on earth and only be seen in western Australia.
Rottnest is a car free Island and can be reached by ferry, boat or helicopter.
In 1696 de Vlamingh described the Quokka as a kind of a rat as big like a cat. He named the island “Rotte Nest”, meaning rat’s nest.
The name quokka was given to the animal by the aboriginal people.
The quokka was wide spread in southwest Australia on the main land and Rottnest island. Due the loss of habitat and preditors like foxes, shrank the number of quokkas dramaticly.
The lack of preditors and the good food availability on Rottnest the Quoakka population became to grow there. As other marsupilas like kangaroo or wallabies, the female suckle their young in the pouch.
They can be seen often along the trails in shady bushes and in the village. Many animals are attracted by the tourists and their food drops. But visitors shouldn’t feed the animals, because they can get serious ill by eating chips, bread or meat.
The island offers a hotel, spa, country club, fun and water park, cafes, restaurants as well as shops, museum and a church. Explore attractions like the old light houses, guns and underground tunnels.
All year around the island has many events running as well a couple of tours, like walk and bike tours, lighthouse and train tours and much more. You can go golfing, swimming in some great bays with clear water, snorkeling, fishing and bike riding.
The island isn’t that big and the attractions can be reached easily by bike or shuttle bus by ur own. There is a lot to explore on that Island so make sure you get at least a full day on the island.
You can rent a bike on the main land ferry ports or on the island at the visitor centre. I booked a bike and ferry combo through the ferry operator. They offer a lot of tour combos, make sure you compare the price with other rentals and tour operators. A visit isn’t cheap but sure worth the money.
Best is to explore the island by bike, you can make a good distance by biking and have enough time to stop and enjoy the bays and attractions. Make sure you bring your bathing suit and some pick-nick with you. The clear water attracts you to have a swim in it. The island is 11 km long and about 4 km wide, is mostly flat to light hilly. It takes about 3-5 hours to round the island by bike, you will loose most of the time at the beaches by swimming or snorkeling. You will be surprised how fast the time goes by. Finish your day at Thomson Bay by exploring the restaurants and cafes. If you haven’t seen much Quokkas you definitely will see them there then.
How to get there:
Ferries to and from Rottnest operate between Fremantle, Hillarys boat harbour and Barrack Street Jetty. There are a couple services like Rottnets Express, Rottnets Fast Ferries, Captaiin Cook Cruises and more. A bus service is often operated by some ferry companies which picks you up at larger hotels and brings you back. Make sure you check out and compare the combo deals they offer.