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Rottnest Island

Rottnest Island Western Australia

The paradise island of WA, spiritual home of the quokka selfie.

At a Glance

Rottnest Island has the reputation of being one of the most popular destination in the Perth tourism region. This reputation does not just consist of empty claims either, there are truly an abundance of exciting activities you can enjoy on this beautiful island surrounded by prime beaches and clear blue water.

Your journey to ‘Rotto’ will start with an amazing scenic ferry ride or a flight across a portion of the majestic Indian Ocean. Your adventure will begin once you have arrived. There are truly endless choice of activities to indulge in, you can take part in water sports, cycle around the island, explore the historical heritage of the island through an island tour with Australian Pinnacle Tours to experience all the natural wonders Rottnest Island encompasses, go whale watching, go for a dive or look for the quokkas, the cutest and most photogenic creature on the planet, for the perfect quokka selfie!

Rottnest Island Western Australia

Where is Rottnest Island?


Rottnest Island is 34 kilometres west of Perth.

Rottnest Island, as the name suggests, is an island located around 20 kilometres off the coast of Fremantle. It is surrounded by a series of reefs and smaller islands. The easiest way and the most popular way to get here is to take a ferry from Perth, Fremantle, or Hillarys.

Rottnest Island Western Australia

Things to see in Rottnest Island


Quokka Selfies

You may have seen selfies of famous people such as Tennis legend Roger Federer and Australian actress Margot Robbie, with an incredibly adorable animal. This animal is the quokka, native only to Western Australia and particularly, Rottnest Island. In fact, Rottnest Island supports the largest population of this friendly photogenic creature. So don’t miss out the chance to see ‘the happiest animal on earth’ when you visit WA.

Quokka Selfies Rottnest Island

Image © Tourism Western Australia


The Basin

Rottnest Island is the perfect destination if you love water sports, with 63 stunning beaches and 20 bays to choose from, to your heart’s desire. One of the most popular among them is The Basin, a picturesque bay with striking clear turquoise water, perfect for swimming and snorkelling. There are also a huge range of water activities available around the island like surfing, diving, fishing and many more! Else, you can just chill at the pristine beaches or have a picnic with an amazing ocean view.

The Basin Rottnest Island

Image © Tourism Western Australia


Bicycling at Rottnest Island

The best way to explore Rottnest Island is on two wheels. As cars are not allowed on the island, the next best way to explore the island would be bicycles. Pick up a bicycle and a guide document now and tour around the island and admire the beautiful landscape at your own leisure, be sure to visit the iconic Wadjemup Lighthouse or to the top of the Oliver Hill for an amazing view overlooking the island and the ocean. You can get hold of bike hires while you are booking your ferry ride with Rottnest Express, or you can hire bikes once you are on the island.

Bicycling Rottnest Island

Image © Tourism Western Australia


Skydiving at Rottnest Island

Skydiving may well be one of the most popular item on ‘bucket lists’, so where else would you want to engage in this adrenaline-inducing, thrilling activity if not the picturesque Rottnest Island? Rottnest Island may as well be one of the best skydiving location in WA! Go on a flight from the airstrip on the island and take the jump from the lofty height of 15,000 feet. You will be able to view the striking beaches and reefs from up top while free falling, possibly a once-in-a-lifetime experience for you.

Skydiving Rottnest Island

Image © Tourism Western Australia

What's the weather like?


Rottnest Island experiences a Mediterranean climate where the summer is warm and dry while the winters are mild and wet. In Summer (December to February), the average maximum temperature is 27°C with an average minimum of 19°C. In Winter (June to August), the average maximum temperature is 13°C with an average minimum of 7°C.

Get to know Rottnest Island's history


Rottnest Island was once connected to Mainland Australia but rising sea water separated it from the mainland. Archaeological evidences show that it was originally inhabited by the Aboriginal people before the land bridge is submerged. The island was referenced in the native Noongar mythology as ‘Wadjemup', meaning “place across the water where the spirits are”.

The first Europeans to land on the island were Dutch. It was given the name “Rats’ Nest Island” by a Dutch captain who thought the quokkas were giant rats. The settlement on the island went through several function changes from aboriginal prison, boys reformatory to a military internment camp.

Today, Rottnest Island is mostly dedicated for recreational activities, with a whooping 450,000 to 500,000 annual visitors to admire the beautiful water, reefs and the wildlife.