The region’s towns of Manjimup, Pemberton and Walpole are quaint, and fairly small, deferring to the natural surrounds that make the Southern Forests particularly special. There are five national parks within a 30-minute drive of Pemberton alone – the Gloucester, Warren, Beedelup, Shannon and D’Entrecasteaux.
For the active, there’s a range of adventures on offer, many taking full advantage of the region’s old-growth forests – tree climbing, for instance. Pemberton has three enormous climbing trees, the largest, the Dave Evans Bicentennial Tree, standing 75m tall. Originally used as fire lookouts in the 1940s, the trio of karri tree lookouts is impressive, but climbing them is not for those with vertigo – or with nervous parents.
- Climb Gloucester, Bicentennial or Diamond lookout trees.
- Take a tour, drive or walk to the Yeagarup sand dunes.
- Go mountain biking in Pemberton, or ride the famous Munda Biddi Trail.
- Tour cellar doors and taste award-winning drops of the Pemberton wine region.
- Fish the rivers and dams for trout, marron and perch; go salmon fishing on the coast, or picnic at Big Brook Dam.
- Take a half-day Donnelly River Cruise to explore nature and Aboriginal heritage, see squatter’s huts, and walk on the edge of the Southern Ocean.
- Take a canoeing tour on the Warren River and learn about the region’s flora and fauna.
- Ride the Pemberton Tramway and wonder at the 1920s timber bridges.
- Enjoy the fresh pancakes, at the Lavender and Berry Farm.
- Swim, picnic or walk around the natural swimming pool, constructed in 1928/29, in the Pemberton Forest Park.