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Tuesday, October 22, 2019

New Melbourne to Margaret River direct flights


Castle Bay in the Margaret River region
Exploring one of Western Australia’s most diverse destinations is now easier thanks to Jetstar’s new direct flights between Melbourne and the Margaret River region.


From March 25, 2020, Jetstar will operate three direct services a week between Tullamarine Airport and the Busselton-Margaret River Airport, making it possible for visitors from Australia’s east coast to travel non-stop to one of Australia’s premium wine regions – either for a short or long break.

Named by Lonely Planet as the number one destination to visit in 2019 on its Best in Asia Pacific list, Margaret River is the only premium wine region in Australia where visitors can hop from award-winning wineries, breweries and restaurants, to stunning beaches, tall-timber forests, world-class surf breaks and ancient caves.

Food and wine lovers can visit more than 85 cellar doors with many offering restaurants with vineyard and ocean views; taste the artisanal creations of the region’s boutique breweries and distilleries; or tour the local farmers markets and providores.

The region is home to many of WA’s top producers and suppliers of cheese, chocolate, olive oil, craft beer, spirits, seafood and world-class chefs who draw their inspiration from local fresh produce and the stunning landscapes.

Beyond the premium food and wine, there’s the picturesque walk trails, ancient caves and pristine beaches, alongside a thriving art scene, ancient stories from traditional owners, kid-friendly attractions and an underwater playground at the longest timber piled jetty in the southern hemisphere – Busselton Jetty.

Accommodation options in the region range from chalets and villas to farm stays and B&Bs; caravan parks and camping to family-friendly hotels and resorts; or luxury retreats and glamping to secluded private property getaways.

Travellers wishing to extend their Margaret River region adventure can head further south to discover the raw, dramatic coastline and historic stories of Albany and the tall tingle trees at Walpole. Travel a little further inland to find cooler climate wines, fresh local marron and black truffles at Pemberton and Manjimup. Or, head north to go swimming with dolphins at Bunbury.

Visits can be timed to coincide with one of the region’s lively annual events including the internationally renowned Western Australian Gourmet Escape (November), Margaret River Pro (May) and Cape to Cape (October). Or, cosy up in the cooler months at events including Truffle Kerfuffle (June) Cabin Fever Festival (July) and CinefestOz Film Festival (August).

The new direct flights will operate Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, departing Tullamarine Airport at 8.00am AEST and arriving at Busselton-Margaret River Airport at 9.05am WST; then returning to Melbourne at 9.40am WST.

Flights are now on sale through Jetstar.com, with fares currently starting from $192^.

For more information on WA’s Margaret River region, visit westernaustralia.com.

Visitor experiences in the Margaret River region
  • Enjoy a long lunch of fresh local produce prepared by award winning chefs at one of the region’s many vineyard based restaurants such as Vasse Felix, Cullen Wines, Leeuwin Estate, Wills Domain and Amelia Park.
  • Give surfing or stand up paddle boarding a go. Sheltered beaches, bays and epic swells are dotted along the coast.
  • Walk or train to the end of the Busselton Jetty, then meet the colourful fish and sea-life at the Underwater Observatory. At 1.8 kilometres, the jetty is the longest timber piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • Be amazed by over 2,500 species of wildflowers decorating the coastal walking tracks and forests with vivid colour from August to November.
  • Learn about the Margaret River region on an Aboriginal cultural tour with a traditional owner from Koomal Dreaming and Cape Cultural Tours.
  • Browse the beautiful boutiques and galleries of Dunsborough, Yallingup and Margaret River. There’s homewares, local art, florists, clothing stores, great cafes and plenty of beautiful souvenirs.
  • Stock up on local chocolate, cheese, olives, olive oil, nougat, bread and venison at local providores or the weekly farmers market, then picnic or camp amongst the karri trees in Boranup Forest.
  • Head underground and explore the ancient limestone cave formations. Join an underground tour at Lake, Jewel, Mammoth or Ngilgi Caves.
  • Walk a section or all of the Cape to Cape track. The track runs 135 kilometres from Cape Naturaliste near Dunsborough, to Cape Leeuwin near Augusta, with companies such as Cape to Cape Explorer Tours and Walk into Luxury offering guided walking tours.
  • Climb the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, Australia’s tallest mainland lighthouse, and see where the Southern Ocean and Indian Ocean meet. There’s also the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse, which has undergone a major upgrade and offers panoramic ocean views from a new observation platform, landscaped lawns, a nautical-themed playground and Lightkeeper’s Inn Café.
  • Jump on a charter boat and watch the whales frolic in Geographe Bay between June and November. There are several whale watching tours operating in the Margaret River region, departing from Dunsborough and Augusta.
  • Go rock climbing, abseiling, mountain biking, eco quad biking, fat biking, horse riding and canoeing.
  • Enjoy a dip with a difference at the Injidup Natural Spa, before taking an Insta-worthy shot of Sugarloaf Rock.
  • Sample some of the best local brews, spirits and ciders such as Black Brewing Co, The Beer Farm, Cheeky Monkey, Eagle Bay Brewery and Wild Hop Brewing Co. Or, make your own gin at Margaret River Distilling Co’s Giniversity.
  • Oh, and since the region is famous for its wine, taste the region’s premium drops on a winery tour. The region produces around 20 per cent of Australia’s premium wine, and there’s more than 85 cellar doors. Make sure you elect a designated driver, or better yet, join one of the many tours available.

^One-way, excludes checked baggage. Not available on all flights or days and availability may be limited. Selected travel dates and conditions apply.

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