Albany is a port city on south coast of Western Australia, 400 km south of Perth, the state capital. It is situated on Princess Royal Harbour, a natural inlet of the Southern Ocean, 5 km east west and 3 km north south. Exports are grains, and woodchips. Imports are mainly raw materials for the production of fertilizers. The population is approximately 30,000. Albany is actually the oldest continuous settlement in Western Australia, and was founded in 1826, three years before Perth. Until the construction of Fremantle Port in 1897, Albany was the only deepwater port in Western Australia. Unlike nearly all of Western Australia, Albany is cool and wet, with a Mediterranean climate. It receives an average of 942 mm of rainfall per annum and its average summer temperature is only 22.4°C. Information is available from the City of Albany web site .
The direct route on the Albany Highway from Perth is around 4 hours drive, on single carriageway road with 110km/hr speed limit. There are overtaking lanes every 5-10km or so. There is not much in the way of tourist attractions on this road, and the more scenic routes add significant additional kilometres and time to the trip.
There is a practical cycleway network connecting the areas of Albany, and several bicycle hire places in town. In particular the historical area, shopping precinct, Middleton Beach and Emu Point are all linked by a waterfront off-road cycleway.
Albany Convict Gaol - corner of Stirling Terrace & Parade Street. Tel: +61-8-9841-5403. Restored complex of men’s cell blocks and some warders' quarters, built in 1852 for Imperial convicts shipped to WA as artisans and skilled labourers. This is also the town's main museum with extensive historic presentations of the local area including maps, photographs, interesting Aboriginal artifacts, and relics from the penal colony days. Open daily from 10:30AM to 4:30PM. Special night tours are also available on Fridays and Saturdays.
Residency Museum - near Stirling Terrace. Originally built as a store in the 1850s but converted into the Government Residency from 1873-1953. Open from 10AM to 5PM from Monday to Saturday and from 2PM to 5PM on Sundays. See the jaws of a white pointer shark and the huge rotating lens from the old Eclipse Lighthouse.
Albany Public Library and Information Service - York Street. Tel: +61-9841-9390. Also offers internet access.
Albany Tourist Information Centre - at the Old Railway Station on Proudlove Parade. Tel: +61-8-9841-1088.
Albany Town Hall Theatre - York Street. Tel: +61-8-9841-1661. Plays, concerts, musicals of all kinds, located in one of Western Australia's oldest buildings.
Albany Wind Farm - 12km south-west of the city centre. Worth a visit even if you are not into windmills. Twelve 1800kW wind turbines supply a large percentage of Albany's electrical requirements. The Wind Farm is open every day of the year. There is a large car-parking area, extensive network of boardwalks with views over the southern ocean. There is artwork and information panels containing profound statements as you admire the view. The Bibbulmum Track passes through the area, and there is a staircase down the cliff to the ocean. Entry is free.
Beaches- Albany is located right on the coast with two stunning beaches; Middleton Beach and Emu Point both within a few minutes drive of the centre of town. Both beaches are ideal for swimming with Emu Point beach being particularly well sheltered making it an ideal place for families with young children to visit. In winter, however, swimming is not for the fainthearted.
Brig Amity Replica - located in the Albany Historical Precinct, off Princess Royal Drive. Tel: +61-8-9841-5403. Replica of the Brig Amity (built in 1975) which brought Albany's first settlers from Sydney in 1826. Open daily. There is an honour box to pay entry fee onto the ship.
Old Post Office Building, Stirling Terrace. Historic former customs and bond store, with the middle level being a sorting area and post office. The spiral staircase in the tower is magnificent, and the building now houses the Albany campus of the University of Western Australia.
Patrick Taylor Cottage Museum, 39 Duke Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-6174. Wattle and daub home, built circa 1832, the oldest surviving dwelling in Western Australia. Open daily.
The Princess Royal Fortress, Forts Road (off Marine Drive), Tel: +61-8-9841 9333, . The Princess Royal Battery currently functions as a tourist destination and provides an insight into the site and Australian military history generally. Apart from the many exhibits and displays, the site incorporates a small shop and tearooms for visitors; a function centre; and a covered area with barbecues and tables.
Vancouver Arts Centre, Vancouver Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-9260. Housed in the former Albany Cottage Hospital, a heritage-listed building built in 1887, the VAC is a focal point for all forms of the arts in the Albany area.
Whale World, Tel: +61-8-9844-4021, . Situated on the site of the old Cheynes Beach Whaling Station, closed in 1978. Includes 'Whalers Galley Café-Restaurant,' whale-orientated museum with 20 different exhibits including ‘Giants of the Sea’ whale skeleton display, 3D whale movies, souvenir shop and visits to the 'Cheynes IV' an actual former whaling ship, tied up next to the museum.
Albany Leisure and Aquatic Centre, Barker Road, Tel: +61-8-9841-2788. Gymnasium for fitness activities, swimming (including swimming lessons), aquarobics, basketball, netball, volleyball, indoor soccer, tennis, indoor hockey, badminton, rollerblading, climbing wall, crèche for minding children, activities for seniors, plus Jamma's Café. Open daily.
Albany Historic Town Trails - Two walks which visit 39 places of significant historical interest within a 2 km radius of central business district. One starts from the Gaol and the other from Stirling Terrace. Free maps area available from the tourist information centre.
Bibbulmun Track, . Long distance walking path running from Kalamunda, east of Perth, to Albany, a distance of 963 km. (The name comes from the Bibbulmun, or Noongar people.) There is also a parallel bicycle trail, called the Munda Biddi Trail, for part of the distance.
Desert Mounted Corps War Memorial - originally located at Port Said in Egypt, unveiled by Prime Minister 'Billy' Hughes in 1932. Shipped back to Australia in 1959. Good views from this point.
Mount Clarence Trails - from the War Memorial at the end of Apex Drive around the edges of Mount Clarence. Views of the harbour and the town.
South Coast Diving - Shop 84b Serpentine Road, Albany. Tel: +61-8-9841-7176. Guided dives, snorkel and scuba. Boat charters. Dive locations include Seal Island, Breaksea Coves and the HMAS Perth dive wreck scuttled in 2001.
Quaranup Point Possession Trail - 1.6 km walk from Albany's old Quarantine Station to Point Possession where George Vancouver claimed the whole of Western Australia for Great Britain. It is on the far side of Princess Royal Harbour on the way out to Torndirrup National Park.
Albany Farmers Market, . Located on Collie Street. Held every Saturday morning.
Albany Boatshed Market, Located on Priness Royal Harbour between the Albany Entertainment Centre and Albany Port. The Market is held every Sunday morning. Fresh produce, bakery items, jams, chutneys and local seafood are some of the items for sale.
Albany Dog Rock Motel Restaurant & Function Centre, Middleton Road, Tel: +61-8-9841-1400,.
Bay Merchants Gourmet Deli, near the beach on Adelaide Crescent, Tel: +61-8-9841-7821. Great coffee using local milk from the Ravenhill Dairy and fresh roasted coffee from the Naked Bean. Homemade cakes, biscuits and gourmet lunches. Open daily from 6:30AM until 6PM.
Cosis Café, corner of York Street and Peels Place, Tel: +61-8-9841-7899. Indoor booths and tables, or busy outdoor alfresco square on York Street. Coffee and cakes as well as an extensive lunch and breakfast menu. Open daily until 5PM.
Dylans On The Terrace Restaurant, 82-84 Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9841-8720, . Overlooking Princess Royal Harbour. Breakfast served all day. Excellent coffee. Open daily from 7AM until late. In business since 1987.
Earl of Spencer Historic Inn, corner of Earl Street & Spencer Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-1322, . One of the oldest taverns in Western Australia (since 1874). Four open fires and heritage décor. Light snacks, homemade pies or large country main meals. Open all day. Al fresco dinner in warmer months. Resident ghost.
Golden Town Restaurant & Takeaway, corner of Aberdeen Street & Frederick Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-8038.
Lavender Cottage Restaurant, Peels Place, Tel: +61-8-9842-2073. Historic cottage in the centre of town with French ambience and cuisine. Morning and afternoon teas with homemade cakes & lunches. Open Monday through Friday from 9AM to 4PM; and Friday night for dinner from 6:30PM. Closed Saturday and Sunday.
Leonardo's Ristorante - Stirling Terrace. Tel: +61-8-9841-1732. Gourmet Italian menu. Open Monday through Saturday, from 6:30PM until late.
Moby Dick's Fish & Chips, 60 South Coast Highway, Tel: +61-8-9841-6142.
Monet’s Café, at Middleton Beach, Tel: +61-8-9842-6900. Morning and afternoon teas and lunch. Cakes and coffee in a courtyard garden. Open Wednesday to Sunday from 8AM until 5PM; Friday and Saturday night dinner from 6PM until late. Closed Monday and Tuesday.
Naked Bean Coffee Bean Coffee Roasters, Sanford Road opposite the Post Office. Tel: +61-8-9841-4225. Many blends of coffee, cakes and slices. Open Monday to Friday from 8AM until 5PM. Located a bit out of town towards Perth.
Nonna's Brasseria, York Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-4626. Gourmet Italian food. Open from 11AM until late on weekdays and from 5PM until late on Saturdays. Closed Sundays.
O`Ba-San Sushi Bar, York Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-6820. Japanese take-away food. Open daily.
Origin Indian Tandoori Restaurant, 75 Frederick St. Tel: +61-8-9841-1008. Open 7 days for dinner. BYO.
Poppie's Cafe, Mews Arcade on York Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-7595. Morning and afternoon tea and light lunches. Closed Sundays.
Rookley’s Gourmet Café, Peels Place, Tel: +61-8-9842-2236. Al fresco gourmet dining. Open Monday through Saturday from 9AM to 3PM (winter) & 9AM to 5PM (summer). Closed Sundays.
Rustlers Steak House, stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9842-2454. Wood-fire-heated outdoor dining area. Varied menu including steaks, seafood and vegetarian items. Kid's menu. Open 5PM until late.
Shells Restaurant, Albany Highway, Tel: +61-8-9841-4144. Open daily from 6:30PM.
Sonatas on Serpentine Restaurant, Serpentine Road, Tel: +61-8-9842-5772.
Three Plenties Palace Restaurant, 148 York Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-4121. Chinese food.
Venice Pizza Bar & Restaurant, 179 York Street, Tel: +61-8-9842-3978. All day menu including traditional-style Italian pizzas and cuisine, seafood, fresh filled rolls and pastas & delicious home made cakes. Open from 9:30AM till late, six days a week. Closed Sunday.
Whalers' Gallery Restaurant, at Whaleworld, but you don't have to pay the admission to eat there. Nice views of the water. Burgers, seafood platters, dips and kids meals. Tel: +61-8-9844-4347.
Albany Hotel, York Street, Tel: +61-8-9842-3337. Street-side bar right in the centre of town with sheltered outdoor al fresco area. Counter meal menu, plus coffees, as well as a large range of local and international beers. Open daily.
Liberte at the London Hotel, Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9847-4797. The best ambience in Albany. In addition to the main bar a Cocktail Bar is open Friday and Saturday nights.
Premier Hotel, Lower York Street, (Part of CBC Central Café.) Tel: +61-8-9841-11544. Open daily.
Tanglehead Brewery , Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9841-1733. Modern micro brewery with 4-6 brewed. A tasting selection of 4 beers available for $10. Restaurant open daily for lunch from 12 noon until until 2:30PM. Then dinner from 6PM until late, but food is available in the bar outside those times. Serves local produce and locally ground Naked Bean coffee.
Albany Best Western Motel and Apartments (previously the Frederickstown Motel), corner of Frederick's Street & Spencer Street. Tel: +61-8-9841-1600. Unlicenced Restaurant and a central location, the only motel/hotel in Albany with views of the harbour. 39 units, prices from $119 per night.
Albany's Cruize-Inn, 122 Middleton Road, Tel: +61-8-9842-9599, . Self-contained house with 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, fully equipped kitchen and dining area, modern laundry and a spacious living area with island style BYO bar, piano and tile fire.
Albany Dog Rock Motel Restaurant & Function Centre, Middleton Road, Tel: +61-8-9841-1400, . Internet available. Price range of rooms from $86 to $189.
Albany Gardens Holiday Resort, 22 Wellington Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-4616, . Variety of self-contained deluxe units, holiday units, and chalets. Caravan and motor home sites, grassed, with double concrete pads, drive-thru, in garden settings. Ensuite powered sites, powered sites and unpowered sites. Communal showers and toilets. Laundry. (Formerly known as the 'Mt Melville Caravan Park.')
Albany Happy Days Caravan Park, Lot 21, Millbrook Road, Tel: +61-8-9844-3267, . Ensuite cabins, spa chalets, onsite caravans, grassed van & tent sites. Shop, laundry facilities, canoe hire.
Banksia Gardens Resort Motel/Apartments, 212 Albany Highway, Tel: +61-8-9842-4111, . Serviced apartments, located a short drive to Albany city centre & Middleton Beach. One, two or three bedroom suites with landscaped gardens. Includes 'Endeavour Restaurant.'
Norman House Bed & Breakfast, 28 Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9841-5995.
Oakview Cottage Bed & Breakfast, 34 Fredrick Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-4538.
Oyster Harbour Caravan Park, Elizabeth Street, Tel: +61-8-9844-7164.
Panorama Caravan Park, 106 Frenchmans Bay Road, Tel: +61-8-9844-4031.
Royal George Hotel/Motel, 62 Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9841-1466. Budget hotel rooms plus motel-style units. Counter meals. Beer garden and satellite TV. Views of harbour from upstairs rooms. Price range of rooms: $39 to $74.
Ryan's Premier Hotel/Motel, York Street, Tel: +61-8-9841-1544.
Sherrilou Bed & Breakfast, 104 Middleton Road, Tel: +61-8-9841-4751.
The Beach House at Bayside, 33 Barry Court, Tel: +61-8-9844-8844.
The Castlereagh, 9 Flinders Parade, Tel: +61-8-9842-0500.
The Terrace Bed & Breakfast, 36 Marine Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9842-9901.
Torbay Guest House, Lot 24, Peet Rise, at Cosy Corner Torbay, Tel: +61-8-9845-1327.
Valley Pond Farmstay, 3 Pine Rise at Lower Kalgan, Tel: +61-8-9846-4224. Farm holidays in self-contained stone chalet with slow combustion stove. 30 acre property.
View Street Lodge, 35 View Street, Tel: +61-8-9842-8820.
White Star Hotel/Motel, 72 Stirling Terrace, Tel: +61-8-9841-1733.
Woodridge Country Retreat, Tackenup Road, Napier, Tel: +61-8-9844-3446.
Woody Grange Chalets, 208 Willyung Road, Tel: +61-8-9844-3458, . 4 self-contained chalets on 80 acres. No smoking. No pets.
Denmark - 50 km's east of Albany, Denmark is home to surfing beaches, wineries and shopping.
Stirling Range National Park - about 80 km north of Albany. Rugged peaks rising abruptly to more than 1000m (3281 ft) above sea level, with stark cliff faces, magnificent views and rare plants ranging from tiny orchids and heathland to flowering gums. Most peaks have paths leading from the parking areas to the top. This is the only place in Western Australia to have any snowfall.
The Rainbow Coast - stretches from the hamlet of Walpole in the west to Bremer Bay in the east, and from Albany in the south to the towns of Kojonup and Katanning in the north. Approaching Walpole is the tree top walk, where you can walk amongst the large red tingle eucalyptus trees.
Torndirrup National Park - along Frenchman Bay Road, less than a twenty minute drive out of town. Dramatic and beautiful coastline, known for 'the Gap,' 'the Natural Bridge,' 'the Blowholes' and 'Peak Head.' Panoramic views from the Stoney Hill Heritage Trail. Visit Elephant Rocks and Green Pool for safe swimming, amongst spectacular coastal scenery. Toilets and change facilities are located at some points in the park, but not all. Check the maps, and plan accordingly.
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