Visit Albany and experience the Anzac legend where it began.
A small town in Western Australia may not seem a likely spot to hold cultural significance, but Albany on the extreme south west coastline of the state, has a dramatic whaling, convict, settler, maritime, military and Aboriginal history.
Albany, which has been home to the Menang Noongar people for more than 18,000 years, marks the spot where the first European settlers set foot in Western Australia. Much of their legacy remains today, with close to 50 colonial buildings standing proudly as museums, galleries and restaurants.
On a 30-minute self-guided walk along the Amity Trail you can take in almost two centuries of history – from convict prisons, to whaling ships and taverns to quaint cottages and grand National Trust residences.
Albany’s King George Sound also marks the spot where the first convoy of Australian and New Zealand soldiers departed for the battlegrounds of World War One. On 1 November 1914, Albany was the final departure point for the first Anzac troops on their way to the hostile battlefields of Europe and Turkey – an ill-fated pilgrimage that shaped a nation.
Today, you can follow their extraordinary stories through the National Anzac Centre’s state-of-the-art interactive displays.
The Historic Whaling Station at Discovery Bay is now a museum – the only one of its kind to actually be housed in a former whaling station. Today Albany is a major tourist spot for whale-watching and migrating humpback, southern right and blue whales can be spotted from the shore or on a whale-watching cruise.
The breathtaking beauty of Albany’s rugged coastline creates a fitting backdrop for some adventure too. One of the world’s great walking journeys, the Bibbulmun Track, runs from Perth to Albany.
You’ll also find world-class swimming, hiking, fishing, sailing and diving, as well as farmers’ markets, wineries, distilleries, breweries, providores and artisans. Albany is known for its incredible wildflowers, secluded beaches and dramatic coastline – all only five hours south of Perth, down a spectacular coastline that hugs the great Southern Ocean.