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Southern Forests

It’s time to escape to the Southern Forests region of WA, the tranquil region is the ideal place to get back to nature. The region takes in the towns of Bridgetown, Nannup, Manjimup, Pemberton and Balingup, as well as the many forests, national parks and dramatic coastlines that surround them.

You can wander through the amazing forests of the region, taking in the 400-year-old giants trees. It is an incredibly biodiverse area with stunning blackbutt, Jarrah and Marri Forests as well as the Karri and tingle Trees. You can even test your fear of heights, climbing up two of the Karri trees, the highest is 75m.

The region is not just about forests though, you can take in the quaint country towns or stretch your legs along either the Bibbulmun track or the Munda Biddi Trail (2 world-class walks), there are stunning rivers, waterfalls and waterholes to explore and delightful local produce. Not to mention there are 20 national parks to experience, including D'Entrecasteaux National Park which includes Yeagarup Dunes – the largest landlocked sand dunes in the southern Hemisphere.

It’s the perfect place to visit during winter, the valleys are full, or mist and you can curl up around the fire.

Our top picks of things to do:

1. Take in the Yeagarup sand dunes in D'Entrecasteaux National Park. The best way to discover the dunes is to jump on a tour with Pemberton Discover Tours. The incredible 4wd tour takes you through the towering forests, lets you explore the pristine dunes and brings you to the deserted Yeagarup Beach.

2. Visit the climbing trees, once fire lookouts, the Gloucester tree and Dave Evans Bicentennial tree are now available for the enjoyment of visitors. We recommend visiting the Gloucester Tree, which is located in the Gloucester National Park just outside of Pemberton. You can climb 53 metres high on metal pegs inserted into the tree and is worth a visit even if you don’t get too far off the ground. Please note, Climbing the Gloucester Tree is not for the faint of heart!

3. Donnelly River Cruises are an award-winning cruise company offering a unique Ecotourism experience. Cruises along the Donnelly River will take you through spectacular scenery. Take in D’Entrecasteaux National Park and the diverse river ecosystem as you meander along the river, accessing that aren't even accessible by 4WD. The tour takes you to the river mouth where you have the opportunity to disembark and walk this remote and pristine part of the world.

4. Experience the Wildflowers. During the spring, the forests come alive with an extra pop of colour as thousands of wildflowers bloom. Find out more about the wildflower season here.

Where to stay:

Our friends at Balingup Heights Hilltop Forest Cottages is the perfect place to base yourself. The award-winning property has so much to offer, your kids will love feeding the farm animals and you can get out and explore the surroundings or just sit back with a book by the fire.

RAC Karri Valley Resort is your idyllic winter's getaway. Wake up to the misty lake views from your accommodation or from the warmth of the fire at the onsite restaurant. RAC Karri Valley offers beautiful secluded forest cabins, lakeside rooms and even camping sites. There are plenty of activities at the resort to keep you busy, including canoeing and fishing on the lake along with hiking trails.

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