The Dunsborough, Yallingup and Eagle Bay area has certainly flourished over the past decade, once a country town that Western Australians spent their summer holidays fishing and swimming to an international destination of wineries, breweries and food experiences. For me, Dunsborough is a place to relax and unwind, my favourite time to visit is in the cooler months, when the rain has greened the sunburnt landscape and the wood fire can be lit at night.
Over the June long weekend a group of us spent a few nights in the town and toured around. Here is a quick snap shot of some but not all of the great local businesses in the area.
Eagle Bay Olives
About a 15 minute drive from Dunsborough’s city centre is a large family owned olive estate and small farm shop. A single olive tree can produce an array of products – premium extra virgin olive oil, table olives, pesto, olive wood utensils and chopping blocks. All of these are available in the farm shop and you can taste for free. Two Fat Cows olive oil ice cream from Margaret River is available to purchase.
Olive Farm and Tasting Shop
521 Cape Naturaliste Road, Eagle Bay
Eagle Bay Brewing Company
Two years later and the Eagle Bay Brewing Company continues to provide consistently good food with exceptional service. After a morning of tasting stops in the area we stopped into the modern brewery for a few drinks by the wood fire. Eagle Bay Brewery have a delicious looking menu with a few choices for dessert, making it a nice fit for those that wish to have a coffee and tea break between wine tastings. I left with a bottle of the Bubbles 2012 ($28.00) and it is also available by the glass in the restaurant for $9.00. Our previous visit can be seen here.
Brewery and Restaurant
252 Eagle Bay Road, Dunsborough
Happs Pottery & Winery
The first time I visited the family owned and run Happs winery was when I was 17 and since then the wine and pottery collection has grown and so has my taste of wines! Happs do a preservative free red and white wine range. If you are a sweet wine person the Fuchsia range gives you 9 choices from muscat to verdelho. Connected to the beautifully rustic cellar door, the large collection of pottery items is organised into colour schemes and looks stunning. I just loved the deep blue range. Bowls, serving platters, dinnerware and vases are some of the items created in the pottery.
Winery, Cellar door and Pottery
575 Commonage Road, Quindalup
A diversified and upmarket winery there is indeed a car gallery with an Aston Martin DB5 and a vintage Lamborghini within the Aravina Estate. A cafe, restaurant, gift store, playground, function room, gazebo gardens and cellar door, this estate will entertain everyone in the family. A more of a casual outdoor dining area overlooks the vines and manicured gardens. I had a bit of fun taking some snaps of my pregnant friend in the gazebo and the foreground of the vines. The garden as you enter straight from the car park (pictured above) seemed like a scene straight out of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Great place!
Winery, Cellar Door and Restaurant
6 Thornton Road, Yallingup
Wulura farm produces some very reasonable priced wines from $10.00 a bottle. The wine tasting session is intimate and informative. The cellar door has a lovely verandah overlooking the dam, a perfect spot for drinking wine. Free wine, honey, dukkah and olive oil tastings are available in the shop.
1071 Wildwood Road, Yallingup
Yallingup Roasting Company
Yallingup Roasting Company is a café located in the centre of Dunsborough. Chairs spill out onto the grass and it is the favourite morning spot for regular holiday makers. The café uses locally produced milk from Bannister Downs. On long weekends the café attracts queues of people but the staff do an amazing job and our coffees were exceptional. There is a yummy collection of slices and cookies on the counter. The lemon pistachio and caramel chocolate hazelnut slices are two of my favourites. Yallingup Roasting Company roast their own coffee beans, you can purchase a pack to take home and even t-shirts with their ocean inspired logo.
Cafe and Espresso Roaster
7b/233 Naturaliste Terrace, Dunsborough WA 6281
Clancys Fish Pub
The last evening of our long weekend we drove to Clancy’s Fish Pub for dinner. The only place where my photos failed and I have nothing to show but only good things to tell. As we entered the log fire was burning and the staff energetically greeted us. We ordered our meals at one counter and drinks from the bar. The menu offers more than seafood, a few items on the special board are omitted from the menu online.
We would definitely eat here again. Food portions were decent and quality was good for pub food. The scotch fillet served in a balsamic sauce and with plenty of mash and beans was the envy of the table. The sauce of the spicy pork ribs was delicious and the wedges great for mopping up that spicy sauce. The sticky date pudding was served with a scoop of burnt butterscotch ice cream, this was the finisher of the night sending me into a food coma in front of the fire back at the house.
Dogs are welcome but be sure to follow the sign at the front for the special entrance, to avoid them going through the restaurant area.
Pub and Restaurant
1710 Caves Rd, Dunsborough
Simmo’s Ice creamery
No trip to Dunsborough is complete without a stop to the original Simmo’s ice creamery. It has become a little bit of a ritual for us to stop through on the way home with our car packed full of bags. I am pretty sure that all 60 favours are available, it certainly looks like 60! My favourite flavours are apple pie, raspberry cheesecake and hazelnut nougat. A great spot for families with a mini carousel, mini golf, picnic tables and playground. Be sure to say hello to the emus and be careful they love ice cream!
Ice creamery and Cafe
161 Commonage Road, Dunsborough
Overnighting in the area
Staying close to Dunsborough town centre is handy as you can walk to the shops and cafes. The Dunsborough town centre is a 10 minute walk to the beach. Eagle Bay has some absolutely stunning and premium style accommodation. The beautiful views and seclusion come at a higher price though. There are some pretty little bays for swimming in Eagle Bay. Yallingup Beach has a small section of homes high on the hill with wonderful views of the ocean, many surfers frequent the area due to the superb location. Yallingup is quiet and serene, sunsets are beautiful in the area. Plenty of walking trails and there is a reasonably priced camping ground.
Accommodation varies from self contained holiday houses to units and large resorts. There is a strip of big chain style resorts between Dunsborough and Busselton, they sit on the beach overlooking the calm Geographe bay. Most of the resorts offer special deals during the year.
Dunsborough is just over a 3 hour drive from Perth. I would recommend hiring a car so that you can freely explore the wineries and nearby towns.