Hello there! Welcome to Margaret River, a little town with a big reputation for wine and surf.
We are Gill and Nic and today we will be your tour guides. Pour yourself a glass of wine and join us for a virtual ride down the south west coast of Australia...
It has been over two years now since life, the universe and everything led each of us to make the move to Margs with our respective families. Being WA (West Australian) girls, we were already reasonably familiar with the South West. The phrase "heading down South" is often bandied around in Perth, our state's capital.
Long weekends, uni breaks, family holidays - going down south is about packing up the car and getting out of the big city. John Butler even wrote a song about how he heads 'down south' for inspiration.
Nowadays, for each of us, this town is so much more than a place to get away to. It is home.
So let's fire up the senses and hopefully we can show you why there is no place like home.
And no place like Margs....
A convoy of Kombi vans, station wagons and camper vans along the main stretch of town. Backpackers live from their cars in local parks and beach parking lots. Fields of black and white cows ignore the summer population explosion.
Vineyards and tiny art galleries peep out at you as you take a drive along Caves Road.
Kids play in the street on their skateboards in the late afternoon, and so SO many stars in the black sky at night.
Quality local produce, fresh blueberries, local organic cheese and creamy milk.
We take the boys out to the Berry Farm where we eat homemade boysenberry pie with cream.
My little boy is given free range duck and chicken eggs by one of the farm hands - we scramble the eggs when we get home and they are creamy and rich and so yellow.
My partner and I kick back with a glass of local red once the boys are tucked up in bed....bliss!
Autumn Vines and Olive Trees
Seaweed on the beach in summer and salt in the air.
Cigarette smoke as we pass The Tav on the main street, which is packed to the rafters with tourists & locals alike. In winter, you will smell wood fires burning into the crisp cold air and hot roasting coffee beans early on a chilly Saturday morning at the Farmers' Markets.
Insects chirping at night.
Kookaburras calling from the trees.
Frogs croaking in the river and the occasional cow mooing.
In the day the parks are full of Mums chatting and kids playing.
Local musicians busk in the street or play their songs at The Tav.
Forests and Big Trees
Isolation. This can be both good and bad.
Being three hours south of the most isolated city in the world (Perth) means Margs, as a town, has a really strong sense of community. But it can often feel so very far away from everything.
There is an artistic buzz about this town. Writers, artists, musicians, chefs, wine makers - you can feel the creativity. And despite a fierce sense of ownership amongst the 'real' locals, there is a strong transient feel.
A whirlpool of movement is created by the comings and goings of backpackers, tourists, newcomers and people who, like us, are just wanting a sea change.
IN THE KNOW
Insider Tip: Head up the road to Fishica in Witchcliffe, a family run business stocking beautiful Eco-friendly products and resources for parents and those aspiring to a greener way of living - it's the most amazing space and so worth a visit.
There you have it - a 'Six Senses' tour of Margaret River!
We hope one day that you are able to go the distance and check it out yourself....
Thanks for having us Felicity!
What a wonderful tour girls, thank you so much! I've learnt lots of new facts about Margs that I didn't know before and even though I've had a trip to WA on my 'Must Do' list for some time, you've given me the incentive to get there sooner.
Now Gifters you know the drill, be sure to write lots of comments either here or on the girls blog letting them know what you thought of the tour & be sure to have your bags packed early next Friday as we jet off for the U.S of A!