There are two little spots just north of the townsite of Margaret River chock full of hidden gems.

Next time you whizz down Bussell Highway, slow down and explore the magic of Cowaramup. There is much to be discovered both in the town itself and surrounds: from gourmet stores and artisan cellar doors to craft breweries and restaurants.

Head out west to the coast and the laid-back shores of Gracetown await. Anyone who has ever jumped on a surfboard likely knows the place, but for the uninitiated: Gracetown is quite simply the stuff of nostalgic childhood holiday dreams. Beach shacks now sit alongside some pretty stunning holiday homes, but it’s still the perfect shoreline spot to return to basics.

This is your guide to spending 48 hours unearthing the secrets of Cowaramup and Gracetown.

Where To Stay

Olio Bello Lakeside Glamping

It’s not every day that you’ll be waking up with lakeside views in the middle of a 320-acre certified organic olive farm, surrounded by 8,000 olive trees. Olio Bello Lakeside Glamping in Cowaramup however is one spot where you’ll be able to do exactly that, all from your own luxurious safari-style bungalow. With sixteen bungalows to choose from, you’ll be assured a restful stay far away from the crowds.

Olio Bello
Slow down and reconnect with nature at Olio Bello Lakeside Glamping. Photo: Supplied

Bettenay’s Lakeside Spa Apartment & Vineyard Villas

Bettenay’s Lakeside Spa Apartment & Vineyard Villas are right in the heart of the Margaret River wine region, on a 132-acre farm and vineyard. You’ll be invited in by the Bettenay family for a relaxing and peaceful stay at one of their chalets or their romantic spa apartment. Plus, you’ll have direct access to their cellar door where tastings of wine, liquor and – of course – nougat are on offer.

Tanah Marah

Down a red dirt road, behind tall Karri trees and a winding path lined with wildflowers and peppermint trees is where you’ll find Tanah Marah.
Owners Linda and Rory Curtin are curators of unique immersive holiday experiences and pride themselves on providing a place to get away from the everyday. Tanah Marah hosts 6 rammed earth chalets and a lakeside function centre on 340 acres of Karri & Marri forest.

Private Properties: Percy Street

This gorgeous coastal chic home provides a relaxing holiday vibe the moment you step up to the front door. Perched high on the Gracetown hill with expansive views of Cowaramup Bay and the North Point surf break, Percy Street epitomises luxurious beach holiday living and has direct access to three of the best surf spots in the region.

Percy Street
Pair your brekkie with the most stunning views from the deck at Percy Street. Photo: Supplied

Day One


Kick your morning off with an ocean dip at Gracetown Beach. The sheltered waters of the beach are ideal for a gentle swim, or if you prefer an adrenalin kick you can jump on a surfboard and hit up one of the famous breaks. North Point, South Point, Huzzas, Gallows and Guillotines should all ring a bell if you’ve asked any locals for their fave surf spots – they range in difficulty and accessibility, so educate yourself before you go.

Follow up with a caffeine hit and a bite for breakfast at local haunt Gracies General Store or stop at family-owned Grace Farm’s cellar door for a sneaky wine tasting before lunch. Enjoy the stunning view of the vineyard and native bush and learn about the sustainable farming principles that underpin their winemaking philosophy.

Gracetown Beach has it all: swim, surf or go for a relaxing beach walk. Photo: Dylan Alcock Photography



Fishbone has been a welcome addition to the South West’s restaurant scene since it opened a few years back. On a hot day, there is nothing better than those zingy Asian-inspired flavours that grace the menu. If you have a hankering for sushi or sashimi and fancy washing it down with a cleansing glass of rosé, then this is your pit stop. The Karaage deep fried chicken is a winner too, as are the Takoyaki octopus balls. Order double, your fellow diners will thank you.

Olio Bello

Olio Bello is smack bang between the two towns and a trip isn’t complete without stopping by. The lunch menu is fresh and flavoursome, whether you’re after a hearty pasta dish or a refreshing salad. Be sure to set aside a couple of hours minimum, as this is not the spot to rush from. The olive groves will have you feeling like you’ve zipped off to Italy for the afternoon (a glass of wine helps), and there are plenty of olive and olive oil-based goodies in their store – both to eat and to lather on your skin.

Olio Bello
Enjoy a long lunch at Olio Bello. Photo: Olio Bello


Shop up a storm on the main street in Cowaramup, stocking up on local goods to graze on for the rest of your stay. Wander down the road from top to bottom (or vice versa) and be sure to duck into the side streets too. You’ll find locally made chocolate at Temper Temper and hand blended teas from Seven Seas Tea. There are knick-knacks galore, and locally made arts and crafts at the gift stores in town, plus a second-hand clothing store with a fab range of pre-loved fashion.

Be sure to duck into The Gourmet Food Merchant, ground zero for dinner supplies. It’s full of delicious local goodies that require little to no preparation before they are gobbled up, and they make a great coffee too.

Beyond town, foodies are spoilt for choice with some of the yummiest food producers in the region to pick from nearby.

Just 3km east of Cowaramup is Millers Ice Creamery, beloved by many for its small batch ice cream in an array of creative flavours.

Down a little further, turn into Harmans Mill Road to find The Margaret River Chocolate Company which has every chocolate lover’s dream come true with wall to floor covered in ganache, buttons, bars, blocks and truffles. Next door the Margaret River Providore has almost everything you could wish for – dips, chutneys, cooking packs, wine, and plenty more gourmet goodies.

More of a nougat lover? You won’t want to miss a visit to the Margaret River Nougat Company – they have over 34 varieties of French style soft nougat.

As the afternoon draws in, make a beeline towards Passel Estate. Take a seat with your glass of small batch wine on the deck and take in the natural bushland reserve on the property. A family (or ‘Passel’) of endangered Western Ringtail Possums was relocated here following bushfires, and the owners continue to provide sanctuary to endangered native species within the estate. Book the Nature & Wine Walk experience to support their conservation efforts.

Passel Estate
Choose from a selection of guided wine experiences to ensure your visit at Passel Estate is one to remember. Photo: Supplied


Now, one word. Sunset. Steer for the coast and watch one of the famous WA sunsets dip below the horizon, then head to your accommodation to enjoy the spoils of the day’s produce gathering.

Instead of worrying about getting taxis home from dinner and choosing a spot for a meal, now is the time to slow things down and chill out with a glass of wine and a grazing board of the day’s haul.

There's nothing like finishing the day with a west coast sunset. Photo: Russell Ord

Day Two


There are several spots to spend your second morning exploring. First, head for breakfast in Cowaramup town, where you are spoilt for choice with the selection of spots to get your caffeine fix.

The perfect mid-morning activity is WOW Illusions, a mind-bending place that will delight all ages. Live out your Alice in Wonderland fantasy in a room that will make those inside it appear bigger or smaller in the blink of an eye, or test out your navigation skills and sense of direction in the tricky mazes. There are plenty of photo opportunities!

The brand new gallery opening at the end of March by Open Studios favourite Ian Daniell is worth a visit as well. His life-size Ocean Art is a celebration of marine life and an ode to encounters in the wild. The artworks are also available in the form of limited edition fine art prints. Each print is signed by the artist and annotated with a percentage, noting the print size to the life-size original.


Ian Daniell
Ian Daniell's stunning art celebrates iconic ocean species at 1:1 scale. Photo: Stuart McMillan


Cowaramup Brewing Co.

Cowaramup Brewing Co. is just a short drive inland from the township of Cowaramup and you’ll be greeted with a pretty drive through rolling pastures before arriving for lunch. A family run brewery, their beers are well worth sampling and you can even take home a growler for later on. Food is simple, filling and family-friendly, and there is plenty of space to stretch your legs on the lawn.

Rustico at Hay Shed Hill

Tapas-style dining is perfect for a relaxed day of adventuring through wine (and cow) country, and Rustico has a fixed price degustation menu that will serve you up ten of their favourite picks (highly recommended). The view is beautiful too, and you’ve got the award-winning wines from Hay Shed Hill to accompany your plates. Open for orders all the way through until 5 pm, they hold true to the Spanish relaxed way of life… who wants to rush a meal anyway?

Rustico at Hay Shed Hill serves award-winning tapas and world-class wines. Photo: Supplied


After lunch, start your afternoon of wine-tasting right in town at family-owned boutique wine producer Peacetree Estate. Just a short drive away, Victory Point Wines showcase their delicious boutique range at their stunning cellar door. Their decision to not irrigate the vineyard was made at the initial planning stage to maximise the complexity of flavours from the fruit and the individual characteristics of the vineyard at each vintage.

You’ll be spoilt for choice heading down Tom Cullity Drive with a line-up of family run and boutique wineries – Thompson Estate, Bettenay’s, Montague Estate, and Juniper are rounded off with Vasse Felix, the founding winery of the region and regularly found at the top of ‘best restaurant’ lists.

Well-worth a short ten-minute loop north is a visit to the immaculately manicured property and gardens of Fraser Gallop Estate. Book in for a Wines and Vines tour and find yourself behind the scenes (and aboard a solar powered buggy), fully guided with a selection of multi award-winning Parterre wines in hand, heading deep into the private estate and vineyard of which the very grapes in your glass were made.

Finish off the loop at the illustrious and globally renowned Howard Park, one of the region’s architecturally designed cellar doors offering beautiful wines to boot. Their specialty? Sparkling. They are one of the few wineries in the region producing Methode Traditionnelle sparkling wines, so an “Art of Sparkling” tasting in their exclusive, purpose-built, and private Wine Chapel is therefore an absolute must for sparkling-lovers – or anyone looking to celebrate a week well-spent.

All that’s left to do is toast to a magical 48 hours spent exploring the areas of Cowaramup and Gracetown.

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