- Hiking, Natural Wonders, Parks and Gardens, Recreation Type
- Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend
Read about how we rank Things to Do.
In the late 17th century, Dutch explorer William de Vlamingh saw this sunny island's hordes of quokkas (think small kangaroos) and thought they were rats, so he named the island, Rotte nest, literally "rats nest." Along with snapping selfies with the quokkas, the island is a great place for swimming and snorkeling, hiking on the Wadjemup Bidi trails, or relaxing on one of its 63 beaches, including the most popular, The Basin and Salmon Bay.
Stopping by the Rottnest Island Visitor Centre and chatting with the helpful docents about what to do on the island should be your first stop, many visitors say. Others recommend heading straight to the white sands of The Basin to swim and snorkel.
The easiest way to reach Rottnest Island is via a Rottnest Express ferry from Fremantle or Perth. Along with beaches and natural attractions, visitors will find lodging and restaurant options too. For more information, visit Rottnest Island's website.