If I had to choose one word to sum up our family getaway to Rottnest it would be ‘MAGIC’. Ava hasn’t stopped singing ‘Rottnest, take me to my island’ since we got back and there’s no better sign of a brilliant family holiday than happy kids!
What I really loved about Rottnest is we were transported back to the good old days, where kids spent their days riding bikes and scooters, heading off on fishing expeditions Huck Finn style, swimming and collecting shells at the beach and eating ice cream at the end of a hot Summers day. In the evenings, parents sat outside their chalets watching the kids play cricket and go on quokka patrol (gently herding them out of courtyards, cheeky little devils!). No private cars on the island means that kids have so much more freedom and parents have peace of mind.
When my husband first suggested heading to Rottnest for a holiday, I wasn’t convinced. I’d always thought of Rottnest as a day trip destination and wondered if there would be enough to do for five days. Also, my idea of a holiday is fluffy white towels, crisp sheets and a yummy breakfast buffet so I wasn’t sure how I’d go with the basic accommodation on the island (think beach shack chic!), but you know what? It was spacious, clean and comfortable and that was good enough for me! It was actually kind of fun ‘glamping’, and because Ava usually wakes up around 5.30am, having a kitchen meant we could have breakfast whenever we liked.
I was also really impressed with the shops on the island. The general store was just beautiful and jam packed full of delicious cheese, pates, fruit, bread, wine – you name it! The bakery was a big hit, along with Simmo’s ice creamery but my favourite find was the dress shop, Indianic. I popped in there every day just to browse the gorgeous range of swimwear, dresses, kaftans, jewellery, hats and homewares. Whoever owns the store is a very clever buyer as there was such a wide range of labels from Camilla to Morrison to Ladakh and the customer service was fabulous! Big happy clap!
We loved taking the girls to the Basin every day which was only a fifteen minute walk away from Thomson Bay, and was the most family friendly beach as it was easily accessible and the water was just breathtaking.
On our last day the weather was a bit cool and overcast, so we hopped on a bus tour of the island to see the sights and I was amazed at just how spectacular the beaches were. Some of the spots reminded me of the Greek islands they were so stunning. We stopped at Geordie Bay and had lunch at the gorgeous cafe there, then hopped on a shuttle bus back to Thomson Bay.
Other highlights included a trip to the museum, the family fun park and a twilight dinner at the Hotel Rottnest watching the sun set over the Indian Ocean, while the kids all danced to tunes played by a live DJ. Seriously stunning and oh so relaxing.
We were sad to say goodbye to our little beach shack and the Zempilas family holiday of 2014 where Ava first learnt to ride a scooter and a bike, but we will be back again very soon to create even more special family holiday memories.
You can check out the Rottnest Island website here.
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Where was the last holiday you had?
Are you a glamper or do you prefer more luxurious holidays?
Any recommendations for our next mid year family holiday destination?0