This exciting tour visits some of WA’s best wineries, gardens and natural landscapes during the state’s famed wildflower season. Around 11,000 flora species are found in WA and over 75% are found in the south-west, one of the world’s top 10 biodiversity hotspots.
Kwongkan is the Noongar Aboriginal word for the geographical floristic region of the south-west of Western Australia. It covers the coastal and inland sand plains from Esperance to Albany and old growth Jarrah and Karri forests inland. This region contains 70% of the 8000 native plant species found nowhere else in the world. It has been decreed a global biodiversity hotspot and has rare and endangered fauna that has evolved alongside plant life in spite of some of the most impoverished soils on the planet.
The abundance and diversity of flora and fauna in the south-west evolved because it became a ‘biological island’ cut off from other flora; oceans surrounded the west and southern sides, and deserts hugged the eastern side. Most of the area we explore has remained above sea level for over 200 million years and with plant species adopting strategies to extract the very few nutrients available on these weathered, impoverished soils.
This tour will take you to remote and spectacular areas unlike anywhere else in Australia, from tall karri forests to vast coastal sand plains rich in diversity and the ancient granite domes of the Porongurup Range to some of the most prestigious wine areas of Margaret River.
- Enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of Kings Park International Park Breeding Program hosted by Senior Plant Breeder, Digby Growns.
- Visit Albany, the Porongurup National Park and Fitzgerald River National Park; around 11,000 flora species are found in WA and over 75% are found in the south-west, one of the world’s top 10 biodiversity hotspots.
- Attend the Ravensthorpe Wildflower Show and visit the herbarium which holds over 3000 botanical specimens.
- In the Margaret River region visit Bill Mitchell’s award-winning garden.
- Enjoy a 3-course wine-paired lunch at Leeuwin Estate’s award-wining restaurant and visit its art gallery and gardens.
- Journey by 4WD to view the giant karri forests in Warren National Park and the Yeagarup Dunes to view coastal heath resembling ancient flora and many beautiful wildflowers in season.
- Take the Tree Top Walk in the Valley of the Giants and enjoy a cruise with a local expert to explore the biodiversity of the Walpole Wilderness.
- Enjoy a riverboat cruise of Oyster Harbour and the Kalgan River: learn about Aboriginal history, the exploration by early seafarers and settlers, and the diversity of flora and fauna.
- View the natural geological features of Torndirrup National Park; we walk to the lookouts at both The Gap and Natural Bridge.
- Explore Cypress Farm, the home of Professor Kingsley Dixon – Foundation Director of Science at Kings Park and Botanic Garden.
- Visit the private garden of John Banasiewicz who is the president of the Western Australian Fern Society. His garden is a magnificent demonstration of his passion for plant collection.
For more information or if you wish to book please contact Australians Studying Abroad
T +61(0)3 9822 6899 E email@example.com