Our family trip to Swan Valley & Dunsborough – Part 2

My 2 favorite places during our trip: Swan Valley and Dunsborough. Good food, good wine, great location and superb company.  Brings back fond memories.

This is Part 2 of our family trip to Australia. Read Part 1 here: Family trip to Perth Part 1


Day 3 – Swan Valley

After an exhausting day at Caversham Wildlife park and Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour, we wanted to go for something more relaxing the next day.  With 2 toddlers, we limit our activities to maximum of 2 per day. We decided to visit Swan Valley (which was just next to the Caversham Wildlife park).

Quick Tips:
There were a lot of restaurants in Swan Valley. Please make sure you check their operation time. They have their own categories – AM or PM or AM  & PM. Certain restaurants categorized under PM only opens at 12 noon. It was not easy to find one that opens at 11 am!

First stop – Margaret River Chocolate Company at Swan Valley (their website

Let’s put it this way. The Margaret River Chocolate company was not what I expected at all! They really only sell chocolates and wine.  I expected behind-the-scenes chocolate making, some huge display made of chocolate and sweets and playground for kids.  Maybe Charlie and the chocolate factory influenced my expectations. We spent only 20 minutes there, bought some chocolates and head out to hunt for a nice vineyard that opens at 11.00 am.

Posing by the entrance.
Posing by the entrance.

Houghton Winery Cafe (their website)

We were extremely lucky to find this place. I highly recommend it to family with or without kids. There is no need for me to write much here as the photos speak a thousand words.

This is Houghton Winery Cafe - welcome!
This is Houghton Winery Cafe – welcome!
It is a huge estate and the weather was perfect. Kids can run around enjoy the fresh air.
It is a huge estate and the weather was perfect. Kids can run around enjoy the fresh air. You can order lunch or wine and just chillax all-day long.
This little one was enjoying herself - roaming free
Baby A was enjoying herself, running around freely
The wine was so good...and cheap!
Order a bottle of wine – it is worth it!
The food - words cannot describe how delicious it tasted. It was as if you are in heaven - yes THAT GREAT!
The food – words cannot describe how delicious it tasted. It is as if you are in heaven – yes THAT GREAT!

Everything was yummy. The PORK is a MUST! Its called the sticky tamarind pork – delicious and melts in your mouth! Highly recommended. We order another plate after we finished our meal. Check out the menu here

This is us enjoying our lunch
This is us enjoying our lunch
We-fie with my baby girl
We-fie with my baby girl

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We easily spent 3 to 4 hours at the cafe. Very relaxing place where you can put your hair down, enjoy the food and scenery. An ideal place to hang out for adults and children.

Day 4 – Dunsborough

Our next stop at Dunsborough is the Bayshore Beachside Resort (Booking can be done here) Room rates: Approx. AUD 204 per night. It was about 2.5 hours drive from the city. Thanks to a friend’s recommendation, we chose Dunsborough and definitely no regrets. It was definitely more affordable than Margaret River and we can easily drive around since we have a car.

We had quite a challenging time understanding the signs for R&R along the highway. Couldn’t find the toilets! In the end, we went to McDonald’s for toilet break and take-away burgers.

Bayshore Beachside Resort was da bom! We were just in awe – the playground for kids, the tennis court, the lake, the amazing backyard and a huge house!

The mini playground/swing for children
The mini playground/swing for children
Where we call home for 3 nights at Dunsborough
Where we call home for 3 nights at Dunsborough
The kitchen
The kitchen
The living room
The living room
Our bedroom
Our bedroom
This is our bedroom view
This is our bedroom view
Just outside our room - spectacular view
Just outside our room – spectacular view
We definitely want to come back to this resort, if given the opportunity
We definitely want to come back to this resort, if given the opportunity. This is our backyard.
Tennis court
Tennis court
Don't mind having tea outside at the terrace in the evening
Don’t mind having tea outside at the terrace in the evening

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What do we do for dinner?

If you notice, I did not share much about our dinner. You must be wondering if we skip dinner? Definitely not! Restaurants in Perth and West Australia closes quite early. We are usually ready for dinner at around 7 or 8 pm (quite normal with 2 toddlers, it cannot be any earlier). The first night, we had a tough time finding for a decent baby-friendly restaurant – most were closed already. That limits our options. We notice that restaurants that opens till late are usually those that are expensive and high class and serves alcohol and not so baby-friendly.

In the end, here is where we spend most of our dinner time:

At the supermarket! Coles is our favorite place to go.
At the supermarket! Coles is our favorite place to go.

You got it right, we went to Coles for groceries shopping and prepare our meals at home (5 out of 8 nights). It was really convenient as all our accommodation came with kitchen utensils. It is much easier to eat at home – hassle free and at our own pace. I personally hate being rushed!

That is all for today – last and final part of our trip coming up real soon!

 


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