For the first time in two years Western Australia opened borders to international visitors at 12.01 a.m. on Thursday, March 3, 2022. Western Australia is welcoming international visitors into the state under the guidance of the Safe Transition Plan. In order to enter the state, travelers must provide proof of full vaccination and meet travel requirements outlined by the Australian government, as well as have a registered G2G Pass and complete a rapid antigen test within 12 hours of arrival. For international visitors who arrive in Western Australia through other states or territories, all of the aforementioned requirements apply and visitors must also have received a third shot if eligible for the booster.
The Australian government requires that international visitors obtain a foreign vaccination certificate, complete a Digital Passenger Declaration within 72 hours of the flight, and present a negative PCR test within three days or a negative rapid antigen test within 24 hours of the departure flight to Australia.
Upon arrival in Western Australia, international visitors must adhere to public health and social measures, which include wearing a mask indoors and showing proof of vaccination at hospitality and entertainment venues. There are also travel restrictions in place to protect the residents of more than 200 remote Aboriginal communities within Western Australia. Visitors can learn more about the communities where travel is open or restricted on Western Australia’s Aboriginal Communities Covid-19 page.
Western Australia’s ancient and beautiful landscape is a place where visitors can disconnect from the everyday and the well-trodden, and reconnect with something unspoiled and a little wild. The destination is home to pristine beaches, rugged gorges, secluded waterfalls – including Australia’s only horizontal waterfalls – and one of the world’s largest wildflower collections.
Despite border closures in March 2020, the tourism industry in Western Australia continues to develop bringing new accommodations, attractions, and experiences to the state. International visitors can look forward to many firsts during their travels throughout Western Australia this year. Some examples include:
Offering visitors breathtaking and uninterrupted views over Kalbarri National Park, the 330-feet high skywalk features two cantilevered viewing platforms that extend about 80 and 55-feet beyond the rim of the Murchison River Gorge. Located at West Loop, the $24 million project also showcases the culture and stories of the Nanda Traditional Owners through interpretive and artistic elements. Kalbarri can be reached in a 6.5-hour drive north of Perth as part of a road trip along the ‘Coral Coast Highway’, or visitors can choose to take a one-hour flight to Geraldton, and reach Kalbarri in just under two hours by car.
In cosmopolitan Perth, the New WA Museum Boola Bardip opened as a gateway to explore all of Western Australia. The $300 million (USD) project sits on the country of the Whadjuk Nyoongar people, who also inspired the museum’s name “Boola Bardip” meaning “stories” in the Nyoongar language. Woven throughout the museum are the stories and perspectives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The new WA Museum Boola Bardip includes the restoration of heritage buildings, construction of a new building, a public art project and the design, production and installation of museum content. In January 2022, the museum started offering Nyumbi, a weekly Aboriginal dance performance, and a smoking ceremony for museum visitors to observe.
The Matagarup Bridge zip line opened to the public on December 5. Similar to the Matagarup Bridge Climb, which opened in January 2021, the zip line adventure starts with guests climbing around 150 steps up the bridge to the launch platform, sitting about 115 feet above Perth’s iconic Swan River. Zippers reach speeds of up to 45 miles per hour in an exhilarating ride over the river before landing on the other side of the river at Burswood Park. Evening zip line and climbs are also available, providing guests with a unique experience of Perth city at night.
Along with new attractions, several new luxury accommodations await visitors to the west coast. Just offshore from Perth, Rottnest Island welcomed Samphire Rottnest in October 2020. The hotel is designed to complement its raw, natural surroundings with 80 spacious guest rooms offering a coastal retreat; private balconies overlooking Thomson Bay; and a sanctuary of lagoon-like pools.
South of Swan Valley in the up-and-coming Pemberton wine region, Ampersand Estates opened its cellar doors December 13, 2021. Surrounded by the majestic Donnelly River and the ancient karri forests of Easter National Park, Ampersand Estates is much more than a winery. The Estate is now accepting bookings for its three, private luxury accommodations: the two-bedroom Settlers’ Cottage; the Homestead, which features a dining room, large kitchen, and library as well as five ensuite bedrooms; and the Vintner’s Residence, which offers five elegant bedrooms overlooking the vineyard. Ampersand Estates is also planning two wedding venues; curated picnics that can be enjoyed across the 130-acre estate; and Rainfall Distillery – Australia’s only single harvest distillery – producing vodka and gin using the finest local ingredients.