541 Kms southeast of Perth lies the sleepy town of Ravensthorpe. With it’s Mediterranean climate and rural outlook, the town is a popular stop-over for travellers on route to Esperance and beyond.
John Septimus Roe surveyed the area in 1848. In 1868 the Dunn brothers settled in Coconarup, thirty years later James Dunn found gold at Annabel Creek, and a gold rush followed. After the depression in the 1930s pastoral land was released with further land releases in the 1960s and 1970s, agriculture remains the principal industry of the area.
The Fitzgerald River National Park includes the Ravensthorpe Range, inland bush and farm lands. With pristine beaches, four wheel drive tracks, hiking, camping, canoeing and wildflowers that bloom all year round, it's a great place for tourists to visit. Take the scenic Archer Drive to a lookout within the Ravensthorpe Range. Between Ravensthorpe and Hopetoun is Ethel Daw Drive, a 1.5km road off Elverdton Road which takes you to Mt Desmond lookout, offering uninterrupted views.
Ravensthorpe-Hopetoun Visitor Centre and Museum can provide a wealth of information on the area, and has a display of mineral samples and gem stones. The miner’s cottage and historic shoe display are also worth a look. The Fitzgerald School Site has been restored to mark the significance of the development within the Ravensthorpe district.
The Hopetoun-Ravensthorpe Railway Heritage Walk Trail, is a walk which follows the old railway line between the two towns. There are other easy walks long the rail line: Ravensthorpe to Desmond, Desmond to Kundip, Kundip to Lee Creek (figure of eight), and Hopetoun Trail Head Loop.
Distance from Perth (km): 541