In honour of several sanity-challenged friends of mine who are due to participate in the Rottnest Channel Swim this weekend, I've been thinking about my favourite island paradise - usually referred to as "Rotto" by us locals. Trips to Rottnest are an obligatory part of a visit to Perth these days, as proven by even the tour my Japanese friend visited on last week squeezing in a trip to Rotto when they really didn't have a spare moment.
But the most important thing which I tell prospective visitors over and over again is that Rotto is best enjoyed at a relaxed pace and that means you have to stay overnight. Stay several nights if you can, or even a week if you want to chill out properly. It's a beautiful island during the day, with idyllic bays, great snorkelling and swimming, lovely pub and cafe and an absolute holiday feel, but after five when all the ferries have long since departed and only those staying overnight remain, that's when Rotto becomes a proper paradise.
Rotto is relaxing because it's small, there are virtually no cars, no high-rise, and not too many places to go. The main Rottnest Island activities are things like swimming and lying on the beach, cycling round the island, relaxing with a drink and a meal, and spending time with friends and family. You're forced to relax and a lot of us need that these days. So, if you're planning a trip to Western Australia, I urge you to see Rottnest properly by spending at least a night there and preferably longer. Okay? Rant over!
And just for my friends are are going to swim from Perth's Cottesloe Beach all the way to Rotto on the weekend - I feel like you might be some important knowledge lacking - so in case you didn't realise, there are also ferries to Rottnest and this is one of the places you can buy tickets. Really, there's no need to swim all that way! But good luck anyway.