If you are planning a day trip Harvey is a fabulous little town to visit, full of history and only an hour and half from Perth. Harvey is half-way between Perth and Margaret River - so if you are heading down South why not take a different route down South-West Highway instead of hitting the Forest Highway for a change.
There is so much to do and see in Harvey, but I have narrowed it down to a few key places of interest. Most of the activities and places are within a few kilometres of one another so there is no need to travel great distances once you reach Harvey!
The visitors centre where you will find all the information you need!
If you want to stay in Harvey there are loads of Farmstays in the area. Bluehills Farmstay is gorgeous very family friendly and with stunning views of Harvey Dam. Be warned though this farm stay gets very busy during peak periods so why take them up on their midweek offer which runs from Monday through to Thursdays (during non-peak periods). The rates are very reasonable starting from $130 dollars per couple per night (minimum two night stay). It's five dollars extra per night per child and twenty dollars extra per night per adult.
As you enter into Harvey town on the left is the Visitors Centre - great for finding out about whats on offer in the Harvey region and also the Stirling Cottage Tearooms which are set in the most amazing garden grounds. The Harvey River meanders around the periphery of the garden- well worth a stroll around. If you are feeling like a cup of coffee and a light snack after the drive from Perth stop into the historic tea rooms, where the friendly staff will be happy to look after you.
Next stop - the Weir! You can walk across the Weir - an excellent way to build up your appetite. Or if you have bought your own lunch there is an excellent picnic spot overlooking the river. There is ample shade, BBQ's and a kid's playground.
Be on the look out for road side stalls such as the one I found on Weir Road, the thoroughfare into the township itself. I bought some fresh home grown honey in a small jar for $3.50. Payment was by an honour system and there were wonderful chutneys and fresh vegetables on offer too.
Again on the way into Harvey town there is the Eureka Bakery, which has been servicing Harvey since 1948. They have all the old-school favourites such a mean Vanilla slice plus yummy fresh bread and pies. There is an outside area where you can sit and eat which is well shaded.
Just 3.3km south of the township is HaVe, Harvey Cheese where you can taste delicious creamy cheeses from Fetta to Semi-hard and everything in between. Or If you are heading North out of the township why not stop and check out the Big Orange on Third Street (in the Harvey Fresh Orchards) which you can climb for gold coin donation.
Stirling Cottage tearooms are the best kept secret in the south west. I had no idea it existed after living in the region for 20 years. I had visited May Gibbs house in Sydney then was told by a friend about her links to the old house in Harvey. Beautiful gardens and you can see why she was so inspired by this place. Lovely food and deck to sit out and enjoy.