Based in Perth, Western Australia, I enjoy writing about and photographing events and places of interest whenever I get the chance.
Published March 29th 2013
Located only an hour's drive south of Perth, a visit to the city of Mandurah is a comfortable day trip and there's plenty to do to fill in the time once you arrive. My family and I wanted to experience the Mandurah Dolphin and Canal Cruise, which is a one hour boat tour through the calm inland canals Mandurah has become famous for.
The cruises depart from the Boardwalk Precinct - also home to the Visitor's Centre, The Mandurah Performing Arts Centre, Dome and Hans Café, Simmos' Ice-cream store and Cicerello's Fish and Chip shop. This area can be reached from Perth by train and bus if you're not travelling by car.
We were welcomed on board our boat and received a friendly commentary about the development of the canals and historical points of interest as we cruised along. The obvious highlight was that we saw some dolphins – this isn't guaranteed but there are said to be something like 150 dolphins that call these waterways home – so the chances seem pretty high.
We saw a mother dolphin and her calf feeding on fish and the boat was skilfully manoeuvred to make sure we got a good view of them breaking the water several times and then later swimming in our wake as we sped away. We saw two more dolphins shortly after and all aboard were happy to capture a good range of photos or video – although you had to be quick because they move incredibly fast!
The trip was relaxing and sea-legs weren't required to enjoy the experience. The scenery, magnificent homes and range of boats to be seen was impressive and certainly showcases the great lifestyle on offer to those living on the canals. The cruise also takes in wildlife reserves and a range of bird life was easily spotted.
The hour raced by and we were returned to the boardwalks with plenty of time to enjoy an ice-cream and to take advantage of the ten per cent discount vouchers offered at the end of the cruise for use in the Mandurah Cruises' gift shop.
It is advisable to check availability by phoning 9581 1242 – but this is an experience we are happy to recommend.