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To Penguin Island From Perth, Australia


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Elyssa Hsu



Penguin Island, located near Perth, Australia, is a captivating destination that offers a unique and immersive experience with nature. This stunning island, nestled in the sparkling waters of Shoalwater Bay, is home to an array of wildlife, most notably the adorable little penguins that have become the island’s namesake.


Just a short ferry ride away from the mainland, Penguin Island is a perfect getaway for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts, and families seeking a memorable adventure. With its pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and diverse marine and bird life, the island provides a picturesque setting for a day trip or a longer stay.


The journey to Penguin Island begins at the enchanting seaside suburb of Rockingham, just 45 minutes south of Perth. From here, visitors can board a ferry and embark on a scenic cruise across the bay to this secluded paradise.


As you approach Penguin Island, the lush vegetation and rugged coastal cliffs greet you, creating a sense of anticipation and wonder. The island’s unspoiled beauty promises an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life and invites you to immerse yourself in the natural wonders that await.


With its unique blend of sun, sand, and wildlife, Penguin Island offers something for everyone. Whether you want to relax on the pristine beaches, explore the walking trails, get up close to marine life, or simply enjoy a picnic amidst the breathtaking landscapes, this island paradise has it all.


So, let’s embark on an adventure to Penguin Island and discover the treasures that lie within its shores. Get ready to meet the adorable penguins, bask in the beauty of the island’s surroundings, and create memories that will last a lifetime.


Getting to Penguin Island

Getting to Penguin Island is an easy and convenient journey from Perth. The island is located just off the coast of Rockingham, approximately 45 minutes south of the city. Here are a few options to consider when planning your trip:

  1. Ferry: The most popular way to access Penguin Island is by taking a ferry from Mersey Point Jetty in Rockingham. There are multiple ferry services available, with regular departures throughout the day. The ferry ride itself is a delightful experience, allowing you to soak in the scenic beauty of Shoalwater Bay as you make your way to the island.
  2. Self-Drive: If you prefer to have more flexibility in your schedule, you can drive to Rockingham and park your car near the ferry departure point. There is ample parking available, and it offers the convenience of exploring the surrounding areas before or after your visit to Penguin Island.
  3. Public Transport: For those who prefer to use public transportation, you can take a train from Perth to Rockingham and then catch a bus or taxi to the ferry terminal. The train journey takes approximately 40 minutes, and the bus journey from the Rockingham train station to the ferry terminal is less than 10 minutes.

Regardless of which mode of transportation you choose, it’s recommended to check the ferry schedules and availability in advance, especially during peak seasons. It’s also worth noting that ferry services may be subject to weather conditions, so it’s a good idea to keep an eye on the forecast before your trip.


Once you reach Penguin Island, you’ll find a small jetty where the ferry docks. From there, it’s a short walk to the island’s visitor center, where you can gather information, purchase tickets for any additional activities, and learn more about the island’s conservation efforts.


Now that you know how to get to Penguin Island, it’s time to embark on your journey and dive into all the exciting experiences that await you on this beautiful island.


Exploring Penguin Island

Penguin Island offers a plethora of opportunities for exploration and discovery. From its stunning landscapes to its remarkable wildlife, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Here are some of the highlights of exploring this captivating island:


Walking Trails: As you step foot on Penguin Island, you’ll be greeted by a network of well-maintained walking trails that span across the island. These trails offer breathtaking views of the coastline, rugged cliffs, and lush vegetation. Take a leisurely stroll along the boardwalks and meander through the island, immersing yourself in the natural beauty that surrounds you.


Lookout Points: Along the walking trails, you’ll find several lookout points strategically placed to provide panoramic vistas of the island and its surroundings. From these vantage points, you can marvel at the vastness of the ocean, spot native bird species soaring overhead, and capture stunning photographs of the island’s picturesque landscapes.


Beaches: Penguin Island boasts pristine beaches with powdery white sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters. Spend some time basking in the sun, building sandcastles, or taking a refreshing swim in the inviting waters. The beaches are also perfect for picnicking, so be sure to pack a delicious spread and enjoy a leisurely lunch amidst the natural beauty of the island.


Wildlife Encounters: One of the main attractions of Penguin Island is, of course, the penguins. Take a guided tour or join a supervised penguin feed to get up close and personal with these charismatic creatures. Learn about their behavior, habitat, and conservation efforts while observing them in their natural environment. Aside from penguins, keep an eye out for other wildlife on the island, including sea lions, dolphins, and a variety of bird species.


Snorkeling and Diving: The surrounding waters of Penguin Island are teeming with marine life and vibrant coral reefs. Strap on your snorkeling gear or take a dive into the depths of the ocean to discover a world of colorful fish, graceful stingrays, and other fascinating underwater creatures. The island also offers snorkel and dive tours for those who want a guided experience.


Whether you prefer a leisurely stroll, a beachside retreat, or an adventurous wildlife encounter, exploring Penguin Island promises a memorable experience for all. So, lace up your shoes, pack your swimsuit, and get ready to immerse yourself in the wonders of this remarkable island.


Wildlife on Penguin Island

Penguin Island is not only home to its adorable namesake, but it also teems with diverse wildlife that will leave you in awe. From playful dolphins to majestic sea lions, the island offers a unique opportunity to observe these incredible creatures in their natural habitat. Here are some of the wildlife encounters you can expect on Penguin Island:


Penguins: Of course, the star attraction of Penguin Island is the little penguins (also known as fairy penguins) that reside here. These endearing birds are the smallest species of penguins and are known for their adorable waddling walk and charming demeanor. Take a guided tour or join a penguin feeding session to witness these fascinating creatures up close as they swim, dive, and interact with each other.


Sea Lions: As you explore the coastlines of Penguin Island, you may be lucky enough to encounter Australian sea lions basking on the rocky shores. These graceful creatures are known for their playful nature and curious personalities. Observe them as they sunbathe, swim, and frolic in the waves, creating lasting memories of these delightful marine mammals.


Dolphins: Keep an eye out for the playful dolphins that frequent the waters around Penguin Island. These intelligent and acrobatic creatures are often spotted swimming alongside boats, showcasing their impressive jumps and spins. Join a boat tour or kayak adventure to increase your chances of catching sight of these mesmerizing animals as they gracefully glide through the ocean.


Birdlife: Penguin Island is a haven for bird enthusiasts, with an abundance of avian species to observe. From the rare and colorful Hooded Plovers to the elegant Ospreys soaring above, the island is a bird lover’s paradise. Birdwatchers can explore the various lookout points and walking trails to spot a vast array of feathered inhabitants that call Penguin Island their home.


Marine Life: The waters surrounding Penguin Island are teeming with marine life. Don your snorkeling gear or hop on a dive tour to witness the vibrant coral reefs, schools of tropical fish, and fascinating underwater ecosystems. Keep an eye out for graceful stingrays gliding across the seabed and curious octopuses hiding amongst the rocks.


Exploring the wildlife on Penguin Island is a truly magical experience. From the cute and charismatic penguins to the captivating sea lions and dolphins, the island offers a unique opportunity to connect with nature and witness the wonders of Australia’s diverse wildlife.


Activities on Penguin Island

Penguin Island offers a range of exciting activities that cater to all interests and ages. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or an educational experience, there’s something for everyone to enjoy on this enchanting island. Here are some of the activities that you can partake in:


Penguin Feeding and Guided Tours: One of the highlights of visiting Penguin Island is the opportunity to witness the feeding of the adorable little penguins. Join a guided tour to learn about the penguins’ behavior, habitat, and conservation efforts while watching them being fed by a knowledgeable park ranger. It’s an experience that will leave you with lasting memories of these charismatic creatures.


Snorkeling and Diving: Dive into the crystal-clear waters surrounding Penguin Island and discover a world of vibrant coral reefs and diverse marine life. Snorkel among schools of tropical fish and search for hidden treasures beneath the waves. If you’re a certified diver, join a dive tour to explore deeper waters and encounter mesmerizing underwater creatures.


Kayaking and Paddleboarding: Explore the scenic beauty of Penguin Island and its surrounding coastline by kayaking or paddleboarding. Glide through the calm waters, admiring the rugged cliffs, sandy beaches, and stunning vistas. It’s a fantastic way to immerse yourself in nature while enjoying a fun and active water adventure.


Wildlife Spotting: Take a leisurely stroll along the walking trails and lookout points, keeping an eye out for the abundant wildlife that calls Penguin Island home. Spot rare birds, observe playful dolphins swimming offshore, and look for sea lions sunning themselves on the rocks. Bring your binoculars and camera to capture these incredible moments in nature.


Picnicking and Relaxing: With its picturesque landscapes and serene beaches, Penguin Island is an ideal spot for a leisurely picnic. Pack a delicious spread of food and drinks and find a cozy spot to unwind, soak up the sun, and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. Take a dip in the inviting waters or simply laze on the sandy shores, rejuvenating your body and mind.


Photography and Nature Walks: Penguin Island provides ample opportunities for photographers and nature enthusiasts to capture stunning images and immerse themselves in the island’s natural beauty. Embark on a leisurely nature walk, capturing the breathtaking landscapes, unique flora, and fascinating wildlife that inhabit the island. Don’t forget your camera to preserve these extraordinary moments.


These are just some of the activities that await you on Penguin Island. Whichever activity you choose, be prepared to be captivated by the island’s natural wonders and create unforgettable memories of your time in this idyllic Australian paradise.


Facilities and Amenities on Penguin Island

Penguin Island provides essential facilities and amenities to ensure visitors have a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re planning a day trip or an extended stay, here are some of the facilities and amenities available on the island:


Visitor Center: The island’s visitor center is the hub of information and services. Here, you can gather maps, brochures, and advice on the best walking trails, wildlife encounters, and activities to explore on Penguin Island. Knowledgeable staff are on hand to answer any questions you may have and provide updates on guided tours and feeding times.


Café and Restaurant: If you’re in need of refreshments or a satisfying meal, Penguin Island has a café and restaurant where you can indulge in a variety of culinary delights. Enjoy a hot cup of coffee, a delicious snack, or a delectable meal while taking in the scenic vistas of the island. It’s the perfect spot to relax and recharge during your visit.


Picnic Areas: Scattered throughout the island are designated picnic areas equipped with tables and benches. These areas offer a wonderful setting to enjoy a leisurely picnic while surrounded by the island’s natural beauty. Pack your own picnic lunch or grab some food from the café and find a spot to savor the moment.


Toilets and Showers: Penguin Island provides clean and well-maintained toilet facilities for visitors’ convenience. Additionally, there are shower facilities available for those who wish to rinse off after a swim or water activity. These amenities ensure you can freshen up and stay comfortable during your time on the island.


Souvenir and Gift Shop: Want to take home a memento of your time on Penguin Island? Visit the souvenir and gift shop, where you’ll find an array of unique items, including plush penguins, locally made handicrafts, clothing, and more. It’s the perfect place to find a special reminder of your visit or pick up gifts for loved ones.


Beach Access: Penguin Island boasts stunning beaches that are easily accessible for visitors. Whether you want to take a dip in the clear waters, build sandcastles, or simply relax on the sandy shores, the island’s beaches provide a tranquil and picturesque setting for beachgoers of all ages.


Walking Trails and Lookout Points: The island features well-marked walking trails that guide visitors through its scenic landscapes. Along these trails, you’ll also find strategically placed lookout points, offering panoramic views of the island’s coastline and wildlife. These amenities allow visitors to explore and appreciate the island’s natural wonders at their own pace.


These are just some of the facilities and amenities you’ll find on Penguin Island. Whether you’re seeking information, sustenance, or conveniences to enhance your visit, the island ensures that your needs are met, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty and tranquility of this remarkable destination.


Departing Penguin Island

As your memorable time on Penguin Island comes to an end, it’s time to plan your departure from this idyllic paradise. Here are some essential details to ensure a smooth and hassle-free departure from the island:


Ferry Departure: Refer to the ferry schedule to determine the departure time of the next available ferry back to the mainland. Plan your activities and exploration on the island accordingly to ensure you don’t miss your desired ferry. It’s advisable to arrive at the jetty a few minutes before the scheduled departure time to board the ferry comfortably.


Cleanup: Before you leave Penguin Island, it’s important to clean up after yourself and leave the island as pristine as you found it. Dispose of any rubbish in the designated bins and help maintain the island’s natural beauty for future visitors to enjoy.


Return of Rental Equipment: If you’ve rented any equipment, such as snorkeling gear or kayaks, be sure to return them to the designated rental stations. Check the rental agreement for the return procedures and any specific instructions provided by the rental service.


Final Wildlife Spotting: As you make your way towards the ferry, take the opportunity for some final wildlife spotting. Keep your eyes peeled for penguins, sea lions, dolphins, and any other wildlife that may cross your path. Capture any last-minute photos and cherish the memories of your encounters with these remarkable creatures.


Take One Last Look: Before stepping onto the ferry, take a moment to turn around and admire the captivating beauty of Penguin Island. Absorb the stunning vistas, the sparkling waters, and the lush landscapes, imprinting them into your memory as you bid farewell to this enchanting destination.


Arriving on the Mainland: Once you reach the mainland, whether at the Rockingham jetty or another designated drop-off point, take a moment to reflect on your time spent on Penguin Island. Consider exploring the surrounding areas, such as the vibrant coastal town of Rockingham, before continuing on with your day or journey back to Perth.


While departing Penguin Island can be bittersweet, taking with you cherished memories and newfound appreciation for nature, the journey doesn’t have to end. Carry the spirit of the island’s beauty and the sense of tranquility it instilled in you long after your departure.



A journey to Penguin Island from Perth, Australia, offers an unforgettable experience immersed in the wonders of nature. From the charming little penguins to the breathtaking landscapes and abundant wildlife, this island paradise is a true gem just a short distance from the mainland.


Exploring Penguin Island allows you to connect with nature in a unique way. Whether you’re walking along the scenic trails, spotting diverse bird species, snorkeling amidst vibrant marine life, or simply enjoying a picnic on the pristine beaches, the island offers a wide range of activities to suit all interests.


With its facilities and amenities, including a visitor center, café and restaurant, souvenir shop, and clean toilet and shower facilities, Penguin Island ensures a comfortable and enjoyable visit. The island’s commitment to conservation also shines through, with guided tours and feeding sessions that educate visitors about the importance of protecting the island’s unique ecosystem.


Departing from Penguin Island may bring a tinge of sadness, but the memories and experiences gained during your visit will stay with you for a lifetime. As you leave the island, take a moment to savor the stunning vistas one last time, appreciating the natural beauty that surrounded you.


Whether you were captivated by the adorable penguins, mesmerized by the playful dolphins, or in awe of the rugged cliffs and crystal-clear waters, Penguin Island leaves a lasting impression on all who visit. It’s a destination that reminds us of the intrinsic connection between humans and nature, and the importance of preserving such remarkable places for future generations.


So, if you’re seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, look no further than Penguin Island. Embark on a journey to this enchanting oasis, where the beauty of nature and the wonders of wildlife await you. Discover the magic of Penguin Island and create memories that will stay with you long after you depart.