Albany is set on the beautiful King George Sound and Princess Royal Harbour, 408 Kilometres southeast of Perth. It is the oldest city on the west coast. To the North are the Stirling ranges and the Mount Barker wine region, and to the south, surrounding coastline that is raw and dramatic, comprising of rugged cliffs, sandy white beaches and thick forest. Albany is a major transportation hub and busy port. The principle imports are rock phosphate, petroleum products, sulphur and fertilizer. The main exports are Grain Silica sand and woodchips. The city centre of Albany is located between the hills of Mount Melville and Mount Clarence, which look down into the Princess Royal harbour. During the Second World War, Mount Clarence and the hillsides of Albany were the last glimpse of Australia for so many convoys embarking on their journey across the world, and although there is no firm date, the first ANZAC Day Dawn Service was held in Albany to commemorate the Australian and New Zealand Army.
George Vancouver named the harbour after Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte Augusta Matilda, who was born when he sailed into the waters in 1791. Prior to this the first European explorers to visit the area were on a Dutch Ship Gulden Zeepaert (Golden Seahorse) in 1626. For a long time the harbour was the only port of call for huge mail steamers delivering cargo from all over the globe. The King George Sound was vast for its time, with its jetties able to accommodate vessels of up to 45m in length. It was the lifeline of Albany and the entire Southwest.
Things to see and do
Albanies wineries include The Alkoomi Winery and Goundrey Wines. Middleton Beach and Ellen Cove are popular spots for both beachgoers and fishermen. Other fishing areas include Cheynes Beach and Princess Royal Harbour. Whale World is located near Cheynes Beach, and diving is available at the HMAS Perth.
Places to eat and drink
Rustlers Steak House. Venice Restaurant - an evening meal, light lunch or coffee. Moby Dicks and The Squid Shack - traditional fish and chips. The Wild Duck restaurant 'a little more upmarket.
Did you know?
Albany Port Authority won Port of the year in 2006.