No, you’re not in Scandinavia, you’re on the south-west coast of Australia, in Denmark WA, a seaside town that not too many tourists know about, but a destination that’s home to some of the best beaches and biggest forests in the region.
It might be small and almost unheard of – most people will assume you’re talking about the European Denmark, of course! – but there are a lot of great things to do in Denmark WA. Here you can find some of Western Australia’s most spectacular coastline, and you can explore golden beaches and snorkel in crystal clear water. Nearby, huge forests of Karri trees blanket the interior, and you’re never too far from a national park.
Here are the best things to do in Denmark Western Australia!
How to Travel to Denmark WA
Denmark is located on Western Australia’s south-west coastline. It’s actually in an excellent position to be included on a road trip itinerary in the area, and if you’re travelling from Perth to Albany then you can call in here if you take the route from the state capital, via Margaret River and the coast.
Of course, if you’re also travelling from Perth to Esperance, you can call in at Denmark WA too when you’re passing through the south of the state. You can easily spend the whole day exploring the best things to do in Denmark WA, especially if you love the great outdoors!
If you’re driving straight down from Perth, then the quickest route is along the Albany Highway, and it takes at least 4 hours. Albany is just down the road, and it takes just half an hour to get to the city from Denmark. A popular road trip route along the south coast can bring you from Denmark to Albany to Esperance, which is at least 5 hours away to the east.
While having a car is obviously the easiest way to get to Denmark, and to get around once you’re there, you can also take the daily TransWA bus from Perth, which travels via Bunbury, Pemberton and other destinations in the south-west, before making a stop in Denmark. The same bus then carries onwards to Albany.
When to Visit Denmark WA
Denmark has a very mild climate – in Western Australian terms anyway! – and the town has a distinct set of four seasons through the year, unlike areas in the north of the state such as Karijini that only experience two seasons, wet and dry.
Summer is always the most popular time of the year to visit Denmark WA, although it’s never too busy even in peak season. Between November and March, temperatures can be incredibly hot, particularly in the middle of summer, but this is perfect beach weather. Summer temperatures average around 25 degrees celsius but can peak well into the 30s during the day.
Autumn and winter can be cold and rainy, and you might want to head further north – from Perth to Exmouth, for instance – to escape the bad weather in the south, if you are travelling in WA this time of the year. When it’s winter in Denmark WA, you might start to believe you’re actually in the cold climes of European Denmark.
Things to do in Denmark WA
Denmark Visitors Centre
When you first arrive in the sleepy town of Denmark, you might want to call into the Denmark Visitors Centre to get you started. At first glance, it might not seem like there are that many things to do in Denmark Western Australia, but at the visitor’s centre, you’ll soon see that the town’s real charms lie in the surrounding nature.
You can pick up maps, find out where you can camp and see where best national parks in the area are at the Denmark Visitors Centre. You can learn about the history of the town too, and find out if there are any local events happening during your stay in Denmark.
It doesn’t have to be your first stop in town after the visitor’s centre, but at some point during your visit, you’re going to want to call into the Boston Brewery for a beer. The locally-run brewery is found on the highway, and they have some great outdoor seating areas where you can relax in the sun as you work your way through the tasting paddles.
The pub serves great food too, while of course, you can take a look inside this microbrewery to see the inner workings of beer creation first hand.
Denmark Dinosaur World
You might want a few beers in you before heading to one of the more unusual things to do in Denmark WA. Yes, little Denmark has an entire attraction that’s dedicated to Dinosaurs, and the small town is, to be honest, not the first place that would come to mind when it comes to learning about prehistoric creatures.
Dinosaurs are apparently a big deal in Denmark though, because the town has its own dedicated Dinosaur World to visit. It’s actually half an hour up the road from the town centre, off of the ominously named Bandit Road, because it’s not only a Dinosaur World, but it’s also a reptile and bird park.
You can find big animatronic skeletons bringing ancient dinosaurs to life, and you can find plenty of chirping parrots too.
Denmark Chocolate Company
On your way to the Denmark Dinosaur World, you can call into the Denmark Chocolate Company to try out some of the local, chocolatey creations on the South Coast Highway.
You can take a tour through the small factory itself to learn more about the chocolate-making process and how the business began. The highlight though is getting to try the chocolate itself, and with an on-site bar, you can pair the best of their products with some of the best wines from the Denmark area.
While the town is set away from the coast and is built around the pleasant climes of the river, you can easily reach the beaches when you are in Denmark. The closest, most popular spot to town is Ocean Beach, which you can actually find just a short journey from the chocolate factory. Just head off the highway to the coast.
Ocean Beach has a great stretch of sand, and there’s plenty of room even on the busier weekends. This isn’t the open ocean either – despite the name – and one of the reasons that Ocean Beach is so popular with the locals is because it’s so sheltered. The beach looks over a small bay, and on the other side is a strip of land and a narrow passage into the ocean.
It’s a good place to go swimming, but it’s also a great place to learn how to surf. The waves are small but consistent and you can learn the basics without having too much to worry about.
Denmark River and Berridge Park
If it’s the river you’d rather enjoy though, then head back into town, where one of the best places to visit in Denmark WA is Berridge Park.
This charming riverside area might seem to be a more appropriate fit in the English countryside rather than out here in Western Australia, but the Denmark River meanders through the town in green and verdant fashion.
Grab some snacks from the Denmark Bakery and sit out along the river to take in Berridge Park in all its refreshingly peaceful glory.
Quite possibly one of the best things do in Denmark Western Australia, Greens Pool is a spectacular beach that’s found within William Bay National Park, just a short drive from the town.
This is easily the most popular place to visit in Denmark, and you’ll soon understand why. A sandy beach faces out across calm swimming areas protected by rocks and coral, and the water is home to a diverse array of marine life.
It’s a great place to kick back on the sand, to go for a swim or to go snorkelling.
Follow the beach east from Greens Pool, and make your way along the coastline to the Elephant Rocks. The south of WA has plenty of granite scenery, and at the Elephant Rocks, you can find some of the largest granite boulders in the region.
If you look closely enough, you might be able to make out the elephant shape of the rocks, which is why they gained their unusual name.
If you haven’t seen quite enough beaches already, then one of the best things to do in Denmark WA is to visit Peaceful Bay. It’s a bit further out, and you’ll need to travel along the South Coast Highway towards Walpole for around 40 minutes, but it’s worth the journey.
You’ll find a long, wide bay stretching along the coast. Enjoy the sands, the turquoise water and enjoy this incredible natural sight!
Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk
Just outside of Walpole and close to Peaceful Bay, you can take to the trees and experience the daunting Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk.
As you leave the coast behind you, giant Karri trees begin to rise from the ground, forming huge forests across the interior of the south-west. These enormous trees can grow up to 100 metres tall, and the forests are a staggering sight to comprehend.
The Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk allows you to walk on suspended pathways that are raised high above the ground. You are quite literally walking amongst the giants themselves, and it’s a humbling thing to experience.
Gloucester National Park
If you want to experience more of the vast forests, then you can also visit Gloucester National Park, which is found near the town of Pemberton. It’s a good two-hour drive from Denmark to Pemberton, but if you love Karri trees, you won’t want to miss it.
The national park protects some of the tallest trees in Australia, and many were used for decades as fire lookouts. You can still climb to the top of several of the taller trees, including the Gloucester Tree, where you can find the lookouts, and enjoy a thrilling but beautiful panoramic of the karri forests.
West Cape Howe National Park
West Cape Howe National Park is found to the east of Denmark, and it’s a fantastic area of natural beauty where you can find the most southerly point in Western Australia.
The national park has some excellent beaches, but the best place to visit in West Cape Howe is undoubtedly Shelley Beach. Above the beach, there’s a great viewing area – it’s even used by hang gliders and paragliders who launch themselves off the cliffs here – while the beach itself is possibly the best campsite near Denmark. If there’s space, you can spend the night on the beach, and wake up with an unbeatable view of the ocean in the morning.
Torndirrup National Park
Located along the coast, towards Albany, Torndirrup National Park is the best place to really experience the wild and windswept coastline of the south-west.
There are some great beaches, such as Frenchman Bay and Misery Beach, while you can even visit an old whaling station that’s been turned into a museum.
The highlight of the park though is seeing the powerful ocean waves at work. This is a windy and turbulent place – you can also visit the Albany Wind Farm here too – and at the Gap and The Natural Bridge, you can see how the very cliffs themselves are being constantly shaped by the ocean.
You can’t visit Denmark without visiting Albany too, and if you’re travelling down from Perth, you’ll pass through the city on the way to Denmark, if you don’t take the longer, scenic route past Margaret River.
Founded in 1826, this is the oldest European settlement in Western Australia, and there are a lot of things to do in Albany!
You can visit the Anzac Centre to see how the first soldiers left the port here to make their voyage across the world to fight in World War I, while you can also hike along the old coastal defences that were set up to protect Albany from a Japanese invasion that never arrived.
In King George Sound, you might be lucky enough to spot whales migrating past, while you can visit Middleton Beach, or Emu Point to enjoy Albany’s laid -back beachside lifestyle, or attempt the tough Bald Head hike to see the dramatic coastal scenery at its best.
Stirling Range National Park
While you are in the south, it’s a good opportunity to check out more of the region’s great scenery, and if you’re looking for a change from the forests and beaches by Denmark, then the Stirling Range National Park is just an hour and a half away from the town. You can even visit the range on your way to or from Perth.
The Stirling Range National Park is a dramatic, mountainous area, where there are plenty of high peaks to summit. The most iconic thing to do here is to tackle the Bluff Knoll hike. At 1099 metres high, Bluff Knoll is the only place in Western Australia to ever see regular snowfall!
Close to the Stirling Range, you can find the fascinating Porongurup National Park, where enormous granite boulders are balanced precariously on top of one another. It’s a unique area, and you can climb the ladders that lead to the precarious Granite Skywalk, for insane views over the surrounding forests.
The area is steeped in local, indigenous myth and legend, and you’ll soon see why you stand beneath the huge boulders and look out over the landscapes.
Map of Things to do in Denmark Western Australia