Eat Pray Love: 3-Ways to Spend A Romantic Getaway in Western Australia

Through author Elizabeth Gilbert’s best selling novel, ‘Eat Pray Love’ and its film adaptation starring none other than the gorgeous Julia Roberts, many have been inspired by her journey to three of the world’s most remarkable places; Italy (eat), India (pray) and Indonesia (love). But unlike Ms. Gilbert, many of us do not have the luxury of a book deal or the ability to run away for a year long break just to find ourselves. Given that short vacations are usually the order of the day, the first place that usually comes to mind when I truly need to find my balance, is Perth and the surroundings of Western Australia. The state’s extraordinary and vastly diverse regions provide a perfect opportunity for any visitors to embark on their own version of ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ journey, especially for a romantic getaway, all within a single country.

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For an unsurpassed culinary adventure, venture into the South West of Western Australia where the famed Margaret River, an easy three hour drive south from capital city Perth, lies.

Chosen as one of the top ten regions in the world in 2010 by Lonely Planet, Margaret River is the perfect location to indulge your gastronomic senses with locally produced sweet treats including chocolate, fudge, cheese, yogurt and ice cream to tantalise your tastebuds. Stop over at the Margaret River Providore and browse its spectacular array of products such as homemade jams, wines, oils, and sauces made from produce in its own vineyards, organic olive grove, orchard and vegetable. Or have a meal with the very same ingredients in its cafe.

The region has over 90 cellar doors and over 200 vineyards, one is spoilt for choice. A few of the most beautiful ones to enjoy a romantic meal are Vasse Felix, Leeuwin Estate, Cullen, Clairault and Xanadu where the flavours of the freshest local produce are perfectly paired with some of the world’s most outstanding wines. Bon Appetit!

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After sampling the delicious delights of Australia’s South West, make your way up to Australia’s only monastic town, New Norcia. Just a two hour drive north east of Perth, New Norcia is a tranquil and spiritual town reflecting monastic, Aboriginal and European heritage. Join a town tour to get a look inside the 160 year old monastery or share in the daily rhythms and routines of the Benedictine monks by staying at the Monastery Guesthouse. I’m not too sure about what the abstinence rule in this little hamlet is, but all couples, regardless of their beliefs, will find themselves stilled by the soul of this tranquil community. Time out for some peace and quiet perhaps?

Alternatively, if you are heading back to the state’s capital, drop by the Fremantle Prison. This former high security prison’s Anglican Chapel is one of the finest and most intact of early prison chapels in Australia. Its foundations were laid in 1855 by inmates, and the chapel was completed and furnished by 1858.

As the centrepiece of the eerie Main Cell Block that faces west over Fremantle, the chapel dominates and anchors the entire prison site. And believe it or not, it is now one of the more unique places for couples to tie the knot. Gives a whole new meaning to the term “lifetime imprisonment” doesn’t it?

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Finally, complete your ‘eat, pray’ journey by falling in love in (or with) the beautiful Coral Coast.  I embarked on an ultimate 10-day road trip to discover the region back in 2001 and never regretted a moment. Some of the pictures featured above were from that said trip.

Embrace the sights at Pinnacles, one of Australia’s most unique landscapes marked by towering limestone spires and Shell Beach, one of only two in the world, formed from billions of tiny shells. I’m sure you wouldn’t mind dolphins crashing your romantic early morning date along the shores of Monkey Mia.

For the more adventurous couples, may I suggest an exploration to the magnificent Murchinson River georges of Kalbarri National Park and spend the day either relaxing on a river cruise or packed with daredevil activities from abseiling to sandboarding. Then finally, wind down under the twilight sky at an outdoor cinema watching the latest Hollywood releases before snuggling up together in a cozy tent underneath the stars.


For further reading:

I’ve previously written travel tips post, 5 Fantastic Ways to Spend Your Day In Perthand a guest post on 10 Things to Do in South Western Australia via

For my food related posts and restaurant reviews on Perth and Western Australia, please click HERE.

You may also want to visit the official Tourism Western Australia website for more information on each region, accommodation and restaurant to help plan your own unique ‘eat, pray, love’ journey. Photo credits: St. Ildephonsus College Chapel and Romancing Wine shots were featured with the permission of Tourism WA.

12 Responses to Eat Pray Love: 3-Ways to Spend A Romantic Getaway in Western Australia
  1. J
    February 10, 2011 | 1:22 am

    V-day (approaching). Bah humbug.
    (lol. Nice post! As usual… I think I have fallen in love with the succulent looking piece of lamb in the first photo collage…)

  2. "Joe" who is constantly craving
    February 10, 2011 | 2:17 am

    all this places that requires driving is making me wish i have a car!!

  3. kampungboycitygal
    February 10, 2011 | 4:24 am

    we had a really good time at MR! stayed at the most gorgeous B&B, sampled the best wines & gourmet food at leeuwin, vasse felix, voyager & cullen, and the spring weather is absolutely perfect. we'll definitely be back!

  4. Sean
    February 10, 2011 | 5:27 am

    if i ever get to perth, i'd skip the praying and spend 80 percent of my waking hours eating (and drinking) instead!!! and the other 20 percent? looking for my own javier bardem, i guess :D

  5. CUMI & CIKI
    February 10, 2011 | 6:45 am

    awww.. the shot with the lover's feet is so cute! I wanna go to Margaret river! thanks again for writing that superb guest post for meeeeeee ;)

  6. minchow
    February 10, 2011 | 10:54 am

    So Western Australia isn't all the retirement village it's cracked up to be! Will have to seriously consider a vineyard whistle stop tour around WA!

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    February 10, 2011 | 1:50 pm

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  8. Travel Luver
    February 10, 2011 | 2:57 pm

    I love your culinary journeys…and this one was particulary romantic to share with the significant other ;)

  9. Leslie (Downtown Traveler)
    February 10, 2011 | 3:03 pm

    I love your postcards! Interesting you suggest a prison visit… there seem to be a ton of old prisons in Australia that have been turned into hostels or attractions. Very spooky to stay in one!

  10. qwazymonkey
    February 13, 2011 | 6:36 pm

    J: Hmmm I'm thinking of singing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" on V-day and replacing your name with hers instead. Tee-hee. But, that lamb was fork-tender and braised with the best wine and rosemary sauce. Yummy!

    Joe: Car rentals aren't that expensive in Oz for a weekend getaway you know

    KBCG: I'm glad you loved it there. I agree, one must stay in a B&B whenever in MR. My favourite has got to be Loaring Place. Love it and can't wait to go back.

    Sean: Well, what if I said that the monastery serves up a one-of-a-kind meal experience? Would you think twice? But I never thought you were a Javier Bardem kinda guy. Thought Beiber is more up your alley? *sniggers*

    C&C: Pleasure's all mine. Glad you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed writing it

    Min: Never the dullsville really. Just go with a few good friends and drink til your hearts content. What a great way to kickback

    Travel Luver: Thanks for dropping by and commenting. Appreciate it alot.

    Leslie: Well Australia was after all where they castaway convicts in the past, hence the great number of prisons. A visit is never short of eye opening, but to actually stay overnight in one, I think i'd just past on that.

  11. Perth car hire
    February 14, 2011 | 9:44 am

    There are lot ways to enjoy exploring Australia. You can go in the city or trekking in mountains. You can feel the heat in beaches and enjoy the drinks and foods.

  12. Life for Beginners
    March 3, 2011 | 11:45 am

    Perth-fect! :D