Ellis Brook a floral reserve in suburban Perth

Western Australia contains some of the world’s most unique wildflowers, and during Spring practically the whole state, which is three times the size of Texas, comes alive with colour.

Many visitors to Perth head to Kings Park, a huge swathe of natural bushland which also contains botanic gardens, picnic areas, restaurants and cafes that is on the edge of Perth CBD.  To see Western Australia’s native fauna in its natural state one of the best places to visit is Ellis Brook near the suburb of Gosnells.

Ellis Brook Valley forms part of the Banyowla Regional Park.  The reserve contains 550 species of plant, which attract 116 species of birds, there are also 8 species of native animals and a number of species of frogs that can be seen, and certainly heard, when conditions are right.

Ellis Brook contains a number of good bushwalking tracks, and is the site of Sixty Foot Falls, which can be seen at its best during winter when the rains set in.  Some of the tracks are quite steep, but the effort is really worth it as you can get spectacular panoramic views from many of the higher parts of the reserve.

The reserve backs on to two major quarries, and there is a disused quarry within its boundaries which contains quite a good water hole.  Although swimming here is discouraged, you can sneak a quiet dip if you are careful.  You can also refresh yourself in the water holes above Sixty Foot Falls, and ideal way to cool down after the reasonably strenuous climb to the top of the falls.

Ellis Brook Valley contains picnic areas with (free) gas barbecues, good paths and interpretive signs and maps.

Unfortunately, Ellis Brook Valley can’t easily be reached by public transport but to reach there by vehicle turn east onto Gosnells Road, right onto Pitt Road, right again at Hayward Road, left into Quarry Road then left into Rushton Road.

If you do visit Ellis Brook, also try to visit Jadran Winery, just follow Gosnells Road to Resevoir Road, to this remarkable small, family-run winery, which has some of the best fortified wines you will taste.

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