"Keeweechic's Rottnest Island" Top 5 Page for this destination Rottnest Island by keeweechic

Rottnest Island Travel Guide: 239 reviews and 545 photos

Rottnest is sandy island about 19 km off the coast of Fremantle. The entire island is only 11km wide and 5 km wide and it is the only piece of land between Perth and Capetown. It was discovered by the Dutch in 1696 and named `Rats Nest` because of what appeared to be king size rats on the island. These rats were in fact Quokkas which are native wallabies found only on the island. The original spelling of the name was "Rott Enest" but has stuck since its discovery and the 'E' was dropped. The local Aboriginal people knew the island as "Wadjemup" which is thought to mean "land across the water". The local Noongar aborinals consider Rottnest to be a house of spirits. A number of ancient aboriginal tools have been found at Rottnest island which date back 30000 years. With the arrival of the European settlers, Rottnest changed in its appearance. Land was cleared and tracks around the island were made. Fires were repeatedly burned from the wood collected. Sometimes the fires were an aid for the Aboriginal prisoners in hunting the Quokkas.

The architecture is quite unique and dates back to the 1800's. There is a varied history of the island being an Aboriginal penal settlement and a World War I camp for 1300 German and Croatian extract prisoners of war. Salt was also gathered and processed here as well as having a World War II military installation there. The island was first used by the Governors of Western Australia as a holiday resort between 1848 and 1919.

Today, Rottnest Island (or Rotto as it is referred to) is a very popular place because of its great beaches and bays. There are plenty of opportunities for recreational activities and the Island authority is actively re-greening the woodland area with reforestation. Many people choose to visit for the just the day and arrive in the morning and leave on the late afternoon ferry.

Photos which are taken by myself and all headings are copyright and digitally marked. Please do not use them without permission. Thanks.
(c) keeweechic 2001-2008 (copyright)

  • Intro Updated Mar 8, 2008
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Reviews (92)

Comments (10)

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Mar 8, 2008 at 7:19 AM

    Hi, Keewee! Thanks for your updated page! I never mark my photos, though...

  • traveldave's Profile Photo
    Sep 17, 2004 at 8:01 PM

    With a name like Rottnest, I just had to see what kind of place this is. Despite its name, it looks like a nice island.

  • KristaB's Profile Photo
    Sep 1, 2004 at 4:24 AM

    I thought the name came from something rotten, what a relief to learn it's connected with rats that are not really rats. Slime is local dialect for top of the hill or roof - thank you!

  • CandS's Profile Photo
    Jun 23, 2004 at 3:14 PM

    Wonderful page! We might go there in August so your tips are very helpful! :)

  • bugalugs's Profile Photo
    Nov 16, 2003 at 8:11 AM

    a lovely place, it looks so beautiful. Those quokkas look nice, but I hope they dont have a tail like the thing (cant say the word) they were mistaken for! :-)

  • travelinxs's Profile Photo
    Jul 30, 2003 at 12:12 PM

    This could be a pleasant place to chill out on our arrival in Perth. Cheers for the advise.

  • Nobbe's Profile Photo
    May 17, 2003 at 6:50 PM

    Strange name, but still good! =)

  • b1bob's Profile Photo
    Apr 15, 2003 at 9:35 PM

    I never heard of this place before. It's always the obscure destinations that intrigue me.

  • pepples46's Profile Photo
    Nov 9, 2002 at 8:59 PM

    I tried to smuggle some tiny shells, got caught:-(( embarassing..not so you're page, great showing KW!

  • Freebeacher's Profile Photo
    Nov 9, 2002 at 8:28 PM

    I missed Rottnest when I was in Perth. Good job!! Next time!


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