This enchanting holiday island is more than Beaches, Boating, Beer and Barbecues.
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Historically, Rottnest Island has been used as:
1838 - an aboriginal prison for 70 years
1846 - a pilot base to guide ships for 57 years
1848 - the governors summer home for 65 years
1881 - a boys reformatory for 20 years
1902 - classed 'recreational use' forever
1915 - an internment and prisoner of war camp
1917 - classed 'A-Class Reserve' forever
1940 - an army camp during the war for 5 years
Notorious Rottnest reefs.
Eight shipwrecks after the first lighthouse was built, it was obvious another was needed.
A storm in the winter of 1899 claimed two more ships and 36 lives, so the decision was made.
In 1900, Bathurst Lighthouse was built and lit.
These tasty, timid creatures were called 'Quak-a' by the aborigines who hunted them.
Abundant in the south west of WA before dingoes, cats and foxes arrived.
Now they are only found on a few small islands that formed about 6500 years ago when the sea levels rose.
Over 300 years ago, on the largest island, Dutch explorers saw it was infested with rats and named it Rottenest Island.
These gregarious marsupials are like kangaroos and wallabies - the females suckle their young in a pouch. They are herbivorous, nocturnal, can climb trees and survive without fresh water.
Now called Quokkas, the current population on Rottnest is about 10 000.
Ospreys are spectacular hunters with sharp curved talons built for fishing.
Also called Fish Hawks.
There are several nests around the island, all protected by the small limestone stacks.
Eggs in August, chicks in October and flying by December.
As you step ashore all your troubles and worries disappear.
Grab a bike, head in any direction and find one of the 63 beaches to snorkle, swim or just relax.
Try the hop-on-hop-off bus service or a guided tour or wander around exploring the early colonial buildings and maybe spot a quokka or two.
Finish the day with a coldie in the Quokka Arms beach-side beer garden.
Oliver Hill, in the centre of Rottnest, contained a battery of two 9.2 inch guns to protect Fremantle Harbour on the mainland.
During World War II these weapons were manned 24/7 by 100 soldiers each shift.
It took five men to fire the shells, at a rate of 3/minute, to a distance of 28 kms. Kabooom!
Today it is an underground military museum with guided tours.