Bunbury’s unique waterfront location was crucial as the city grew around its port but it was a slow beginning. Europeans first discovered the area in 1803 on a voyage led by Captain de Freycinet. However the region wasn’t fully explored until 1830 when Governor James Stirling’s expedition navigated up the Collie River before establishing a camp called Port Leschenault.
Expedition members claimed large land grants and a military regiment was sent to protect the anticipated settlers. Bunbury’s first settlers, the Scott family did not arrive until 1838.
Convict labour and the Donnybrook gold rush saw the small colonial outpost become a town.
The Port of Bunbury developed into the South West’s main export hub bringing further prosperity, and growing the town into the city it is now.
There are quaint reminders of the past dotted throughout Bunbury and together they form a memorable collection of sites and activities.
Bunbury Regional Art Galleries (1883)
Originally a convent and chapel for the Sisters of Mercy.
Paisley Centre (1887)
Once the Bunbury Boy’s School, this is one of the few 19th century public buildings remaining.
The Rose Hotel (1865)
One of Bunbury’s most impressive heritage buildings.
Reflective of the city’s maritime heritage, with 13 identified shipwrecks buried in its sand.
King Cottage (1880)
Home of the King family from 1880-1920, it is now a musieum with displays of clothing, tools and memorabilia from the turn of the century.
St Marks (Old Picton) Church (1842)
Cnr Charterhouse and Flynn Roads
The second oldest church in WA built by Anglican Rev. J Wollaston using wattle and daub construction.