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Girls' weekend under $500: Margaret River

13:00 AEST Fri Aug 26 2011
Kelly Landry put the $500 weekend to the test with a couple of friends in Western Australia. They went to Margaret River, a place to escape a busy life. It offers excellent wining and dining, beaches, forests and caves. Scroll down to see how Kelly spent her $500 budget!

Margaret River Chalets

With accommodation suitable for all budgets, Kelly and her friends chose to stay at Margaret River Chalets. Right on the edge of the township and adjoined to a nature reserve, the family-run business offers excellent value for money.

Three chalets — Blue Wren, Kookaburra and Rosella, sleep between four and six people — and have potbelly fires as well as reverse cycle air-conditioning. There's a fully-equipped kitchen, barbecue and lots of space inside and out.

Pick fruit from the organic orchard and enjoy mingling with the ponies, cows, chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs, kangaroos and the owners' dog Lucy is always up for a pat.

Scenic drive

After a light breakfast and meeting the resident animals, it was decided to save some money and enjoy the area's marvellous scenery. Armed with maps and suggestions from the Chalet owners, the girls took Caves Road and saw stunning surfing beaches, towering karri trees and orderly vineyards.

Must Margaret River

Having saved money by taking a drive, splurging on dinner at Must didn't break the budget. Racks of wine snake around the walls and the bar has quality wine and spirits. Pop in for a drink, snack or bistro meal. Great choices for meat lovers, they also source the ocean and earth for their menu.

Local wines are all there, as well as around 500 from around the country and abroad. Thirty are available by the glass and waiters can suggest the perfect one to accompany your meal.

Sea Gardens Cafe

Organic, free range and locally produced goods are used where possible at Seadies — and the pizzas and coffee are very special. One pizza is large enough for two people to enjoy and there's great music and those fantastic views.

Margaret River Chocolate Company

Everyone was more than pleased to take a detour to the Chocolate Company. The award winning world of chocolate has free tastings, interactive displays and viewing windows so you can watch the making process.

They make over two hundred products from the edible to white chocolate massage oil. There are truffles, bars, sugar-free chocolate, cocoa powder and gift hampers. There was plenty to choose from to enjoy on the drive back to Perth. The cafe serves hot chocolate, cakes and fondues.


Margaret River, three hours south of Perth.


Margaret River Chalets start at $190 a night twin share.

Must Margaret River's lounge menu ranges between $8 and $28. Lunch is $33 for two courses, $44 for three. Both include a glass of wine. A children's menu is available.

Sea Gardens Cafe prices range from $9.50 to $35. It is open even day from 9am to 8.30pm.

Margaret River Chocolate Company temptations start at $1.70. The showroom is open every day from 9am to 5pm and the Chocolate Cafe 9am to 4.30pm.

Prices correct at August 27, 2011.

For more information

Margaret River Chalets
Lot 106 Bussell Highway
Margaret River
Ph: (08) 9757 2905

Must Margaret River
107 Bussell Highway
Margaret River 6285
Ph: (08) 9758 8877

Sea Gardens Cafe
Mitchell Drive
Prevelly Park 6285
Ph: (08) 9757 3074

Margaret River Chocolate Company
415 Harman's Mil Road
Metricup 6289
Ph: (08) 9755 6555
Fax: (08) 9755 6556

Breakdown of girls' $500 weekend:

  • Petrol $62
  • Accommodation $190
  • Dinner $140
  • Breakfast $8
  • Lunch $60
  • Chocolates $39.95
  • Total $499.95

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