Nestled into a protected coastal site in the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park, Ellensbrook Homestead is one of the Margaret River region’s best hidden gems.
This picturesque site is rich in shared histories.
It sits in Wadandi country at a place called Mokidup. The Wadandi have maintained an unbroken connection to Mokidup for thousands of years and used the location for summer camping.
In 1857, when Alfred and Ellen Bussell arrived, a Wadandi guide led them and their young daughters to the protected location with a supply of fresh water and it became their home.
The Wadandi assisted the new settlers to establish their farm – showing them ways to fertilise the ground with fresh seaweed. The Ellensbrook venture was successful, with income derived from the sale of beef, butter and cheese.
Over the decades the house was built in stages by ticket-of-leave convicts, deserting seamen and local Noongars.
Between 1871 and 1877 Ellensbrook was managed and the homestead extended, by the eldest of their five daughters, Fanny.
In 1899, the second daughter Edith established the Ellensbrook Farm Home for Aboriginal Children. The Home continued for 17 years during which time Edith continued the tradition of extending the main building.
Once inside the historic house and its grounds there is plenty of opportunity to learn more about the fascinating entwined stories of this place. You will also discover the role Ellensbrook played in a fledgling tourist industry in the 1880s.
If you’re looking for some respite from the bustle of Margaret River, we definitely recommend taking the time to explore this peaceful place and discover the many stories held within the house and its landscape.
Our top tips? Take a picnic! And be sure to make the most of your visit by taking the short walk to Meekadariby, a beautiful grove surrounded by peppermint trees and lush ferns. You can also stroll to the beach along a section of the Cape to Cape Trail for breathtaking ocean views.