Kojonup was settled in 1871 and visitors to the town can find many places of interest that celebrate and embrace a long, rich farming history.
Follow the Historical Walk Trail and visit the many significant places that make up Kojonup’s history and heritage. The Military Barracks, Heritage Harness Display, St Mary’s Church, the Old School, the Railway Station and the Old Post Office are among the fifty-two sites mapped out on the walk.
Visit Brigadier AW Potts, a WWII Kokoda Hero who is celebrated with a life-size sculpture standing on a boulder of granite in Apex Park and then head 19kms out of town along the Blackwood Road to Muradup, where you will find one of the oldest World War memorials in Australia, built in 1916.
The highlight of a visit to Kojonup is the Kodja Place and Rose Maze.
Kodja Place embraces the ‘One Story, Many Voices’ history of Kojonup and can be found in The Visitors’ Centre. Architecturally designed, it is a rammed earth building in the shape of a ‘Kodj’ or stone axe and celebrates town and farm life with interactive attractions.
Sit on the school bus, drive the farm Ute and walk the boards of a typical shearing shed; visitors can even check the rain gauge and the farm budget.
The Kodja Place Gallery and Story Place also houses a display of artefacts, Noongar and farming stories, exhibits, photographs and short videos. Outside is a grassed courtyard with shading trees, bush pockets of native plants, a stage and a traditional Mia Mia sitting adjacent to the spectacular Heritage Rose Maze Garden.
The Rose Maze is an iconic feature of Kojonup with 2000 Australian-Bred rose bushes.
This stunning maze weaves the stories of three Kojonup women; Indigenous Yoondi, European-Australian Elizabeth and Italian migrant Maria. Their stories are told through printed words, mosaics, a journal, and poignant letters home.
As visitors walk the maze, they will encounter a rich tapestry of roses, pergolas, seating and pathways as the stories of these symbolic women are revealed.
The Maze is at its best in November however, there are always some roses flowering from October to June. Enjoy fragrances of blooms from over 100 varieties of roses across 1400 plantings.
Picnic amongst protected native flora and wildlife in the Farrar Nature Reserve. This 1000 acre Reserve, just outside Kojonup, supports a variation of flora and fauna due to the diversity of soils.
It is also home to The Railway Dam sunk by horse and cart in the early 1900s.
The Dam supplied fresh water for steam engines which ran through the reserve from Boyup Brook to Kojonup until 1982. It was also a recreational swimming spot until the town swimming pool was built in 1970.
Now Long Neck Tortoises and numerous species of frogs can be found alongside Kangaroos, Wallabies and Reptiles.
If you’re more of a bird lover then pay a visit to the Myrtle Benn Flora & Fauna Sanctuary. It was developed by local school children in the late 1960s to create several walking trails and public access to the magnificent natural flora and flourishing native birdlife in the beautiful woodlands.
Spend an idyllic, indulgent getaway exploring the countryside and bushwalking during wildflower season.
The Annual Wildflower Festival showcases a stunning wildflower display with over 400 named species within the Kojonup Shire, including a spectacular display of local orchids.
Within the Great Southern Region surrounding Kojonup, visitors will find several world-class wineries.
The gourmet produce of the Frankland River Region is a forty-five minute drive from Kojonup where you will find Alkoomi Wines & Olive Oil, Blackwood Crest, Ferngrove Vineyards Estate, Frankland Estate and Jingilli Olive Oil.
It is, however, advised to ring ahead to ensure the cellar door is open.
Join the people of Kojonup for a chicken and champagne lunch and picnic at the Wandecla Races. This fun family day out is held every year in February at the Wandecla Polo & Polocrosse Club, one of the oldest clubs of its kind in WA.
Free entertainment throughout the day such as Dash for Cash, Fashion in the Fields, Live music and much more, will keep the whole family entertained.
Enjoy a cold beer at the Commercial Hotel, Western Australia’s oldest continually licensed hotel, or the magnificent Royal Hotel, built in 1887 and conveniently located directly opposite Cornwall House Accommodation.
Enjoy freshly baked pies, pastries or bread from the famous Kojonup Bakery.
For something more substantial take a seat at the delightful Black Cockatoo Café which is open 7 days or Country Kitchen, open Monday-Friday, offering patrons delicious, country-style, home cooked meals and baked goods.
Kojonup has some wonderful shops to explore:
At the top end of the town is Gallery Aura; a stunning art gallery showcasing the work of many fine Australian artists. Paintings, sculpture, ceramics and textiles are all beautifully displayed alongside European antiques hand-picked by the owner.
In the centre of town, next door to the famous Kojonup Bakery, you’ll find Woodenavacloo specialising in locally handmade toys and trinkets with ‘old world’ charm.
Across the road is the Crafts & Gifts Shop, the quintessential country store with locally made pickles, preserves, gift cards and craft-wares. There’s a sports shop to pick-up what you need for some wonderful bush walks in the region and don’t miss Renew, tucked around the corner on Jones Road, a quaint Country Thrift Store for those who love to rummage.
Cruise on down to the Southern end of town and you will find the Kojonup Men’s Shed and across the road is Nightingales Nursery & Nest; a wonderful Emporium of Homewares, Furniture and Plants; an eclectic mix of everything for the home.
Just a hop, skip and a jump further along Albany Highway you will find the Gift Shop at the Kojonup Visitors’ Centre, well stocked with local and regional products, Noongar Aboriginal Arts, Crafts and Books.
**Image from Gallery Aura
Challenge your friends to a game of golf or tennis at the combined Kojonup Golf Course and Tennis Club. Or sweat it out in the Squash Courts, Turf Ovals or Bowling Greens at the Kojonup Recreation Complex. Cool off with some lap swimming in the Olympic pool* or water-ski at Lake Towerinning, an ancient meteor crater filled with fresh, clear water.
*The swimming pool is open for the summer season, daily from 12.30pm to 6.30pm and for the early birds 6.30am to 8.00am Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
** Image from WA Tourism