Wadjemup Bidi is a series of walk trails on Rottnest Island that provide visitors an opportunity to traverse the Island’s unique landscapes and experience spectacular coastal headlands, stunning inland lakes and natural and man-made attractions along the way.
Recently the Governor spent an afternoon walking some of the trails and reflected, “I love Rottnest and the walks take you to different places, all with fantastic views of Rottnest’s coastline and lakes. The walks are a great way to learn more about the Island’s precious environment and its history, to enjoy Rottnest’s unique charm and to keep fit.”
When asked about the establishment of the trails, Rottnest Island Authority chief executive Michelle Reynolds said, “Our walk trails showcase the diversity of Rottnest Island (Wadjemup). Whether it be walking along our northern beaches or visiting the colonial history on the Bickley Walk Trail there is so much of the Island to explore.”
The 45 kilometres of the Wadjemup Bidi walk trails are set out in five sections, each boasting culturally and environmentally significant landmarks to interpret and experience. The intricate network of trails aid to control and manage visitor impact, by connecting Rottnest Island’s beautiful natural features to its cultural history in an environmentally sustainable manner. The Whadjuk Noongar are the Traditional Owners of Rottnest Island and “Bidi” in Noongar means “trail” or “track”.
The development of this cohesive network of walking trails encourages visitors to appreciate the cultural significance, multiple histories and environmental dynamics of the Island. This was key to ensuring the reduction of ad hoc access, which in the past has caused significant environmental degradation of the surrounding coastal formations and vegetation. The integration of interpretation and trail design communicates the diverse values of the Island to ensure visitors continue to respect and protect the Island.
The Rottnest Island Wadjemup Bidi Project focused on achieving sustainable management to facilitate the following objectives:
- Reduce human impact on the coastal dune systems
- Rehabilitate erosion areas
- Create opportunity to improve visitor yield and numbers
- Create opportunity to communicate educational and sustainable management messages
- Protect the visitor from coastal risk issues
- Enhance visitor experience
- Create training, employment and business opportunities
The development of the trails was assisted by volunteers from six community groups who completed tasks associated with revegetation for the walk trail project These volunteers contributed 4,940 hours of in-kind labour to plant 6,865 trees.
Maps of the trails along with detailed information are available here: (http://rottnestisland.com/see-and-do/natural-attractions/wadjemup-walk-trail)