The Shire of Toodyay, bordering the north eastern edge of the Perth metropolitan area, spans an area of 1683 square kilometres and lays claims to some of the most magnificent examples of natural and cultural heritage in Western Australia. The name Toodyay is believed to be derived from an Aboriginal word ‘duidgee’ which means ‘place of plenty’, referring to the richness and fertility of the area and the reliability of the Avon River.
The townsite of Toodyay is located approximately 85 kilometres east of Perth in the picturesque Avon Valley. Founded in 1836 and declared an historic town by the National Trust in 1980, the town today still displays fine examples of 19th century history, with architecture reflecting the early convict era. Historic buildings include the Old Courthouse (Shire Administration Centre), the Mechanics’ Institute (Toodyay Library), Connors Mill and the Old Gaol. Connors Mill, a working display, and the Old Gaol Museum are open to the public for a minimal admission fee.
Toodyay provides residents with quality retail outlets and services, such as bank and ATMs, post office, telecentre, library, chemist, hardware, supermarket, garage, gift stores, bakery, hotels and restaurants. The town has first rate sporting facilities including bowling greens, tennis courts, equestrian and skate parks, as well as cricket, football and hockey fields.
Flowing through Toodyay is the beautiful Avon River on which the world’s longest white-water race, the Avon Descent, is held each year. Residents and visitors can enjoy a peaceful picnic at Toodyay’s Duidgee Park where there are barbeque facilities, children’s playgrounds, public toilets and a miniature railway.Also located within the Shire are the Avon Valley National Park and numerous Reserves that become a blaze of colour with magnificent displays of wildflowers during the spring months.
The Shire of Toodyay forms part of the Western Australia Wheatbelt region and a significant proportion of the land is used for agricultural activities, particularly sheep, cattle and grain. Extracts Industrial Park is located approximately 5km from Toodyay and currently accommodates various light industries. A future industrial area has also been identified that will have the capacity to accommodate the future long term industrial needs of the Shire.
Tourism is a growing industry that has significant potential to expand, with visitors being attracted to the dramatic landscape, significant heritage values and country lifestyle. There are many artisans in the region, as well as a wide selection of venues that offer quality accommodation. The Toodyay Visitor Centre, with an online booking service, is the ideal source for obtaining information about places of interest.
The Shire of Toodyay continues to experience a migration of people from the Perth metropolitan area who are seeking an alternative semi-rural lifestyle, resulting in unprecedented demand for property and development. With a commuter train service available, more people working from home and increasing numbers of fly in fly out workers in the mining industry, Toodyay is a popular location for people looking for an alternative home base that is a safe place for their families.
Visitors who choose to drive to Toodyay from Perth have several different options, including scenic routes. These options are;
- Toodyay Road via Gidgegannup
- Great Eastern Highway via Clackline
- Great Northern Highway via Chittering Road & Julimar Road (Scenic Route)
The MerredinLink and The Prospector are comfortable commuter trains that link Perth with Toodyay, then continue onto to Northam, Merredin and/or Kalgoorlie.
The journey between Midland and Toodyay follows a scenic route along much of the Avon River and picturesque hills of the Avon Valley.
The MerredinLink operates Monday, Wednesday and Friday, linking Toodyay with Perth and Northam/Merredin.
The Prospector departs at least once a day linking Toodyay with Perth and Northam/Merredin/Kalgoorlie.
There are many things to consider when booking places to stay, because the type of accommodation can affect your entire stay.
Whether you have a pet, children, a large group, travelling on a budget or getting away for a romantic weekend with a loved one, Toodyay has a good selection on offer for whatever your situation and requirements.