Swan River Seaplanes launch seaplane day tours from Perth to Margaret River

(L-R): Member for South Perth John McGrath MLA, City of South Perth Mayor Sue Doherty, Kristy Bailey of Swan River seaplanes, Western Australian Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett and Troy Thomas of Swan River Seaplanes, announcing the launch of Swan River Seaplanes' seaplane tourism services between Perth's Swan River and Margaret River, Queen Street Jetty, South Perth - Mon 23 January 2017. Behind is VH-MOX Cessna 208 Caravan (amphibious seaplane) (MSN 20800227) operated by Swan River Seaplanes (West Coast Air Services Pty Ltd/Avanova Pty Ltd). Photo © David Eyre
(L-R): Member for South Perth John McGrath MLA, City of South Perth Mayor Sue Doherty, Kristy Bailey of Swan River seaplanes, Western Australian Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett and Troy Thomas of Swan River Seaplanes, announcing the launch of Swan River Seaplanes’ seaplane tourism services between Perth’s Swan River and Margaret River, Queen Street Jetty, South Perth – Mon 23 January 2017.
Behind is VH-MOX Cessna 208 Caravan (amphibious seaplane) (MSN 20800227) operated by Swan River Seaplanes (West Coast Air Services Pty Ltd/Avanova Pty Ltd). Photo © David Eyre

23 January 2017 © David Eyre

Today saw the official launch of day tours from Perth’s Swan River to Margaret River by Swan River Seaplanes, on a six-month trial until June 2017.

The new tourism service begins from Friday 27 January 2017, using a Cessna 208 Caravan amphibious seaplane (VH-MOX).

The flights depart on Thursdays to Sundays from a new pontoon on Queen Street Jetty on the South Perth Foreshore at 9am, taking off from the Swan River and enjoying excellent views of the city and Western Australia’s coastline, before landing at arriving at Margaret River Airstrip (on land) an hour later at 10am. The same journey by car takes three times as long.

The price includes a day tour to the Margaret River wineries before the aircraft departs Margaret River at 3pm, arriving landing on the Swan River and returning to Queen Street Jetty at 4pm.

The seaplane can seat 12 passengers and the round trip flights, including wineries tours, will cost $795 per person.

The idea was conceived by One Eighty Marketing director Kristy Bailey and Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures owner Troy Thomas as a means for time-poor tourists in Perth to be able to visit the famous Margaret River wine region in the South West.

At the official launch were Western Australian Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett, Tourism Council CEO Evan Hall, City of South Perth Mayor Sue Doherty, Member for South Perth John McGrath MLA, Kristy Bailey and Troy Thomas of Swan River Seaplanes, and a large media contingent.

Cessna Caravan VH-MOX departed at 12:08pm with a group of passengers, including City of South Perth Mayor Sue Doherty, and was airborne at 12:16pm. It completed an orbit over the Swan River, before heading to Margaret River.

Swan River Seaplanes joins Red Baron Seaplanes, which launched scenic flights from the Swan River from its base at Barrack Street Jetty in 2016, using a Grumman SeaCat (AgCat seaplane). Red Baron Seaplanes will also operate flights from the Swan River to Rottnest, a 12-minute flight.

Perth’s Swan River has had a long standing aviation history with seaplanes dating back to the 1920s. Perhaps most famous was the operation of military and civilian (Qantas) Consolidated Catalina aircraft from Pelican Point and Matilda Bay in Crawley during World War Two. Qantas operated Catalinas on the longest non-stop airline service, from Perth to Ceylon (later renamed Sri Lanka), with flights sometimes lasting 32 hours.

See more photos of Swan River Seaplanes official launch and flight in our Aircraft Photos section

VH-MOX Cessna 208 Caravan (amphibious seaplane) (MSN 20800227) operated by Swan River Seaplanes (West Coast Air Services Pty Ltd/Avanova Pty Ltd), Swan River, South Perth - Mon 23 January 2017. Taking off from the Swan River at 12:16pm, after the official ceremony to launch seaplane tourism services between Perth's Swan River and Margaret River Airstrip, including tours of Margaret River wineries. Crown Resort at Burswood in the background. Photo © David Eyre
VH-MOX Cessna 208 Caravan (amphibious seaplane) (MSN 20800227) operated by Swan River Seaplanes (West Coast Air Services Pty Ltd/Avanova Pty Ltd), Swan River, South Perth – Mon 23 January 2017.
Taking off from the Swan River at 12:16pm, after the official ceremony to launch seaplane tourism services between Perth’s Swan River and Margaret River Airstrip, including tours of Margaret River wineries. Crown Resort at Burswood in the background. Photo © David Eyre

David Eyre

President, Aviation Association of WA Inc

2 thoughts on “Swan River Seaplanes launch seaplane day tours from Perth to Margaret River

  • February 3, 2017 at 2:14 pm
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    And yet, just about a month ago I recall reading here about another seaplane operator who wanted to establish a similar operation, yet pulled the plug and flew his plane out of WA due to the excess red tape.
    A much larger and more impressive aircraft it was also.
    So how did this minimalist operation get off the ground, when something that could have been a real attraction was forced to look elsewhere?

    Reply
  • March 6, 2017 at 11:07 pm
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    We flew on C208 VH-MOX last August from Broome to the Horizontal Falls, terrific trip. If you have never been on a floatplane, go do it, exhilirating experience.
    I think the reason this operator was given approval is that the aircraft and the AOC is with a long established seaplane operator ie West Coast Air Services based in Broome and therefore is an accredited operator.

    Reply

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