I’ve never been to Rotto so thought a tour would be a good way to experience everything. I booked online the night before. When we collected our tickets there was some sort of a mix-up that required the lovely clerk to rebook everything- no issues, it just took her a few extra minutes.
The ferry ride over on Rottnest Fast Ferries was good - smooth, in a spacious 3-deck catamaran with a snack bar that also sells alcohol. It was a 45 minute ride from Hillary’s to Rotto.
There’s no tour guide for the whole journey. We were left to find our own way to the train station for the tour to Oliver Hill once we reached the island. Signage was average but we managed. This tour was excellent, run by very knowledgeable volunteers. It does involve a bit of walking and some stairs. Side note, keep your ticket after you get on the train, as you need it to get into the Tunnels tour. (Shoutout to the awesome lady at the Fast Ferries call center who reissued my ticket via email after I threw it out!)
We took the train back into town - it was a 30 minute ride out but 15 minutes back, arriving at 1330. The bus part of the tour was to depart at 1345. We went to the bakery to buy pre-made rolls for lunch. (The tour provided Subway vouchers for lunch but Subway was busy and we didn’t want to miss the bus.)
The bus tour was run by Kevin who was an excellent guide, sharing many stories and facts about the area. This bus tour is a stay-on-the-bus tour, something to keep in mind if you want to take photos, as you need to be quick! We were unable to see West End due to construction in the area, and landed back in the settlement at 1515.
We had an adequate hour to relax with a drink and quokka-watch before our ferry departed at 1630.
All in all, this was a very good way for a first-timer to see everything without cycling 25km!