Explore Kings Park, Fremantle, Rottnest Island and much more on this list of the top 10 experiences in Perth.
Australia's only capital city on the Indian Ocean oozes confidence. Explore Perth's hip bars and sunny beaches, spectacular green parks and glittering skyscrapers, easily accessible wine regions and beautiful colonial architecture. Be enthralled by a city on the move that has passion for the past and energy for the future.
Wander one of the largest inner-city parks in the world, Kings Park and Botanic Garden. Take in gorgeous views of the Swan and Canning Rivers, the city skyline and Darling Ranges while walking bushland trails, admire manicured gardens and stop at one of the various cafés in the area. Don’t miss strolling among treetops along the Federation Walkway!
Turn down Murray Street and find funky Wolf Lane for eclectic collections of cafés and bars. Chill out in Mount Lawley, meet office workers in Perth’s city bars, hit up vintage and designer shops along Leederville’s Oxford Street and head to Northbridge for vintage fashion, hip bars and cutting-edge restaurants.
Thirty minutes from Perth’s CBD, Fremantle has its own special character. Discover colonial remnants like Fremantle Prison, the Fremantle Arts Centre and Old Courthouse. Delve into seafaring history at the terrific WA Maritime and Shipwrecks Museums , then drink from a choice of 43 tap beers at the 1843 landmark Sail & Anchor. Visit famous craft brewery Little Creatures at Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour.
The small bar movement in Perth has grown substantially with many popping up across the City Centre and surrounding suburbs. Sample wine and tapas at laneway gem Andaluz, join the cool crowd at The Aviary or go for a stylish rooftop feel at QT Perth, with its sweeping 17th-storey views. Also in the City Centre are Helvetica and Varnish on King. In hip Northbridge, find Ezra Pound Bar, Mechanic’s Institute and Sneaky Tony’s.
Discover more about Australia’s amazing west coast and tales of early explorers at the WA Maritime Museum. Delve into an extensive collection of Indigenous art at the Art Gallery of Western Australia and discover colonial history at the World Heritage-listed Fremantle Prison. The live gold pouring demonstrations at The Perth Mint will wow history buffs and be sure to make time for The Bell Tower, home to the 14th century Swan Bells, one of the largest collections on Earth! .
Don’t miss Perth’s beachside towns. Stop in Scarborough for coffee at funky cafés like Wild Fig before taking to the waves and a spot of snorkelling at Trigg and Sorrento Beaches – try Island Market or Voyage Kitchen for lunch. Closer to the city centre, watch the sunset across the waters of Cottesloe Beach and City Beach, great spots for picnics and beachfront restaurants – book into Il Lido, Odyssea or the iconic Cottesloe Beach Hotel.
Perth has changed remarkably in recent years. Taking a walk around Elizabeth Quay is a must-do. This dazzling riverfront precinct meets the city and boasts an exceptional array of pop-up events and dining options on the water, plus one of the city’s lushest new rooftop bars, at The Ritz-Carlton. Yagan Square is the new heart of the city, uniting funky Northbridge and the stylish City Centre at one epic cultural hub. Explore it all on a walking tour. On weekends from March to September, hit up an ‘Aussie Rules’ football game at the new 60,000-seat Optus Stadium.
Feel a world away on Rottnest Island, even though it’s only 19 kilometres (11.8 miles) from Perth. Access this car-free island by ferry, helicopter or even seaplane. Hire a bike to discover more than 60 beaches, snorkel coral reefs, dive shipwrecks, watch whales (seasonal) and explore history. Segway, skydiving and seafood tours are available. Best of all, get close to cute little marsupials - the cute quokka, found only in Western Australia.
Whether it be swimming with wild dolphins in Rockingham, capturing a quokka selfie at Rottnest Island or saying g’day to a West Aussie in a waterfront bar, the locals of Perth are famous for their laidback and friendly nature. Keep an eye out for dolphins and black swans in the aptly named ‘Swan River’, too! Visitors can also head to Caversham Wildlife Park for guaranteed encounters with some local icons.
Drive 25 minutes north-east of the City Centre to the Swan Valley and find 40 vineyards and many cellar doors offering tastings in Western Australia’s oldest wine region. Join a guided tour, cycle through the vineyards or take a cruise upriver, sipping local wines and enjoying the scenery with visits to cellar doors. A range of breweries and other local food producers also feature in what is Perth’s very own pantry. The Swan Valley bursts with flavours and fun at many events and festivals, including the annual Western Australia Gourmet Escape each November.