02 September 2014
Perth First XI: Tourist Highlights
With blue skies, beautiful beaches a vibrant city centre and an outdoor lifestyle like no other, Perth is the perfect place for a relaxing holiday. To make the most of your time in Perth, check out our list of 11 ‘must-do’ activities in the city.
Oasis in the City
One of the largest inner city parks in the world – at 400 hectares it is larger than New York’s Central Park – Kings Park is a green oasis in the heart of the city. A short walk or free bus ride from the city centre, check out the impressive views of the Swan River and city skyline, pack a picnic, see an outdoor movie or live performance in summer, and the wildflowers in spring, or learn more about the park on an Indigenous walking tour. Visit website.
Designer brands meet local labels along King, Queen, Hay and Murray Streets in the city. Outside the city centre, head to Claremont Quarter, Garden City, Fremantle, Mount Lawley, Leederville or Subiaco for your retail fix. Other rich pickings include designer jewellery crafted from Western Australian gold, Argyle diamonds and Broome’s famous South Sea pearls. If vintage, hip and quirky is more your style, make quick for the boutiques of William Street in Northbridge. Visit website.
Indian Ocean Sunsets
Home to 19 pristine metropolitan beaches, it’s easy to find your own slice of white sand to relax and enjoy one Western Australia’s famous sunsets. Surfers head to Scarborough and Trigg, while swimmers and stand-up paddle boarders cool off at Cottesloe or Mettam’s Pool between Sorrento Beach and Trigg. The Scarborough foreshore is undergoing revitalisation and has just welcomed the new Matisse Club, next to the recently refurbished Rendezvous Grand. Cottesloe Beach has also recently welcomed a new dining experience, Cott &Co Fish Bar as part of The Cottesloe Beach Hotel, on Marine Parade. Visit website.
Perth city and its urban villages of Cottesloe, Claremont, Mount Lawley, Leederville, Maylands, Northbridge, North Perth, Subiaco and Victoria Park are brimming with new dining options. Sample Western Australia’s fresh produce and wines at one of the many new small bars, cafes, and restaurants such as Print Hall, The Old Crow, Pleased To Meet You and Lalla Rookh, or at one of the city’s fashionable food vans or pop-up restaurants. On the weekend, check out what the locals are up to at local farmers markets. In summer, make a bee-line for twilight hawkers markets, al fresco cafes and beachside dining. Visit website.
Perth’s Cultural Centre in Northbridge is home to the Art Gallery of WA, the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, the State Library, the State Theatre and the WA Museum, including the Heath Ledger Theatre. Dotted throughout Perth you’ll find art installations that make up the Perth city art walk. From November to May enjoy Perth’s bevy of outdoor cinemas, live performances and festivals. The Fringe Festival and Perth International Arts Festival are crowd pleasers. Visit website.
Island in the sun
Home to 63 beaches and bays, Rottnest Island is a short ferry ride from Perth, Fremantle or Hillarys. There are no cars on the island so pedal power is king. Enjoy lunch at one of the cafes and restaurants, most offering spectacular ocean views, swim, snorkel or dive, or take an eco-cruise and discover the local wildlife. In the late afternoon, make a beeline for The Rottnest Hotel, overlooking Thompson Bay -it’s the perfect spot to unwind as the sunsets. Visit website.
Amongst the vine
Western Australia’s oldest wine region, the Swan Valley celebrated its 180th year in 2014 and is an easy 30-minute drive from Perth city. Here you can meet the maker at some of the small family wineries or sample some of the wines from vineyards that sell their wines internationally. There’s also fresh produce, microbreweries and galleries galore on the Swan Valley Food and Wine Trail. Continue your food and wine foraging in the Perth Hills and Avon Valley. Visit website.
Experience Perth’s unique attractions
Travelling around Perth city is free so hop on a CAT bus and tour Perth’s city sights. Ring one of the world’s largest musical instruments, the Swan Bells at the Bell Tower; watch a live gold pour and see the world’s largest collection of gold bars at the Perth Mint; catch a ferry across the Swan River to Perth Zoo - home to over 1,500 animals; or, head out to Caversham Wildlife Park where you can meet koalas, kangaroos, wombats, and many other native wildlife. Visit website.
Swim with the dolphins
From the shores of the spectacular Shoalwater Islands Marine Park, enjoy a range of marine adventures, ranging from small group swimming with dolphins tours, sea kayak tours of Penguin Island, and boat cruises to get up close and personal with the local dolphins, sea lions and little penguins. A little further south, you’ll often find dolphins playing in the tranquil waters off the Mandurah foreshore, delighting diners at the waterfront eateries. Visit website.
Adventure World is home to over 30 unique attractions including water rides, water slides and thrill rides. The medieval-themed ‘Dragon’s Kingdom’ is an enchanting land of little dragons, over-sized flowers and fairies. With six rides, swimming pools, water slides and an aqua splash zone dedicated to the youngest adventurers, Dragon’s Kingdom is unique in Western Australia. The award-winning Kahuna Falls is one of Australia’s largest rain fortresses, boasting a 1,000 litre tipping bucket and over 100 interactive water-play features. Visit website.
For more information on things to see and do in Perth, visit: www.westernaustralia.com
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