Perth is Australia’s best kept tourist secret. There are more things to do in Perth than you might have thought. Standing unassumingly on the westernmost edge of the continent, this remote city has much to offer for those willing to travel off the beaten path. From scenic nature to cultural heritage sites, from relaxation opportunities to intense touring, Perth is sure to cater to tastes of all kinds of visitors.
Perth was founded by Captain James Stirling of the Royal Navy in 1829, and grew exponentially during the 1890s Australian gold rushes. Nowadays, Perth is the regional mining hub for Western Australia, as well as its administrative center. In recent years, its reputation as a traveler’s hidden gem is only starting to grow.
What draws people to Perth? It is a combination of several contributing factors. Its relative isolation allowed the city to develop without much outside interference, allowing it to create its own version of the ‘Australian Dream’. Perth’s climate makes it very comfortable to live in throughout the whole year, especially if you prefer warmer weather. Perth has all the trappings of a modern metropolis as well. Finally, Perth is surrounded on all sides by untapped nature, making it something of an eco-tourism paradise.
Perth Travel Guide
As far as specific traveler-friendly locations are concerned, Perth has plenty going on. To give you a taste what’s on offer, I’ve created a short guide on what to see and do during your stay.
Spend the Day at Cottesloe Beach
Cottesloe Beach is without a doubt the most popular and beloved beach in Perth, and for good reason. Like most beaches in the area, Cottesloe prides itself with glistening white sands and crystal-clear waters. What makes it truly special are nearby grass terraces and parks, the tall Norfolk Island pine trees, and the lively summer atmosphere. Generations of Perth citizens have spent their summer days diving into the ocean, watching the sunset while enjoying a glass of local wine, or drinking a beer with friends over seafood dinner. Don’t miss out on this one.
Set Sail For Rottnest Island
Rottnest Island, or Rotto as it’s known among the locals, is a small island located about 18km off the coast. Rottnest island has plenty of things to do and see. Beaches covered in white sand and secluded coves filled with aquamarine water attract divers who wish to gaze at the local marine life. Bike trails cover the entirety of the island. While the walkway network of Wadjemup Bidi offers 45 kilometers of paths, connecting cultural and environmental landmarks. If you have a taste for history, the island’s museum chronicles the former role of the island as a prison colony.
Relax at King’s Park
King’s Park is one of the world’s largest inner-city parks, two-thirds of which is protected bushland that epitomizes the region’s unique biodiversity. The nearby botanic garden holds thousands of species of local flora, including a 750-year-old baob tree. King’s Park is a historical site as well, chronicling the interactions between the local Nyungar people and European colonists. There are plenty of public education programs being offered all year round if you want to know more. You can also take a walk through the treetops, appreciate the elegant design of the State War Memorial. Or just stick around for a while and enjoy the view of the city and the Swan River.
Shop at The Fremantle Markets
The Fremantle Markets are located in the town of Fremantle, a part of Perth’s wider metropolitan area. Built in 1897, the market consists of over a hundred shops in the historic hall of the building. You’ll find fresh food producers, vegetable growers and food retailers selling their wares in the yard. Far more than just a regular marketplace, the Fremantle Markets is a veritable entertainment mecca! You can enjoy live music and performances between bouts of shopping.
Enjoy the Quiet Life
Among all other cities in Australia, Perth probably has a unique vibe. For a city of over 2 million people, it somehow still manages to evoke a small town charm, albeit with a modern city exterior. It is as if it has been over-developed for the number of people who actually live there. It never seems to get busy or feel crowded, making it perfect if you wish to stay for a while. Just be careful. After staying a while in Perth, its charms might seduce you enough to want to stay here for good.
Pack Your Bags and Come Over
Perth is slowly becoming the star of Australian tourism. Despite its remote location, tourists are more willing to take a detour from more obvious tourist locations to come and visit. And for good reason. Perth has something to offer for everyone, it’s just a matter of reserving a flight ticket.
Author: Leila Dorari is an entrepreneur and freelance writer from Sydney. She is passionate about exploring different places across the globe and believes that first you need to get lost before you can get found. In her free time you can find her hiking with her furry four-legged friend.
Heading to Perth? Stay at Billabong Backpackers!
Travelling the West Coast? Check out our Guide to Western Australia