5 Things To Do In Perth – Your Day Trip Inspiration
If you are heading to Western Australia, you’ll most likely base yourself in its capital city, Perth. This isolated city exudes beauty with its white sandy beaches, is nearby to a large number of vineyards and has an energetic and lively city centre.
Here are five things to do in and around the city of Perth.
Kings Park and Botanic Gardens
As one of the largest inner city parks in the world, Kings Park is a highlight for many travellers. Whether you’re looking for a picnic in the park or you’re keen to do some activities, the 400 hectares of greenery are sure to tick every box. Overlooking the city centre and the meandering River Swan, the park’s location makes it an ideal place to sit back and take in the surrounding views.
Perhaps the most impressive feature within the park is the Botanical Garden which houses over 3000 species of flora found within Western Australia. With two thirds of the area protected as bushland it’s a fantastic way of combining a leisurely day in the sun with a cultural experience. There are free guided tours through the park or self-guided tours where you can stop at the various plaques en route to discover more about the history of the park and the area.
Swan Valley and Margaret River
For travellers who are keen to sample the local produce, a trip to Swan Valley is well worth a visit. Just 25 minutes east of Perth lies the town of Guilford. The Swan Valley Visitor Centre is located here, equipped with brochures mapping out over 200 food and drink activities along the 32km route. Whether you’re a Shiraz fan, or a Cabernet Sauvignon lover, with over 40 local vineyards the area is tailored for every taste palate! Along the route be sure to stop off and take part in local activities at the pottery studio near Guilford or, admire the local Aboriginal artwork in the Maalinup Aboriginal Gallery.
Visitors who are prepared to travel further afield are encouraged to take a day tour to Margaret River & Cape Leeuwin. This trip includes a visit to Busselton Jetty, the longest wooden jetty in the world and a chance to visit the most south-westerly point of Australia at Cape Leeuwin, home to the iconic lighthouse. Take a guided tour to hear about its construction back in 1895 and if you’re lucky enough to be there from May-September the area is renowned for whale sightings. The town of Margaret River features hundreds of caves, several of which are available to explore including Mammoth Cave, home to the remains of million year old fossils of extinct animals such as the Australian Megafauna. The town is also a surfer’s paradise with a collection of beautiful sandy beaches where visitors can spend their days basking in the sun.
Two hours north of Perth lies the limestone formations known as the Pinnacles, located within the Nambung National Park. In juxtaposition to the soft flat sands of the desert, these pillars are a striking image. While most visitors choose to visit them in the day, the Pinnacles can be just as spectacular at dusk, where you can witness the strange shadows cast by the many hundreds of pillars, some of which stand at up to three and a half metres tall. If you happen to be there between August and October, the desert is also littered with an array of wildflowers such as New Norcia.
If the idea of seeing wild animals in their natural habitat appeals to you then head to Kangaroo point, an area on the beach where the animals gather at the start and end of each day. Or, if you want to wash off a hot day in the sun, the additional beauty of Namburg National Park is that it’s surrounded by a variety of beaches which are perfect for swimming, surfing or snorkelling. From Perth, experience Pinnacles & Koalas, an exciting day tour that encompasses a visit to these striking limestone formations.
Off the coast of Perth lies Rottnest Island, a firm favourite among travellers. The island has a no car policy and bikes are the preferred mode of transport. The island is a breath of fresh air after visiting the bustling city of Perth. Water activities are a main attraction here and the coral reefs are a wonderful excuse to try and discover the 135 different species of fish. Also popular is the native Quokka, an Australian marsupial known for its adorable smile and cheeky manner. Be sure to come equipped with a selfie stick in order to capture your time with this native Instagram star!
The Sunset Coast
If you’re a fan of the sea breeze in the hot summer months and cooling yourself off in aqua blue waters, then you absolutely must take a drive north of Perth’s business district along the sunset coast.
The sunset coast comprises of the area north of the city centre and is made up of seven coastal areas.
The sunset coast area refers to seven coastal towns/local authorities. Here’s what you’ll find at each point:
Town of Cottesloe
- Cottesloe Beach – this famous white sand beach with crystal clear water is a must-see. Be sure to stop on your way back too to see the stunning sunset over the beach.
Town of Claremont
- Swanbourne – You can find unique Federation-style homes from the late 1800’s and the British Colony.
Town of Cambridge
- City Beach – a highly affluent area with another gorgeous, sandy, crystal-clear water beach. Generally a great place for beginners to surf (watch out for shorebreaks during the summer though!).
- Other activities you can take part in at City Beach are kitesurfing and windsurfing. Back on shore, the soft yellow sand is perfect for beach volleyball and matkot (beach tennis)
- Lakes and nature reserves: Lake Monger and Perry Lakes. Check these natural spots out if you want a change of scenery from the beach.
City of Stirling
- Largest local government area population in Western Australia
- Trigg beach: perfect for body boarding and surfing. Snorkeling is also an option here to see the vast marine life.
- Scarborough Beach: Set up as an entertainment complex. If you prefer a beach with a little more fire in it’s belly, Scarborough beach has bars, clubs and restaurants all along the beach strip.
City of Joondalup
- 20% of Joondaup’s population are expats from the United Kingdom.
- Sorrento beach: also visit Hilary Boat Harbour nearby
- Mullaloo Beach: home of Surf Life Saving Club, making it an ideal spot for families.
- Burns Beach: quieter beach with caravan park. Picnic and barbecue facilities available. Keep an eye on sandflies!
City of Wanneroo
- Huge land area covering around 685 square kilometres
- Quinns Beach: dog lovers rejoice; this beach has a dedicated dog beach for all the cuteness overload you can handle.
- Two Rocks: beautiful views and you’ll find the remains of the Atlantis Marine Park here.
Shire of Gingin (optional)
Depending on which tourism board you listen to, either the City of Wanneroo is the end of the sunset coast or the further north Shire of Gingin is.
If you head this far north, try not to get lost in the massive 3,211 sq km that the Shire covers.
If you traverse this far north, check out the small picturesque fishing town of Lancelin. You’ll be 127km north of Perth at this point.
You’ll have gorgeous views of the Indian ocean from the Lancelin pier. Sandboarding and driving 4-wheelers in the sand dunes or on the beach are other adventure activities available to you in Lancelin.
When you’re ready to drive back, you’ll no doubt be bringing with you a ton of amazing memories. Just don’t forget to stop somewhere to watch an unforgettable sunset on the way home.
If you’re looking for things to do in and around Perth, you won’t regret ticking these five beautiful and exciting locations off your itinerary. With a wide variety of activities and sights, this city, and its surrounding areas on the Western Coast of Australia, are a joy to explore. Whether you enjoy a relaxing few days on the beach or day trips into the desert, Perth is a great base to see such incredible Australian diversity.
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