As one of the world’s sunniest cities, Perth residents enjoy more than 3000 hours of sunshine a year and visitors can spend as much of their holidays outdoors as they please, with very little chance of rain altering their plans. In Perth, having plenty of space is the norm, so don’t be surprised when you find out the park you’re strolling through is bigger than New York’s iconic Central Park, or that a collection of over 19 beaches run along the coast, just a short way from the CBD. The Western Australian capital also offers plenty of family-friendly ways to discover its history, heritage and wildlife. Holiday rentals in Perth are available for every budget, from stylish condos in the city centre to family homes just a hop, skip and a jump from the water.
Do Perth Like the Locals: on Foot
Stretch your legs in one of Perth’s many green spaces and mingle with the locals. Perth’s active residents are likely to be walking or jogging along the banks of Swan River, which wraps around the city. Visitors can take in some of the best skyline views as they share the riverside running trail. To learn about Aboriginal heritage, head to the inner-city Kings Park and Botanic Garden, where you can participate in guided tours focusing on local history. Kings Park offers a wide range of other activities for the whole family, including a treetop walkway, and ample dedicated picnic spaces where you can have your lunch surrounded by wildflowers. To delve deeper into Perth’s history, visit Stirling Gardens, Western Australia’s oldest public gardens, home to the Old Course House Law Museum and the state’s Supreme Court. Some of the trees you’ll walk beneath are approaching their 200th birthday. In recent years, bouncing kangaroo sculptures have modernized the park’s landscape.
Uncover Perth’s History and Culture
For a comprehensive look at Perth and Western Australia’s human and natural history, spend some time at the Museum of Western Australia, housed within heritage-listed buildings. In addition to viewing dinosaur fossils found in the area, you can learn all about Western Australia’s first inhabitants, the Katta Djinoong. Learn about Perth’s British heritage by visiting Swan Bell Tower, which encases the original bells of a 14th century church in London’s Trafalgar Square. Saint Martin in the Field Church’s bells are, in fact, some of the largest in the world, still operated today by professional bell ringers. Swan Bell Tower doubles up as an observation deck, where you can take in panoramic views of the city from the 6th floor. Next, visit the Perth Mint, the oldest functioning gold mint on the planet, where you can even watch gold being poured or prepare your own gold coin, as well as take part in a number of interactive displays.
Perth for Families
If you are traveling with the kids, you’ll find Perth to be a very family-friendly city with activities catering to children and teenagers alike. Nature lovers can head straight to Perth Zoo, an award winning zoo where you’ll be able to encounter over 1300 animal species, many of which are endangered. Meanwhile, you can get up close and personal with Australian marsupials at Faversham Wildlife Park, with the option to pet and feed koalas, kangaroos and other favourites. Another family-oriented Perth destination is the Scitech Discover Centre, home to one of Australia’s best planetariums, where children of all age groups can take part in hands-on activities or watch various space-related shows throughout the day.
Hit the Beach
The 19 beaches that hug the coastline near Perth cater to different crowds, from families to surfers. The most visited beach in Perth is Cottesloe, with its white sand and turquoise water often gracing postcards of the city. The waterfront is backed by grassy parklands, where towering pines provide shade. While at Cottesloe Beach, stop to refuel at Indiana Tea House or go for a jog along the trail bordering the shore. If you would like to relax in a quieter oceanfront location, spend your days at neighbouring North Cottesloe Beach. Alternately, immerse yourself in Perth’s surf culture at Scarborough, known just as much for its good breaks as for a good party, or hit the waves at Trigg Beach, the go-to beach for experienced surfers.
Getting to Perth
The closest big city to Perth is actually in Indonesia, which gives you a good idea of how far from the rest of Australia the WA capital is set. This being said, Perth is very easy to access by plane, with major international and regional aircrafts taking off and landing at the capital’s airport each day. If you’re arriving from the East Coast and would like to experience the Australian Outback, hop on a train departing Sydney or Adelaide. You’ll get to Perth in 3 days’ time.