Spectacular natural surroundings meet the vibrant buzz of this thriving city. Perth is brimming with entertainment options sure to inspire, where a kaleidoscope of food, wine, arts, culture, hip boutiques and new bars await.
Nestled between the magnificent Swan River and one of the world’s largest inner city parks, the city is fringed with a natural beauty that beckons attention. And with a world-class wine region and sunsets over the ocean within half an hour of the city centre, and more hours of sunshine than any other capital city in Australia, there’s plenty to enjoy in this picture-perfect city.
Eat, drink, play
Perth’s burgeoning small bar and dining scene will leave visitors spoilt for choice – look for laneways characterised with an artistic flair with lit-up pathways leading to the final destination.
Perth’s small bars are frequented from mid-day by lunch-time diners into the evening by social night owls soaking up the atmosphere and a cocktail or two. Check out Spanish tapas bar Andaluz and whisky bar Helvetica on Howard Lane, have a cheeky drink at the Cheeky Sparrow or, at Wolf Lane or the new Bar de Halcyon on Wolfe Lane or head to Brookfield Place off St Georges Terrace, which offers multiple new bar and dining options including The Print Hall, The Trustee and the intimate Bobeche underground at 1907 on Queen Street.
Explore: inner-city precincts
A cluster of inner-city hot spots surround the city, each adding a unique flavour of restaurants, bars, nightlife and boutique shopping to Perth’s repertoire. Sharing the CBD’s border, Northbridge is one of Perth’s nightlife hotspots and the cultural hub of the city. The area is full of restaurants offering every cuisine imaginable, as well as clubs, pubs, and bars galore, and hip boutiques on William Street. It’s also home to the State Theatre Centre of WA, the Art Gallery of WA, the WA Museum, PICA and more.
Across the river are the tree-lined streets of South Perth, this quaint area boasts high-end restaurants offering superb city views, while Subiaco, to the city’s west, offers high-end homewares and boutique shopping, and a bustling evening scene. Head to the high streets of Leederville or Mount Lawley to trawl through eclectic boutiques for an original find, or sample some of WA’s best food and wines at one of the many cafes, bars and restaurants.
Perth has also become a mecca for luxury brands, with labels such as Gucci, Bally, Louis Vuitton and Tiffany & Co appearing on stylish King Street in the city. Local brands such as Kailis Pearls and Melanie Greensmith (Wheels & Doll Baby) have also set up shop, making King Street the ultimate destination for the fashion savvy.
The Hay Street and Murray Street Malls connected by plazas and arcades are at the centre of the city’s mainstream shopping locale, or head to inner city precincts such as Northbridge, Leederville or Mount Lawley to search out something a little more bespoke.
Kings Park & Botanic Garden offers spectacular views overlooking the Swan River and city skyline, and is the perfect place to relax or enjoy a picnic. Indigenous tours running in Kings Park offer visitors the chance to understand the cultural significance of the area. One of the largest inner-city parks in the world, pack a picnic or make the most of the public barbecues to enjoy these beautiful grounds overlooking the city.
Myriad cycle and walking paths hug the Swan River and hiring a bicycle is one of the best ways to enjoy the outdoors. A ferry down the Swan River from Barrack Street to Fremantle will give you views from the water of Perth’s riverside real estate, or stick to the city scenery and hire a catamaran from South Perth.
To really live the Perth life, a visit to one of its beautiful beaches is a must. The beach plays an important role in Perth culture, so no matter what time of year you visit, try your hand at surfing at iconic Scarborough Beach or grab some fish and chips and watch the sun set over the Indian Ocean from Cottesloe.
World-class courses, superb weather, and breathtaking scenery make Western Australia a premier golfing destination. You’ll find plenty of golf courses offering top quality facilities, as well as rugged, beautiful and vibrant natural settings. Courses like the Joondalup Resort Country Club, The Links Kennedy Bay and Lake Karrinyup Country Club have established themselves as some of Australia’s best golf courses, well known for their design and challenging layout featuring variation in setting and style.
With an extensive choice of public golf courses and golf professionals, enthusiasts are able to access champion courses for a nominal fee, making WA the ideal destination for a weekend game or golf trip – you might even share the green with a kangaroo or two!
A leisurely 25-minute drive east of the city or a cruise up the Swan River from the Barrack Street Jetty leads to the picturesque Swan Valley – Western Australia’s oldest wine growing region. Boasting award-winning wines and craft beers, fresh gourmet produce, arts and crafts, rolling vineyards and natural bushland it is a perfect city escape. While in the area, stop in at the historic town of Guildford, browse antique shops, boutiques, and admire the historic buildings.
South of Perth is the charming port of Fremantle, offering the best preserved 19th century portscape in the world with beautifully restored buildings, a lively fishing boat harbour, buzzing cafe strip and vibrant markets. A tram tour or a visit to the Maritime Museum or Round House uncovers Fremantle’s rich and fascinating history. Or step inside the historic Fremantle Prison for a tour exploring the labyrinth of tunnels by foot and boat, delving into the darker side of Fremantle’s history.
For a fantastic day trip, take a ferry to Rottnest Island, located just 30 minutes from Fremantle. “Rotto” as the locals call it, is home to 63 secluded beaches and 20 bays, making it the perfect location for swimming, snorkeling and relaxing. The iconic pub “Hotel Rottnest”, overlooking the tranquil waters of Thompson Bay, has recently undergone a stylish makeover. There’s also a range of excellent eco and cultural tours on offer. For nature-lovers, head to Rockingham where you can take a tour and swim with wild dolphins, or take a ferry to nearby Penguin island to see a colony of penguins and roosting seabirds up close.
Further south, arranged around an estuary criss-crossed by pleasure boats and pontoons, Mandurah is home to cafes and restaurants dotted along its boardwalks. Along the coast, the beaches are sensational for water-based activity including surfing, windsurfing and sailing, while the Marina precinct is home to a relaxed boating culture and array of leisure and shopping. Mandurah is an hour south of Perth city.
Experience Western Australia
Perth is also the gateway to some extraordinary and unique West Australian experiences. The landscape is inspiring in its beauty and grandeur, from pristine coastal beaches to the rugged red landscapes of the outback.
In the South West, discover tall tree forests, beautiful beaches, caves, luxury accommodation, and world-class food and wine regions. A journey inland east of the city takes visitors to the Golden Outback – a region of historic townships, spectacular desert wilderness, outback characters, gold rush history and the spectacular beaches of the Southern Ocean including Australia’s whitest beach, Lucky Bay, at Esperance.
North of Perth, the Indian Ocean bordering the Coral Coast is home to a vast array of marine life – humpback whales, dolphins, turtles, dugongs, manta rays and colourful tropical fish. Here, you can also swim with the world’s largest fish – the gentle whale shark – at World Heritage listed Ningaloo Reef from April to July each year.
For an epic Aussie adventure, head to the far North West of the state. The Kimberley region of WA is one of the world’s last true wilderness areas encompassing red, rugged landscapes, pristine white beaches, waterfalls and gorges, and a rich Indigenous culture and history.
For more information, visit westernaustralia.com.