Vibrant Perth: where natural beauty meets urban flair

Perched on the banks of the stunning Swan River and nestled alongside one of the world’s largest inner-city parks, Perth’s natural attractions are rivalled only by its big-city buzz. Prepare to be won over by Western Australia’s happening capital.

Clocking up an average eight hours’ sunshine per day, Perth is tailormade for outdoor fun. Explore the magnificent Kings Park and Botanical Garden, hire a bike and follow the cycle paths around the river, jump on a river cruise from Elizabeth Quay, or catch an Indian Ocean sunset at one of the city’s 19 glorious beaches -- after a refreshing swim, naturally!

Perth’s inner city has flourished in recent years. Get your retail fix in fashionable King Street, your culture hit at the Perth Cultural Centre, and your foodie kicks in multicultural Northbridge. Yagan Square is also worth a wander, with its bustling market hall, kids’ playground and public art.

An easy drive or train ride south, Rockingham is your gateway to the pristine Shoalwater Islands Marine Park. Get set for some unforgettable marine encounters, from swimming with wild dolphins to meeting penguins and seals.

Beach holiday and city break rolled into one, Perth is the total package.

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Things to do: Perth

  • View of Cottesloe Beach and Indiana Tea House, Perth, Western Australia

    Cottesloe Beach

    Believe the hype: with its silken white sand and gentle surf, there’s a reason Cottesloe Beach (aka ‘Cott’) is so famous. Locals flock there to swim, snorkel, surf and soak up spectacular sunsets -- why not follow their lead? Trendy cafes overlooking the ocean and a scenic walking path add to Cott’s perennial appeal.

    Image: Tourism Western Australia

  • Couple enjoying fresh local seafood on outside deck at Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour, Western Australia

    Fremantle

    A half-hour drive or train ride from Perth, Fremantle is a port town renowned for its exquisitely preserved 19th-century streetscape, fascinating historical attractions and colourful vibe. Visit the iconic Fremantle Markets, indulge at any number of eclectic eateries, and discover why ‘Freo’ is one of Australia’s craft-beer hotspots. Family-friendly beaches and a lively music and arts scene complete the picture.

    Image: Tourism Western Australia

  • Casual dining at a Northbridge cafe with local urban art in the background. Perth, Western Australia.

    Northbridge

    For mouth-watering food and wine to suit every budget, legendary nightlife and a splash of arts and culture, head to Northbridge. A short stroll from the city centre, it’s bursting with bars, clubs, cafes, restaurants and cool places to shop, not to mention must-see attractions like the Art Gallery of Western Australia, the State Theatre and the newly renovated WA Museum Boola Bardip.

    Image: Tourism Western Australia

  • Adorable quokka (Setonix brachyurus) on Rottnest Island looking straight at the camera, with a tranquil bay in the background. Perth, Western Australia.

    Rottnest Island

    It doesn’t get much more laidback than Rottnest Island. As if crystalline waters, secluded bays and breath-taking ocean views weren’t relaxing enough, cars aren’t allowed and bikes rule. Plus of course, you’ll get to meet the country’s cutest marsupial: the quokka, found almost nowhere else. Easy to reach by ferry from Perth, Fremantle or Hillarys, ‘Rotto’ is Perth’s very own island paradise.

    Image: Tourism Western Australia

  • Couple visiting Lancaster Wines, Swan Valley. Perth, Western Australia.

    Swan Valley

    Just 25 minutes east of Perth but seemingly a world away, the picturesque Swan Valley is WA’s oldest wine region. Meet the makers at small family-run wineries and sample some of the wines served in Perth’s top restaurants. There’s also microbreweries, cideries, distilleries, galleries and restaurants galore. Family favourite Caversham Wildlife Park is home to a huge array of native critters, including koalas, wombats and kangaroos.

    Image: Tourism Western Australia

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Airport information

Perth Airport (PER)

Distance to city centre 12km (domestic terminal), 19km (international terminal)

Taxi A taxi to central Perth will take around 20 minutes and cost about AUD $45 (plus an AUD $4 airport surcharge).

Bus Transperth runs bus route 380 from Terminals 1 and 2 and bus route 40 from Terminals 3 and 4 to the centre of town. Both journeys take around 30 minutes, and the fare is about AUD $5.

Rideshare DiDI, Ola and Uber are available at Perth Airport. Dedicated rideshare pick-up bays are clearly marked and can be found at each terminal. An AUD $4 airport surcharge applies to all airport pickups.

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When to go

Perth has a temperate Mediterranean-type climate; summers are hot and dry, winters wet and mild. Summer temperatures average 30°C November–April, but maximum temperatures regularly reach (and can exceed) 40°C. Very hot days tend to have low humidity and an afternoon sea breeze, making conditions more bearable.

If you prefer pleasant, comfortable weather, with flowers blooming and clear skies, the best time to visit is spring (September–November). Perth's International Arts Festival is held in February–March, and the Fremantle Festival in October–November.

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Getting around

Get around Perth on Transperth buses, trains and ferries. Purchase a Smartrider card that lets you load up credit and touch on to travel, and gives you discounted fares. Free CAT buses stop off at major spots around Perth. The city’s traffic is generally manageable, so hiring a car is also an option.

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