Perth is one of the planet’s most isolated capital cities, yet this sun-soaked capital of Western Australia defies its remote location by boldly flaunting its riches – and there are many, both natural and material. A gorgeous setting astride the winding Swan River, with a string of pearly beaches nearby, provides the perfect playground for outdoor adventures. Sailing, swimming, fishing, and boating are all popular things to do, and in the center of the city, beautiful Kings Park brims with natural bushland and panoramic views.
Kings Park and Botanic Garden:
With beautiful views of the Swan River and Darling Range, Kings Park and Botanic Garden is an oasis of peace near the heart of the city and one of the largest inner-city parks in the world. Almost two-thirds of this 1,000-acre park is natural bush, with a diversity of native plants and birds. Dedicated to conservation, the botanic garden spotlights plants from Western Australia and other Mediterranean climates such as South Africa and California. Highlights include an acacia garden, the peaceful Place of Reflection, and a water garden that recreates a Darling Range creek.
Sun lovers can choose from a bevy of beautiful beaches in and around Perth. Less than a 15-minute drive from the city center, pine-fringed Cottesloe is one of Perth’s most popular beaches, with its clear waters and thriving café culture. Port Beach is also a favorite, and City Beach has a children’s playground and plenty of picnic nooks.
For families, the sheltered inlets on the snaking Swan River, such as Como, Crawley, and Point Walter are top choices, as well as Rockingham Beach and the sheltered shore at Hillarys Boat Harbour.
Trigg Point has one of Perth’s best and most reliable surf breaks, and Scarborough is another top spot to ride the waves. Farther afield, the shores of Rottnest Island and Penguin Island offer excellent snorkeling and are great for fun family day trips.
About three kilometers from the city center, Perth Zoo has been delighting animal lovers since 1898. International visitors can experience some of the country’s unique wildlife in the Australian Bushwalk and Wetlands exhibits. All the favorites are here: kangaroos, koalas, wallabies, wombats, and Tasmanian devils. Other exhibits take you around the world to different ecosystems – feed giraffes at the African Savannah, ogle orangutans in the Asian Rainforest, enjoy an elephant show, or peer at a pygmy marmoset in the South American primate exhibit. The zoo is easily accessible by bus, car, train, and bike, and you can also hop aboard a ferry from Barrack Street jetty.
Roast lamb, with votes, barely scraped home from the meat pie and the barbecued sausage in bread. More recent culinary arrivals are spaghetti bolognese and salt and pepper squid, hardly rated, and sweet dishes pavlova and lamingtons.