Perched on the Swan River and overlooked by the expansive bushland of Kings Park, Perth is a vibrant city bustling with energy and alive with many sporting, cultural and outdoor pursuits waiting to be experienced.
The river and surrounding parklands provide plenty of opportunities for staying active, pursuing a love of the outdoors and exploring spectacular scenery. A little further afield, some of Perth’s world-famous tourist attractions are easily accessible by car, train or ferry.
Here are some ideas to get you started on your outdoor adventures.
On your bike
Hire a bike and pedal around to enjoy beautiful views of the river on the Swan River Windan Bridge loop. Keen for something a little more adventurous? Drive 20 minutes to Mariom and experience the unique and rugged beauty of Perth’s spectacular beaches on the Mariom to Burns Beach trail. For the serious punters, head to Perth Hills with a mountain bike where trails of various lengths and difficulties await.
Climb Jacob’s Ladder
Get your fit on, head to Kings Park and make the trip down and back up Jacob’s Ladder staircase on your way, if only to say you’ve conquered Perth’s most notorious set of stairs. The spiralling staircase comprises of 274 steps for visitors to tackle before catching their breath and enjoying panoramic city and river views from the top.
Hike it up in Kings Park
Spectacular Kings Park and Botanic Gardens is accessible on foot or by bike from the city centre and is a not-to-be-missed experience for visitors to Perth. Explore the huge range of native flora and fauna with a free guided walk by a Kings Park guide, be regaled with panoramic views of the Swan River and the city skyline and stop by the State War Memorial before taking a walk along the Lottery West Federation Walkway or one of the Park’s many other paths that explore the park’s sprawling bushland. Kids will also love learning about the state’s unique environment at the Rio Tinto Naturescape and playing in one of the many quality playgrounds scattered throughout the park. If you’re after a bite to eat, the relaxed Botanical Café serves up quality food and coffee or grab a snack from the Kings Park Kiosk.
Foot it in Fremantle
A comfortable train ride from the Perth CBD, historic Fremantle bursts with opportunities for visitors wanting to experience the city on foot. Pound the history trail and explore the old Fremantle Prison, the largest and most intact convict prison in Australia, and the maze of tunnels beneath it. Step it out to Victoria Quay and learn about WA’s rich maritime history at the WA Maritime Museum or stop in at the weekend waterside E Shed Markets. Take a stroll through the West End district to appreciate the beautifully preserved 19th century buildings before stopping off at the Round House, the oldest building in Western Australia, and take in the sweeping views of the city and the Indian Ocean. Finally, head to Bather’s Beach for a refreshing dip before crossing over for a brew at the famed Little Creatures Brewery.
Bike around Rottnest Island
Biking and walking trails abound on world-famous Rottnest Island, renowned for its habitat of quokkas and too-blue-to-be-true views of the Indian Ocean. Hire a bike straight off the ferry from Perth, grab a map and pedal onto the quiet roads that criss-cross the island. The island perimeter comprises of many beautiful bays, perfect for ditching the wheels and taking a dip to cool off. Rising gentle slopes also provide postcard-perfect opportunities to snap a picture of the breathtaking scenery; be sure to stop at the Wadjemup Light House for an amazing outlook. The island can also be explored on foot; follow the Wadjemup Bidi, a series of walking trails passing by or through many important landmarks for the traditional owners of Rottnest Island, the Whadjuk Noongar people.
Snorkel at Mettam’s Pool
See a different side of Perth at Mettam’s Pool, one of city’s most popular swimming and snorkelling spots. The pool is easily accessible by car or train from the city centre and is a great place to take the kids; the relatively shallow and sheltered bay provides calm waters and a wonderful range of marine life to be explored clo