Perthis the capital of Western Australia. It is a vibrant city flanking the broad reaches of the Swan River. To the west is the Indian Ocean and to the east the Darling Escarpment. It is a sophisticated yet casual city with many interesting places to visit, to mention a few – there are museums, art galleries, parks, restaurants, a wealth of shops to explore, as well as an exciting night life to enjoy.
After day 6, we were done exploring the Margaret River region, and it was time to head on to Perth. If you want to read our post on Margaret River, you will find them here:
The Story Thus Far:
Anyway, We had only one and a half days to enjoy the city of Perth, but we managed to cram a few neat activities in that short span of time! Here are 5 great things to Do in Perth, even if you are on a tight schedule.
1. Explore Perth’s CBD
Like in most cities, Perth’s CBD is a good place to do some shopping or museum hopping (though the museums are more scattered around the CBD). And there’s no better way to explore than to take a walking tour with Two Feet & a Heartbeat – Australia’s most awarded walking tour company, proudly operating in both Perth and Sydney.
two feet and a heartbeat walking tour guide
Two Feet began in 2007 in the time-honoured tradition of scribbling an idea down on a coaster at the pub. Two old friends, who had spent many of their years travelling realised that there was a significant gap in the market for quality guided group tours similar to those they had experienced in other wonderful cities such as Berlin, Edinburgh and Budapest.
the swan bell tower
Our tour guide introduced us to the sights, sounds and tales of the city’s interesting history, culture and heritage in a fun, relaxed and informative way. The center of the CBD consists of the pedestrian-only Murray and Hay Street Malls. Here you can wander through shop after shop and have a grand time just people-watching. One of the tourist highlights in the CBD is the Swan Bell Tower. Its a grand sight to see and it’s a great way to start or finish a stroll along the Swan River shore or a ferry ride on the river. Other places of interest around the CBD are London Court, the Perth Mint, and the Western Australia Museum and the Art Gallery of WA (both in Northbridge). But overall, wandering around the CBD is a great way to get a feel for the city.
2. Visit Fremantle
Fremantle is a little bit like Perth’s hippie sister. ‘Freo’ lies at the mouth of the Swan, 19km from Perth but a million kilometres in terms of personality. Creative, relaxed, open-minded, Freo makes a cosy home for its myriad painters, writers and musicians and those who love to be around them. It has a busy but laidback vibe compared to Perth, with a thriving night scene as well. Highlights in Fremantle include Little Creatures Brewery – a great brewery that beer drinkers would appreciate and also the Fremantle Markets filled with almost anything you could want to buy, from food to art and clothing at relatively inexpensive prices.
3. Explore King’s Park
Kings Park and Botanic Garden overlooks the Swan River and Darling Range and showcases an outstanding collection of Western Australia flora. It is a popular place for picnics, pleasant walks, cultural and ceremonial events. Nearly two thirds of the Park is natural bushland containing 319 species of native plants and around 80 bird species. The balance of the Park is made up of superbly cultivated gardens and open recreational areas. Our friendly guide for the day Mr Greg Nannup of Kings Park Indigenous Heritage Tour, met us to give us a quick guided tour of the grounds.
Greg Nannup – our guide for the day
For Western Australians and for the many interstate and international visitors, Kings Park and Botanic Garden is a place of inspiration, relaxation, recreation and wonder. The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority manages Kings Park and Botanic Garden in accordance with the Kings Park and Botanic Garden Management Plan, to ensure the conservation of native biological diversity and cultural heritage icons, while providing for the diverse range of visitor interests.
A favorite activity in Kings Park is the Tree Top Walk along the Lotterywest Federation Walkway. You will great views of the trees around you and the Swan River and the Old Swan River Brewery below. If you don’t feel like exploring all the flora and fauna, the grassy picnic areas along Fraser Avenue offer a great place to sit back, relax, and enjoy the views over the Swan River and the CBD.
4. Visit the Perth Mint
Where else can you get your hands on more than $225,000 worth of Gold, see the world’s largest displays of gold investments bars and Australia’s largest displays of natural gold nuggets? Enjoy the excitement of seeing liquid gold transformed into a bar in the original melthouse where gold has been poured for 107 years, at the Perth Mint.
5. Have Dinner at Incontro
best seafood in town
With floor-to-ceiling glass on three sides, this swanky restaurant takes full advantage of the spectacular views across the water to Perth CBD. Chef Peter Manifis is a dab hand with seafood – an entree platter features fresh natural oysters, crispy lightly battered prawns, spicy-hot salt-and-pepper cuttlefish, and thinly sliced tender mackerel coated with gremolata and a lick of fresh horseradish. Incontro has a great wine list to choose from and if seafood is not your thing, then the lamb chops and pork knuckle served here are equally divine options to choose from.
The Chef and Kara
“Sea food and eat it!” would have to be Chef Peter Manifis’s mantra. Pete’s love affair with seafood stems from his youth growing up in the North of Western Australia. The son of a commercial prawn fisher Peter was surrounded by an ocean of seafood with his folks supplying their own fish and chip shop with the freshest of catch. Pete’s training under renowned Chef Alain Faberge of the national award winning Loose Box fame was disciplined and thorough and put him in good stead to make a real name for himself as a skilled and well trained chef. Pete went on to win a Gold Plate award for Best Seafood Restaurant at Perth’s Zafferano and his current position is Executive Chef at Incontro Restaurant on the banks of the Swan River in South Perth. Incontro’s focus is top quality seafood’s and meats and is arguably the best seafood restaurant in Perth.
tasty lamb chops.. lovely bite sizes to be eaten with your fingers of course!
We also finally got to meet our host Kara Jecks, from Tourism WA here, and had a terrific time with her at dinner. Finally a big thank you to Tourism Western Australia for their kind arrangements of this last leg of the trip. We will definitely be back to explore Perth in greater detail some time in the not too distant future, we hope.