Moving to Australia? These outdoor activities are a must when Living in Perth.
Moving to Australia to any of the major cities can be expensive and full on at times, so it is always good to know you can still embrace Australia’s great outdoors without having to go too far. As we discussed in our article about ‘the cost of living in Perth’, it is definitely a city you can enjoy a good quality of life at a reasonable price.
It has a generally relaxed pace of life and is often referred to as the city to live in if you like the outdoors. It is surrounded by national parks and breathtaking sunset drenched beaches, not to mention the beautiful Swan River that runs right through the heart of it. It is safe to say you are not short of things to do and see, and with Perth’s consistently mild climate you can enjoy the outdoors all year round.
Hiking and wildlife
Drive 30 minutes East from the centre of Perth and you can be hiking around the waterfalls of John Forrest National Park. There are trail options for all abilities and lots of picnic spots to make a day of it. A 30 minute drive Northeast of the city is Whiteman Park, a great day out with the kids to see the steam trains, electric trams and abundance of wildlife.
A little bit further North is Yanchep National Park. An ideal place to explore caves, waterways and hiking trails. The park has a koala sanctuary and hundreds of black cockatoos alongside a lot of water birds, kangaroos and even some snakes! There is also a spacious green picnic area overlooking the lake with a small cafe and a pub, perfect for a family outing. About 40 minutes Southeast of the city you can find the serene Wungong National Park, great for hiking and biking with fantastic views of the city. The park is often quiet, making it a perfect spot to escape the city with your dog.
Cycling around the city centre parks
The centre of Perth has some amazing parks, and all of them are connected by cycle paths. Due to its riverside location the centre of Perth is flat, meaning these cycle paths are accessible to all.
You can start in the iconic Kings Park and have a wander around the impressive botanic gardens and winding paths overlooking the CBD and Swan River. Then you can make your way down across the bridge to Sir James Mitchell Park overlooking Elizabeth Quay.
The cycle path continues along the waterside, then you can come over the bridge stopping off to see the kangaroos of Heirisson Island. Over the bridge you enter East Perth. Head east on the cycle path that takes you through Victoria gardens and you will find yourself in the hidden gem of Claisebrook Cove.
A great place to stop for a coffee. If you don’t fancy a coffee break, come off the cycle path before Victoria gardens and head over the impressive Matagarup Bridge to the Optus stadium. There are cycle paths and park land all around the stadium with several picnic and playground stops if you’re with kids.
To continue, you can cycle around the watersedge to Belmont Park and around the back of the stadium. The cycle path continues alongside the road and river all the way up to Ascot where you could circle round Kuljak island and head back home!
Depending on how long you stop at each park, a one way version of this cycle should take around 1.5 – 2 hours and is flat throughout. The beauty of it is that they are all connected so you can stop and turn back at any point!
Paddling on the Swan River
What better way to enjoy the Swan River than to actually be on it! South of the city you can hire kayaks, SUPs, mini catamarans or full blown party boats depending on your budget. A popular cheap choice for a sunny weekend is hiring a kayak or SUP, then enjoying a post-paddle BBQ with your mates on the shore.
For something a bit different and part of Australia’s history, you could take a jazz cruise up the Swan River on the unique Paddle Steamer Decoy.
If you actually want to get in the water you could nip up to Hillary’s Boardwalk for a swim in the calmer harbour water. Or to Scarborough for a swim in the beachside swimming pool.
While the waves aren’t huge around Perth that doesn’t stop the streams of locals going out everyday. It’s a great place for beginners and youngsters. The best places to hire boards and catch those waves are at Trigg and Scarborough beaches. Those seeking bigger waves need to catch the ferry to Rottnest Island and get over to the West coast. This sheltering island is the reason the swell is small on the mainland. If they still aren’t big enough for you, you’ll have to take a road trip down South to Margaret River to find swells of up to 18m!
Maybe you want a more urban day out. Why don’t you head to bohemian and historic Fremantle, “Freo”. There you can see colonial architecture whilst listening to buskers, take a tour around the world heritage site prison or wander around the vibrant markets. The markets have been around for over 100 years and are popular with locals and tourists alike, all set inside the beautiful original architecture.
Swan Valley region
While it cannot boast the fame of the Margaret River region, the Swan Valley is a must see in Perth. Beautiful rolling vines as far as you can see. You can hire a bike to discover at your own pace, book a lunch at the Cheese Barrel cafe or book a tour to taste all the wine, cheese and chocolate on the Swan Valley trail.
Although the East coast is often the most popular place to move to in Australia, you will never get to sit on the beach and watch the sunset like you can on almost all of Perth’s beaches. Every night you will find locals setting up on the beach to watch the surfers and kite surfers ride with the most incredible backdrop.
Standard of Living in Perth
The standard of living in Australia is second to none. This is only a snapshot of what outdoor beauty Perth has to offer. There is no doubt that Perth has enough to keep you busy, whatever your timescale or budget.
For more information check out the article below.