Often the forgotten part, yet it is the largest state in Australia, Western Australia (WA) takes up almost a third of this giant country. WA boasts some of the world’s finest beaches, and they are seldom busy which makes it even better! It is a fabulous state with it’s capital, Perth, the most isolated yet sunniest capital in the world! Perth is a rather small city, and in 24 hours you can easily see all the main sights – read on to find out what to do with 24 hours in Perth & Fremantle!
King’s Park is a must see, both at day and night as it offers great views of the city. By the World War II memorial you get the best view of the skyline. As with many Australian cities, there are free BBQ facilities in this park, which is something that I love about Aus; everyone can get together and enjoy a good ole ‘shrimp on the barbie!’ . Lots of people come up here, have a picnic and enjoy the sunshine, but please remember suncream is so important in Australia, don’t forget it!
There are free city walking tours that last 90 minutes, running at 11am Monday – Saturday, however Perth is a very compact city, so it is easy to explore on your own if this time is not convenient or you’d rather do it independently. Make sure to check out London Court, a beautiful shopping street in the CBD that takes you back to Olde London and the times of Shakespeare. Stirling Gardens nearby is a nice place to rest your legs for a bit and watch the world go by. Taking a walk along the Swan River, which runs through Perth, is always a relaxing way to spend an hour or two, and you can even pop over to Heirisson Island, an island in the middle of the river, to see some wild kangaroos, although they are not phased by humans so you can get very close to them!
Perth’s beaches are something special. The great thing about Perth’s beaches is that they are all west facing so they all have incredible sunsets. Every time I see a sunset in WA, it is simply stunning as the sun sets over the Indian Ocean.
The city has 19 white sandy beaches, with Cottesloe being the most popular, and the local’s favourite beach. Head to the cafe La barchetta for breakfast on the terrace overlooking Cottesloe beach. Bring a sweater as the terrace is in the shade so it can get quite cool. It tends to get quite packed so head there early if possible. We were lucky to get a great table with an amazing view of the beach, and the breakfast was just out of this world. One thing I love about Australia is that all the food is so yummy and super healthy!! Plenty of gluten-free options available, which is brilliant. Everyone is health conscious out here which is great as it makes you want to be healthy too!
Another popular beach is Scarborough beach, a few miles north of Cottesloe. Currently undergoing a makeover, it is looking really great, and there is a big outdoor pool just next to the beach for serious swimmers.
Fremantle market is possibly my favourite thing to do within the immediate vicinity of Perth. Only open on Friday to Sundays, this indoor market dating from 1897 reminds me so much of the amazing markets back home in London. The energy in this place is really special – such a great atmosphere! You can find literally everything under this roof, from souvenirs to grocery shopping, international street food (always giving away free tasters I may add!) to lighting and massages and SO MUCH MORE! My favourite stalls are the ones selling the beautiful photos of Western Australia; seeing these places makes me realise how amazingly beautiful, and not touristy, this part of Australia is. I also love the stall selling healthy detox teas, and the girl selling her own paintings, both of the latter which I bought. Click here to visit the Fremantle Market website.
Zig-zag scenic drive
Zig-zag scenic drive offers great sunset views of Perth. You are essentially driving on a dirt path, and as the name suggests, the road is a zig-zag shape. Kangaroos like to come out around sunset, so just go slow when driving, however as usual I didn’t get to see one, making my total spottings of kangaroos in WA: zero.
Now if you want to do the trip mentioned below, you can either find a tour online, or my suggestion would be to rent a car – car rental in Aus is surprisingly cheap, and it gives you so much more flexibility than a tour.
Busselton & Margaret River area
Busselton is a 2-3 hour drive from Perth and has the longest pier in the Southern Hemisphere. The sunset here is simply stunning.
In the morning we headed to Meelup beach, another beautiful WA beach. Apparently kangaroos chill on the beach here early in the morning, but I’m still yet to see a kangaroo in WA.
Looking for more Western Australia itineraries? Check out my guide on the Pinnacles Desert and Lancelin Sand Dunes!
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