Thursday, 4 May 2017

Luxury in 48 Hours: Perth, Australia.

I'm a little bit of an expert on Perth, and I've written about it a lot in the past from my numerous visits there. For those who are new around here (*waves*) and don't know already, I did year 11 and 12 of High School in the western suburbs of Perth, so have a fair amount of local knowledge and my love for this isolated little city is very, very strong. I used to go back twice a year to visit, until I started working after Uni and cut it down to once a year.

Last year I made the move back to Australia and spent six weeks in Perth before moving to Sydney, so I went back for a visit over Easter to visit everyone and see my brother and his girlfriend who were visiting from the UK. As I've written so much about my Perth visits before, instead of telling you everything we did like I usually do, I figured I'd write a more useful guide to try and persuade you all to stop there on your way over to the more popular East Coast!

Perth City Skyline in Western Australia

Whether you're visiting for a weekend from Sydney or Melbourne, or have a stopover between the UK and the East Coast, I really hope this is useful and shows you just how many amazing things there are to do in Perth. I'm gonna do a 'The Perfect 2-Week Roadtrip Itinerary' for Western Australia similar to my USA one let me know in the comments if that's something you lot would be interested in! 

Check in at: Fraser Suites Perth

Being based in either the City of Perth or Fremantle (Freo) is best if you're only in Perth for a short time, as both are really close to the train lines, which you'll need to really get the best out of Perth. For a longer period of time you'll need a car though (more on that when I do the longer itinerary guide). I've stayed at both Fraser Suites and The Duxton, and Fraser Suites was definitely my favourite out of the two. It's a super stylish hotel with incredible views over the Swan River!

Day 1 - Friday

9am: Head to Leighton for breakfast & beach

Start early and get the train from the city to North Fremantle, from there walk across the bridge to Leighton Beach. Start with breakfast at Bib & Tucker (they do amazing breakys, as well as great juices and Iced Chocolates), and then walk down to the beach for a swim. The sand is perfectly white and the ocean here is usually super calm so perfect for swimming!

12noon: Wander around Freo

It's difficult to put together a guide for 48 hours in Perth, mainly because the best thing about Perth is the food...and there are SO many good places I want you guys to check out! But alas, I will save the other awesome foodie places for the longer itinerary ;) In the meantime, with your 48 hours in Perth, take the train from North Freo to Freo, and then walk down Market Street, then turn up High Street and keep walking until you get to The Roundhouse. You get a nice view from the top over the ocean, harbour, and Rottnest, and there's a little museum/tour which teaches you the interesting history of The Roundhouse and Freo's history.

1pm: Walk down to the Harbour and go to Little Creatures for lunch 

From The Roundhouse walk along the Harbour front towards Little Creatures, and get a table outside on the water if the weather is nice (if it isn't just sit indoors, it's pretty cool as well as you can see below). Make sure you don't over-order like I always do, you'll want to save yourself for dinner! Must orders for me are; Frites, Octopus, Halloumi, and the Pumpkin and Feta Salad. You'll want to share as it's all tapas style. The pizzas are also amazing if you fancy something carby!

2:30pm: Fremantle Markets

After lunch walk it off by taking a stroll up to the Fremantle markets and soaking up the atmosphere. The markets are only open on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and they have some cute gift stalls and food stands, but they don't take too long to walk around so you don't need much time for it.

3:30pm: Earn your dinner with a walk to the Bay View Lookout

Get the train from Fremantle up to Victoria Street - it's time to earn your dinner, aka, walking time! If you're feeling lazy you can get an uber from Victoria Street station up to the lookout, but if you're feeling energetic you can follow my little map and walk it. The Bay View Lookout is in Bay View Park, and you'll see it as you walk/drive around the corner onto Bay View Terrace from Owston Street.

It gives the most incredible views over Perth and the Swan River, and is one of my favourite places in the world. It's my happy place and just round the corner from where my ex-boyfriend lived - I used to go there when I was happy, sad, needed a cry, or just needed to be alone. It was also a place I went with friends to watch the fireworks on NYE, get drunk, and just have a laugh with an amazing view in front of us. A place of happy memories and beauty. I always wanted to get married there.

6pm: Early dinner at il Lido in Cottesloe

 Anyway, from there you want to walk or get an Uber (have you realized yet that Perth is difficult to get around without the use of a car?! ;)), to il Lido in Cottesloe for an early dinner. il Lido is one of the top luxury restaurants in the area, with incredible Italian food (Perth has a large Italian community), and some of the best views over the ocean. Watch the sunset, eat some excellent food, and then head back to the city from Cottesloe station.

8:30pm: Quick Change - Perth Bar Crawl

You may be wondering why I've recommended to stay in the City when most of the activities I'm recommending are closer to Freo. Well, the bar crawl is why. Perth is full of super cute hipster bars with insanely good cocktails and great DJs. Get the train from Cottesloe back to Perth (or just get an Uber) and after a quick change at Fraser Suites head out to some of the great bars in the city!

9pm: Bobeche 

Walk from the hotel to Bobeche, a speakeasy themed bar creating innovative cocktails and serving free popcorn! Bobeche has a bit of an older crowd, but is well worth visiting.

10pm: Wolf Lane

Wolf Lane is a fave of mine now. I first went late last year, and absolutely loved the atmosphere, great DJ, young crowd, and fun cocktails (think a cocktail in a teapot etc). 

11pm: The Aviary

I've been going to The Aviary for a coupla years now and it's still a favourite of mine! It's one of the best rooftop bars in the city, and they always have an awesome DJ who plays epic tunes. You want to finish here because it's open later than the other bars and has more of a party/dancing atmosphere than the others.

Day 2 - Saturday

8am: Rottnest Island! 

A lot of people will tell you not to go to Rottnest if you only have a short time in Perth, but honestly I don't think you can visit Perth and not go. It's a tiny paradise island off the coast of WA, and perfect for a day trip! It highlights just how vast and different Western Australia is, and how you can go such a short distance and be somewhere that feels completely different.

Book your tickets in advance and get the first ferry of the day - you can either go from Perth City or Fremantle. When you arrive on Rotto, go to Dome and fuel up on Eggs Benny and Banana smoothies (I know I know, a lot of people hate Dome, but there isn't really anywhere else on the island for breakfast). After breaky, get a ticket for the Island Explorer bus, and then go to the Bakery. Buy a meat pie and a carrot cake, and put them in your bag for later.

First stop on the bus, Parker Point. One of my favourite beaches on Rottnest, make sure you walk down the steps and right along the beach so you get round the corner where there'll be less people and better swimming!

The Island Explorer bus comes to the beaches every half hour, so keep an eye on the times and try to just spend half an hour at each beach so you can see more of them. On the next stop get off at Salmon Bay. Enjoy the perfectly calm waters and have a swim. By this time you may want your pie, but save the cake for a little later - you don't want to fill up all at once!

Next beach? Parakeet Bay. Another beauty. Such a perfect beach, it even featured in my Best Swimming Beaches in Perth post.

Take the bus back to Thompson Bay, it's time to meet some Quokka's! Walk from Thompson Bay and up towards The Basin. There are always loads of Quokka's near the Oval on the way, and they tend to be all along the main road up to The Basin too. Make sure you don't feed them or touch them, but do get a #QuokkaSelfie!

If you have time before your ferry, visit the museum to learn more about the history of the island and the horrific use of it as a prison for the Indigenous Australians. You'll need a drink after finding out what happened on the island, so pop over to the Rottnest Hotel for a drink. It's a goodun. Then take the last ferry back to either Freo or the City (I think the ones to Freo depart later). 

8pm: Crown Casino

You can either stay in the City and have an early night, or you can go and check out Crown, Perth's entertainment complex. Have a quick shower and change at the hotel, and then get the train to Burswood, which is the station a 5min walk from Crown's entrance. Lose or win some money in the casino, go for dinner at either Rockpool or Nobu, and then go for a drink at TWR and Mesh.

Day 3 - Sunday

9am: Explore King's Park

I know today is the day you leave, but it's finally time to explore the city! Get the bus up to King's Park and take in the incredible view over Perth's city skyline. Walk through the park and over the glass bridge, and through to the other side of the park. It's super pretty and is heaving with Australian flora and fauna.

1pm: Eat the best gelato and see the city

Walk into the city and see just how little it is, and then walk down to Elizabeth Quay for lunch at Isles of Voyage looking out over the river. Save room for dessert, and try the amazeballs gelato at Gusto Gelato afterwards!

It really is quite difficult to explore Perth without a car, but it can be done if you stick to the main suburbs and areas, and I do think Perth is well worth a visit even if you can only spare 48 hours. Keep an eye out for my longer roadtrip guide for WA, which will take you into the some of the less touristy areas!

For more ideas about what to see, do, and eat in Perth, take a look at my Perth blog posts!


PIN FOR LATER: 48 Hours in Perth, Western Australia! See Fremantle, Cottesloe, Swan River, and Rottnest Island all in just one weekend! Plus, my favourite city bars for the perfect bar crawl!

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1 comment

  1. Thanks for this post! My husband is Australian and his family is in Sydney but we visit every couple years and try to add in a little bit of exploring. I'm dying to see the quokkas on Rootness Island so this post is super helpful in showing what else we can do to fill up the trip.


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