Perth is one of the most isolated state capitals in the world. Located in the south west area region of the vast state of Western Australia, with 1.5 million residents, it contains around 70% of that state's population. Perth is based around the Swan River on a flat coastal plain down from the Darling ranges. The many uncrowded beaches along the Perth coastline also help define the lifestyle; Perth is laid-back, quiet and safe. The centre of the Perth metropolitan area is the Perth CBD located on the Swan River around 10 km inland. The CBD is the premier business and shopping centre, and together with the adjacent Northbridge, the entertainment centre as well. The CBD is about 1 km North-South but 2 km East-West and is centred on the pedestrianised Forrest Place. In or adjacent to Forrest Place you will find the General Post Office (GPO - open Monday - Friday 9-5 and Saturday 9-12), the Tourist Information Centre, Perth Train Station and the Forrest Chase shopping centre including Myer Department store. The main East-West streets are Wellington Street (northern boundary), Murray and Hay Streets (which become pedestrianised shopping malls in the centre), St Georges Terrace/Adelaide Terrace and Riverside Drive (which runs along the Swan River and forms the southern boundary of the CBD). The main northbound street is Barrack Street which runs along the eastern end of the central shopping district and the main southbound street is William Street to the west.


Perth is classified as having a Mediterranean climate. Summers are hot and dry whilst winters are generally wet and mild. Summer temperatures average near 30C or 86F between the months of November and April and during the height of the season, maximum temperatures occasionally reach and exceed 40C or 104F. Very hot days are usually accompanied by very low humidity which makes conditions more bearable. A common occurrence during the summer months is the arrival of "The Fremantle Doctor" a sea breeze which can cool the city by up to 15 degrees. Winters are cool and moist, however, visitors from colder climates might find it odd that on some days, even locals can be seen without a jumper or jacket on. Maximum temperatures during this season (June-August) average 18C or 64.6F. Minimum temperatures can approach or drop below zero on clear nights. When it does rain, it is often very heavy. Storms with destructive winds and minor tornadoes occasionally occur during the winter months, but they generally aren't too much to worry about and you might find that in a day or two you can wander around the city without a coat on again! Spring (September through November) and Autumn (March through May) are ideal times in which to visit Perth. Spring is perhaps the very best time of year to see the sights as after a decent winter's rainfall, the famous wildflowers around Kings Park and the Avon Valley bloom splendidly. Beach-goers from colder climes might find the summer months too unbearable, so it is perhaps best to visit during March-April or October-November.

getting around

public transport

Perth has a fairly reliable and inexpensive public transport system that is operated by Transperth ([5]). Information with regards to journey planning, timetables, disruptions or service alterations can be obtained from their website, by calling 13 62 13 (until 10PM) or at 'Transperth Infocentres' located at Perth central train station, Wellington Street bus station, the Esplanade Busport (which is located to the south of St. Georges Tce near the bell tower and Ferris wheel) and Plaza Arcade, which is located within the city centre (the Plaza Arcade can be found between the Hay and Murray St malls - if walking from St. Georges Tce, walk up London Court and across the Hay St mall, the Plaza Arcade is located directly opposite the exit to London Court). By bus: All buses operating within 'Free Transit Zone' (city centre), including the CAT (Central Area Transit) buses, are free of charge. The Free Transit Zone extends to Newcastle Street when going north, and to the end of Kings Park when going west. CAT bus services stop 5-6PM. CAT buses run circle routes every 5 to 15 minutes, but depending on the traffic and the volume of boardings, you might find walking to be less time consuming. City CAT services are geared towards both tourists and locals. The red CAT service runs East-West and stops at Royal Perth hospital, the WACA (Perth's home ground for cricket), the historic Perth Mint, Wellington Square, the Murray St Mall/Perth Underground train station, His Majesty's Theatre, Parliament House, King St (after its return to the city via West Perth) and the Wellington St bus station/central train station. The yellow CAT runs a similar route to that of the red CAT. The blue CAT runs North-South and stops at; the Bell Tower, London Court, James St (Northbridge), Central TAFE and William St. The vast majority of stops along each route have a map and an ETA (which can either be read or dictated by pressing a large button below the route map). Transperth also operates a CAT service in Fremantle which runs every 10 minutes and a newly-operated CAT service in Joondalup. This service provides a great way of getting around the towns as it connects both facilities and tourist attractions. Most buses are clean, modern and air-conditioned. Most suburban services run from the city, major suburban towns such as Fremantle and from major train stations. Tourists can use the improved Transperth web site [6] to get detailed information on services and time tales, as well as use the journey planner. Google transit [7] also offers a similar journey planner. By train: Perth's suburban railway network is great for getting to outlying suburban areas for those who might be visiting relatives, however tourists might only find the Mandurah line and/or the Fremantle line to be of any use. The Armadale/Thornlie and Midland lines run through three transfer stations; Perth central station, McIver and Claisebrook whilst the Mandurah and Clarkson lines run underneath the city, with the Fremantle line running from Perth station only. The Mandurah line travels through the Esplanade station, which provides easy access to the adjacent busport and the south of the city and the Perth Underground Station. Perth Underground Station features an underground concourse which allows pedestrians to connect to the central station, which is located at surface level. Train services run frequently during peak hours and every 15 minutes during daylight hours (to most stations). Services commence around 5:30AM each day and cease at around midnight. It is worth noting that trains run half hourly from 7PM every day. By ferry: Transperth provides a ferry service that travels across the Swan River. This service departs from Barrack St Jetty and arrives at Mends St Jetty, South Perth. The ferry provides a great link to the cafe strip of South Perth, however it is best for tourists (especially those who do not like walking) to catch a bus if they wish to visit the nearby Perth zoo, as it is a sizable walk from Mends St (most of it being uphill).


Perth's taxi services, as with anywhere in Australia, are at times unreliable, expensive and are best avoided. If you do insist on catching a taxi from an entertaining precinct, make sure that you are waiting at a spot that is as close to a taxi rank as possible, as this might increase your chances of getting a taxi quickly. Drivers are known to avoid picking up drunken patrons from outside of pubs, clubs or from the entrance to Perth central station. It is worth pointing out that the West Australian government has committed to improving the city's taxi service, however whether or not this will make a difference remains to be seen. If you are out partying in Perth/Northbridge or Fremantle and you do not need to travel too far, it is probably best to hop on a Transperth Nightrider bus. Transperth also have trains operating until 2AM on Friday and Saturday night servicing all lines. On arrival into Perth Airport, be prepared for the possibility of lengthy waits for a taxi, particularly at the international terminal and late at night. Unfortunately, other transport options into the city are severely limited; especially at night; and incoming passengers are left with little choice but to take a taxi. Two major taxi companies are Swan Taxis (13 13 30), who dispatch both Swan and TriColor taxis, and Black and White Taxis (131 008).


Perth and Fremantle can be comfortably explored on foot or by bicycle as Perth has some of the best cycling and pedestrian infrastructure in Australia. The Perth bicycle network features an ever growing, metro-wide system of bicycle/pedestrian paths. The system features; Principal Shared Paths (high standard shared paths that run adjacent to each railway lines and along major motorways). Local Bicycle Routes (a series of on-road routes as well as some suburban off-road sections that run through parks - these paths provide a connection to such destinations such as schools, shopping centres and other recreational facilities. Generic minor works (projects include general improvements to the cycling environment in local areas, such as on-road bike lanes and sealed shoulders). End of trip facilities (including; U-Rails, Cora bike racks and bike lockers and change-rooms). Cycle maps are available from most bike shops, and at Planners Map [8]. The Department for Planning and Infrastructure provides a range of guides, maps and brochures for bike riders. If you have a scenic route in mind, these brochures can take you to the coast, Kings Park, Armadale and the Hills or around the Swan River. A favourite amongst seasoned local cyclists is the ride along the North side of the Swan River between the City and Nedlands. Allow sixty minutes for a round trip along this route, as you might encounter a strong headwind! Bicycles are allowed on board Transperth trains but not during peak hour. Cycling at full pelt in the fully pedestrianised Hay and Murray St malls in the city centre is generally tolerated by the police. Doing this, however, is an easy way to cheese off local pedestrians if you are going too fast.


Renting a car is the ideal means of transportation for traveling to outlying attractions. Perth's major freeways and highways are free from any tolls, as is not the case in Sydney and Melbourne and from either of these major arterial roads, it is possible to be surrounded by beautiful countryside within minutes. Rent-a-car providers are located adjacent to the airport and there are quite a few scattered around the city and the suburbs. The general speed limit within built-up areas is 50 km/h unless otherwise stated. Note that traffic in Perth (as elsewhere in Australia) travels in the left-hand lane(s). It is advisable to travel on the left hand lane even in dual carriageways for tourist drivers. This might take a bit of getting used to if you drive on the right-hand side back home. Drivers from left hand side of the road countries should fit right in.


The Perth Cultural Centre is located adjacent to the Perth Train Station and Northbridge. It is the hub of cultural activity in Perth, including the art gallery, the museum, the State Library and the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts. CAT buses stop regularly; the Blue CAT Stops 7 and 15 both service the Cultural Centre, as well as Yellow 24, Red 31 and the Perth Train Station. The newly-added Wheel of Excellence is a 13-minute Ferris wheel ride overlooking Perth city and the Swan River. Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for children under 12. Biking trail in King's Park.Kings Park is a large and lush park that is full to the brim with native flora and fauna. Located to the South-Western side of the city centre, Kings Park provides a fantastic view over the city (especially at night). The modest yet striking War Memorial can be found here. To get here, take either bus #37 (weekdays) or #39 (weekends) from St Georges Terrace. Also 39 on Sundays (Kings Park is located within the Free Transit Zone if you are traveling from within the city centre). The Red Bull Air Race [9] is held in Perth annually in early November. It is the Final of the season and the event determines the overall winner of the competition. Thousands of spectators pack the Swan River foreshore as planes fly at low altitude (just metres above the water!) at speeds reaching well over 300kmp/h). After the race, there is an air show in which the pilots can perform some airborne trickery. Potential spectators should be warned that it is a very busy event: parking will be a enormous problem (with some locals going to extreme lengths to get spaces) and public transport sparse. Fremantle about 20km south-west of Perth's city centre is the original port town of Fremantle. Even today, the port still supports a major maritime industry. Despite the fact that Fremantle is a part of Greater Perth, it is still considered by many to be a city all its own as back in the old days; Perth and Fremantle were separate colonies. Small enough to walk around in, Fremantle boasts attractions that include; the Maritime Museum, the Fremantle markets (located on South Terrace, amongst the cappuccino strip), the E-Shed markets (located near the Fremantle wharf), the Little Creatures brewpub, the Fremantle Gaol (after dark "Ghost Tours" are worthwhile) and South Beach. Why not hire a moped to complete the very European feel of this humble yet wonderful port city? It is worth noting that the locals call Fremantle affectionately 'Freo'. Hillarys Boat Harbour [10] can be found within Perth's northern suburbs (just a thirty minute car ride). Here you can swim all day in the ocean; be warned however that the water is full of seaweed. There is a small water park called The Great Escape, for those who need to keep the kids entertained! The Aquarium of Western Australia [11] (Aqwa) is located at Hillarys as well. Aqwa features an underwater observatory that takes the shape of a tunnel. It is possible to get up-close and personal with sharks, stingrays and a huge variety of marine life. (Bus 456 from Greenwood station will get you to Hillarys during daylight hours on weekends. Perth Mint [12] is the nation's oldest operating mint and one of the oldest mints in the world. Even today it still produces coins and gold bullion from its original premises. You can buy and sell gold, jewellery and souvenirs, see the mint in operation and watch molten gold being poured to create gold bars. (Walk from City Centre along Hay Street east or catch the red CAT). Perth Zoo [13] has been open since 1898 and has an excellent reputation with both tourists and locals alike. Free guided tours are provided at 11AM and 1:30PM each day. Thirty-six animal fact files, featuring some of Perth Zoo's most popular species, are available for you to download free before your visit to Perth Zoo[14]. Buses 30, 31 and 34 provide a quick and easy means by which to get to the zoo however if you do feel like a good walk, take the Transperth ferry from the bottom of Barrack St. Once at Mends St, head up the hill to the first major road (Labouchere Rd), turn left and cross at the next available set of traffic lights. The zoo is a bit further up-hill, but it is well worth the walk for those who prefer to keep active. On the way back from the zoo and heading back to the jetty, there are plenty of pubs, cafes and restaurants at which you can stop in for a bite, including the Oyster Bar and Cocoa's (which are located right on the riverfront). Burswood Entertainment Complex [15]: Situated amongst some of the most valuable real estate in all of Australia is this all-in-one entertainment precinct. The casino offers all games, the theatre provides a venue for some of the best touring productions while the Burswood Dome is a 20,000 capacity arena that regularly hosts tennis tournaments and international concerts. Also included within the complex are a number of bars and pubs including Paddy Hannan's (named after the first person to strike gold in West Australia) and the infamous nightclub The Eve (previously the Ruby Room). Take the Thornlie line (platform 4) from the central station, McIver or Claisebrook (platform 2). Claisebrook Cove [16]: is a major urban redevelopment area on the Swan River, on the fringe of the city centre. Spend an hour or so wandering about the brightly coloured, modern and strikingly unusual architecture before you wind down with a meal and a hot or cold bevy. Views of the city centre from the footbridge that runs above the cove are particularly stunning at night. (Take the yellow CAT to the Haig Park Circle stop during daylight hours or take the Midland, Armadale or Thorline line to Claisebrook transfer station which is located within the Free Transit Zone). Swan Bells TowerThe Swan Bells [17] is a bell tower located at the foot of Barrack Street, near the ferry wharf. The bells are from the church of St Martin-in-the-Field in London, and were a gift from the London to the people of Perth. The bell tower has a modern design, and is somewhat controversially regarded by locals. It costs $11/$7 to enter the tower, and you get a view over the river and city. You can look around the outside of the tower, and hear the bells at noon. It is a nice part of town, surrounded by park and next to the river. Mundaring Weir [18] A historic feature of the Perth landscape, the Mundaring Weir was completed in 1903 and was designed by the famous engineer C.Y. O'Connor (who also responsible for the Fremantle Harbour and the Kalgoorlie water pipeline). Visitors may walk over or around the Weir and the surrounds have picnic areas featuring public barbecues. There is also a museum nearby which documents the history of the Weir and the Pipeline project. The Mundaring Weir Hotel is also a historic landmark and offers good food, accommodation and often live (usually classical) music. The Weir is a relatively short drive from the Mundaring townsite and it provides an ideal gateway into Perth's scenic hills. Whiteman Park; located in the Northern outskirts of the city, Whiteman Park is an amazing national park and wildlife sanctuary. Kids can pet the Kangaroos and other wildlife and the grownups can enjoy the railway, railway museum and loads more. Perth features an abundance of similar wildlife parks which are spread around the outskirts of the metropolitan area. Australian Rules Football: Perth, like Melbourne, is mad for its footy! Every weekend, Subiaco fills to near-capacity with either West Coast Eagles or Fremantle Dockers supporters. Why not choose whose colours you like best and join in the fun? As the Eagles are the more popular and successful side in the Australian Football League (A.F.L., games are likely to sell out well in advance, so it is best to buy your tickets a couple of weeks before the scheduled fixture (Ticketek offer a pick-up service as the venue). Aussie rules football might be hard to understand at first, but it is quite exciting.


Take a walk along the river or on one of Perth's many beaches. Swim Perth boasts some of the country's best beaches, which are ideal for swimming during the warmer months. Sunscreen is essential and insect repellent may come in handy during the evening. As the beaches are on the open ocean it is strongly advised that you only 'swim between the flags' at patrolled beaches. Probably the easiest beach to get to by public transport is Scarborough beach, which can be accessed by catching the Clarkson line from platform 1 at either Perth Underground or Esplanade stations, getting off at Glendalough station before catching the 400 Bus. Alternatively, you can catch the 400 from the Wellington St bus station which is located down the far end of the central station - from any of its platforms, head West to the concourse, turn left and then head down the ramp. A beach on Rottnest Island, off the coast of PerthSwim Naked There is only one beach in Perth that permits nude bathing: Swanbourne. Males sunbathing topless at other beaches is the norm, however females will not usually get a police fine but will get stared at. The atmosphere at Swanbourne Clothing Optional Beach (about 100m north of Swanbourne Beach) is friendly and relaxing. It is more of a sunbathing beach than a swimming beach, with a steep sandy descent into water which gets deep quickly. There are no lifeguards or red-and-yellow flags at this beach and so it is essential to keep a close eye on children near the water. The nude beach is frequented by a variety of sun-seekers of all ages; couples, families, groups. The easiest way to get there is by car, however there is a train station about 1km away Cycle - Perth has excellent bike paths and fantastic weather almost all year round which makes it perfect for cycling. The paths that follow the Swan River are very scenic and mostly flat. You can take your own bike, hire a bicycle from one of the bike hire providers located near the Swan River or take a tour with Bluetongue Bike Tours [19] or Pedal OZ [20]. Catch a flick at one of the many independent or European cinemas, including Paradiso in Northbridge, Astor in Mount Lawley and The Luna cinemas in either Leederville or Fremantle. These cinemas showcase a range of local, Bollywood, French and Italian productions as well as International film festivals and documentaries throughout the year. Most of these aforementioned cinemas often offer free finger-food and beverages before the screening. Also check out the open air cinemas in summer, located in Kings Park, Movies by Burswood, Luna Leederville, Mundaring, and The University of Western Australia. Get out for a day to Fremantle; great for a walk around without a specific goal in mind or for some light shopping (Markets with food and knick-knacks are open on Thursdays, Fridays and on Weekends) or why not enjoy a meal or coffee and cake whilst soaking in the atmosphere? Fun park - Containing only 1 little kiddy coaster it is definitely not for the serious thrillseeker; Adventure World [21] is Located in the outer suburb of Bibra Lake. This fun park features five waterslides, various rides for the adventurous and a special 'Kids Cove' for children. Picnicking is encouraged or you can buy food on site (no alcohol is permitted). The easiest mode of transport is the car however Adventure World is only a short bus ride (#520 from either Cockburn Central train/bus station or Fremantle train station - frequencies range from half-hourly weekdays, hourly Saturdays and two-hourly on Sundays and public holidays - zone 3 fare). Best of all, unlimited rides are included in Adventure World's entry fee. Over summer, Adventure World also hosts several "Adults Only Pool Parties," which are held on either a Friday or Saturday night. The park is closed to children, and becomes a fully licensed venue, serving alcohol as well as hosting bands after dark. Go Wine Tasting Well renowned amongst locals and tourists alike, the Swan Valley boasts some of the country's best wineries and brewpubs. Although the wine is perhaps not as highly regarded as seasoned wine buffs as that produced in regions such as Margaret River, the Swan Valley features the advantage of being relatively close to the city. A combined river cruise and organised bicycle tour with Pedal OZ is a pleasant way to visit the area or if you have a 'designated driver' you can do it yourself. The easiest way to get there is to drive from the city along Lord Street, which then becomes Guildford Road, which will take you to Guildford (25 minutes) then follow the brown tourist information signs. For many people, the Swan Valley is synonymous with Houghtons Wines [22]. This winery provides a popular spot for a picnic. Visits to the Margaret River Chocolate Factory and Oggies Ice Cream shop (both on West Swan Road) are obligatory! Raves and Festivals. If dance music is your thing then be sure to check what music festivals are being held while you are in Perth, especially if you are planning on coming between October and March. Because the Northern hemisphere hotspots like Ibiza are closed, and this is when the southern summer occurs, many top DJ and electronic music artists will make the trip out to Perth. Combined this with some fantastic venues like the Supreme Court Gardens in the center of the city, and almost perfect weather and you get a recipe for some excellent raving. (Check out for upcoming dates) For those into their Rock/Indie music The Big Day Out festival is held at the Perth Royal show grounds in early Febuary every year. Note: be sure to keep the alcohol to a minimum and drink plenty of water as many people become dehydrated at these events every year. Also note that all the events mentioned above are single day festivals unlike the typical weekend long camping festivals in Europe.


A 10% Goods and Services Tax is included in listed prices. Electronics in Australia are expensive for locals, however tourists will find prices extremely cheap due to the current value of the Australian dollar. Australia is currently the cheapest place in the world to buy an iPod. Harbour Town (Yellow CAT from any stop) is where manufacturers have their factory outlets; some good deals are to be had there. Perth has many local things to buy, including the world renowned Broome pearls, Perth Mint gold and Argyle diamonds. Shopping hours in Perth are mostly regulated by the government. Between January and November they are: 9-5:30 Monday to Friday (some larger chain stores such as supermarkets have started closing at 6) 9-5 Saturday Extended trading to 9PM on Thursday in suburbs (including Fremantle) or Friday in the City Centre 11-5 Sunday in City Centre and 12-6 Fremantle only. In mid-December Christmas trading hours kick in and usually run until the end of December (individual shopping centres set their own times). Trading is extended to 9PM on weekdays and on Sundays most shops open 10AM-5PM. Smaller shops may open longer hours by law all year. Some useful hints: There are two Woolworths Supermarkets located in the city. One is on the Murray Street mall near Barrack Street. This is open 7 days and until 7PM on Weeknights. It can get very busy around 5PM (the end of the business day for Perth office workers). Another newly opened store is located on St Georges Terrace, in the enex100 development. This store is open until 7PM on weeknights and 5PM on Saturday. On Sunday the store is open from 11AM-5PM. Woolworths accepts all forms of payment including Visa, MasterCard and American Express. Both of these stores carry the new Woolworths logo and branding on their signage, so they may differ in appearence to older stores around Perth. A late-night pharmacy (chemist) is on the corner of William Street and James Street in Northbridge (just north of the city centre). A 24 hour pharmacy is on the corner of Beaufort and Walcott Streets, just north of the city. King Street has some of the more expensive shops in Perth, including Louis Vuitton and Gucci. 'But' at the Northern end of King Street from Murray Street to around the corner of Wellington Street you will find a mix of fantastic locally owned boutique stores with more afforable designer Australian clothing and interesting designer imported clothing and a great coffee shop. Some of the best shops to visit are 'Love in Tokyo, Billy and Rose, Cult Status, Zekka, Mame and Dilettante. Hay Street and Murray Street malls are the main shopping precinct of Perth. They have a number of chain music, clothing and department stores. The two are connected by a number of arcades, including Carillon arcade, Plaza arcade and Picadilly arcade. These have a number of off-beat asian fashion stores, unique jewelry shops, and even a shop which specialises in gourmet teas. Basement level of Carillon arcade has a large food court. Murray Street, PerthPeople seeking alternative clothing with a dance/street bent might want to check out Narcissist clothing (located along Barrack St - just listen out for the drum & bass oozing from the stairs that lead down to this basement level shop) and Red Rover clothing (Murray St east), the former of which also sells 12" vinyls, CDs, DVDs and a small selection of DJ equipment. Keep an eye out for Elizabeth's secondhand bookstores - along Hay St (west) near King St. There is also one located along the cappuccino strip in Fremantle which is open 'til late on weekdays. Books start at just AU$2 which is brilliant if you are running low on both spending money and reading materials. Northbridge is fast becoming the place to go for more alternative shopping. William Street, located on the opposite side of the Perth Train Station to the city malls, has a variety of independently owned businesses, mostly operated by the youth of Perth. Here you can find punk/goth/rockabilly fashion and footwear, graffiti art supplies, independent art galleries, anime/manga collectables and generally more unique stores. If you are bored of the same big clothing labels, you can find some really different, locally designed fashion, as well as some excellent vintage pieces. Harbour Town located on Wellington Street in West Perth (Yellow Cat to Harbourtown or Train, Fremantle line to City West. Within Free Transit Zone)is good for a budget shopping spree, and contains primarily outlet stores. Trendier suburbs such as Mount Lawley, Leederville and Subiaco have a number of offbeat designer fashion stores. Specifically, music and book lovers will want to check out the dependable Planet Video & Books (located at the corner of Beaufort and Walcott Sts, Mount Lawley). There are a number of shopping complexes located in the outer suburbs, such as in Morley, Carousel, Cannington, Midland, Joondalup, Booragoon, Innaloo and Karrinyup. These have the usual department and chain stores. After Christmas (and around July as well for many stores) is the best time to come to Perth for shopping. Perth City as well as some regional (i.e. Bunbury, etc.) stores are open Boxing Day and suburban stores open on the 27th. Customers have been known to form a line across the street to even enter stores such as 'Guess' and Myer store entry and escalator movement is monitored by security guards to prevent floor crowding.


One of Perth's many drawbacks is that its people have not embraced late night dining. Very few places will serve food after 10PM, even on Friday or Saturday nights, with the notable exception being some excellent out-of-the-way Asian eateries and the other cafes in Northbridge (Northbridge is Perth's entertainment precinct and is located just to the North of the suburban railway line) such as The Moon late night cafe. Most restaurants in Perth do not cater for vegetarians or vegans, and if they do - the range is extremely limited. There is an extensive array of restaurants in Northbridge. You will find a great selection of Southern European (Italian, Greek etc) and Asian (especially Indonesian and Vietnamese) restaurants. Seafood lovers are also spoilt for choice. As one might expect, Northbridge gets very busy on Friday and Saturday nights as Perth goes into party mode. Fremantle is a good option for getting out. It's easy to get to by train and has enough restaurants, bars and coffee shops to keep you well fed and watered. South Tce is famous for its cappuccino strip (as this nickname suggests, both sides of South Tce feature an endless array of cafes, many of which are situated next door to one another), but this area is popular amongst the yuppie crowd, busy during peak hour and most cafes serve rather average coffees (in fact, good coffee can be hard to come by in Perth). If you find yourself in Freo (short for Fremantle), the better cafes and coffee can be found at the smaller establishments located at the train station end of South Tce. On weekends, a local tradition is to visit the Fisherman's Wharf on warm, sunny weekend evenings for fish and chips. There are a couple of options to choose from and they are all located close to the beach. Just follow your nose or the seagulls. Subiaco is located just a couple of kilometres from the city centre. You can either catch a train from Perth central station (Subiaco station is the third station from Perth along the Fremantle line) or if you are feeling adventurous, you can walk down Hay St (heading west) from the city. Subiaco is a trendy but fun suburb which features some great food and entertainment. Remember that the pronunciation of Subiaco should sound something like 'Soo-bee-AK-o' OR just 'SOO-bee'. Claremont is a suburb which is also located along the Fremantle railway line (or a short drive away) and it is here that you will find some good restaurants as well (including authentic Italian). Mount Lawley and Highgate Centered around Beaufort Street, this bohemian suburb includes some of Perth's edgier bars, restaurants, pubs, cafes and clothing shops. Mount Lawley and Highgate provides the heartbeat of Perth's gay and artistic communities and as such, you might find yourself spending a lot of time browsing around Planet Video and Books or any one of the several fashion boutiques, before you unwind at either The Queens or The Flying Scotsman pubs (which mark the start and finishing points of the restaurant/cafe strip respectively if you are heading North from the city). If you want to splurge, try The Must Wine Bar. Try GoGo's Indian for a real spicy treat. If you're from the UK, they'll even do curry and chips for you upon request! The Swan Valley, especially along West Swan Road contains various wineries and restaurants with stunning views over the vineyards. Particularly good are The Black Swan Cafe, Duckstein Brewery, Elmar's and The Mallard Duck Cafe. Some of Perth's classier restaurants can be found in the Claisbrook Cove area of East Perth. The street arrangement within this area can be quite confusing, so consult a map before you leave. It is worth noting that Perth is a friendly and approachable city in general and as such, locals are only too happy to provide directions.


Perth CBD boasts several bars, usually crowded after 5PM with those who have just finished a hard day's work. The Westende Belgian Beer Cafe has an impressive selection of imported and local beers on tap, with specialised glassware to match. Alternatively, Sassellas Tavern located on the third floor of Carillon Arcade has a balcony that overlooks Forest Chase, and if you're hungry they have a good selection of food that's ready in 10 minutes. The steak sandwich is good value for around $13. Murray St west end could be the perfect place for a Perth pub crawl as there is a pub or a bar every fifty metres. (guys won't get in unless they're with a girlfriend) Visitors will most likely start this pub crawl at Bobby Dazzler's (300 Murray St on the corner of Murray and William St) if heading West from the shopping mall or from William St. This quintessentially Aussie pub/restaurant (which is adorned by Australian flags as well as sporting and Aussie beer related memorabilia) serves a good selection of draft beers which are complimented nicely by some (albeit overpriced) authentic Aussie grub. Located in the same hotel complex is The Moon & Sixpence - this authentic British-theme pub has a wide and ever changing selection of local, British, Irish and European beers and ales, and as one might expect, the food isn't bad either (although this is where the authenticity ends, thankfully!). After your visit to the "Belgian", head back across to the same side of the road as Bobby Dazzler's and the Moon and head west for a couple of (hopefully not too drunken) paces until you find Carnegie's (356 Murray St). The motto of this very impressive pub/bar is "The Spirit of Rock" and, as such, the music policy leans towards contemporary rock and pop music (when the resident DJ isn't spinning, punters can select from a wide range of tunes from a state of the art video jukebox). The towering liquor cabinets are almost two stories high and as one might imagine, the draft beer, cocktail and "shooter" list is equally as monumental (Carnegie's has the longest cocktails list in Perth according to local press) and it is all complimented by a friendly and outgoing team of bar-staff. Tuesday night is quiz and $6 pints night whilst Wednesday nights feature half-price cocktails from 6PM. Further west from Carnegie's is the Amplifier Bar, linked to Capitol Nightclub. Head here late on a Saturday night for some indie dance hits and an eclectic crowd. Keep going and you'll hit Tiger Lils. This funky Asian styled restaurant/bar is great for lunch or dinner and transforms into a vibing bar on Friday and Saturday nights. Towards the east end of Murray St is the home of Perth's dark/alternative scene, Sin Nightclub (45 Murray St). Open on most Saturday nights from 10PM, Sin plays a mix of industrial, electronica, goth and 80s new wave. The crowd is predominantly goth, with much of Perth's artistic & internet culture also well represented. Nightclub attire is a must, with lots of black recommended if you want to blend in with the regulars. The club has a very strict 18+ ID policy: if you don't have an Australian drivers license, you'll need to show your passport to get in the door. While draconian, it ensures that Sin remains a trouble free sanctuary for the alternative crowd. Fremantle has the usual array of pubs and clubs. Of special note are the Fly by Night Musicians Club and Kulcha (folk). The famous micro-brewery Little Creatures is also worth visiting for those with money and wishing to experience a unique local brew and a friendly, relaxed atmosphere. You can also enjoy a nice meal there, with gourmet pizza being their main specialty. Subiaco has an array of venues where you can have a drink and a dance, such as the Subi Hotel, Club Red Sea, Sapphire Bar and Llama Bar[30]. "Subi" becomes really busy when events are held at Subiaco Oval. Drive Through Liquor Stores - not exactly a bar per se, but definitely a concept unique to Australia. These are usually open until quite late. It is considered polite to park your car outside and walk through if you are intending to browse and take your time. Many Aussies enjoy to drink in the comfort of their own home or backyard as much as they enjoy drinking in their favourite pub. Perth has a small but strong dance music scene which revolves heavily around drum & bass. Club nights and international gigs are held at a variety of venues across the city centre, Northbridge and outer suburbs (check out local street press magazines such as Xpress for gig guides and further info) for a comprehensive gig guide). Beats and breaks are big business in Perth and if this is your flavour; it is worth checking out Ambar (104 Murray St, Perth - NB Ambar is not located in Northbirdge) on any given Friday or Saturday night (Couples only). This unpretentious bar/club, which serves some very tasty cocktails to compliment its uber-cool music policy, was the highest ranking Australian club in a DJ Magazine poll which surveyed 500 international DJ's so as to find the Top 50 International Nightclubs (this poll was held back in 2005 and has yet to be repeated). For the record Ambar came in at no. 42 whilst its only Aussie rival; Sydney's Home Nightclub came in at no. 47. Many local punters say that this accolade could be attributed to the crowd's friendly and "up for it" attitude. Funky house and breaks fans will dig Geisha Bar (139 James St, Northbridge - note: polish those shoes!) whilst trance/hard trance fans will feel right at home at Rise Danceclub (Couples Only)Metro City (146 Roe St, Northbridge) hosts a weekly R&B/hip hop night but this enormous venue also hosts concerts and large dance music events. When heading into Perth by train from the West, Metro's (as it is known to the locals) is clearly visible from the window as its unique, palace-like exterior stands out amongst the multi-level carparks and other bland buildings which can be seen along Roe St. Most dance music bars/clubs close at 2AM following Friday and Saturday nights and are subjected to Police enforced lockdowns and lockouts (as is the case in Brisbane), so you will find yourself stuck in one place after 3AM, and be stranded should you be short on money for a cab.


There is plenty of choice when it comes to accommodation. Check out some great places to stay in Perth here.