Your ultimate agent guide to Perth and surrounds

Aerial view of Elizabeth Quay, Perth

While uncertainty around the resumption of international travel continues, it really is a no-brainer for agents to ride the big domestic wave hitting Australia right now.

So, Travel Weekly has teamed up with Tourism Western Australia to highlight another of the state’s major drawcards which attracts millions of visitors each year.

Nicknamed the “City of Light”, Perth is Australia’s sunniest capital city, and effortlessly blends urban cool with raw, natural beauty.

Its heart is bustling with new bars, restaurants, hotels, shopping and cultural spaces, and is also home to Kings Park and Botanic Garden – one of the world’s largest inner-city parks.

Within 30 minutes of Perth’s city centre, visitors can explore WA’s oldest wine region, watch a famous WA sunset, cycle around an island paradise or walk the streets of Fremantle.

Must-sees and must-dos

Perth is seriously oozing attractions and experiences to keep all kinds of travellers satisfied, but here are a few your clients really should check out while in the capital city:

  • Transformed public spaces

An array of new public spaces has activated Perth and its surrounding cultural hubs, including the vibrant waterfront precinct of Elizabeth Quay, the 60,000-seat Optus Stadium and Yagan Square, which is a celebration of WA’s Aboriginal heritage.

Yagan Square (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Perth’s hotel scene has also undergone a boom, following the opening of a raft of new and refurbished properties in the CBD and surrounding urban and coastal areas. Not to be missed is the spectacular new WA Museum Boola Bardip located in the Perth Cultural Centre.

  • Kings Park and Botanic Garden

At 400 hectares, Kings Park is one of the largest inner-city parks in the world – it’s even bigger than Central Park in New York!

Home to more than 3,000 species of native plants and around 80 bird species, the natural landmark is the perfect spot to sit back, relax and take in the serenity.

Kings Park and Botanic Garden (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

A short walk or free bus ride from the central business district, visitors will be rewarded with superb views over the Swan River and city skyline, rich Aboriginal and European history, cafés, playgrounds and picnic spots.

Your clients can explore Kings Park on their own or take a guided tour, and enjoy a live performance or film in the summer months.

  • Cuisine, culture and couture

Perth’s city centre and its urban hubs of Leederville, Mount Lawley, Northbridge, Victoria Park and Subiaco offer an ever-expanding range of dining, shopping and entertainment options.

Kitsch Bar Asia in Leederville (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Art and museum exhibitions, theatre, ballet, music and sporting events are on in Perth year-round, while fashionistas can check out international and homegrown style throughout the city and surrounds.

There are a number of guided walking tours that take in the city’s past, present and future. Your clients can explore laneways, architecture, street art, bars, cafés and restaurants, as well as take tours themed around cheese, beer, wine, whisky and gin.

  • Unique attractions

Visitors can hop on a free CAT bus and tour Perth’s city sights, ring one of the world’s largest musical instruments – the Swan Bells at the Bell Tower – or watch a live gold pour and see the world’s largest collection of gold bars at The Perth Mint.

The Perth Mint (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Your clients can also take a ferry ride across the Swan River to Perth Zoo (home to more than 1,500 animals), or head out to Caversham Wildlife Park (30 minutes’ drive east of Perth) where they can meet koalas, wombats, kangaroos and many other species of native wildlife.

  • Day trips

Within an hour of Perth’s central business district, visitors can meet the friendly quokkas on pristine Rottnest Island, tantalise their tastebuds in the Swan Valley or Perth Hills wine regions, swim with wild dolphins at Rockingham with Perth Wildlife Encounters, cruise the canals in Mandurah, or discover maritime history, the World Heritage-listed Fremantle Prison and a bohemian lifestyle and café culture in the eclectic port city of Fremantle.

One of Rottnest Island’s famous quokkas (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

  • Beach sunsets

With 19 pristine metropolitan beaches to choose from, it’s easy for travellers to find their own piece of paradise to enjoy one of WA’s famous coastal sunsets.

Cottesloe Beach (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Eat, drink, laugh, groove and cheer

Perth plays host to a range of events throughout the year, showcasing the city’s art and culture, food and wine, comedy and sport.

During the summer months, the annual FRINGE WORLD and Perth Festival take over the city with a smorgasbord of theatre, comedy and music experiences.

For foodies, there’s a range of evening markets on offer, such as the Twilight Hawkers Markets in the city. There are also rooftop movies and vibrant outdoor pop-up bars throughout the city.

Twilight Hawkers Markets (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

For sports lovers, Perth’s world-class Optus Stadium will host the AFL season and the Bledisloe Cup in July 2021, as well as a number of big-name concerts.

Tour central

Whatever way your clients would like to explore Perth and the surrounds, they can almost be guaranteed there’s a tour to suit their style, with several new ones launched within the last two years.

Perth’s Matagarup Bridge is the centrepiece for an iconic new adventure tourism attraction, the Matagarup Bridge Zip+Climb.

Opened in January 2021, guests can now climb the 314 steps to reach the bridge’s 72-metre-high Sky View platform, which offers stunning 360-degree views over the city, Swan River and Optus Stadium.

Optus Stadium (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

This month, adventure seekers will be able to zipline from the launch platform of the bridge, 400 metres across the Swan River to a landing platform in Burswood Park.

Completed in 2018, the Matagarup Bridge provides pedestrian access over the Swan River, from East Perth to the Optus Stadium precinct.

Visitors can now also experience the Swan River from a fun and unique perspective, thanks to the introduction of two new waterbiking tours.

Perth Waterbike Adventures, which depart from Matilda Bay, and Perth Waterbike Co, departing from South Perth, allow guests to safely pedal and glide across the Swan River, with a range of different tours on offer.

Also complementing the new Swan River offerings is GoGo Active Tours’ new kayaking tours along the Swan River and Canning River wetlands.

Perth has also welcomed a collection of new walking tours in recent years, offering a unique way to soak up the city’s cultural, nature-based and culinary attractions.

Launched in early-2019, The Hike Collective is an ecotourism tour operation highlighting natural landscapes in all corners of the city, including Rottnest Island, Perth Hills and its metropolitan beaches.

In Perth’s port city, the team at Fremantle Tours has launched several new itineraries to its current offering, including a ‘Street Art, Beers and Bikes’ tour, a ‘Fremantle Street Art Walk’ tour and a ‘Vegan Food Tour’ of the historic city.

East West Designs in Fremantle (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Local favourite Oh Hey WA and award-winning Two Feet & A Heartbeat continue to grow its suite of Perth walking tours, incorporating coffee, art and culture; small bars and dining; history and culture; nature and wildlife.

Visitors to Kings Park can learn about its intriguing past and spiritual significance to the Aboriginal people on a tour with Go Cultural Tours or Nyungar Tours.

Trip planning tips

Perth has a comfortable Mediterranean-type climate, making it a year-round destination for travellers.

The capital city is bathed in sunshine for an average of nine hours a day (making it officially the sunniest capital in Australia) and boasts one of the most enviable outdoor lifestyles in the world.

Beaches, bushland, world-class wines and ocean sunsets can all be enjoyed within 30 minutes’ drive from Perth.

Your clients can easily experience all of Perth’s must-sees and must-dos in as little as five days, including the panoramic views from Kings Park, Fremantle history, Rottnest’s beautiful beaches, WA’s oldest wine region, and the dolphin playgrounds of Rockingham and Mandurah.

Swan Valley (image source: Tourism Western Australia)

Agents are advised to give Tourism WA’s ‘Best of Perth’ itinerary a squiz to help plan their clients’ stay.

Accommodation options are aplenty in Perth, with the city having welcomed the opening of a raft of new and refurbished hotels in recent times.

DoubleTree by Hilton Perth Waterfront, The Ritz-Carlton Perth, QT Perth, The Adnate Art Series Hotel, InterContinental Perth City Centre and the Parmelia Hilton are just some of the latest additions.

Keen to learn more about Perth and the surrounding regions? Click here.

Featured image: Elizabeth Quay in Perth (source: Tourism Western Australia)

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