Perth is a great place to visit, full of natural beauty, outdoor activities and a burgeoning food and bar scene. However, accommodation and entertainment can be a little pricey. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the city without breaking the bank. These five free activities will provide you with a taste of Perth’s highlights and leave you with some cash to spare (or splurge).
1. Picnic at King’s Park
Set high above the city, sprawling King’s Park has unbeatable panoramic views of the CBD skyline and Swan River. At any time of day or night, you’ll find locals and visitors alike enjoying the gardens. Pack a picnic and snag a spot overlooking the skyline, or find a more secluded area near the botanical gardens, war memorial or one of many shady pockets in the park. There are also several walk and bike trails, including a tree-top walk set among the eucalypts. And there are always cafes available if you fancy a coffee and cake.
2. Swim at Cottesloe Beach
If there’s one thing Perth has in spades, it’s beautiful beaches. However, Cottesloe Beach is iconic, with its white sand, Norfolk pines and bustling café strip. Relax on the sand or grassy bank, take a dip, indulge in a lunch of fish and chips and then stay for the sunset. You can easily spend a whole blissful day without spending a cent.
3. Explore historic Fremantle
The port city of Fremantle has a colourful past, as evidenced by its many interesting museums and tours. However, most of these will charge for entry. If you want to put the ‘free’ in Freo, you can wander around its charming cobble-stoned streets, dip your toes at the Fishing Boat Harbour, window-shop on High Street and head to the famous markets between Friday and Sunday. Fremantle is bike-friendly, with plenty of paths that allow you to safely explore.
4. Indulge in the Swan Valley
Tucked away in Perth’s east, just 25 minutes from the CBD, the Swan Valley is a premier wine region with a wealth of cellar doors offering free tastings. However, it’s also becoming popular for breweries and distilleries. It’s entirely possible to indulge in the area’s attractions without spending a cent – including art galleries, historic sites and chocolate and cheese factories giving out free samples. If you want to plan your own itinerary, the Swan Valley Visitor Centre will provide you with a free map of the Food and Wine Trail.
5. See Elizabeth Quay
This landmark waterfront precinct is a new addition to the Perth CBD, having just opened at the start of the year. It’s a lovely spot to enjoy the Swan River and is great for the whole family. A regular schedule of events delivers music, markets, food and art. Find out more on the website.
Getting around Perth and Fremantle is free and easy – the CAT Bus allows you to hop on and hop off any of its four central routes, free of charge.
Do you have any favourite attractions in Perth?