Saturday, March 24th, sees the launch and first non-stop flight from Perth to London on the new Qantas Dreamliner – an 18 hour journey. Yes, it’s a long way, but with just one flight to get there it certainly seems a lot more accessible for a shorter break, rather than seeing Australia as a trip of a lifetime, requiring weeks of your time.
Perth is emerging as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in Australia with billions of pounds of investment. The new Elizabeth Quay at the waterfront and Yagan Square, linking the city with the trendy suburb of Northbridge, have created a new heart in the city offering cafes, gardens, events and food markets. The city has been transformed and it is well worth spending a few days exploring as part of a holiday to Australia. It combines perfectly with the beautiful beaches and winelands of Margaret River. Or, with add on flights starting at only £40 per sector you could include a visit to the famous Ningaloo Reef or head up to the idyllic beaches and remote gorges of Broome and the Western Kimberley.
Here’s our Top Ten must do’s in Western Australia…
1 – ROTTNEST ISLAND
Rottnest Island is very top of our list and a must do for any Perth goers. Rotto (as it is affectionately known) sits 18 kms offshore and is famous for its laid back atmosphere and beautiful coastline. Pack a picnic and after a short ferry ride from Perth or Fremantle, hope on your bike (hire included in the ferry ticket) and explore the gorgeous beaches, swim in crystal clear waters and be sure to get a selfie with the cute quokkas, small marsupials which were the inspiration for the island’s name.
2 – COTTESLOE BEACH
Head to Cottesloe Beach (or Cotto as it is known by the locals), a perfect spot for swimming, snorkelling, surfing and enjoying the legendary WA sunset with a chilled glass of wine.
3 – KINGS PARK
Take an early morning walk around the 400 hectare Kings Park, for magnificent panoramic views of the city and the Swan River. It is a short five minute drive or 30 minute walk west of the city. At the park’s heart is the Botanic Gardens boasting over 200 indigenous WA plant species.
4 – CRUISE THE SWAN RIVER
Cruise down the Swan River to lively Fremantle, known for its markets and café culture, or head east for a sumptuous lunch in Western Australia’s oldest wine region – the Swan Valley.
5 – ELIZABETH QUAY
A brand new addition to Perth’s emerging dining scene, Elizabeth Quay is a waterfront area with sophisticated restaurants and cafés. The perfect spot to watch the world go by.
Combine a stay in Perth with one or more of Western Australia’s diverse landscapes and experiences.
6 – MARGARET RIVER
Three hours’ drive south of Perth, Margaret River is one of our favourite wine regions of Australia. Not only does it produce 25% of Australia’s more premium wines, with 200 vineyards, many with top class restaurants – it is perfect for foodies. It also boasts stunning, unspoiled beaches, perfect for a day of relaxation or a coastal walk. Stay on the beach at Pullman Bunker bay, or tucked away in a boutique bolthole within a vineyard at Cape Lodge.
7 –NINGALOO REEF
Accessible just footsteps from the sand, the World Heritage listed Ningaloo Reef is the largest fringing coral reef in the world. Fly up to Exmouth and spend a few days snorkelling the pristine coral gardens. Stay right behind the sand dunes, where you can snorkel straight off the beach at Sal Salis.
8 – SWIM WITH WHALE SHARKS
If you are in Exmouth between March and August then Swimming with Whale sharks is a MUST. The chance to swim with these gentle giants is an opportunity of a lifetime.
9 – BROOME & CABLE BEACH
Hop on a flight up to Broome, famous for is 22 kilometres of white sand, turquoise waters, and Indian Ocean sunsets. Stay at the charming Cable Beach Club, the only hotel right on the beach.
10 – KIMBERLEY & BUNGLE BUNGLES
The legendary Gibb River Road runs through the heart of Western Australia’s Kimberley region, a vast area with magnificent scenery and spectacular gorges. Head down the Gibb with a 4WD or spend a few days staying at El Questro, an outback station, and be sure to fly over the unique Bungle Bungle Ranges.
A 10 night City and Beach break starts from just £1965, combining the luxurious new COMO Treasury hotel with 7 nights at Pullman Bunker Bay, international flights, transfers and car hire. See more information here