When I arrived, I quickly fell in love with Perth as I had such an amazing experience with the bus driver that took me to the city. He was so caring, helpful and friendly and I also really enjoyed that Perth isn’t as huge and busy as Melbourne or Sydney.
I filmed my first vlog when I was in Perth! Very new and weird to talk to the camera, but I will get used to it when I do it more often and I hope you enjoy watching anyways :)
There are also some impressions from my South-West Australia Tour included in this video at the end.
Sadly, I got a bit homesick and lonely in my first days in Perth which made me then not enjoying my time that much. Luckily, I could change my mood by booking a tour to explore the south-west of Australia and meeting some nice travel mates on the way.
I really can tell that your experiences on your travels and whether you like a place or not depends so much on the people you share your time with. And as a solo traveller, it is very likely that you will feel lonely at some stage of your travel – but that’s okay, that’s part of the experience and in my second week in Perth, I was luckier with my roommates and had a great time!
Where to stay
I stayed at the City Perth Backpackers which is located between the centre, Northbridge and Subiaco (the best/main parts of town) and it takes less than 10 minutes by foot to the city centre.
I really liked this hostel because it was super clean and had a nice kitchen without any dirty dishes or food in the sink. I met some great people in the two weeks I stayed, even though there are also some long-term workers living there that tent to drink too often, too early and too much… but I just avoided the TV area and then it was fine.
Things to do, Places to go
The prettiest place in the city (in my opinion) is the Kings Park with a beautiful view of the city. A great place to run, walk, explore the Botanical Garden with many unique plants that only exist in Western Australia and have a picnic.
The Victoria Quay is another pretty place with a great view over Southbridge and the river, as well as the city centre when you stand on the bridge. At night it looks even more special and I can highly recommend going there (but taking a jacket, it’s pretty windy :D ). Also, the harbour is located there and you can do tours to Fremantle, through the river and to Rottnest Island.
The CBD area has a pedestrian area with a lot of shopping and food places. On the weekends there are markets and live music (see more down below), but as it is the business district I prefer Northbridge for eating out more.
The funny thing is, you can find those old and British looking arcades right next to the high buildings in the CBD.
Northbridge is super nice to eat out, especially for Asian food and you can also find very nice cafés, bistros, book shops, vintage stores and little boutiques.
At the Northbridge Piazza, they sometimes show movies and you can relax in the grass.
Between the CBD and Northbridge, there is a Plaza called Yagan Square where the main train and bus station is located. There is also a big building with many nice restaurants, bars and food stalls.
Even though it can’t keep up with Melbourne or Sydney, the Art Gallery of Western Australia is worth a visit and if you need some quiet time to work (+ free Wi-Fi) I can recommend the Library right next to it.
There are many nice beaches not far from the city that you can go to by bus or train and the great thing is: because it is Western Australia you get to see an amazing sunset over the ocean! I went to Cottesloe Beach once and other very nice beaches (from what I’ve heard of) are Port Beach, Leighton and Mosman Beach, City Beach, Floreat Beach and Brighton Beach.
I love going to markets here in Australia. It’s so much fun seeing all this good food, supporting local growers and producers, trying new and exciting things and having a look at beautiful self-made things. Especially after I had such an amazing experience in Brisbane with markets, I am always in the hunt :D
Here are some markets that I visited:
- Subiaco Farmers Market (Subiaco) on Saturday
- Perth City Farmers Market (East Perth) on Saturday
- Perth Home Grown (Murray Street Mall, CBD) on Sunday
- Mends Street Farmers Market (South Perth) on Sunday
- Twilight Hawkers Market (CBD) Friday evenings in summer month
I would say eating out in Perth is even a bit more expensive than on the East Coast and there are also less great options.
In Northbridge you can find many Asian restaurants and in the CBD some more expensive ones but I missed some cute cafés and little bistros. You can find some in the suburbs like in Subiaco or also in Fremantle (read more below).
At Yagan Square there are a few nice places for lunch and afternoon snacks.
And I also went to an amazing restaurant called Formosa which is an Asian restaurant that is completely vegetarian and has a lot of vegan options and they recreate the real meals. I had a vegan seafood noodle soup and my friend a chicken stew and some nuggets and it was really yummy. You definitely need to like those „fake foods“, but I tell you: the nuggets were crazy delicious!
At the Victoria Quay there is an Indian restaurant called Annalakshmi with a buffet and you pay as much as you want to.
In the city centre, there is only one Coles that is super expensive and small as well. Better go to Coles or Aldi in the Suburbs of Perth, like Subiaco (if possible) because they are much cheaper and bigger or shop in these stores instead:
- La Vida Vegan Grocery (West): completely vegan grocery store that has soo many cool products
- Golden Choice Fruit Veg (Subiaco, West): the best place to shop fresh and cheap fruits and veggies as well as Asian groceries
- Emma Seafood Yong Tofu Asian Market (Northbridge)
- Kakulas Brothers (Northbridge): Bulk food store where you can get all kinds of flour, grains, rice, herbs and spices, dried fruit, muesli, as well as some special foods (they had German red cabbage and a German dumpling mix :P )
Day trips from Perth
Fremantle is a really popular and hip suburb of Perth and only 10 minutes by tram and around one hour by bus from the city centre.
I stayed at the Fremantle Backpacker Hostel which I can’t really recommend because my room window was right where everyone partied outside so it was super loud, but I’ve heard that Fremantle is a party place anyways. So probably all hostels have those issues.
The Fremantle Market in the Market Halls (from Friday-Sunday) is very popular and a nice undercover market with a lot of different things, as well as many food stalls. You can try the food at many stalls and there is definitely a lunch or snack for every taste.
The South Beach Sunset Market, South Fremantle (Saturday evening in summer month) are supposed to be very nice as well.
Right at the market, there is a completely vegan café and bistro called ‚Chick Pea‘ which has some amazing yummy food. I had a tumeric waffle. toast with cashew cheese and tomato.
And the Milk Belly Café also serves two vegan sandwich options and I tried there pulled BBQ jackfruit sandwich that tasted really delicious and super flavourful. Even my friend admitted that it was really good!
There is also an Acai Brothers and Aloga Bowls for great Acai Bowls and a restaurant that I wished I could have tried (but it is more on the expensive side) is Raw Kitchen.
Rottnest Island is a very famous island in the Indian ocean only about 40 minutes by ferry from Fremantle or 2 hours from the city centre. It is home to the funny looking and friendly Quakkas and a beautiful place with breathtaking turquoise beaches and lovely landscapes. There are no cars allowed so you can explore the island by foot, bike, e-bike or by hop-on-hop-off bus.
I had a wonderful day cycling around the pretty hilly island stopping for beautiful views, taking pictures and enjoying nature.
There is another vlog coming soon where I take you along my day on Rottnest Island!
From Perth you can also make your way up to Exmouth along the less popular but just as beautiful West Coast of Australia (which is still on my bucket list) or travel along south to see Wave Rock, Margret River, Albany and Esperance which I did on a 6 day tour that you can read about here!
Western Australia is less popular than the Eastern coast but definitely still worth visiting. Perth is a great city that as plenty of things to offer and you can see and travel a lot when you go north or south. I will for sure come back to travel along the West Coast one day!