Where to stay
Base yourself at Alex Hotel in Northbridge. Centrally located in the cultural heart of Perth, this hotel is all sorts of cool. Step out the front door and everything you need is there for the taking. Hip cafes, delectable restaurants, lively bars and local theatres – Northbridge has it all.
What to do
DAY ONEAustralia is known for its great coffee, so it’s only right you start your day with a top-notch brew. Northbridge’s Eillo, sitting on the bustling William Street, serves up some of the best coffee in Perth - and their 'Bloody Big' coffee size is a dream come true for weary travellers. Eillo also stocks a delightful range of homewares such as candles, clocks and other décor items – so if you’re after a side of souvenirs with your morning coffee, this is where to go.
Once you’ve finished your caffeine hit, walk down William Street and check out some of the quirky shops, cafes and concept stores before heading into Kakulas Brothers. This family-run shop was opened in 1929 by two Greek immigrant brothers, selling European goods like dried fruits, nuts, olives and spices. These days, it’s the go-to place for everything you’d need to fill a picnic basket – which is exactly what you need for a day of sightseeing. Grab a selection of Kakulas’ fresh cheeses, cured meats and tasty breads, then make your way to Kings Park.
Once you’re done admiring Perth city from above, it’s time to make your way down there yourself and visit Elizabeth Quay. Take a walk along the Elizabeth Quay Bridge, which offers spectacular views of both the city and the river. Stop by The Spanda, a 29-metre artwork resembling the ripples of the Swan River; and admire the First Contact Sculpture, a stunning five-metre-tall, cast aluminium artwork by renowned indigenous artist, Laurel Nannup.
Then its time to reward yourself with a drink, and what better spot than the The Reveley. Sitting right in the heart of Elizabeth Quay, this is the perfect spot to enjoy a sunset cocktail, wine or beer.
Once it’s dinner time, make your way back to Northbridge for a meal at one of Perth’s best Italian eateries, No Mafia. This southern-Italian wine bar-some-restaurant serves up authentic Italian share dishes like beetroot cured salmon with Campari and orange; slow braised lamb shoulder with pecorino; and gnocchi with tomato sugo and mozzarella.
DAY TWOGet yourself a caffeine hit from Kafka, A Coffee Shop. Sitting at the bottom of Fitzgerald Street, this quirky café features pink paint, hand-made coffee cups, and a light bright ambience so appealing, you could be forgiven for thinking you’re in the entry hall of an art gallery. Order yourself a superb coffee, and watch the world go by perched on one of their alfresco chairs.
Then make your way down to the Barrack Street jetty in Perth’s city centre and jump on board your boat to Rottnest Island.
Surrounded by limestone coral reef, Rottnest is a snorkeller’s paradise. Swim among the coral, spot incredible marine life and soak up the sun on the white sand beaches of Geordie Bay, Little Parakeet Bay, Little Salmon Bay and The Basin.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite swimming and sunbathing, head to the pub at Hotel Rottnest to enjoy lunch at one of the most sublime alfresco dining areas in Western Australia. The menu includes share plates, local seafood and mouth-watering pizzas; the drinks list features WA craft beers, wines and cocktails; and the views look out over the stunning Thompsons Bay. Treat yourself to a long lunch here – its worth it.
Once lunch is done, make your way back to the ferry - but not before stopping at the iconic Rottnest Bakery. Famous for many tasty treats, including freshly baked bread, organic meat pies and delicious jam and cream donuts, the Rotto Bakery is a Perth institution.
Make your way back down to ground level and set your sights on The Standard for dinner. This industrial-chic bar and restaurant has got a fusion dining menu that takes you all over the world. The dishes, which are designed for sharing, range from caramelised kangaroo and charred local squid, to turmeric coconut fish and Korean barbeque chicken. Add to that an incredible wine, beer and cocktail list, plus atmospheric dining in their ambient courtyard, and you have yourself a perfect Perth evening.