1. Welcome, Guest

    Upcoming events: Supanova: Adelaide (20th-22nd November), Brisbane (27th-29th November)

    Oz Comic Con: Brisbane (19th-20th September), Sydney (26th-27th September)

FF:WA Visiting Perth - what to see/do?

Discussion in 'Oceania Discussion Boards' started by DarthXan318, Feb 18, 2009.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    So as I mentioned in the other thread, I'll be dropping by Perth next month for a week. Basically my mom is going there to visit an old friend of hers, she wants a travelling companion, and I'm not doing anything at the moment ...

    Anyway, any suggestions for things I should put on the itinerary, and tips for stuff to bring and etc? From what I've looked up so far Freemantle sounds like fun and Mom wants to go to Margaret River, but that's about as far as we've gotten. Mom's friend has a car but is probably not available all week, I'm a bit of an adrenaline junkie, my mom markedly less so, and neither of us particularly likes museums. I know Melbourne but I also know well enough not to assume both coasts are identical.

    Plz tell me about your capital city. :D
  2. Stinky_jawa Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2000
    star 4
    Don't go swimming at the beach with chops tied to your limbs?

    You could always go look at the bell-tower... *tries not to laugh*

    Hmmm.. honestly trying to think of something.. fishing's (on a charter) not bad if you're into that?
  3. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    I think I'm missing something. :p Bell tower?

    Yeah not too big on fishing, although we might go on a (short) cruise or something. Not so sure on that count yet.
  4. Ivo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 10, 2002
    star 1
    Don't forget the Ferris wheel [face_whistling]
  5. Stinky_jawa Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2000
    star 4
    little in joke.. The Bell tower is on the fore-shore and was quite expensive to make, was a lot of negative feedback about it at first as it didn't seem to attract any visitors (and not many people seemed to want it built in the first place). Don't know if it doesn't still or whether it's doing better..

    Sorry about the lack of suggestions, I live here and have never really looked at it in a 'touristy' type of way... If you were visiting southern WA in general, I could suggest Wave rock (Hyden) or the walk through the treetops (uh, near Denmark I think?) etc, but they are a considerable distance from the City. (talking 400km or more). There's a waterslide park thing? Adventure world, but I've never been there. A ski park next door as well I think..
  6. Saintheart Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    star 6
    Well, Xan, seeing as you're headed to my stamping grounds I suppose I should check in ... :D

    The Margaret River area is really nice and well worth a few days down there to get round and see some stuff. Actually I'd tend to recommend it as opposed to things in the Perth area, really.

    The Margaret River area's a bit like a warmer part of Tasmania; lots of wineries, forests, that kind of stuff. Sort of alternate-lifestylers-meets-the-cafe-latte-set kind of feel; it was a dairy farming district and surfers' hangout until they put a lot of wineries in there. You've picked a decent time to come over, because you've still got chances of pretty good weather over that way. If you're going to swim I'd recommend Yallingup or the northernmost towns in that area. It's all within an hour and a half if you're making Margaret River your base, as it were ... although you could really pick just about any town in the area, it's all that close.

    Anyway, on the adrenaline side of things, surfing's good at Margaret River (though I know nothing about it) so swimming's a possibility. There's a few caves around that area to wander through. Michelle and I make a point of doing archery every time we're down there; it's a small course, but very satisfying. :) Beaches are beautiful, lots of nice wineries if you're into that sort of thing; chocolate factory, cheese factory, ice cream factory, and some really nice restaurants which aren't *too* pricey ... I recommend Amberley, a restaurant based out of Amberley wines -- great service and really, really good food while we were down there. Sightseeing stuff ... well, there's a mile-long jetty and an underwater museum at the end in the area, but I'd say if you want natural sights and just a really relaxing time, you'll like Margaret River.

    Perth ... well. There's parasailing near the city; look for a company called West Coast Parasail. Fremantle (not Freemantle -- kind of like Fremen :D ) is nice for its cafe and coffee strip, with a couple of nice restaurants. Sweet beaches, and if you've got a spare day head over to Rottnest Island on the ferry service that runs out here for some more sights and cycling and so on. There's also the odd laser tag sort of game out here, and paintball I think, though I've never taken part myself. I'd avoid Perth central except for a quick look up the west end of Perth which does have a couple of very nice clothing shops, but it ain't real cultured out here. Adventure World's a nice water park, but it's been more than 20 years since I went there.

    That's all I can come up with off the top of my head, but I'll add to it if I think of anything else.
  7. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    No worries Stinky_jawa, I feel the same way when people ask me what to do in cities where I live. :p It sounds like the bell tower is kinda like Melbourne's Federation Square, then? Well - people do go to Fed Square, but there was a lot of resistance to it when it was built.

    Thanks for the info, Saint! :D Lots of good stuff there ... we were already planning to go to Margaret River, but from the sounds of it we might spend more than an afternoon there. Caves and parasailing and things sound pretty cool; I've never gone surfing, but maybe I'll give that a go if we've got time. [face_thinking]

    And yes, so keep the virtual tour guide going if you think of anything else.. :D
  8. Saintheart Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    star 6
    If you're planning to do some things in Margaret River I'd recommend you either leave from Perth very early or stay overnight, or even take a couple of days down there. From Perth it's about a three hour drive to get there at the moment (they are putting in a highway to lower the time, but it's still not done) you lose time going through Rockingham and Mandurah, which are the two major suburb/towns along the way. And you'll be doing more driving once you're down there; it is relatively straightforward to get around once you're down there, but first time round I'd tend to leave myself a lot of time so I can enjoy some of the sights at a leisurely pace. That way you can absorb some of the "feel" of the place, which is really its biggest drawcard. You can see a couple of things down there with one afternoon, but then you're leaving at about 6:00 p.m. with an ETA back in Perth at 9:30 or later. *shrug*

    If you really are stuck with only one afternoon in the area, I'd recommend taking a drive down Caves Road and just picking some places to look at off there. Caves Road is more or less the backbone of the road system down that way; it's close-ish to the coastline and has decent access to places like Yallingup (good surf). Ngilgi Cave makes for an interesting half hour or so, and there's a few wineries along there. (A stop at at least one winery for a tasting is a must if you're going to Margaret River :D ) I personally recommend Wise winery which you'll find about 10 km off Caves Road -- not necessarily because of the wine as such, but because of the view -- it's based on a hillside overlooking the ocean and is a gorgeous place to stop for a look. Bunker Bay and Eagle Bay are two beaches out that way, too, where the Rich and Shameless of Perth tend to have their holiday homes.

    Another possible itinerary down there is to take the road south through Margaret River for a while, stopping at Cowaranup where there's a candy factory ... one of my personal faves ... and then finding a road west that brings you to Caves Road and travelling back north along that. That way you get pretty much the rural feel and the opportunity for a look at the coast.

    But as I say, it's better to take a whole day or two in the area. You'll just find it more relaxing, and personally I think you're getting more bang for your buck down south than you would be in Perth.
  9. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    Hm, I'll keep that in mind. [face_thinking] I think staying the night there should be doable ... three hours on the road twice in one day sounds a little less fun. :p Over the weekend, perhaps, if Mom's friend wants to come with us.

    *Scribbles notes* :D
  10. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    Despite the controversy over the bell tower I think it actually is nice to visit. Went there once a few years back. I think that Perth's attractions are not the standard touristy stuff. When it comes to restaurants, zoos atc other places have bigger. What I love about Perth though (after seeing every other city in australia and living for a long time in Sydney and Canberra) is that I think it's the most scenic city. I never appreciated how much until spending time away from it. There are dozens of great spots to get a view of the city itself. Other side of the river on the southshore (which is lined with parks) or up at kings park which is on a hill overlooking the city.
    I also think Perth's beaches beat what I've seen elsewhere. I'm not a real beach person but in all the time I spent in NSW the only nice beaches I saw were either a long way north or south of newcastle/wollongong. In perth the beaches are far nicer IMO. RotTnest island's nice to visit though I haven't been for a while so it's probably fairly pricey these days. I've heard that you cant take a trip from Perth to Bali for the same amount of money you'd spend on a trip from Perth to rotto though I'm not sure how true that is.
  11. Saintheart Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    star 6
    What soneil said, especially about Kings Park for a view of the city.

    I forgot one good place to stop by for a (relatively) cheap lunch: Dunsborough Bakery. Dunsborough's a little blink-and-you'll-miss-it stop near the start of Caves Road, but the Bakery's pretty much a landmark for anyone who's surfed or passed through the Margaret River area. It's not touristy, but they do beautiful baked goods and pastries there for fairly cheap, which is why it was popular with the surfers. It's a bit hard to describe where it is, but just get into Dunsborough and ask your way there; folks know the place pretty well. :)

    Oh -- and for another impressive cave, look for Mammoth Cave as well. I originally went into the place when I was 14 and abseiled down into it (long story) and it had an amazing impact on me. Worth a look. Basically your three "good" caves down that way are the Crystal Cave (south, almost to Augusta); Mammoth Cave (south, but not far out of Margaret River); and Ngilgi Cave (north end of Caves Road, pretty close to Dunsborough IIRC.)

    If you're looking for a good map of the region, there's an excellent one that marks out more or less every winery, factory, and stuff like archery which can be picked up from the Busselton tourist bureau. The bureau itself is a bit forgettable, but the map is excellent for showing you where all the good stuff is; ask for "the map of the area that shows where all the wineries are." If you find one that's got an archery park advertised on it, that's in all likelihood the map.

    Sorry if I'm gushing about the area, but it's where (a) I asked Michelle to marry me and (b) where we spent our honeymoon, so as you can imagine I've got a soft spot for the place. :)
  12. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    Haha. It must be one heck of a place. :D

    Ooh, I'll have to get us up to Kings Park then ... I love cities (and views thereof). Gotta hurry up and buy myself a new digital camera, the one I have is much abused and is probably nearing the end of its lifespan.
  13. Adalia-Durron Former RSA/EUC Empress.

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2003
    star 10
    Look at the activity you have activated Xan!! :D
  14. Stinky_jawa Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2000
    star 4
    Man, that's just tempting fate..
  15. Adalia-Durron Former RSA/EUC Empress.

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2003
    star 10
    Probably! But I couldn't help myself, I got excited when people started posting!!
  16. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    That side effect might have occurred to me when making this thread ... :D

    :p

    I like to think most people like to talk about the place they live in, anyhow. And there's been some fantastic suggestions in this thread, really - I would probably have entirely foregone the swimsuit (not much of a beach person either) and tried to see Margaret River in an afternoon, but with what you guys have said I'll probably try to make it a two-day trip or so and squeeze in beach visits. So seriously, I appreciate all the comments and tips and stuff. :D
  17. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    So: hello from Perth. :D

    Sadly I think I've been overruled re: Margaret River. :( Mom's friend doesn't think it's worth the drive (... fair enough, it's her car), doesn't like caves ( :() and thus has filled up our itinerary with other stuff accordingly. I did get to see the Swan Valley wineries today though, and tomorrow I think we're going to wander round Fremantle, King's Park and (hopefully) take a look up the bell tower... we were right at it today before it opened, and it looks pretty neat. Then again, I like modern architecture.

    ... anyway yeah, just sayin' hello. :p I've only been here a couple of days, but I am enjoying your very pleasant city and surrounding 'burbs. Lots of space, wide roads, and not so many people. It's also warm and dry, which is a welcome change from boiling hot and humid KL where I've spent the summer, and the cheery people send my mood up several notches. Awesome. I love Australia.
  18. Stinky_jawa Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2000
    star 4
    Greets and welcome to Perth!

    Bummer about Margaret River, but yep, couldn't have asked for cooler weather at this time of year.

    Hope you all enjoy your stay! :)
  19. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    I should have thought before but I was DJing a rave tonight and I should have got you an invite. Not sure if that's your scene but a taste of Perth's underground nightlife might have been unique. :)
  20. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    Ooh... yeah, that would've been pretty cool. :D Well: I'm not really into underground nightlife, I've never been to a rave :p but I like new, exciting things, and the most interesting thing I've done at night all trip is play Rock Band until the wee hours of the morning.

    If I ever find myself round these parts again perhaps..
  21. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    I meant to check in before this, but the last week has been a flurry - long story short, I was home for a week and now I'm in Beijing...

    Anyway, Perth was nice! I had a good time. :D It's, well, quieter than Melbourne :p but very pleasant, very warm (people and the weather), and I got to sample some excellent seafood. Mmm seafood.

    I'll post some pictures (well, if you guys are interested in touristy pictures of your backyard...) as soon as I figure out which are the best 5 or so out of the 400 that I took so the thread doesn't explode. It's a very photogenic city; that or I am a shutterbug. :D
  22. Stinky_jawa Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2000
    star 4
    Good to hear you had a good trip! Sure post those pics! I'm keen to see what it looks like (never seem to get out of the office.. lol) :_|
  23. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    Well then... :D

    Some 'arty' shots - a train station, sunset, and this cool bit of art in the pavement in King's Park:
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3100026.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3140307.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3150364.jpg]

    The Eye of Perth and the view from above:
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3110066.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3110176.jpg]

    City shots: London Court outside and inside (I swear it looks like something out of Harry Potter), and this square plaza thingy north of the street mall:
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3100040.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3100046.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3100055.jpg]

    Boats at Fremantle, and a lulzy sign:
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3120199.jpg] [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/xany/Perth09/P3120205.jpg]


    There's plenty more (scenery, swans, more scenery, some skyline shots, plants - it's a very photogenic city) but I think 10 is plenty... I have quite a few from wine tasting around the Swan Valley but those are, er, slightly blurry, especially the ones taken later in the day. :p
  24. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    Cool. Thanks for posting.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.