Perth Kids – Your Ultimate Perth Family Holiday Guide
For many Australians, Perth as a holiday destination is like travelling to another country. It’s a long way away and can be expensive to get there but we are here to tell you – it’s TOTALLY worth it.
Perth exudes modern, urban cool with raw natural beauty and is the perfect base for your Western Australian family holiday adventures.
Set on the banks of the Swan River, Perth is often described as the most isolated capital city in the western world. Perhaps, that’s what makes it so alluring?
Once you are there, watch the sunset over the Indian Ocean, feed the dolphins with the sand under your toes, visit the island paradise of Rottnest Island, get your history hat on and visit the Fremantle Prison (which is one of the best tourist attractions), zip-line across the tops of the trees at Trees Adventures, and (our favourite…) grab a ferry and ride across to Penguin Island to see, well, the penguins!
Aside from some pretty cool things to do with the family, Perth is bustling with bars, cafes, shopping, cultural hubs, wineries, lots of beaches and diverse natural hotspots. It really is time you stopped thinking about it, and just do it. It is truly one of the best and most relaxed cities Australia has to offer.
Perth is also the gateway to some seriously incredible holiday destinations such as Ningaloo Reef, Broome’s Cable Beach, Margaret River wine region, Rottnest Island, the Pinnacles, Bungle Bungles, Karijini National Park and so much more.
Go on. You know you want to.
Best things to do in Perth with kids
Perth can claim bragging rights for its 19 beaches. They are some of the best in the world. From small and secluded to lively, family shorelines, you can swim and surf and sandcastle to your heart’s content all year round in the warm turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean. Take a dip at the iconic Cottesloe Beach or try out Burns, Port or South Beach, which are also great for families.
Other amazing things to do in Perth with kids:
- Explore the Swan River on a boat tour
- Discover the creatures of the sea at the largest single aquarium in Australia, the Aquarium of Western Australia – book tickets here to skip the line
- Head to Barrack Square and visit the Bell Tower, then head to Elizabeth Quay to have some fun at the water park, playground, food, entertainment and so much more
- Watch a gold pouring demonstration at The Perth Mint
- Take a free (yep, free) guided walking tour of the city with i-City volunteers
- Visit Scitech (Perth’s answer to Canberra’s Questacon)
- See the animals at the zoo… Perth Zoo
- If you want to get wet, Perth Wake Park is pretty cool, as is Just 4 Fun Aqua Park at Rottnest Island.
- You can’t go to Perth and not see the famous black swans, so head to Lake Monger for your best chance at sighting them
- Let the kids run free in Kings Park and Botanic Garden which is one of the largest inner-city parks in the world covering a massive 400 hectares
- Learn about the proud maritime history by visiting both the WA Maritime Museum and the WA Shipwrecks Museum in Fremantle
- Enjoy a beer at the Little Creatures Brewery while the kids play in the sandpit.
If you’re looking to head off on a road trip from Perth then take a look at Our Globetrotters guide to Road Tripping Western Australia.
Best Perth tours with kids
Let someone else do all the organising for once and head off on one of these amazing day tours from Perth. It’s about time you had some fun without having to worry about a thing.
Rottnest Island – if you’re pressed for time but want to see the island paradise of Rottnest Island including its cute little Quokkas, then catch the ferry over and hire a bike to get you around a little faster than your legs, or take a guided tour. Check latest prices for ferry leaving Hillary’s Boat Harbour in the north, or from Barrack St Jetty, Perth.
Penguin Island wildlife cruise and guided walk – from June to December the penguins come home to nest and this is your chance to see these gorgeous creatures in the wild. Take a glass bottom boat ride out to the island before stepping ashore to see penguins up close. Check latest prices
Perth and Fremantle city tours – if you’re looking to discover what Perth has to offer in a day, then the best way is to take a guided city tour. Check latest prices
Pinnacles, Swan Valley and wildlife tour – enjoy a full day of fun and adventure exploring the iconic Caversham Wildlife Park in the Swan Valley, Nambung National Park’s famous Pinnacles and the sand dunes at Lancelin for some sand boarding fun. Plus you get to wash it all down with a delicious vineyard lunch. Check latest prices
Swim with wild dolphins – tick this one off the bucket list and take the kids (only the ones who can swim) to get up close with wild dolphins out at sea in their natural environment – Check latest prices
Margaret River child-friendly day tour – a great tour when you’re short on time but want to discover the beauty and bounty of the Margaret River. Wine and beer tastings for mum and dad, plus a visit to Mammoth Cave, Cape Leeuwin Light House, Busselton Jetty, and beautiful beaches. Check latest prices
Where to stay in Perth with kids
Perth is really spread out, so we have narrowed it down to three areas to stay in, which are all central to everything. The CBD because… it’s central. Catch all kinds of public transport or put your walking shoes on. Northbridge is right next door to the CBD and is a small multi-ethnic neighbourhood, ensuring delicious food and interesting shops. Meanwhile, West Perth is becoming uber popular to stay. It has Solidarity Park, Parliament House and the Perth Observatory close by.
Perth CBD accommodation – check latest prices
Northbridge accommodation – check latest prices
West Perth accommodation – check latest prices
Know before you go to Perth with kids
Food in Perth
Food is diverse and delicious in the capital of Western Australia. Fresh and healthy with a hefty focus on seafood. The family can eat out for breakfast, lunch and dinner at any one of hundreds of family-friendly cafes or restaurants on offer. Because of its gorgeous, sunny climate, you’ll find a high concentration of rooftop bars and alfresco eateries dotted throughout. Instagram worthy to make your friends and family envious!
Getting from Perth airport
Perth Airport is the main airport servicing the whole of Western Australia… so, it’s busy. It is 18km from the CBD (about 20 mins by taxi) and is a really easy airport to negotiate. Ride shares, taxis, shuttle buses, private cars, and trains all take passengers into and out of the city. Check out more detailed information of transport options on the Perth Airport website.
Public transport in Perth
TransPerth is the public transport provider in Perth offering train and bus services in the city, so wherever it is you want to go, they will get you there. There are more than 11,000 bus runs, 1000 train services and up to 80 ferry rides any day of the week. SmartRides and cash tickets are available. Check out the TransPerth Journey Planner.
Driving in Perth
No need to be nervous driving in Perth – the city has a really easy traffic grid. So, hire that car and get driving around Perth and beyond. Check latest car hire prices.
Parking in Perth
Multi-storey car parking, street bays and parking garages are everywhere in Perth. If you’re at the beach, mostly it is free to park (except probably at the more popular beaches where a few dollars will get you a few hours’ parking). More info on parking in Perth.
I’m just going to say it: Perth can get stinking hot at the height of summer (think 40+ degrees), but generally it’s an agreeable 30-degrees for days on end. Thunderstorms and wind in the afternoon cool things down in summer, while winters are generally pretty mild (around about 15-20 degree sunny days).
Favourite Family Events in Perth
Perth Festival, Sculpture by the Sea Cottesloe Beach, Rottnest Channel Swim, Fremantle Street Arts Festival, Eat Drink Perth, Kings Park Festival, Perth Royal Show, plus plenty of major sporting events covering cricket, surfing, golf, motorsport, AFL, rugby union and rugby league and more. 2018 Major Events in Western Australia guide
Images courtesy of Tourism Australia.
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