Unsurprisingly, Perth is home to an insatiable surf culture, but there’s plenty to do here for landlubbers, too: galleries, theatres and bars are scattered throughout, the food scene is superlative and the city is a launch pad to further-afield adventures. Make time for wildlife-spotting on Rottnest Island (or ‘Rotto’, to the locals), mellow Margaret River, the scenic Southern Forests, the Kimberley’s sun-baked desertscapes and Ningaloo Reef’s sub-aqua thrills.
Spotlight on: Margaret River
Love beaches? You’ll love Margaret River. Love nature? You’ll love Margaret River. Love wine and wilderness and walking? You’ll love Margaret River. Love craft beer and delicious food? You’ll – you get the gist. This small town south of Perth punches above its weight, luring visitors – and migratory whales – to its scenic landscapes and surf breaks. Bring shoes you can hike in for Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park and its Cape to Cape track, which traverses limestone caves and sea cliffs.
Smith insider tip #1 Sleep at... Alex Hotel, which woos with craft ales, Margaret River wines and Italian cuisine (the owners are die-hard gourmands, and it shows). The swish-but-cosy Arent&Pyke interiors are equally tasty.
Don’t miss... wheeling around Perth on the hotel’s on-loan, vintage-style Lekker Bikes.They’re free to use, and you’ll also be lent a map, lock and helmet.
Smith insider tip #2 Eat at... Vasse Felix, Margaret River’s founding wine estate, home to a superb restaurant.
Don’t miss... a snoop around the underground wine cellar.
Smith insider tip #3 Drink at... Ezra Pound in Northbridge, inspired by America’s Prohibition speakeasies. Gents with Ezra Pound-style facial hair will blend in nicely.
Don’t miss... a cocktail tailored to your tastes, following a conflab with the booze-nerd bartenders.
Read more about PERTH
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