Perth, the capital of Western Australia, boasts more sunshine hours than any other capital in Australia. Plenty of sunny days combined with a laid-back vibe contribute to making this city a very enjoyable place to live in and to visit.
Located on Australia's west coast, with waves of the Indian Ocean lapping on the pristine beaches, Perth was founded in 1859 by Captain James Stirling. The city has seen two dramatic increases in population growth: one after the gold rushes in the late 19th century and the other following World War Two. In more recent years, several mining booms have occurred, with the mining industry to this day being a significant driving force in the State's economic growth.
As Perth has sunny weather for a large part of the year and the winter is generally mild compared to places like the UK, it is usually possible to include a range of outdoor attractions in your itinerary, regardless of what time of the year you visit.
Kings Park and Botanic Gardens is one of the biggest parks in the world that is located in a city. The park is a striking mix of natural bush with sculptured gardens all situated atop Mount Eliza, a location that rewards visitors with wonderful panoramic views of the city and the Swan River. The park is beautiful throughout the year, but the highlight is undeniably in spring when the wildflowers bloom, providing a feast for the eyes and a spectacle that Perth is renowned for.
Perth boasts many stunning beaches. One of the most popular is Cottesloe, a pretty, family-friendly beach with pristine sand and clear blue waters, located just a 15-minute drive from the city. Cottesloe is ideal for swimming and surfing, while the rocks and reefs make it perfect for snorkelling too. And you can finish off your day by watching the sunset while sipping a glass of wine or eating dinner at one of the nearby bustling restaurants, bars or cafés.
Whether you are after cultural, comedy or sporting events, there are a wide range of activities on offer throughout the year, so you can plan your itinerary around them, if you so wish.
Perth's Fringe World Festival: Not for the easily embarrassed, this Fringe Festival is the third largest in the world. This month-long event takes place during part of January and February, with international and Australian performers delivering a range of comedy, theatre, Burlesque and circus shows in pubs and parks across the city.
Perth International Arts Festival: This annual arts festival brings together contemporary artists from around the world, including Australian talent. Spread over 25 days, this festival starts from mid-February. Spectators can expect a dazzling array of jazz, classical music, dance, theatre, film and literature performances.
Kings Park Festival: Takes place during September at the Kings Park and Botanical Gardens. Take part in guided walks and talks, learn about local flora and see the magnificent wildflowers. Artist displays and a variety of workshops are on offer.