6 Best Day Trips from Perth, Western Australia

Planning a day trip from Perth? There are so many fun things to do near Perth to spend a day away from the city. 

Perth is a stunning city in Western Australia, with lots to see, do and experience right in town. However, if you’re looking for a change of scenery, you don’t have to travel very far for amazing views just a short drive away from Perth. 

These short trips from Perth are all within a two hours’ drive, making these the perfect day trips!

day trips from perth

While I was in Perth visiting family, I was amazed at how many things there were to do within such a short distance from the city! If you’re planning a trip to Australia, don’t discount coming to Western Australia. Many people are drawn to the east coast for the Great Barrier Reef and Sydney, but the breathtaking views, charming towns and scenic drives on the west coast shouldn’t be missed!

Let’s take a look and see some of the best day trips from Perth you can take during any day of the week!

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Best Day Trips from Perth

Rottnest Island

A visit to Rottnest Island absolutely must be experienced – photos don’t do it justice! 

This stunning island is located just off the coast of Perth and is the perfect spot for coastal walks, soaking in the sun on pristine beaches and bays, fishing, cycling, swimming, and snorkelling. This car-free island is 19 km from the coast of Western Australia and is only reachable by ferry, boat or air, and is best explored by bike. 

There are 63 beaches, 20 bays, and tons of coral reefs and shipwrecks to enjoy!

Rottnest Island is a must-visit for any marine lover!

Rottnest Island is home to the famous Quokka – these adorable marsupials you often see in selfies are only found on the island!

For locals and visitors alike, Rottnest Island is a perfect day trip from Perth due to its peaceful atmosphere and variety of activities. 

If you have the extra time, you can book a stay on Rottnest Island to take full advantage of what’s offered. Plus, you’ll be able to catch the sunrise and enjoy some quiet beach walks before the first tourist ferry arrives at 8:00 am.

A short ferry ride from Perth will transport you to a landscape you have to see to believe. 

Want to take a tour? Here are some of the best Rottnest Island day tours!

Rottnest Island

The Pinnacles

The Pinnacles are located in Western Australia, about 2 hours north of Perth. They are part of the Nambung National Park and receive about 250 thousand tourists each year. You can get there by joining several different days tours from Perth. Otherwise, you can drive yourself up the Indian Ocean Drive in your own car. 

These unusual limestone structures are said to have been formed about 25 to 30 thousand years ago. The ocean receded and left shell deposits behind, resulting in the coastal wind erosion exposing these unique pillars.

The Discovery centre is open during the day, where you can purchase a pass for car entry and find out more about how they were formed. However, you can visit the National Park 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, if you’re planning on walking around.

Once you purchase a pass, it’s 4 kilometres to drive the loop track, admiring hundreds of these pointed rock formations, which range in various heights. Consequently, driving or walking around the Pinnacles makes you feel like you’re in your own futuristic alien movie.

Visiting the Pinnacles at night is a whole different experience since it is in a low-light pollution area. This means the stars will be brighter and very popular for the avid Astrophotographer. 

The Pinnacles can be enjoyed by any kind of traveller, especially if you like the great outdoors.

Contributed by Aquarius Traveller

The Pinnacles Desert
Photo by Trevor Dobson on Flickr

Penguin Island

Just 30 minutes south of Perth and a 5 minute ferry ride across lies Penguin Island – a small, 30 acre island part of the Shoalwater Island Marine Park. ⁣

It’s home to 1200 little penguins – only growing to an average of 33 cm!

This magical day trip is fun for the whole family; Penguin Island is part of the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park where you’ll be able to get up close and personal to the Little Penguins (the world’s smallest penguins!) that inhabit the island.

Visit the Penguin Discovery Centre to see the penguins during their feeding times at 10:30 am, 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm with park rangers.

Join a cruise to see Australian sea lions and dolphins around the island.

Penguin Island also offers striking views at any point on this island, with an easy hiking trail, prime viewing points for whale-watching (between September and December), great spots for relaxing with a picnic under the shade of trees overlooking the beach, along with kayaking, swimming and snorkeling.

You can also take a glass-bottom boat tour around the island!

Note: Penguin Island is closed during the penguin breeding season. It’s open daily from mid-September to early June.

Penguin Island

Fremantle

Fremantle is a small town located by the ocean close to the city of Perth. There are plenty of things to do and see in Fremantle and the area is known for its artists, backpacker cultures and coffee shops. 

There are also beautiful beaches located close to the town and plenty of craft breweries to try if you enjoy beer. Stop by the Maritime Museum or discover local art galleries. There are also historic markets which are arguably the most popular tourist attraction in town. Stop by and buy arts and crafts or shop for fresh vegetables and fruits. 

Don’t forget to go on a tour at the Fremantle Prison which used to house hundreds of prisoners but now is an educational museum. You need to book a tour to visit so make sure you come prepared. 

Fremantle is easy to access from Perth with different bus connections and even trains that go to the main train station. The journey shouldn’t take more than 20-45 minutes.

More ways to enjoy Fremantle:

Contributed by Guide your Travel

Photo courtesy of Guide Your Travel

Swan River

The winding Swan River meanders through Perth and empties into the Indian Ocean at Fremantle. This lush landscape provides lots of opportunities for fun.

The climate is Mediterranean-like, providing fertile ground for grapes and the wineries that host them. Over time, the area has also had a fair share of breweries and distilleries get built along its shores. 

Wine tasting tours through Swan Valley can originate by boat or land and often start from Perth. For tours, consider Captain Cook for a river tour or Black Swan Tours for land-based tours.

You can also take a general cruise up the river. Captain Cook and General Sun have a variety of options depending on the time of day and type of activity that you are most interested in.

Additionally, there are ample paths for walking and cycling along the river. If you like wildlife, particularly birds, keep your eye out for pelicans, parrots, black cockatoos, and more. You may occasionally see a dolphin in the river as well. And if you really want to get a feel for the river, paddle boards and kayaks can be rented from FunCats.

On the weekend, you will find couples and families gathering along the grass banks enjoying a picnic. Riverside Gardens is a good option for a fun recreation area with picnic facilities, a playground, and a dog park.

For history buffs, explore Peninsula Farm, a homestead that still stands and shows what life was like for early colonials.

There’s something for everyone along the Swan River, and is a perfect way to spend a day around Perth!

Contributed by Destined Globetrotter

Photo by Denisbin on Flickr

Caversham Wildlife Park

Caversham Wildlife Park, located within Whiteman Park, is a quick 20 minute drive from downtown Perth and is an Australian experience that can’t be missed that’s fun for the whole family! 

This day trip from Perth will get you up close and personal to the largest private collection of native Australian wildlife. 

Owned by a local family since 1988, Caversham Wildlife Park is home to over 200 species of Australian animals including koalas, possums, wallabies, kangaroos, wombats and Tasmanian devils, plus all kinds of birds and reptiles!

This educational and immersive experience all included in your ticket price allows you to have photos taken with koalas, hand feed kangaroos, listen to keeper talks, watch the penguins being fed, catch the farm show, and learn more about these unique Australian icons!

Caversham Wildlife Park is dedicated to its animals and their welfare and it is not a commercially-run operation nor does it receive government funding. This special connection to Australian wildlife helps raise awareness of the plight of many species on the continent and helps develop a deeper understanding of these amazing creatures and what we can do to help them.

Caversham Wildlife Park is open daily from 9:30 – 4:00 pm, with the exception of Christmas Day. Adults are $32 and children 3-14 are $15. Students and seniors are $25.

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