The Best Free Views in Perth - Part I
Here are some of our favourite free views of beautiful Perth - North of the Swan River
Want to take in some of the best free views of beautiful Perth? Everyone has his or her favourite spot and here are ours:
1. Kings Park and Botanic Gardens (Fraser Avenue,West Perth)
This huge bushland park (406 hectares or 1004 acres) is numero uno in our humble opinion. It is the world’s largest inner city park and its close proximity to Perth’s Central Business District makes it a convenient and easily accessible tourist destination. It occupies a prime elevated spot that overlooks both the bustling CBD with its skyscrapers and the magnificent Swan River. The views here are wonderful both in the day and at night. There are several vantage points within Kings Park that offer some pretty spectacular views:
- Fraser Avenue – this is the main entrance to Kings Park and as you drive along it, you’ll see tall, stately, white-barked Eucalyptus trees lining both sides of the road. These Lemon Scented Gums (Corymbia citriodora) were planted in 1938 and they make one of the most beautiful and instantly recognisable vistas found in Western Australia. As you drive up Fraser Avenue, on your left is the first of several panoramas that you’ll have the pleasure of seeing while you’re in Kings Park. The view here is that of the Perth CBD skyline with the Kwinana Freeway and Mounts Bay Road in the foreground. You’ll also see the Bell Tower and Barrack Square in the distance. Further to your right is the pretty suburb of South Perth and straight ahead is the Darling Range in the horizon. At night, the Eucalyptus trees are lit up and this sight, together with the twinkling lights of the city, certainly warrants another visit.
- State War Memorial – the area around the State War Memorial offers spectacular sweeping views of the CBD, the Swan River and southern suburbs such as South Perth and Como. This is probably the most recognised and photographed view of Perth. It can get rather crowded here, especially on weekends and public holidays, with many families and tourists all eager to have their picture taken.The 18 metre granite obelisk was erected in honour of all Western Australians who sacrificed themselves for their country during the First and Second World War. The names of more than 7000 servicemen who died during WW1 are listed on the interior walls of the undercroft. And on the exterior walls, bronze plaques carry the names of 4000 people who dies in WW2. The names of casualties of later conflicts are also included here. The elevated position of the memorial, perched high up on Mount Eliza, enables it to be seen from ground level even at a distance.
- Mount Eliza Lookout – this is another great spot from which to admire the view. You’ll see the Mount Eliza escarpment, the vast expanse of the Swan River, southern suburbs such as South Perth and Como, the Kwinana Freeway that links South Perth with the CBD and the Darling Range in the distance.
- Lotterywest Federation Walkway – this popular treetop walk is one of the top things to do in Kings Park. You’ll see the Swan River that divides the city into two, the CBD and the Old Swan Brewery in the foreground. The walkway is 620 metres long and its highest point is 52 metres. You’ll find yourself walking amongst a canopy of Eucalyptus trees on this impressive glass and steel arched bridge.
- DNA Tower – fancy a bit of exercise? Then you must try climbing all 101 steps of the DNA Tower. But be warned, you need to be fit enough to make the rather steep ascent. The 15m high staircase was inspired by the double staircase of a French chateau in Blois. This Kings Park attraction earned its nickname due to its resemblance to the double helix structure of DNA. There are stops on the way up to the top and you’ll enjoy uninterrupted 360 degree views there. Another interesting feature of this tower is its surrounding paving and wall which is made up of stones from 11 West Australian towns and 80 shires.
2. Cottesloe Beach (Marine Parade, Cottesloe)
If you prefer sweeping vistas of the Indian Ocean, shady pine trees perched on grassy slopes and an iconic heritage building right next to a picturesque beach, then you must go to Cottesloe. Cottesloe (or ‘Cott’ as the locals fondly call it) is one of Perth’s premier beaches on the Sunset Coast and its powdery, white sand and clear blue waters, ensures that it is extremely popular both with locals and tourists - especially during hot, sunny weekends and public holidays. The distinctive heritage building, known as the Indiana, was built in 1910 and serves as a café cum restaurant. Cott is an excellent location from which to enjoy a ‘Sundowner’ (an evening drink) while watching one of West Australia’s famous sunsets. The azure Indian Ocean and the evening sky set ablaze by the vermillion sun might just become one of your most memorable experiences in WA.
3. Reabold Hill (Reabold Hill Scenic Drive, City Beach)
This is located in Bold Park and stands at 85 metres above sea level. This makes it the highest natural point on the Swan Coastal Plain within the Perth metropolitan area. On a clear day, you can see the Indian Ocean, Rottnest Island as well as the tall buildings of Perth's CBD. There is an elevated 200 metre long boardwalk, designed for disabled access, which leads from the free public car park to the summit. Seating is available at the top. Bold Park is a coastal bushland park that consists of 437 (1080 acres) hectares and is one of the biggest bushland areas left in the Perth metropolitan area. It is well regarded as an excellent model of good conservation. There are many trails and several lookout points within the park. Bold Park also has a biodiversity of more than 1000 local and non-native species of plants and animals. It is especially pretty in Spring (September – November) when wildflowers burst into colour all over the park and Reabold Hill would definitely offer a vantage point from which to survey this. Being internationally less known than Kings Park, Bold Park is a good place to explore if you want a quiet and uncrowded walk through the West Australian bush.
4. Mount Flora (Elvire Street,Waterman’s Bay)
This is located on the Sunset Coast and being one of the highest natural points there, you can expect to get some good views of the Indian Ocean and the surrounding western coastal suburbs of Perth. The Mount Flora Regional Museum is located there and it is housed in a 1936 water tank that was previously used by North Beach residents. In 1942, it was used as an observation post by the Australian Defence Forces. This cosy museum has 3 levels: a ground floor that showcases the history of the area, shipwrecks and whaling; the mezzanine floor, which is accessible via a central wooden staircase, has exhibits that provide information on the social history of past residents such as how they lived, everyday items that they used at home and at work. The top level, which is accessible via an external metal staircase, is where you can get the view. Disabled access is only available from the car park to the ground floor and the park. A playground and picnic area can also be found there. Please note that the museum is open only on Sunday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm and we recommend timing your visit with its opening hours as the museum is certainly worth a visit. Admission is by gold coin donation and proceeds go towards the upkeep of the museum.
We hope you enjoyed this article and if you want to know when our next one is coming out, please go to My Guide Perth’s Facebook page and ‘like’ us to receive updates. Happy viewing!