My name’s Dylan Alcock. I’m a travel and lifestyle photographer working around Perth and surrounds. I grew up as a third-culture kid moving away from South Africa when I was three to live in Romania, Japan, Malaysia, Spain, Australia, and the UK, before ending up in Perth as a 25 year old.
This constant travelling as a kid made me love exploring new cultures and new countries. However, it wasn’t until I picked up a camera for a trip to Zimbabwe that I fell in love with the art of photography. Since then, my camera hasn’t left my side. I’ve continued to travel, explore and document.
Put Perth and Surrounds on your Bucket List
Perth is best characterised as the happy medium between nature and city. If you wander a couple of minutes out of the city you find yourself on a coastline of endless beaches. If you stay in the city you are surrounded by the magnificent Swan River. There’s something for everyone in Perth.
What I love most about Perth is the ability to escape – be at the beach, on a road trip, visit a winery or go on a hike. Since it is one of the most isolated cities in the world there is plenty of space to wander and get lost.
Western Australia (WA) is by far the ultimate region of Australia. There is no place in the world quite like it. If you go to the south of WA you are blessed with some of the whitest beaches in the world. Head up the coast to the north of WA and you’re surrounded by incredible red soil.
WA also has some of the best sunsets. You can enjoy a sunset spectacle almost every night, something which other states can’t boast. To me, though, the biggest attraction is the ability to go on epic road trips. With endless destinations to explore – there’s something for everyone to see.
My Favourite Place – Margaret River
My favourite place that I have explored (so far) is Margaret River. With beaches like Meelup in Dunsborough and the surf at Surfers point, there is so much to see and do here. In addition, there is a hidden oasis along some of the beaches that allows you to swim, sheltered from the waves.
A close second favourite in Perth and surrounds would have to be Rottnest Island. I’ve been there countless times over the past two years and I still can’t get enough of it. The second anyone mentions a trip to Rotto I’m in!
10 Best Things To Do in Perth and Surrounds
Perth is the sunniest region of Australia which blends the best of the city with natural beauty. The city is regarded as one of the most liveable on earth – combining a laidback lifestyle with modern sophistication. Discover a region of beaches, food trucks, street art, wineries and remote islands.
1. Watch the Sunset on Cottesloe Beach
2. Explore Point Peron and Penguin Island
Point Peron is the perfect spot to go snorkelling and explore the shallow waters. This long stretch of land at the southern end of Cockburn Sound is a popular getaway for families and friends looking for adventure. The nearby Penguin Island is a fantastic addition to Point Peron.
3. Relax at the Beautiful Scarborough Beach
Drive 20 minutes from Perth and discover Scarborough Beach. It’s a fantastic spot for all the usual activities such as sunbathing, swimming and surfing. Plus there are some great cafes and bars overlooking the ocean. Spend the day at the beach and enjoy a few drinks.
4. Day Trip out to the Awesome Rottnest Island
What’s not to love about an island paradise sitting off the coast that’s only a 40-minute trip away. Take the ferry to Rottnest Island for the day and explore the entire island. Discover quokkas, pristine beaches and plenty of amazing snorkelling spots. There’s something for everyone on Rotto!
5. Come to Elizabeth Quay for Dinner
Elizabeth Quay is the ultimate place to have dinner in Perth. Find a world-class restaurant, enjoy the delicious cuisine and stay for the lightshow around the bridge. Located on the Swan River, this amazing destination is transforming the foreshore into a hub of activity and atmosphere. Enjoy!
6. Grab a Bite to Eat at South Perth Food Trucks
During the warmer summer months (November to April) some of the best food trucks in Australia pop up all over the South Perth Foreshore on Sir James Mitchell Park. Grab a bite to eat from one of the amazing food trucks/trailers and watch the sunset over the city on the foreshore.
7. Kayak along the Swan River
Experience the majesty of the Swan River whichever way you choose – be it on a paddle-board, kayak or catamaran. This is a great summer activity and who knows you might even run into some dolphins on the way! You can choose to experience the river by yourself or join a tour. It’s up to you.
8. Visit Kings Park and Botanic Garden
Set your alarm for an early morning wake up call. Grab a coffee and watch the sunrise at Kings Park. Afterwards, you’ll have the whole day to explore everything this area has to offer. Enjoy an afternoon picnic, take in the epic views of Perth and go shopping at the unique retailers in the park.
9. Have Lunch at Hillarys Boat Harbour
Hillarys Boat Harbour is one of the premier destinations in Perth. It’s home to Hillarys Yacht Club, AQWA (Aquarium of Western Australia), a thriving shopping district, beautiful apartments and fantastic dining options. Have lunch at one of the a la carte restaurants with gorgeous views.
10. See the Sea Lions of Carnac Island
The nature reserve of Carnac Island is a thriving habitat for the precious Australian sea lion. It’s also home to many seabirds, penguins and in the surrounding waters bottlenose dolphins. Enjoy a range of activities on the island such as wildlife spotting and fishing on the sheltered eastern side.
Bonus Experiences: More Day Trips from Perth
Perth is the ultimate city to base yourself for exploring Western Australia. There are so many day trips to enjoy in Perth and surrounds. Below are my favourite day trips in addition to the Top 10 Experiences I just mentioned.
Favourite Memory in Perth and Surrounds
One of my favourite memories was swimming with the sea lions off the coast of Perth at Carnac Island. The water was perfect with no hint of wind and the sea lions were in a playful mood. They wanted to play with us and so they came up really close to say hi. It was such a unique experience.
They really are remarkable animals. Definitely the puppies of the sea!
Burgeoning Food Scene of Perth and Surrounds
The food scene in Perth is definitely making waves. My favourite places are the international food trucks that can be found around the city in summer. The local cafes along the beaches are great too. If you haven’t been to Yelo in Trigg, then you are certainly missing out! I highly recommend this joint.
Best Places to Stay in Perth and Surrounds
I would recommend staying in Airbnb’s when you travel through Perth and surrounds. I’ve had some incredible hosts who often recommend experiences and hidden gems that you can’t find on travel websites. That being said, there are some amazing luxury glamping spots too.
Tips for your Visit to Perth and Surrounds
The best tip I can give anyone who is travelling to Perth and surrounds is to give yourself more time than you think you need. With so much to see and do here, a lifetime truly isn’t enough. So pick and choose where you want to go and add a day or two on the end so you have plenty of leeway.
A smaller tip would also be to not underestimate the driving time. The distances in Western Australia can’t be underestimated. Expect long road trips that take longer than you might expect. Above all, have fun and embrace the natural wonders of Perth and surrounds.
You’ll love every minute spent here in this wonderful region of Australia!