In a lot of ways, Perth is similar to Cape Town. Long, hot days, an outdoor lifestyle, excellent beaches, watersports, good wines and an abundance of sports fanatics. Even the accents sound familiar, with so many South Africans living there! It’s a sophisticated, cosmopolitan city that’s also beautiful, clean and friendly. It’s an excellent city for walking around and you can join an official tour to learn about the history and culture and get insider’s tips on where to go.
It’s an easy place to get around and has tons to keep you entertained, including cultural events, sport and shopping. The city itself has many activities and it’s a short drive to many more. Perth is the capital city of Western Australia and sits on the Swan River.
Perth has a free bus service. The CAT buses run on four routes around the city, with lots of stops that give you route information. But beware: the Australian police are very strict. Make sure you’re not inadvertently bringing in fruit, like an apple you forgot to eat at the airport, or you’ll be fined and threatened with deportation before you’re even enter the country. Don’t even think about drinking and driving, speeding and crossing the road until the little flashing man tells you to. It’s expensive, too. On the bright side, tipping is generally not expected.
Perth is on Australian Western Standard Time (AWST) or GMT+8, with no daylight savings.
Australian dollars are readily available from ATMs, which are commonplace, as well as from banks and forex bureaux. Just about everyone accepts credit cards, including taxi drivers.
Perth is warm and sunny for most of the year. Its hottest from December to March, usually peaking in February at an average temperature of around 31°C. A sea breeze provides some relief from the heat. Winters – from June to August – are relatively cool and wet, but the sub-tropical sun still lifts the temperatures to 18-21°C.
Australian sockets take the unusual Type I plug, with three straight pins offset at an angle. The standard voltage is 230V.
The city is well covered by the mobile networks, with free wifi widely available.
Besides the free buses, there are taxi ranks around the city centre and you can also hail them in the street. If you hire a bike, there is a long network of cycle paths. To go further afield, board one of the many ferries that cross the Swan River to South Perth and Fremantle. Rental cars and motor homes are readily available.
Airport to City Center
Airport shuttle buses run to Perth City and Fremantle from the city shuttle bus stop outside the terminal. Taxis are also available and take 20-30 minutes to the city centre.
For South African Airways flight offers, visit our flights to Perth page.