Are you a traveler who prefers to get off the beaten path and avoid the major tourist sightseeing spots when you travel? Personally, I still wanted to see the Eiffel Tower in Paris but am also not averse to just wandering the streets to find out more about how the locals see their city, and Perth is an ideal city for some aimless wandering!
For a start, I would definitely recommend eating at restaurants and cafes which are off the beaten path of tourists. The fish and chips shops of Fremantle’s Fishing Boat Harbour should still be a compulsory stop but if you’ve hired a car, drive along the coast to experience other fish and chips outlets that aren’t inundated by tourists and you’ll get a better sense of how Perth people live (and eat). Similarly, get out of Northbridge and into the suburbs and you’ll find numerous smaller cafes and restaurants with great food, particularly because Perth is home to such a wide variety of immigrants that different styles of food abound.
After dinner, Perth nightlife also offers plenty of variety and if you want to enjoy an evening away from tourists you have lots of choice. Look out for suburban pubs (especially easy to find by car) like The Rosemount which has an impressive list of live music happening, or get cultural at a spot like the Duckstein in the Swan Valley where the German food is pretty genuine. Check street press or ask at booking offices to find out the latest off-mainstream theatre or other performances around, too.
And finally, for daytime tourist activities that might be a little out of the ordinary, track down some of the many things to do off the beaten path in Perth. For example, if you’re into wildlife but want to skip the zoo, try something like an eco-friendly evening animal hike at the Karakamia Sanctuary, a walk so far off the beaten track that most Perth residents don’t even know about it. (Ssh – don’t tell them! – the animals might not like the crowds!).
The list of less mainstream places to try in Perth is endless, but if you want a starting point, try my weekend off the beaten path guide to Perth. And let me know your favourite Perth off the beat spots in the comments, please!
[Photo of nightlife highlights from the wall of Lawley's Bakery courtesy of Amanda Kendle]