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A Transportation Guide to Perth

Welcome to Perth – Western Australia’s spirited city! Whether you are traveling to Perth for the first time, or simply going for a weekend getaway, we have curated some of the best insider tips for getting to and around the city efficiently and affordably, with must-know information to make your journey as seamless as possible. 

Flying In & Out of Perth Airport 


If you are flying into or out of Perth Airport from Australia, a few tips can make your travel experience smooth. Perth Airport’s most popular inter-country airlines are Tiger Airways and Jetstar, which also happen to offer some of the cheapest fares to fly into Perth from any other Australian city.

Do you plan to fly into Perth from abroad? If so, look into flying on Regional Express (REX), Malaysia Airlines, Cathay Pacific, or Virgin Australia, as they offer high-quality service and relatively affordable rates. To compare these airlines for particular travel dates, consider entering your travel dates into Skyscanner or Momondo to browse an array of differing rates & flight times per airline, to secure the best option.

And, if you want to ensure you are securing the lowest prices available and don’t need to book on the spot, utilize Google Flight’s ‘Track Prices’ feature to receive alerts when prices rise or fall during a particular date range, allowing you to book once you see the rate you’d like. 

If you plan to fly into Perth from Melbourne, Sydney, or Brisbane Airport, it’s worth noting that you can find affordable airport parking with Flyparks from any airport in Australia or New Zealand. The platform allows travelers to compare various off-site airport parking providers & book the car park that best suits their needs and budget.

Just like booking your flights in advance for a couple of months, it’s recommended you do the same with your airport parking, at least by a couple of weeks, if you don’t want to pay exorbitant drive-up rates. As a general reminder: the sooner you book, the better the rates.

You will save exponentially when you book online as rates will always be cheaper there than drive-up rates, as airport car parks discount their rates online to incentivize customers to book in advance, so the car parks are staffed for arrival and aren’t overcrowded by travelers on their day of departure.

Taking Public Transportation in Perth

Bridge in Perth

By Train 

Transperth is the most well-known train network connecting Perth’s city centre with the suburbs and major, natural attractions. Key destinations include Fremantle, Joondalup, Armadale, and Midland. The train lines are colour-coded, making it easy to identify routes for travellers to take. From the city centre, travellers can reach the following key destinations by train:

  • Elizabeth Quay: (23-minute travel journey) 
    • Take the Fremantle Line towards Perth Station 
    • Walk 14 minutes to the destination 
  • Fremantle (50 minute travel journey)
    • Take the Fremantle Line towards Fremantle Station 
    • Walk 16 minutes to the destination 
  • Perth Zoo (1 hour 14 minute travel journey) 
    • Take the Fremantle Line towards Perth Station from the City West Platform
    • Walk 1 minute to Wellington St Perth Station Westbound 
    • Take the 950 towards QEII Medical Centre 
    • Get off at Elizabeth Bay and walk or taxi 45 minutes to Perth Zoo 
  • Scarborough Beach (55-minute travel journey) 
    • From Perth Bus port Zone B take the 990 towards Scarborough Beach Bus Station 
    • Get off at Scarborough Beach and walk 4 minutes 
  • Swan Valley (1 hour 19 minute journey) 
    • Take the Midland Railway Line towards Midland Station 
    • Walk 2 minutes to Midland 
    • Take the 311 towards Bullsbrook 
    • Walk 19 minutes to Swan Valley 

By Bus 

Getting around Perth by bus is an affordable and convenient way to get around the city. The great thing about getting around via bus in Perth is that it is free for rides within the ‘Free Transit Zone,’ which connects passengers from East Perth on Summer’s Street, all the way to Elizabeth Quay Jetty along the Swan River.

If you do go outside the Free Transit Zone, you can easily pay for your ride with a SmartRider Card that can be purchased at retail outlets, Perth Airport, or Transperth Info centres. However, you do not necessarily need a SmartRider card, as you can simply pay for a ticket as you enter the bus. Do keep in mind, though, that you can not tap on

and off the bus with a digital or physical credit card. And, should you choose to pay in cash for your ticket, be sure you have the exact amount, as you will not be given a change. 

Aside from the Free Transit Zone, travellers can also utilise Perth CAT bus services when in the city to travel for free. There are several different colour-coded bus routes to hop on and off and explore the city for free. 

  • Blue CAT: Travellers can journey between Perth Busport and Kings Park via Perth Station and Elizabeth Quay Bus Station 
  • Green CAT: Travellers can journey between Elizabeth Quay Bus Station and Leederville Station via the City West Station 
  • Purple CAT: Travellers can journey between Elizabeth Quay Bus Station, QEII Medical Centre, and UWA via Kings Park & Thomas Street 
  • Red CAT: Travellers can journey between Matagarup Bridge (East Perth) and West Perth via Perth Station and Perth Underground Station 
  • Yellow CAT: Travellers can journey between Claisebrook Station (East Perth) and West Perth via Perth Station 

Travellers can also utilise the Free CAT buses to reach Joondalup, a suburb of Perth and home to Western Australia’s only underwater aquarium, located approximately 26 kilometres north of Perth CBD.

Perth ferries

By Ferry

Transperth offers a ferry service for those wanting to cross or travel along the Swan River. Key destinations to be reached by the ferry route include Perth CBD, South Perth, and Fremantle. You can utilise the Perth ferry service by paying for a ticket at a ticket vending machine or using a SmartRider card for discounted fares. The ferry route travellers can is the following: 

  • Elizabeth Quay Jetty to Mends St Jetty (8 minutes) 

It’s also worth mentioning that travellers can take plenty of recreational boat trips via gondolas, cruise ships, speed boats, and solar-electric ferries. There’s a wide range of water experiences to be had, whether you want an evening dinner on the Swan River or a guided tour full of views of wildlife and the sea. 

By Car

If you want to explore Perth at your leisure, look into renting a car either at Perth Airport or within the city. It’s worth noting, however, that finding parking in Perth, particularly in Perth CBD,

can be difficult to come by, so we recommend checking with your hotel or accommodation whether there is free parking as part of your stay. If complimentary parking isn’t offered, look into this amalgamation of car parks around Perth, along with their hourly & daily rates.

You can rent a car from Perth Airport starting at $71.00 a day to $261.00 for a week for an intermediate SUV car, Nissan X Trail, or MG ZS. A few natural attractions worth checking out if you are travelling by car are the following: 

  • Moore River: Journey here for pristine beaches, estuary fishing, kayaking, paddling boarding and picnics. 
  • Pinnacles Desert: A must-see for anyone visiting Perth for the 1st time, or the 100th. You can take a star gazing tour whilst in the desert, or simply marvel at the 35,000-year-old limestone formations surrounding you while walking on foot. Sandboarding and 4WD on the dunes here are also highly popular. 
  • Yalgorup National Park: Home to stunning saline lakes, including Lake Clifton, renowned for its thrombolites, this park is great for a family to walk along boardwalks, view ancient formations, and explore the unique ecosystem. 
  • Serpentine Dam and Falls: The Serpentine National Park offers travelers a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of Perth CBD to enjoy a scenic drive, have a bush walk to waterfalls or have picnics on the riverbank surrounded by nature and wildlife. 
  • Bell Rapids: Located in the East of Perth lies the Bells Rapids in the Swan Valley, offering picturesque views of the Avon River and rugged granite outcrops with seasonable white water rapids. This is one of the best natural attractions near Perth, perfect for exploration, relaxation, and immersion in Western Australia’s diverse landscape.
Walking in Perth

By Foot

Perth’s city centre is an extremely walkable city. Having your accommodation located in Perth 

CBD or not too far from it will provide you with an extreme advantage as you will be able to get to some of Perth’s most popular spots, historic landmarks, and cultural attractions within the city centre. Some of the must-visit spots in Perth CBD explorable by foot are the following: 

  • Elizabeth Quay: Located on the waterfront, Elizabeth Quay is a modern precinct with public art installations, landscaped gardens, dining venues, and endless scenic views.
  • Perth Bell Tower: The iconic bell tower is located on the Swan River waterfront in Perth, where travelers can learn about the history of bells and experience panoramic views from the observation deck while watching live bell-ringing demonstrations – just prepare your ears! 
  • Perth Mint: Dating back to Western Australia’s gold rush era at the Perth Mint, travelers can take a guided tour to see the world’s largest gold coin as well as experience live gold pouring demonstrations. 
  • St. Mary’s Cathedral: An architectural gothic-revival marvel that was rebuilt in 2009 after it burned down in 1865. This cathedral is undoubtedly worth visiting, especially for those interested in historical religious monuments. 
  • Wolf Lane: A hidden lane away with vibrant street art, eclectic cafés, and trendy bars, you will feel as though you are walking through a natural art exhibition while perusing this street.
Perth at sunset

Final Thoughts

Now you have about everything you need to know about travelling in Perth by foot, car, train, bus, and ferry. There is no shortage of places to visit whilst in Perth, so it’s best to create a list of your must-see places while leaving time open to explore other places that you will encounter along the way.

Perth is renowned for its outdoor lifestyle and cultural festivals, so be sure you experience all you can outdoors if you want to see the city in all its glory.

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