Perth is a fantastic place to live and there is so much to do within the city itself, but the busy city life can be draining. Sometimes we all just need a little getaway and these 15 day trips from Perth are perfect ways to recharge those batteries.
There are beaches, forests, animals, caves, wineries and loads of other things included. There will be a day trip to suit everyone in this list.
We have personally done every trip on this list, often more than once, so we can guarantee that they are all a fantastic way to spend a day off. Let us know in the comments which one is your personal favourite!
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15 Amazing Day Trips from Perth
You may be under the impression that Yanchep is just another suburb of Perth, however there is enough to do here to easily occupy a full day. Head up the coast early and spend the morning enjoying the beautiful Yanchep Lagoon. This is easily one of the best beaches in Perth and a great place to spend a sunny weekend morning. When you start to get peckish you’ll want to jump back in the car and drive inland towards Yanchep National Park. There is a beautiful heritage listed pub here with a large beer garden frequented by cockatoos, kookaburras, rainbow lorikeets and more. The meals here are good quality and the large portions will fuel you for the rest of the afternoon’s sightseeing.
There is a tonne of stuff to do in the national park, if you are motivated enough you can fit it all in, or just pick and choose. The absolute must see spot is the koala boardwalk. It’s only a short stroll but you’ll see plenty of koalas up close in the surrounding trees.
A nice walk will help to to burn off that big pub lunch. There are a number of walks in the park of varying lengths. The woodlands walk and the wetlands walk are some of the shorter ones. The ghost house walk clocks in at 12.4km but is really nice if you are up to it!
There are a couple of caves within the park, one of which can be explored with a guide at set times of the day. The Crystal Cave can be booked online here and is $16 per adult and $8 per child for a 45min tour.
An easy hour and a half drive north from Perth you’ll find the small township of Lancelin. The major drawcard here is the massive dune system that can be explored in a variety of ways. If you have a 4WD vehicle then you can drive out onto the dunes and explore that way. If you have a normal vehicle then don’t stress as there are loads of other fun options.
The easiest way to set yourself up for success is to pre-book your day with the adventures of your choice. Check out this awesome experience which offers a solid two and a half hours of tearing up the dunes on quad bikes, buggies and sandboards. I guarantee this is the best way to see the Lancelin sand dunes!
If you don’t go down that route then at the entrance to the dunes you will find a hire company that rents out various gear such as sandboards, quad bikes and dune buggies. Pre-book your sandboard hire here to avoid disappointment.
You have to give sandboarding a try while in Lancelin but be prepared to take a few dives! It’s harder than it looks but you can always just go down on your bum and still have loads of fun.
Once you’ve exhausted yourself on the dunes, head into town and pay a visit to the Endeavour Tavern. This pub officially has the best beer garden in W.A. and the views are sublime. Grab a pizza and a drink of your choice then gaze out upon the sandy beach and the sun heading towards the horizon over this beautiful stretch of coast.
This is an easy day trip from Perth as it is located along a major highway, making travel times minimal. Mandurah is split by a beautiful river leading to a large estuary and is crisscrossed by canals, making it a beautiful place to spend some time off of dry land.
Start your day trip from Perth nice and early so you can get out on the water before the heat really sets in. There are a bunch of options to explore the waterways and estuary depending on your preference.
Sometimes the best way to see all the highlights is with someone who knows exactly where to find them. This river cruise includes lunch and will take you on a 1.5hr trip around the waterways looking for wildlife, especially dolphins. Oh and did I mention it’s on a pretend pirate ship! This is great if you have kids, but if you want a more low-key experience see here for a similar cruise on a regular boat.
If you’re looking for some good exercise to start the day then you can hire kayaks from Mandurah Boat and Bike Hire. You can paddle around at your own pace and check out all the beautiful canal side houses and if you are lucky, get up close with some dolphins!
For the adventurous you can also hire motorboats and explore further afield. The smaller boats can be hired without a licence and are super fun to motor around and possibly have a little picnic on the water.
Once you’ve gotten enough sun and salt for the morning you can switch to a more relaxed vibe and head into town for some lunch. Dolphin Quay is another main attraction in Mandurah and a great place to find a meal with water views.
Catch 22 offers tapas and drinks and has an amazing view, especially at sunset. It’s a small place but if it’s full then you can head to the Oceanic Bar and Grill, this is also right on the water and looks back onto Dolphin Quay. Off of the quay, the Eastern Foreshore is also lined with restaurants and bars.
The outskirts of Mandurah also have some great things to see. Lake Clifton Thrombolites are worth a visit as they are the oldest living organisms on Earth and it is amazing to look upon them and imagine all that they have survived through.
For a little treat to take home with you, visit Vineyard 28 or Peel Estate wineries. The former specialises in some Italian varieties that can be quite hard to find in W.A and are really delicious. The latter has a really lovely little cellar door and beautiful grounds.
Rockingham is known for it’s beautiful beaches and marine life. In and around the water is definitely where you’ll want to be on this day trip from Perth.
The main attraction here is definitely Penguin Island. Not many people realise that you can see cute little penguins only just outside the city! A visit here is a must and while here you can also explore the surrounding Shoalwater Islands Marine Park.
The best way to see the stunning waters and all the marine life is on this 1 hour cruise. Your ferry transfer to the island is included as is the penguin feeding show. You’ll also have the best chance to spot seals and dolphins.
If you want to explore at your own pace while getting in some exercise, then you can hire kayaks by the hour. The islands are close enough to paddle around as long as you have a moderate level of fitness. See Rockingham Kayak Hire for details.
Point Peron is another great spot to visit in Rockingham. There is a short hike around the point that offers beautiful ocean views and several lookout platforms.
Check out Latitude 32 along the oceanfront esplanade for a really nice meal. This is a great way to finish up a busy day and wind down before heading home.
With everything else that Perth has to offer, you wouldn’t believe that there’s also a high quality wine region right in the backyard! The Swan Valley produces some really top notch wines and the landscape is as pleasing to the eye as the wine is to the palate.
There are a couple of different ways that you can see the Swan Valley. If you drive your own vehicle or take a hire vehicle then you will be able to take in some of the nice hikes in the area.
Our top recommendation is Bells Rapids Park near Upper Swan. There is a beautiful hike along a nice bubbling river and up some hills for fantastic views over the area.
After working up an appetite you can head to one of the 40+ wineries or many craft breweries for lunch. It’s hard to recommend a particular one. Have a browse of the full list here to get some ideas, or just drive around until you find the perfect spot!
If you love your wine like I do, the only proper way to see the valley is on an organised day trip. This way you can taste as much as you like and be exposed to a selection of the best and brightest producers.
The best type of tour is one that takes you on a cruise up the river to start the day and then switches to a bus to explore the wineries and breweries.
With the highly rated tour that we recommend below you’ll see two wineries, two breweries and the Margaret River Chocolate Company.
This full day tour includes the river cruise, lunch, all wine and beer samples, cheese board, chocolate tasting and return journey to Perth!
You only have to travel 60km outside of Perth to completely escape the city and immerse yourself in nature. A trip to the quaint little town of Jarrahdale will have you immersed in the forest and breathing easier in no time at all.
It’s all about the outdoor activities around here and you can start the day out right with one of several great hikes. If you’re up for a proper trek then check out the Kitty’s Gorge trail. It’s 14km so will take some time but the halfway point is at Serpentine Falls so it’s a great place to refresh with lunch and a quick dip.
For a less intense walk you can drive to the falls and hike Baldwin’s Bluff. Serpentine Falls itself is lovely to see when the water is flowing and is only a short stroll from the carpark. Your best bet is to visit in the winter or spring months to see the falls in full swing.
If you prefer to get around on two wheels then head to Langford Park for the mountain bike trails. This area is also lovely just to walk and picnic in, surrounded by the large leafy trees.
After the morning’s exercise you probably deserve some wine! Millbrook Winery has an amazing cellar door, situated right beside a lake and surrounded by lush vines. The wines are as good as the scenery and for many years they have made my favourite Sauvignon Blanc.
Just 15 minutes outside Jarrahdale on the way back to Perth you might also stop in at Cohunu Koala Park. At this small wildlife park you can see and interact with a wide range of native wildlife including emus, kangaroos, koalas and birds.
This is the quintessential day trip from Perth and a must see while visiting the city. This little slice of paradise is only a 30min ferry ride from Fremantle but will transport your mind much further from the city. With some of the best beaches in Western Australia, there’s truly no better way to spend a hot summer’s day!
The island vibes are strong here and clicking into beachy relaxation mode is a cinch. Just include a bike hire with your ferry ticket and you’ll be away as soon as you land with an incredible array of stunning little coves to choose from.
If you want to get a sweat on then you can do a loop of the whole island, spotting quokkas and visiting the iconic lighthouses. The town also boasts some interesting buildings and history and is worth some time exploring.
If you’re not a fan of cycling then there is a hop-on, hop-off bus service that will ferry you around the highlights of the island. A one day pass for this bus service will cost $20/adult and $15/child. Find more info about booking your Rottnest Island bus pass here.
Once you’re absorbed plenty of that beautiful sunshine and salt water then head to the Rottnest Hotel. There are a couple of new food and drink venues on the island which are all lovely but the old hotel is still my favourite.
The beachfront beer garden and open plan restaurant is the perfect place to rehydrate and relax while waiting for the return ferry. You might even see some cheeky quokkas running around the tables!
John Forrest National Park
This gem of a national park is the oldest in Western Australia and worth spending the better part of a day discovering and enjoying. There are some beautiful hikes here as the park is situated in the hills above Midland, just 30mins outside of Perth city centre. The best hike to attempt on a day trip from Perth is the Eagle View Trail which has amazing views of the city.
From here you can just turn around and hike back the way you came which will clock in at around 4.5km. The full loop is about 15km and the views don’t get any better after the lookout.
On the way to the lookout you’ll also pass one of the waterfalls in the park, this doesn’t generally flow during summer but looks great after a solid rain in the wetter seasons.
The best part of this park are all the animals that just hang out around the tavern. The tavern itself is also great after a long walk, offering cold drinks and solid pub meals.
From your table in the beer garden you can see kangaroos, kookaburras, galahs and various other birds. I love to take overseas visitors here as it’s a really unique experience. The picnic grounds are also beautiful if you want to bring your own lunch.
Keep in mind that being a national park there is a $15 entry fee per vehicle.
The Pinnacles Desert
Yet another amazing natural Western Australian landmark located only two hours drive north of the city. It is worth the moderate drive to see this strange landscape and capture all sorts of unique photos as you explore at your own pace.
This is actually the best part of this national park. There is a marked driving trail that snakes it’s way through the desert so you can drive around and pull over for photos wherever you want.
The landscape here was all under water about 30,000 years ago. The wind has worked it’s magic in the intervening time to create these odd formations.
If you are lucky and visit at the right time of day you can even see kangaroos and emus wandering around the desert. The visitor centre on site is a great place to check out, with displays detailing the history and life of the park.
This is a national park so there’s the standard $15 fee per vehicle to enter. If you are visiting a lot of parks in a certain time period then consider purchasing a parks pass. This is especially useful on a longer road trip; check out this Perth to Kalbarri itinerary which takes in the Pinnacles en-route.
While it may look like a suburb of Perth on the map, Fremantle has it’s own unique vibe and more than enough interesting sites to occupy a full day.
There are a tonne of historical buildings lining the streets and one of the main attractions is simply wandering around admiring the facades. The main café strip is a great starting point after grabbing a coffee to fuel your wandering.
From here head to the Fremantle Markets which is housed in a beautiful building dating to 1897. The historical ‘Roundhouse’ is nearby and the walk from the market to here will take you past a lot of the nicest buildings in town.
A short stroll uphill from the centre of Fremantle will take you to the old prison. It is the only UNESCO listed building in W.A and dates from 1850. It is very well restored as a museum and the tours are well worth it to learn the interesting and sometimes shocking history here.
For me personally, one of the best attractions here is the W.A Maritime Museum. The displays are beautifully done and they often feature touring exhibits. There is also a full submarine that you can climb into and explore!
There are just so many things to do in Fremantle that you really need a full article to cover them, luckily we’ve got one right here!
This supremely photogenic rock formation is possibly the most iconic natural wonder in the state. The drive out there from Perth is almost 4 hours so it’s best done on an organised tour where someone else cops all the driving!
This day trip from Perth will take you first to the historical town of York, the oldest in the Avon valley region. There are some lovely old buildings here and you can enjoy them while waking up with morning tea at one of the quaint cafes in town.
Once you reach Hyden you’ll get a proper country pub lunch included and then can explore some of the surrounding attractions like Hippo’s Yawn. There are also some interesting little museums like a toy soldier museum and a lace museum.
The main attraction is of course the giant wave of solid rock that towers over your head. It is so impressive that we returned twice to get photos at different times of day and just to sit and appreciate the wonders of nature.
Following the main event you will also make a stop at Mulka’s Cave and learn about the Aboriginal history associated with it. In wildflower season (Sep to Nov) your driver will also make stops for you to see the amazing blooms that this region is famous for.
If you prefer driving yourself and want to get those lovely sunrise and sunset shots like we did then check out this Perth to Wave Rock Road Trip Itinerary.
Busselton and Dunsborough
The laid-back seaside towns of Busselton and Dunsborough may look far away on the map but don’t stress. The 200km is pretty much all down highways and can be done in a couple of hours. A short road trip from Perth to Busselton will be well worth the journey when you discover everything this region has to offer.
Busselton is the first town you hit and the larger of the two. The main attraction in town is the Busselton Jetty and apart from being the longest wooden jetty in the southern hemisphere, it also has several things to do on and around it.
If you aren’t up to walking the full 1.8km of the jetty then you can hop aboard the jetty’s own miniature train! This train is a favourite with kids but is loads of fun for all ages. It will take you right to the end of the jetty where you will find the underwater observatory.
This is another top highlight of Busselton, being one of only six in the world. You can descend below the waters under the jetty and see the amazing array of sea life that lives below this structure. If you want to get wet then you can also organise scuba dives and snorkelling here.
You can browse and book your adventures on the official Busselton Jetty website here. Alternatively, let someone else do all the hard work and driving! This tour picks you up in Perth and takes you to Busselton Jetty, including a train ride, scenic drive and visit to a local winery.
Dunsborough is much smaller that Busselton and has a lovely small town vibe. The main attraction here are the numerous turquoise bays on the peninsula to the north of town.
Bunker Bay and Meelup Beach are some favourites and a whole day can easily be spent here soaking up the sunshine. Further north you can see the Cape Naturaliste lighthouse, from which whales can often be spotted out to sea during the migratory season.
Some other cool things to see in the area are Sugarloaf Rock and Ngilgi Cave. For the best chance to spot wildlife you can check out this whale watching tour that departs from Busselton.
For lunch you should definitely consider Eagle Bay Brewing or Wise Wine. They both sit high up on a hill overlooking the ocean and have delicious food and beverages. They are attractions in themselves due to the beautiful grounds and views.
A trip to Margaret River may be pushing the boundaries of a day-trip and is really best done as a weekend trip at a minimum. In saying that, if you have limited time in Perth or just in general then you should still get there for at least a day.
There are three main things that you must accomplish on a day trip from Perth to Margaret River. These are wine, caves and a forest drive (bonus points if you also sample some locally produced cheese!).
The wine is best left till last so you don’t get all sleepy or just want to keep tasting all day! First off you should head to one of the several beautiful limestone caves that dot the coastline. These caves have been developed with walkways and lighting to make for a fantastic and easily accessible caving experience.
With the limited time on a day trip from Perth you probably should aim for just one cave. Mammoth Cave or Jewel Cave are your best bet as they are perhaps the most impressive.
To access the caves you will be driving down the stunning Caves Road, which winds it’s way through some amazing forest views. This is another tick off the list and if you want to properly appreciate the views you can make a stop at the Boranup Forest Viewpoint.
For lunch and wine tastings you are absolutely spoilt in this town. Margaret River is truly a world-class wine region and there are plenty of places that do food to match the quality of their wine. Have a browse of the list on the official website here and plan your own tasting journey.
If you plan to stay longer than just a day, read our post on the top-rated Margaret River wine tours to help you select the best one.
It can be a pretty exhausting day with all the driving, caving and wine tasting. I would definitely recommend booking a day tour if you are planning to do this as a day trip from Perth. The below tour includes all of the awesome stuff mentioned above, minus the boring parts like driving and booking things!
See below to browse times and prices for this great day tour.
The first highlight you’ll see on this day trip from Perth is the drive itself. At 200km from the city it’s a bit of a trek but the drive passes through beautiful views of rolling hills, farmland and forest along the way.
You may not have considered Collie for a visit but there is way more to do in this area than you would expect. The first introduction most people have to this town are Instagram shots of the stunning blue lakes.
These are easy to visit as they are just off the main road through town. The blue colour will be most pronounced in the middle of the day on a sunny day. Each lake is a slightly different colour and it’s worth visiting both but Stockton Lake was my favourite (the other is called Black Diamond Lake).
Another must see sight in Collie is the huge mural which has been painted onto Wellington Dam. This is only a short drive from town and the scale and detail is so impressive. It is part of a new mural trail with over 30 artists painting murals all around town. See here for the map so you can locate them all!
For those with kids, there are some old steam train engines set up along the main street that can be fully explored. For a deeper dive you can visit the Collie Rail Heritage Centre. They have numerous displays here, one of which is a model train track, enjoyable for all ages!
To explore more of the heritage of Collie you can visit the replica underground coal mine. This is a great setup and you can take a tour with an actual retired miner. Learn about the working conditions and challenges faced by the early miners and get some great snaps in the tunnels.
A hearty lunch can be found at one of the historical pubs in the town centre or alternatively make the short trip out to Harris River Estate. Yep, on top of everything else there is a winery here! Enjoy a tasting and some delicious tapas before heading back to Perth or exploring the area further.
This little known gem lies about 120km north of Perth along the great northern highway. The drive is itself an attraction, especially if done in the early morning or when the canola is in bloom. As you leave Perth you will pass through rolling forested hills and farmland with amazing views in all directions.
The town of New Norcia is a very historical and unique place, being Australia’s only monastic town and dating all the way back to 1847! It was originally founded as a mission by Spanish Benedictine Monks and maintains it’s Benedictine identity to this day.
Today the monastic community caters well to visitors and there is a lot to do on your day trip from Perth. They have a fantastic museum and art gallery that details the history of the settlement and should be one of your first ports of call. There are town tours that depart from here and are well worth it to dive deeper into the fascinating history of the town.
While there you should try some of the delicious local produce. The original goal of the mission was to be a self-sustaining community and this has carried on. They make some absolutely delicious bread which you can dip in their olive oil from the 100 year old olive grove on site.
A great monastic tradition is the production of ales and wines and New Norcia doesn’t disappoint. Pick up a bottle of the Abbey wine or some delicious Abbey Ale. Share it with friends and you’ll have a super interesting story to tell them as you sample a glass or three.
If you have time left over on your way back to Perth then consider a stop in Chittering. During wildflower season especially there are some great walks in those beautiful hills and valleys that you drove through. They also have a bunch of delicious local produce for sale and even a couple of cute little cellar doors.
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