Enjoy a stunning tour of Perth and Kings Park on one of the city’s iconic open top double-decker buses. You’ll get a superb view of many of the key sights and plenty of information from the onboard commentary. Hop on or off at designated stops as many times as you like. Duration: 24/48 hours
Best price guarantee: If you find this tour elsewhere at a cheaper price, we will beat it by 10%. Some conditions apply. There are no booking or credit card fees when you book this tour with The Big Bus tour and travel guide.
A trip to Perth is more than balmy days and blissful evenings by the beach.
There’s so much more to this city, but when you’re visiting a new place, everything is unknown and new and sometimes difficult to find. It can be hard to know where to begin. I live three hours from Perth. The city and I are acquainted, but I’ve never spent much time exploring or getting to know its gems. It turns out that the easiest way to see it all is on an organised spin around the town with Perth Explorer.
Now to be honest, I’ve always thought city bus tours were only for, let’s say, older travellers. But that was before I boarded the Perth hop on hop off bus tour with Perth Explorer. It offers eleven stops around the CBD, Kings Park and central neighbourhoods. It’s a fast, efficient and relaxing way to see a whole lot in a short space of time.
The Perth Explorer kicks off at 9:15am from the Barrack Street Jetty (the same place where the Rottnest Island ferries leave from). It’s a clear sky day as I climb on board and take a seat on the open-air top deck.
To get a feel for the bus route, I decide to ride through all eleven stops. It takes about two hours to do the round trip. The sun is shining (pretty much a given in the summer) and I do recommend wearing plenty of sunscreen. There’s no shade, but the lack of a roof and windows means that the photo ops are unbelievably good.
There are two buses on the route, spaced an hour apart, so back at Barrack Street there’s enough time for me to grab a drink before the next one arrives. I hop back on ready to hit the stops I want to visit.
As we approach Crown Perth, a complex of casinos, restaurants and hotels, I get ready to do my first official hop off. That is until the recorded commentary mentions something about a dress code. I’m in thongs. Note to self: wear smarter-looking shoes next time!
Next stop is the Perth Mint. I’m a fan of money (like most of us) and although this mint is all about precious metals and investment coins, I’m keen to have a sniff around. I buy a ticket from the bus driver and save a dollar off the entry fee. The fee includes a guided tour of the gold exhibition and a seat at the demonstration of a gold bar pouring! I’m mighty impressed with the one tonne, million dollar gold coin. During the gold pour, the one-liner from the quirky Austin Powers film plays over and over in my mind: ‘I love gold…’.
Back on the bus the afternoon breeze, affectionately known as the Fremantle Doctor, cools my sun-kissed neck.
The first of three Kings Park stops is at the Wadjuk car park. It’s a beautiful area, offering blissful serenity and magnificent views of the cityscape (awesome selfie op!). It’s also home to the upscale Fraser’s restaurant and the Botanical Cafe – a busy eatery which is a great spot for lunch or coffee and cake.
We cruise through the magnificent parklands while listening to fascinating facts about botany and colonial history. There are two more stops in the park, but the time is ticking away so I stay perched on the upper deck, filling my lungs with fresh air.
I finish my tour at the last stop, 50 William Street, which is pretty much the centre of the CBD. I’m amazed at how carefree this Perth hop on hop off bus tour makes getting to know the city. It’s just too easy. I’m proud to say that I’m now a city bus tour convert.
Jennifer Morton is a freelance writer and photographer. The Canadian expat has lived all over Canada, New Zealand and Australia. She also spent six months working on a cruise ship in Europe. When Jennifer is not writing about travel, you may find her lounging on the beach, fishing with her son, sipping coffee at a cafe, reading a book or zooming in on a beautiful scene. She’s also likely to be boarding a plane – or jumping out of one.