As the nights stretch longer and the soft scent of summer wafts through the air, one event signifies the holiday season like no other here: the annual spectacle of Perth Christmas lights.
Let’s be honest: Our corner of the globe may lack the winter wonderland vibes that usually come to mind when thinking of Christmas—no snowflakes, no winter coats, and no hot cocoa by the fireplace.
But we make up for it with a Christmas light display that can only be described as truly magical. Perth City and its suburbs transform into a twinkling tapestry of colours, bringing together communities and elevating the holiday cheer to soaring new heights.
In this blog post, I’ll guide you through the luminous wonder of Perth’s Christmas lights. Whether you’re visiting from out of town or are a lifelong resident looking to revel in the festivities, I’ll walk you through the must-see displays and hidden spots.
Together, we’ll discover why Perth’s Christmas lights are an experience that captivates the childlike awe in all of us, locals and travellers alike.
Best Christmas Lights Perth: Key Takeaways
- Perth City
- Mandurah Canals
- Wanneroo Botanicals Gardens
- Suburbs (read on)
Christmas Lights Perth City 2023
As we turn the corner from November to December, the annual Christmas Lights Trail is one of the most enchanting experiences that takes over Perth City.
This is not just a trail but an adventure—a festive quest that brings together families, friends, and couples to soak in the electric atmosphere that transforms the cityscape into a dazzling wonderland.
Starting off from Forrest Place or St. George’s Terrace—depending on your preference—the trail is a self-guided journey that weaves through iconic landmarks and hidden places in the city.
Detailed maps are provided; if you prefer technology over paper, there’s an app to guide you as well. The trail is well-designed, with walking paths suitable for people of all ages, including strollers and wheelchairs.
The Christmas Lights Trail isn’t just a random collection of bulbs and LEDs strewn about; it’s an artful spectacle illuminating Perth’s iconic landmarks innovatively. From the glistening Yagan Square to Elizabeth Quay, you’ll find a mix of Australian and traditional Christmas icons.
What sets Perth’s Christmas Lights Trail apart are the interactive experiences like light tunnels and projections on buildings. Children—and let’s be honest, adults, too—find these installations irresistibly fun, and they offer plenty of Instagrammable moments.
Of course, no adventure is complete without some indulgence. Following the trail, you’ll find various pop-up stalls offering seasonal treats and drinks.
Christmas Lights Tour
For those seeking a more interactive experience, the Peddle Perth Christmas Lights Ride is the perfect option. Hop on your bicycle and join this merry group as they pedal through the city streets, stopping at various light locations.
This tour is a unique way to experience the dazzling displays while enjoying the company of fellow Christmas enthusiasts.
Mandurah Canals Christmas Lights & Trail
When it comes to experiencing the magic and wonder of Christmas in Perth, one destination that cannot be missed is the Mandurah Canals. Known for its mesmerising display of lights that adorn the waterfront homes, this Christmas lights trail offers a truly unforgettable experience.
As you go through the canals, you’ll be greeted by a spectacular sight of beautifully decorated houses shimmering with an array of colourful lights. The festive spirit is contagious as each homeowner goes above and beyond to create their own unique and captivating light display.
In addition to the Christmas lights trail, some activities and events add to the festive atmosphere. Hop on a boat cruise and enjoy a leisurely ride along the canals, taking the lights’ beauty from a different perspective.
Book early if you plan a Christmas Lights Cruise, as the tours sell out fast.
Wanneroo Botanical Gardens Christmas Lights
For a fun Christmas light display, head to Wanneroo Botanical Gardens for a game of mini-golf. The gardens feature enchanting light displays, illuminated pathways, and bright and colourful lights from late November to mid-January. It’s a perfect outing for the whole family, combining festive entertainment with a touch of whimsy.
Christmas Lights in the Suburbs
The magic of Christmas lights in Perth doesn’t stop in Perth CBD. The suburban neighbourhoods also put on a show, with residents brightening up their homes and gardens with beautiful displays.
Families take immense pride in decking out their homes, some beginning preparations as early as October. When dusk falls, houses come alive in a riot of colours, animated figures, and giant inflatables.
What’s beautiful about these suburban light displays is the sense of community they foster.
A few standout suburbs have earned a reputation for their grandiose displays year after year. If you’re looking for an itinerary, consider these places.
Christmas Lights North Perth
Christmas Lights South Perth
- Atwell & Applecross
- Canning Vale
Timing and Planning
While you can certainly try a spontaneous drive-by, checking social media platforms or local websites for a compiled list of participating homes or streets is a good idea. People post times, themes, and special events, like Santa visits or charity collections.
A Word of Etiquette
Please be courteous. While enjoying the displays, remember that you are on private property. Stay on designated paths and avoid disturbing homeowners.
When driving, watch out for pedestrians and other drivers who may be distracted by the lights.
Many homes have donation boxes set up for various charities—a wonderful way to give back during the season of giving.
City vs. Suburbs: Two Unique Takes on Perth’s Christmas Light Extravaganza
From the well-planned, artistic installations in the heart of Perth City to the delightful and often surprising displays in the suburbs. Let’s delve into the features of each to help you decide where to spend your twinkling evenings this holiday season.
Perth City: A Curated Wonderland
In Perth City, Christmas lights are no casual affair. Months of planning go into the stunning displays, often executed by professional designers and artists. Expect everything to be larger-than-life, whether a towering Christmas tree or an interactive LED installation that changes as you approach.
The city lights attract crowds, creating a lively atmosphere that’s bustling with energy. Street performers, holiday-themed events, and pop-up markets add to the festive atmosphere, making it ideal for those who love social experiences.
Perth City’s Christmas Lights Trail is designed for accessibility. Whether you’re a visitor or a local without intimate knowledge of every city lane, you’ll find plenty of signs, maps, and apps to guide you through the sparkling maze.
Suburban Perth: A Heartfelt Tapestry
While the city lights are breathtaking, the suburban displays have heart. These are labours of love by individual families and sometimes entire neighbourhoods. You’ll see hand-painted signs, homemade decorations, and quirky themes that can be just as captivating as professional displays.
Each house or street in the suburbs often offers something unique. While one may have a snow machine and inflatable Santa, another might feature a handmade nativity scene. This diversity makes a suburban tour feel like a treasure hunt.
Don’t be surprised if the homeowners sit in their front yards, eager to chat or offer you a candy cane. This personal interaction can be a delightful aspect of the suburban Christmas light experience.
Suburban lights usually attract fewer crowds than city locations, giving you the freedom to linger and appreciate each display. It’s a relaxed, almost nostalgic experience that many people find endearing.
Or why not enjoy both magical displays and visit the city and suburban lights?
What’s your favourite Christmas Light display in Perth? Let us know and share your photos in our Facebook group.