Scarborough Beach | One of the Best in Perth

Scarborough Beach is a stunning getaway located only a 25-minute drive from Perth city, Western Australia. With clear ocean waters and a wide long sandy beach, visitors can enjoy many activities such as swimming, surfing, picnics, and sunbathing. There are also plenty of bars, cafes, and restaurants to keep everyone amused.

The Scarborough Beach Surf Lifesaving Club was established in 1928 and is one of Australia’s oldest surf lifesaving clubs.

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Scarborough Beach Location

Scarborough Beach is in Perth’s northern suburbs on the Sunset Coast, about 14 km from the city centre.

International and domestic visitors will fly into Perth Airport. Find details about visas, prohibited items, currency, and safety in this Australia Travel Guide and tips on arriving into WA and other essential travel information in this Western Australia Travel Guide.

There are car hire booths at Perth airport, but it’s best to pre-book your car rental. Choose from Avis, Budget, Europcar, Sixt, Hertz, Enterprise, and Thrifty.
To compare rental car company prices, I use Discover Cars, an award-winning car rental comparison website. They offer competitive pricing in over 10,000 locations worldwide and are have a high rate of customer satisfaction.

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tiered green grass and an amphitheater overlooking the white sand scarborough beach and blue ocean
Scarborough Beach

How to get to Scarborough Beach

Scarborough is about a 25-minute drive from Perth city. There’s plenty of parking – see the best places to park here.

The closest train station to Scarborough is Glendalough, on the Joondalup line. From here, you will need to take a bus or taxi to Scarborough Beach.

Scarborough Beach Facilities (free)

  • Toilets
  • Showers – Indoor & Outdoor
  • Changing Rooms
  • Picnic Tables
  • BBQS
  • WiFi to the main central beach & foreshore areas
  • Exercise Equipment
a coastal path beside a garden and a wooden modern building
Scarborough Coastal Path

Things to do at Scarborough Beach

  • Picnic on the grass overlooking the beach and ocean
  • Swim in the sea or pool
  • Surf
  • Relax on the beach
  • Kite surf or wind surf
  • Dine at one of the restaurants or cafes
  • Watch the sunset
  • Have a drink at one of the bars
  • Skate park
  • Take kids to the whale playground & climbing wall
  • Sunset markets (seasonal)
  • Live music (seasonal)
  • Walk along the beach
restaurants and cafes lining the esplanade with lots of people walking along and sitting under the shade of umbrellas
Scarborough Beach Esplanade

Scarborough Beach Pool

Western Australia’s only beachside pool is located on the promenade overlooking the stunning Indian Ocean. Scarborough Beach Pool is heated so you can swim year-round – the main pool is heated to 27ºC and the leisure pool to 32ºC. There are eight 50 m lanes, four 25 m lanes, and a shallow leisure pool.

The complex has the Cocolat Café, which is open to everyone and La Capannina Italian restaurant with beautiful views over the ocean.

an outdoor swimming pool with lots of lanes and people relaxing under the shade of umbreallas with the ocean as a backdrop
Scarborough Beach Swimming Pool

Scarborough Beach Surfing

Scarborough Beach has reasonably consistent surf, making it popular with surfers. The ideal winds for surfing here are easterly, and the best swell direction is from the west. However, be careful of dangerous rips.

Learn to surf with lessons from Scarborough Beach Surf School.

Scarborough Skate Park & Bowl

The Snake Pit, named after Scarborough’s Rock n Roll era of the 50s and 60s, is one of Australia’s biggest skate parks. The three tiers cater to various events, exhibitions, and sports, including skateboarding, scooter and BMX. The international-level competition skate bowl is 3.6 m deep, and the other skate areas are full of ramps, rails, and banks.

There’s also a rock -climbing wall and a half basketball court here.

large skate bowl and park with the oceana nd beach in the background and skaters hanging out
Scarborough’s “snake pit” skate park and bowl

Scarborough Beach Whale Adventure Playground

This adventure playground was inspired by the Noongar culture, where it is believed whales beach themselves when they are ready to die so they can return to an ancestor’s spirit on land.

With so many fun features, including climbing structures, swings, slides and a cubby house with ocean views, it will keep the kids happy for ages.

playground shaped like a whale near the beach
Scarborough’s Whale Playground

Sunset Hill

Sunset Hill is a raised grassed area overlooking the beach and is the perfect spot to watch the sunset or have a picnic. Or book a room at Scarborough Beach Hotel for the best sunset views.

orange sky sunset over a tropical beach with palm trees
Sunset at Scarborough from Rendezvous Scarborough Beach Hotel

Tjunta Trail

The Noongar story of Tjunta has been sandblasted and painted in five different places around Scarborough Beach foreshore. Start on the lower promenade next to the Lotterywest Whale Playground and follow the trail to hear about a group of children who go missing and how the spirit woman Tjunta finds them.

Scarborough Beach Markets

Scarborough Sunset Markets overlook the beach every Thursday evening from November to April. Find a range of vendors from 5 pm to 9 pm, along with live music. Dinner is sorted with street food from over 60 cuisines, and you can purchase wine and beer from the Market Bar.

The Sunset Bar is on the Lower Promenade lawn area, and the Mocktail Bar is on the beach in front of the Amphitheatre.

a wooden modern building with a cafe on the ground level
Scarborough Beach Pool Café

Best Time to Visit Scarborough Beach

The best time to visit Scarborough Beach for water activities is from November to March when the weather is warm. Head to the beach in the morning before the sea breeze hits the shore as it can be extremely windy, and the sand whips you! The ocean is at its warmest at the beginning of March and coldest in September.

The shoulder seasons of autumn and spring are nice for beach walks, cycling, and enjoying the local food and drink scene.

an outdoor rock climbing wall
Scarborough’s Rock Climbing Wall

Scarborough Beach Restaurants & Bars

Popular restaurants and bars in Scarborough Beach are:

  • Sandbar Scarborough Beach
  • Scarborough Beach Bar
  • The Peach Pit
  • The Lookout
  • Esplanade Bar
  • Oceans 6019
  • The Galway Hooker
  • Buteko
  • El Grotto
an outdoor dining area at a restaurant with fire yellow chairs and tables
Buteko Outdoor Dining Area

Scarborough Beach Accommodation

We use Booking.com for most accommodation bookings as they offer free cancellation on most rooms, have a loyalty program (Genius), a price match guarantee, the site is user-friendly and they have great customer support. We also book through Stayz for private accommodation as they are often cheaper than Airbnb.

There are a few apartments at West Beach Lagoon on booking.com that offer good value for families. They all have two bedrooms, air conditioning, and a small kitchen. These apartments are a bit dated, but it’s reflected in the price. The property is right opposite the beach and has an outdoor pool.

Seashells Scarborough has apartments with pool views and sea views. The complex has two outdoor swimming pools, a sauna, and BBQs. Situated opposite the beach, it’s an excellent location and has free parking.

Sandcastles at the Beach is another apartment complex situated right opposite the stunning Indian Ocean. The air-conditioned two-bedroom apartments have ocean views, fully equipped kitchens, laundry facilities, and a balcony. In addition, the property has free parking and an outdoor pool.

Rendezvous Scarborough Beach Hotel is an iconic hotel overlooking this stunning beach. It holds a special place in our hearts as we held our wedding reception in a suite just below the top floor (where the huge balcony is). We had booked the Penthouse, but Heath Ledger ended up in there (long story), but we wouldn’t have changed it for anything.

Quest Scarborough has serviced apartment-style hotel rooms just 200 m from the beach. The accommodation has a range of rooms, including studios, one, and two bedroom apartments.

a tall hotel building with lots of windows and balconies on an esplanade with palm trees
Rendezvous Scarborough Beach Hotel

Scarborough Beach Webcam

Check out this live webcam of Scarborough Beach.

Beach Dangers in Perth

Let’s be clear: many dangers face visitors to most beaches worldwide, not just in Perth. No tourist has been attacked by a shark in WA. Although they do happen, it is extremely rare. Sharks have attacked a few people each year, but over one hundred die from drowning over the same period.

Non-tropical marine stingers, such as the Bluebottle (Physalia) or Hair Jelly (Cyanea), are usually found south of Geraldton (including Perth). Their stingers are not generally life-threatening but can cause discomfort if you get stung.

The number one danger on Perth beaches are rips and, on average, are responsible for nineteen deaths annually. Read this guide from Surf Lifesaving on spotting a rip and getting out of one. It could save your life.

Stick to patrolled beaches, never swim/snorkel/surf alone, pay attention to the signs, and swim between the red and yellow flags.

For full information on beach dangers in WA, visit Surf Lifesaving.

surf life savers patrolling a white sand beach with red and yellow flags on the beach
Scarborough Surf Lifesaving patrolling the beach

Scarborough Beach FAQ

How far is Scarborough Beach from Perth City?

Scarborough Beach is about 15 km from Perth city.

How far is Scarborough Beach from Perth Airport?

Scarborough Beach is between 26 and 30 km from Perth Airport, depending on the route.

Are dogs allowed at Scarborough Beach?

Dogs are not allowed on the main beach in Scarborough. However, Peasholm Beach, just south of Scarborough, is dog-friendly.

Western Australia Travel Guide

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