Looking to travel to WA? There’s no need to look any further than this local’s Western Australia Travel Guide – I’ve included travel resources, information, destination guides and tips to help you plan your trip to Western Australia.
Western Australia is a vast and incredibly diverse state that is full of natural wonders and activities to explore. From forests and beaches to dramatic outback and wildlife, there’s plenty to see and do in this beautiful part of Australia.
Whether you’re looking for vibrant city life or an Outback adventure, this free Western Australia trip guide can help make planning your holiday easy. With detailed information on attractions, hotels, transportation, and more, you’ll be able to plan the perfect Western Australia vacation!
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Western Australia Travel Guide: Facts
Western Australia is one of six states in Australia and its biggest. Covering a staggering 2.646 million km², it is only home to 2.6 million people. If it was a separate country, it would be the 10th largest in the world.
The capital, Perth, is one of the most isolated cities in the world. Adelaide, in South Australia, is the closest city at 2,131 km away as the crow flies but a whopping 2,700 km if driving. Perth is closer to Singapore than Sydney.
The landscape is varied with fertile soils in the South West region and the red dirt of the North. Western Australia has 12,889 km of coastline and 3,747 islands. The longest river is the Gascoyne River at 760 km and Lake Argyle is the largest built reservoir. The highest mountain is Mount Meharry in Karijini National Park (1,253m) and the highest waterfall is King George Falls in the Kimberley (80m).
The capital city, Perth, is blessed with mainly blue skies and an uncongested city. The white sandy beaches are uncrowded with some amazing surfing and snorkeling spots.
WA Travel Resources & Planning
Don’t try and plan your Western Australia vacation by yourself. We’ve got together all the resources we use that saves us money and makes our trip planning easier.
Find guides on the best time to visit WA, school holidays, getting around WA, Perth Airport guide, itineraries, and road trips.
This should be where you start your reseach and planning!
Let’s explore the diverse and breathtaking regions that Western Australia has to offer.
From the rugged landscapes of the Kimberley and the pristine beaches of the Coral Coast to the city of Perth and the stunning forests of the South West.
This is where you can research what to do in each region, where to stay, the best restaurants & bars, hikes & trails, shopping, and the best tours.
Weather and Best Time to Visit Western Australia
Western Australia experiences a range of climates due to its vast size.
In the northern regions, including the Kimberley and Broome, you’ll encounter a tropical climate with hot, humid summers and mild, dry winters.
Moving south, the climate becomes more Mediterranean, characterised by warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters.
To find out more, read this in-depth guide on the best time to visit Western Australia.
International Travel to Western Australia Information
Time in Western Australia
Western Australia is Western Standard Time – GMT/UTC plus eight hours – and has no daylight savings.
Arriving Into & Getting Around Western Australia
Perth has an international and domestic airport, separated by a 15-minute drive.
From T3 & T4, catch Bus 292 (a circular service between Redcliffe Station and Terminals 3 and 4 with services every 12 minutes during peak), then the Airport Line into the CBD. Bus Route 40 operates between T3 & T4 and Elizabeth Quay Bus Station.
The Indian Pacific is one of the greatest train journeys, travelling across the vast country from Sydney, Melbourne or Adelaide. This 3-day journey is the longest straight railroad in the world.
The easiest way to get around WA is by road. Hire a car or campervan and explore all that Western Australia has to offer. Make sure that the hire vehicle has unlimited kms included if you are planning to go on a road trip. You can drive here with your own driving licence if it is in English and has a photo of you. If not, you’ll need an International Driving Permit.
If you are staying in the Perth metro area, the Smartrider card covers public transport including the trains, buses, and ferries. You can find all the information on the Transperth website.
Knowing where to stay is one of the hardest parts of planning a trip. Luckily we are here to help.
For tips on where to stay, what type of accommodation is available, what price range you’re looking at plus recommendations are all taken care of in our Western Australia accommodation guide.
WA Road Trips
Hire a car and hit the road – the best way to see Western Australia. We use Discover Cars to compare all the major car rental companies to ensure we get the best deals.
Find out our top recommendations for the best road trips in Western Australia.
The Best Destinations in Western Australia
There are so many places to visit, natural and man made landmarks, things to do in Western Australia. From the white sandy beaches and wine region of the South West to the stunning gorges and waterfalls in the Kimberley and everything in between, there’s something for everyone.
See our list of the best destinations in Western Australia.
Hikes in Western Australia
If you enjoy hiking, then you will love the variety of trails in Western Australia. The epic Bibbulmun Track covers 1,003 km from Kalamunda to Albany. The Cape to Cape Track runs for 123 km along the Leeuwin-Naturaliste Ridge, between the lighthouses of Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin. These can both be walked in sections as well.
Of course there are shorter hikes ranging from day hikes to half an hour.
Diving and Snorkelling in Western Australia
Flora and Fauna in Western Australia
WA has the largest collection of wildflowers in the world with around 12,000 different species. It also has 141 mammal species plus 439 different types of reptiles.
Our Western Australia Wildflower Guide details where the best places are to see the wildflowers.
The Diverse Landscapes of Western Australia
Western Australia is blessed with an extraordinary variety of landscapes that will leave you breathless.
Venture further inland to uncover the wonders of the Kimberley region, where dramatic gorges, cascading waterfalls, and rugged mountain ranges create a landscape of raw beauty.
The southwestern corner of the state is adorned with ancient forests, including the majestic karri and tingle trees of the Valley of the Giants and the enchanting Margaret River region with its vineyards and surf breaks.
For those seeking a taste of the outback, the vast expanse of the Nullarbor Plain and the golden sands of the Pinnacles Desert will leave you in awe of nature’s grandeur.
Tours in Western Australia
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Best Places To Eat in Western Australia
The Perth food and bar scene has come a long way since I moved here in 2000. There are now some cool, funky bars to go with the venues that line the beach which are perfect for the West Australian sundowner.
You have a variety of restaurants to choose, from white linen fine dining to street markets.
The Margaret River region produce world-class wines, Truffles grow in Manjimup, seafood is found all along the coast and WA has excellent craft beers.
WA School Holidays
Use this WA School Holiday Planner to find out when the school holidays are in Western Australia.
Events in Western Australia
Perth Cup – Perth’s answer to the Ascot races
ATP Cup – one of the largest men’s tennis events
Lancelin Ocean Classic – a 4-day windsurfling event
Fringe World – a month-long arts festival
Leeuwin Concert – a concert held by Leeuwin Estate
Perth Festival – theatre, music, film, literature and visual arts
Nannup Music Festival – a fun-filled weekend of folk, blues, and world music
Margaret River Pro – top surfing competition run by the World Surf League
Avon Descent – a 124 km white-water rafting race for powerboats, kayaks, and canoes
Kings Park Festival – a celebration of spring with a stunning display of wildflowers
Perth Royal Show – Western Australia’s biggest agricultural show
Blessing of the Fleet – a traditional Catholic festival to bless the crayfish fleet
Blues at Bridgetown – a blues, folk, and roots music festival in the country town of Bridgetown
Tips for Travel to Western Australia
- The sun is harsh and can burn in minutes. Ensure you apply sunscreen frequently and protect your face and body as much as possible with long sleeves, hat and sunglasses.
- Stay hydrated and drink plenty of water. Don’t forget to take a re-usable bottle with you when you go out.
- Swim at patrolled beaches between the red and yellow flags. Pay attention to the surf life savers and the notices on the beach. WA have some treacherous beach conditions.
- Distances are vast in WA. Be prepared for long journeys and take plenty of breaks to avoid driver fatigue.
- Roads in the northern regions can become flooded in the wet season and may be unpassable.
- Try not to drive around dusk or dawn to avoid kangaroos and emus on the road (this is when they are most active).
- Road trains can be as long as 53m and extreme care must be taken when overtaking them.
- Read the Drive Safe Booklet before driving.
Brief History of Western Australia
The discovery of ancient stone artefacts suggest that Perth, or Mooro as it was originally known as, was occupied around 40,000 years ago. The Wadjuk people, a subgroup of the Noongar people, tell the Dreamtime story of how the Swan River (Derbal Yaragan) was formed by serpent-like creatures. The two Wargals lived under what is now Kings Park.
English explorer, William Dampier, sailed down part of the coast in 1688. However, he noted that there wasn’t any fresh water source and abandoned the area.
The Swan River Colony was established by the British Government in 1829 and became the first free settlement in Australia. At first there was no hostility between the settlers and the Wadjuk people. However, the government started selling off land cheaply with no regard to the rights of the indigenous people and there became competition for resources.
Yellagonga, the Wadjuk leader, ended up moving his camp to Lake Monger and eventually to the swamp lands north. By the time he died in 1843, his people had been dispossessed of all their land.
What is the Perth population?
Perth has a population of around 2.1 million (in 2023).
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Car Rental 🚘
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Campervan/RV Rental 🚐
DriveNow is a good resource to compare campervan hire in Western Australia as it includes all the large companies like Britz, Maui, and Jucy as well as smaller ones.
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