What’s Hot in Perth This Winter?
Temperatures might dip a little in winter, but Perth’s local wines, comfort foods and migrating humpback whales puts hibernation well and truly on the back burner. Here’s how to make the most of a winter break in the city.
Mild weather and plenty of sunshine means there’s no need to hibernate your way through winter in Western Australia. The state capital has plenty of bars and restaurants that come into their own this season, as well as activities that will help you get the most out of Perth’s stunning surrounds.
Raise a glass
Nothing says winter like sipping a delicious whiskey, and that’s exactly what’s on offer at Whipper Snapper’s onsite bar. At Australia’s first bourbon-style whiskey distillery, situated on the outskirts of the CBD, the team use local ingredients in copper pot stills before ageing the liquid in new American white oak casks. The result is Upshot – a rich, creamy whiskey with flavours of light butterscotch, caramel and nutmeg. And thanks to a collaboration with Perth-based roasters Five Senses Coffee, visitors can also wake up while they warm up with smooth Irish coffees that feature the roasters’ Crompton Road blend.
There may not be snow at The Aviary, but there’s plenty of Scandinavian style. Perth’s largest rooftop bar is the setting for pop-up igloos during the winter months, with guests snuggling under blankets as they take in the city’s sparkling skyline.
European beers come into their own in winter, and the Swan Valley’s Elmar’s in the Valley is the perfect spot to hold your own impromptu Oktoberfest. Just a 40-minute drive from Perth’s CBD, this microbrewery serves German-style beers in a range of sizes, from small tasters to one-litre steins. There’s suitably hearty food on offer too – think pork schnitzel and bratwurst with plenty of sauerkraut. Or for a hit of the Mediterranean close to the city, graze on sardines, seafood and bread at Brika, a few steps from the CBD in Highgate.
Feast on comfort food
Feasting is always on the agenda in Perth and lower temperatures are the perfect excuse for comfort food. That means pasta, which is served by the metre at Solo Pasta in the inner northern suburb of Mount Lawley. The Italian-inspired menu recommends three metres of pasta per dish but, if it’s a carb fest you’re after, then you can always order more. The pick-and-mix menu sees diners selecting their pasta flavour before choosing toppings and sauces. Swap spaghetti for noodles at Northbridge’s Lucky Chan’s Laundry + Noodle Bar, where spicy bowls of soup – like miso buttered chowder ramen featuring clams from Western Australia’s Shark Bay – will keep you fired up. If (fancy) burgers and (craft) beer are more your thing, Victoria Park’s Dutch Trading Co’s gourmet pub food and 26 taps raise the bar when it comes to the city’s craft beer scene. Need shelter from the rain? You’ll find it in the comfy chairs and comforting brunch dishes served at Sayers Sisters in Northbridge. With its communal table and wall of framed photos, it’s like walking into someone’s house – someone who serves everything from omelettes and tagines to waffles and brownies, that is.
Marvel at WA’s whales
Saying goodbye to summer means saying hello to whales, as the ‘humpback highway’ that passes Perth hits gridlock. Watch out for southern right and blue whales making their way along Western Australia’s coast between May and December too. Whale-watching tours run out of Perth and Fremantle or, if you’re DIY-ing, gaze out to sea at midday when the sun is directly overhead for your best chance of spotting these magnificent creatures. West Coast Drive, running alongside the sparkling Indian Ocean, offers another opportunity to get closer to nature just a short distance from the city.
Embrace the great outdoors
Take advantage of the cooler weather and swap four wheels for two feet to explore Perth’s scenic trails. The 2.5km Law Walk sees winter ramblers wander through the city’s stunning Kings Park, while the 9km Dell to South Ledge trail, a slightly longer walk in the Perth Hills, takes in the rugged beauty of Beelu National Park. En route back, call in at Core Cider House for a seasonal pressed cider.
A winter visit doesn’t mean missing out – you’ll still experience the very best Perth has to offer. Pack a jumper – just in case – and prepare for a warm welcome.