The Best Weekend Getaways from Perth

Perth makes it easy to get away for a weekend and experience new horizons
Perth makes it easy to get away for a weekend and experience new horizons | © Viktor Posnov / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Cassie Wilkins
3 August 2020

One of the best things about Perth is how easy it is to get away from the city for a weekend and experience a whole other world. From forests and valleys to secluded beaches and rugged coastlines – from red dirt roads and historic buildings to artwork and amazing food and drink – some of Western Australia’s finest destinations are a short drive or train ride away. Grab your friends, queue up your favourite playlists, and hit the road – it’s time to go on an adventure.

Dunsborough/Yallingup (Margaret River)

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Everyone knows that Margaret River is the undisputed queen of weekend getaways, with caves, wineries, forests, surf and beaches within a short radius. For a different take on the ‘douth’ (down south) trip, head to Dunsborough or Yallingup and enjoy all the usual classics, along with Cape Naturaliste, Sugarloaf Rock and Injidup Natural Spa. Dunsborough is 250km (155mi) south of Perth, and 40 minutes from Margaret River on the highway through ‘Cowtown’, although it’s well worth taking the scenic route along Caves Road.

Collie/Ferguson Valley

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The  picturesque rural and farming area  in the Ferguson Valley near Dardanup South Western Australia is a tourists' paradise with hills and valleys.
© infinity / Alamy Stock Photo
A couple of hours southeast of Perth, the Ferguson Valley is the perfect weekend escape when you’re craving some adventure and a nature reset. Don’t miss Collie’s Black Diamond Lake with its turquoise waters and Honeymoon Pool at Wellington Dam National Park. If you prefer a more adventurous getaway, Collie has plenty of outdoor activities, including waterskiing, mountain biking, 4WDing and kayaking. For a rural retreat with a twist, stay around Dardanup and visit nearby Gnomesville.

Kalgoorlie

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Street scene including clock tower in the outback gold mining town of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia Australia Pacific
© robertharding / Alamy Stock Photo
If the outback is calling, jump on the train and head east to Kalgoorlie, watching the Wheatbelt and the Goldfields pass you by. This historic town and its environs offer plenty to do and see, from heritage hotels to ghost towns and goldmines, including the giant Super Pit, which is pretty damn super – especially at sunset. The train journey takes around five hours. If you prefer to drive or want to soak up the history, head onto the Great Eastern Highway and follow the Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail.

Jurien Bay

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Ruins of the Jurien Bay Jetty, Western Australia, Australia
© RooM the Agency / Alamy Stock Photo
Two and a half hours north of Perth, Jurien Bay is quickly becoming a favourite weekend getaway destination, especially amongst families who come up here to see the endangered Australian sea lions at the Jurien Bay Marine Park. You can also see World War II ruins, visit Lesueur National Park and explore the coastline. Make a day out of the drive up there, stopping en-route at Lancelin, the Pinnacles and Cervantes.

Blackwood Valley

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The Blackwood River winds through WA’s lush southwestern hinterland, through shady jarrah forests, orchards, lavender farms, wineries and quaint towns like Bridgetown, Balingup and Nannup. About three hours south of Perth, the Blackwood Valley region is the perfect place to spend a weekend forest bathing, relaxing and soaking up the heritage buildings, art galleries and wineries of this picturesque region.

Albany

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Four and a half hours south of Perth, the historic city of Albany was the first colonial settlement in WA, although it’s now better known for its thriving foodie scene, beaches, national parks and marine life. From whale-watching to exploring Torndirrup National Park and admiring the coastline – from checking out the Public Silo Art Trail to hiking up to Castle Rock in nearby Porongurup – Albany is full of hidden treasures.

These recommendations were updated on August 3, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.