Six Days in Perth: A Photo Essay

We have been in Western Australia for six days and our skin is fried. Once concealed in the cold of a New Hampshire winter under jackets and hats, it is now exposed to the rays of an Australian summer–rays that inexplicably penetrate the layers of SPF 50+ we keep dutifully applying.

In short, we are a bit red.

The sunburns are only skin deep, though. Mentally, the heat is a welcome change and has inspired us to see a lot in a short time. Below is a collection of pictures from our first six days.

Walks To and through King’s Park (January 18, 2018 and January 22, 2018)

King’s Park is a gigantic urban park within walking distance of our apartment in Subiaco, a suburb of Perth. The park is not unlike Central Park in New York City. (Frangipani photo cred: Syd)

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On the way to King’s Park, we saw this restaurant. Santa Fe Restaurant. In Perth, Western Australia. AND it claims to serve New Mexican food! You can order enchiladas with red or green chile! We didn’t go in, but this certainly merits further investigation . . . more information to follow.
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We are amazed by the variety of cockatoos here. This is just one example. I just learned that this is a galah.
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War Memorial in King’s Park overlooking the Swan River (It was uncharacteristically cloudy on this day.)
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Syd and I took a 1 1/2 hour tour of King’s Park called “People and Plants” that focused on the connection of the park and its plants to people and history. For example, our tour guide Hamish (standing in the middle of the photo) showed us trees planted by Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh. He noted the impressiveness of the queen’s tree and the spindliness of the duke’s tree. He attributed this to the duke’s tree having to be replaced more than once due to damage–including from lightening. He said that the tree seems to have issues after the duke makes a comment that offends someone–which, according to Hamish, is quite often.
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The name of this bush escaped me after our tour today, but a trusted source up in Darwin reminded me that it is a banksia. They are common in Western Australia. I love the cone-like fuzzy flowers.
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Hamish, the King’s Park tour guide, told us that native Australian flowers tend to be red because they are pollinated by birds.
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This is Syd making her way through King’s Park on the way back to our apartment. It was wicked hot at this time.

Fremantle (January 19, 2018)

Fremantle is a pretty little coastal suburb of Perth easily accessible by a train we can catch close to our apartment. We only went for a very short day trip; I am sure we will have more adventures here in the coming months. For example, this time we didn’t have a chance to visit Fremantle Prison (no longer a working prison, now open to the public). This cute, picturesque town is now the site of music festivals, beachgoers, and foodies.

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Bather’s Beach, Fremantle
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Rich and Syd walking along the Fremantle waterfront–lots of restaurants and cafes

 

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This is what happens in Australia to tweens who don’t clean their rooms. To the stocks with them! Just kidding. Although we didn’t tour the large Fremantle prison, we did have a chance to see the Roundhouse–a small circular “gaol” close to the shore with eight cells. According to the website: “The Roundhouse is the oldest public building in the State of Western Australia. Opened in January 1831, just 18 months after settlement, it was built to hold any person convicted of a crime in the settlement and was used until 1886.” Apparently, offenders hung out in the stocks for no more than six hours. Syd gave it a go for like six seconds.
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This is a view of one of the main drags in Fremantle from the Roundhouse. The ellipses are part of a temporary art installation (the yellow color peels off). You can only get the full effect from this vantage point. See below for further detail.

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Cottesloe Beach (January 20, 2018)

This is an amazing beach we can also reach easily by train. One of the best features is the terraced area above the beach with shady pine trees. Other features: white sand, areas in the water with waves and no waves, some coral reef, and a gorgeous building (that you can barely see behind Rich in the first picture below) with a restaurant, food counter with fish and chips, and changing/shower rooms.

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Perth City (January 21, 2018)

On this day we spent our time in the central business district (CBD), or downtown, of Perth. Here you find the expected large office buildings, but there is also a mall, restaurants, a museum, and cafes. In addition, on this day we walked a short distance to the Elizabeth Quay area near the Swan River. (The Swan River is connected to the ocean, much like a harbor.)

At the Art Gallery of Western Australia, we had the opportunity to visit a temporary exhibit honoring Heath Ledger who was from Perth. The exhibit–lovingly put together–was packed with people who were moving through it with silent reverence. It was clear that he was one of Perth’s favorite sons. The exhibit had screens with cuts from his movies, the actual costumes he wore in many of his movies (e.g., Brokeback Mountain, Monster’s Ball, The Dark Knight, and Ten Things I Hate About You), objects from his youth (showcasing his athleticism), and a room showing music videos he directed (for artists and bands like Ben Harper and Modest Mouse). He was also a photographer and chess player. No one was taking pictures, so we didn’t, either. Instead, we joined our fellow visitors in just quietly reflecting on his work . . . we were not sorry we did.

We did, however, take pictures during other parts of our day . . .

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I like this picture for a couple of reasons. First, it reminds me a bit of Boston with an old historical building in the middle of a metropolitan area. Also, there is a McDonald’s. It’s just an interesting mix.
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Pedestrian bridge in the Elizabeth Quay area
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Elizabeth Quay waterfront

 

We are enjoying Western Australia very much . . . and we can’t wait to see more.

 

 

 

 

7 thoughts on “Six Days in Perth: A Photo Essay

  1. So glad you are having a great time! I’m not a botanist but would say those fuzzy flowers look like a Banksia to me. Also that cool pink parrot is a Galah I still love seeing the local birds here 🙂 I also recommend for food/beer that is family friendly check out the Little Creatures brew pub in Freo

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    1. A galah . . . thanks! And that’s right, banksia. The name was on the tip of my tongue! 🙂 I just updated the post with the names. . . . Yes, we are having an awesome time. All three of us are learning a lot. We will definitely check out that pub in Freo!

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  2. Gorgeous pictures — what a wonderful time you are having already!
    Do be careful of that sun! I am recovering from my latest bought with skin cancer — sutures were removed a week ago — 3 spots on my face (nose, forehead, and ear.) Due to all the surgeries I’ve had on the one spot on my nose, my nostril has “collapsed, and I may have surgery to “fix” it in about 6 weeks.

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    1. I am so sorry to hear about the spots you have been having to deal with. We had Syd read your comment to hammer home how important it is to carefully apply sunscreen. We will definitely be careful about our sun exposure.

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