Check out what's on in Perth this December.
It's time to set off for your favourite beach for a picnic or barbecue, enjoy the regional and national parks and waterways so close to the city, and laze away some time in Perth CBD itself in a courtyard bar or on the foreshore.
Things to Do on the Perth Coastline
The beautiful beaches of Perth skirt the coastline with barely a break from North Fremantle to Mullaloo. Hire a bike and explore them all, cruise up the coast by car, or settle into one great spot for a totally relaxing time.
From Coast beach bar at Port Beach and Bib and Tucker cafe restaurant in the Leighton precinct, there's Cottesloe's iconic Indiana and a string of oceanfront cafes. City Beach's spectacular waterfront dining is a must, and don't miss the beach pool at surf spot Scarborough or sunset at the boat harbour on Sorrento Quay, Hillarys.
Artisan markets are springing up all over Perth in December. As well as our favourite the Scarborough Sunset Markets at Scarborough Beach. Explore the range of artisan goods, homewares, clothing and of course, the array of food tricks every Thursday evening throughout Summer.
The Scarborough Christmas Carols are back in 2022, get in the Christmas spirit on December 11th and head on town to the Scarborough Beach precinct.
Hillarys Boat Harbour
Stroll around the boardwalk and partake in ice cold gelato or a dinner of fish and chips this summer. While you're here, run down to the beach for a swim or take the kids to AQWA (the Aquarium of WA) or sit back on the boardwalk at the Breakwater Tavern while the boats bob and clink in the harbour.
City Beach to Cottesloe
Beach cafes and restaurants are the ideal place to be on a warm Perth December day.
Odyssea on City Beach was awarded a bronze medal in the Tourism Restaurants category of the WA Tourism Awards and is well worth a visit. This was no surprise, given the sweeping ocean views and delicious food being served up right on the beachfront in this stylishly designed building.
Relax on the long deck when the cooling afternoon breeze comes in, or sit inside and enjoy the same views through glass. Other great places to eat on the oceanfront at City Beach include Hampton's and Clancy's Fish Bar.
A 15 minute stroll north brings you to The Kiosk at Floreat Beach, which is great for families, and a 10 minute drive south takes you into the fabulous Cottesloe strip. Excellent snack or dining choices here are the Blue Duck and Barchetta right on the beach front, the famous Indiana Cottesloe, the very casual Beaches Cafe and Il Lido Italian Canteen.
There is still time to explore Mandurah's magical festive lights, step aboard the famous Mandurah Christmas Lights Cruise with Mandurah Cruises and be immersed in kaleidoscopes of colour streaming across winding waterways. Renowned as Mandurah and Perth’s best Christmas lights ~ and the biggest display in Western Australia ~ each year we proudly host thousands of families and people of all ages to share in this festive extravaganza. There are only limited spots left, so get in quick to secure this truly unique experience.
Things to Do in Perth's Parks
There's an extraordinary number of beautiful national and regional parks within the Perth metro area. The Perth air is so fresh and the parklands so well preserved that it's hard to believe you're within sight of a major city.
Lesmurdie Falls National Park
The Perth Hills is the place to look for vast national parks with breathtaking views across to the coast. In December, Perth is hotting up, so pack plenty of water with your picnic and look for spots close to rivers, creeks and waterfalls.
Lesmurdie Falls are often held up as the most spectacular waterfall in Perth. Park at the top of the Falls, where you'll find a picnic area and fabulous vista from the first viewing platform, which is easy to reach. The climb from top to bottom or vice versa only for moderately experienced hikers, but there are plenty of other easier trails around the park.
If you're looking for more things to do in the Perth Hills, plan your trip for 3rd December when Kalamunda Artisan Market comes to the Town Square. Featuring more than 170 stalls, this is one of the largest in Perth and an ideal venue to find unique Christmas gifts from amongst the arts and crafts made by local creatives. All funds raised go to local charitable projects. If visiting on another weekend, be sure to visit the Kalamunda Farmers Market which is held every Sunday, and stock up on beverages, bread, cakes, pastries, eggs, fresh produce and more.
Explore the Perth Hills Artisan Markets, held on Sunday 17 & 18 December, and check out the crafters to the makers, the local producers, the growers, the jam masters, the artisians, the creatives, honey producers, cake makers, jewellers, lotion makers, spices and more. Hear local musicians and buskers, indulge in delicious food and have a fabulous day amongst the hills of Perth.
Another must this December, is basking under the Swan Valley stars, whilst enjoying a Christmas movie of course! Mandoon Estate is bringing back their extremely popular Christmas movie series! Watch The Polar Express, The Grinch or ELF and nibble on a pre-ordered picnic hamper. Or grab a bite to eat and sample award winning wines and beers in the picturesque gardens of the estate before hand. Tickets are limited.
Canning River Regional Park
Perth is famous for the vast sweeps of the Swan River as it meanders down to the coast at Fremantle. Less well known is the Canning River, which joins the Swan just after passing under Canning Bridge at Applecross, where you'll find lots of outdoorsy things to do on Perth's doorstep.
The final stretches of the Canning fall within Canning River Regional Park - a haven of beautiful bushland, wetlands, pathways and picnic areas within the southern suburbs. The river is home to an array of birdlife, fish and turtles, and a wonderful spot for kayaking and swimming.
Things to Do in Perth City
December in Perth wouldn't be the same without a visit to see the Christmas lights. This year, the Rio Tinto Christmas Lights Trail has been created by the City of Perth, with 35 dazzling light installations around the city for you to find. Follow the maps provided on the CoP website, VisitPerth.com.au. This Free event covers 6km across the City of Light, over 46 summer evenings and will allow you to find unique large-scale light installations ranging from traditional Christmas icons and loveable Australian animals, to immersive projections on historic buildings. Enjoy festive entertainment and performances throughout the city every Friday and Saturday night too!
CBD Shops and Bars
It's Christmas shopping time throughout December, and Perth CBD has it all. Explore the arcades and laneways around Forrest Place, Hay Street Mall and Murray Street Mall before settling into a leafy courtyard in one of Perth's small bars.
While you're browsing around, don't miss London Court, between Hay Street and Murray Street Malls. Popular with holiday makers for souvenirs, this is a great place to find curios, gifts and quirky stocking fillers.
Swan River Foreshore
Look for what's on in Perth in December to help you plan your visit to the city.
When you're ready to take the weight off your feet for a while, or spend a lazy few hours by the river, get to know The Point Bar and Grill, sitting right on the Swan River across from the city foreshore. With lounges and balconies overlooking the water across to Heirisson Island, this is one of those truly unique things to do in Perth.
Elizabeth Quay is another great area on the Perth riverside to kick back for a while.