Luring locals as successfully as it does its six million annual visitors, Kings Park is one of the world’s largest and most beautiful inner-city parks. Living up to its name this immense native parkland on the slopes of Mount Eliza offers spectacular views over the city skyline where the Swan and Canning Rivers meet and is definitely the best park in Perth.
At 400 hectares, it is 60 hectares larger than Central Park in NYC and for locals, equally as iconic. Home of the Western Australian Botanic Gardens, it is studded with trees, vast green lawns, fountains, pavilions, kids playgrounds, a suspended bridge and dense wildflower carpets – all just five minutes from the Perth CBD.
On entering Kings Park via Fraser Avenue, smooth, pale lemon-scented gum trees line the road stretching into Perth’s blue sky. Each tree features memorial plaques for prominent Western Australian citizens commemorated in 1929, the centenary of the colonial establishment. At night coloured lights illuminate these iconic trees making this a beautiful spot for a sunset picnic.
Two-thirds of Kings Park is protected untamed scrub with sand or paved trails, a conservation reserve in the urban area. The walking tracks and designated cycle paths allow visitors the chance to appreciate over 3,000 species of the State’s unique flora.
Western Australia War Memorial
Kings Park is also home to the State War Memorial Precinct where more than 40,000 people congregate every year for the Anzac Day Dawn Service. This area features the Cenotaph, Court of Contemplation, Flame of Remembrance and a Pool of Reflection; with memorials to various battles, military units, prisoners of war and other groups found throughout the parklands.
Free Walking Tours in Kings Park
Another big plus for this park is the free walking tours run by passionate volunteers. The tours run daily at 10am, 12pm and 2pm. Tours depart from opposite the Aspects of Kings Park Gallery Shop. Self-guided walks are also a great way to experience the trails at your own pace. For spectacular views and an encounter with the Western Australian wildflowers and fauna, our suggestion is to take the Botanic Garden Discovery Walk.
Tree Top Walk in Kings Park
Walk among the treetops on the Lotterywest Federation Walkway. The famous “glass bridge” suspended 52 metres in the air over a canopy of tall eucalypts offers spectacular views of the city and its waterways. This experience will leave you breathless! The elevated section of the walkway is open between 9.00am to 5.00pm daily, and entry is free.
History of Kings Park
We think it is pretty incredible that this green space has been retained in the heart of a capital city! All thanks to the efforts of John Septimus Roe – the first surveyor-general of the Swan River colony. After European settlement in 1829, Roe protected the wooded area, noting its value. But by 1835 its use as a timber mill was more attractive to Perth’s early inhabitants. Logging continued for 36 years, until a large tract was successfully preserved. By 1890, the parkland was extended and soon after it officially opened. It was given the name Kings Park in 1901 to mark King Edward VII’s ascension to the throne.
Perth people love being outdoors enjoying the sunshine, and Kings Park is the place to be. Every weekend you will see picnic rugs covering the vast grass along Fraser Avenue and around the War Memorial. It’s a magnificent setting for social events and weddings.
No matter how often I go, this park blows me away with its beauty and views every time.
Things to know before you go:
- Kings Park is completely free for entry.
- To get to Kings Park from Perth city is free using public transport. Transperth bus route 935 travels from St Georges Terrace right into the heart of the Park at the Fraser Avenue Precinct.
- The main car park is Wadjuk Carpark, located behind Fraser’s Restaurant.
- The Kings Park Festival runs every year in September, with stunning displays, a variety of walks, talks and wellness events plus thousands of WA wildflowers in full bloom.
- Dogs are welcome in most areas of Kings Park provided they are on a leash no longer than two metres.
- Botanical Cafe near the Information Centre is a great spot for coffee with a view or lunch while visiting the park and its attractions.