It’s well known that wider WA is home to some of the most beautiful national parks the world over, whether it’s red earth, white sands or turquoise blue waters. If you don’t have the time to head all the way to Karijini or Cape Le Grand, Perth is surrounded by national parks to explore that are less than an hour away by car.
Here are the national parks near Perth you need to visit this weekend.
John Forrest National Park
Best visited in autumn and winter, now’s the time to pack for a day trip to John Forrest and go exploring. With several trails running through the park to hike, mountain bike or drive, the lookouts boast epic views of the Swan Coastal Plain and Perth city. Once you’re tired from all that activity, picnic among the kangaroos and plenty of other native critters living in the park. With plenty of 2—5km walks including the Swan View Tunnel and the Hovea Falls trail, John Forrest is perfect for a cruisy half-day trip to refresh your senses.
Bold Park in City Beach is close enough to home that it’s achievable mid-week for those that need a quick breather from city life. With over 1,000 native and non-native species of flora, fauna and fungi in the park, it’s hard to fathom it’s just a stone’s throw from Floreat. Bring your runners and head in for a scenic walk between work hours.
Kalamunda National Park
23 kilometres east of Perth, Kalamunda National Park is one of the less-visited parks of Perth, which is all the more reason to check it out! With beautiful woodlands of jarrah, marri, wandoo and butter gums shading the trails, it’s the perfect day trip for a bushwalk, mountain bike or even a horse ride in the area.
Beelu National Park
With access to endless walking trails and an entry point to the Bibbulmun Track, Beelu National Park boasts a huge range of lookout points with panoramic views and the largest living English oak trees in Western Australia. If you’re wanting to bring your pup along for the ride, you’ll be happy to know Fred Jacoby Park has a dog-friendly area too.
Korung National Park
A quick 45-minute trip from the Perth CBD brings you to the Korung National Park, with a generous amount of walking trails for all ages and abilities, it’s a popular spot for bushwalking and mountain biking, particularly in spring when the wildflowers are out. If you’ve only got half a day, the Mason & Bird Heritage Trail is a quick three-kilometre walk along the timber tramway to the site of the original mill. With a range of other trails, from the Lions Lookout Walking trail, Victoria Reservoir Walk, Chanel Ten Tower Walk and The Carmel Walk Trail—there’s no shortage of trails to explore while you’re in the area.
Yanchep National Park
One of the more diverse parks to pay a visit to on the weekend, Yanchep National Park has more than 400 recorded caves to explore, trails ranging from 500 metres to 46 kilometres in length, picnic spots among the woodlands and a campsite at Henry White Oval for those keen to stay overnight. Just 50 kilometres out of Perth you’ll find a koala boardwalk, western grey kangaroos in abundance and woodlands and wetlands filled with a variety of bird species to spot along the trails.
For a slightly more intrepid version of your usual morning walk, the Cascade Trail is just 22 kilometres east of the CBD and home to the tallest waterfall in Perth. After a narrow and slightly rocky ascent up the Cascade Trail, you’ll hear the sounds of rushing water before coming across Lesmurdie Falls. To reach the top of the falls, follow the Foot of the Falls Trail where you’ll find two panoramic lookout points and after a 1-kilometre descent you’ll reach the foot of the falls, another beautiful view that’s very worth clambering over the rocky trail to reach.
Midgegooroo National Park
Previously known as Canning National Park, Midgegooroo Park is home to several mountain bike and bushwalking trails of all levels, less than an hour out of town by car. If you’re looking for a zen weekend getaway, the Eden Light Retreat is nearby offering an oasis outside the city and a range of therapies from yoga, sauna sessions and specialised massage to enjoy after a weekend of walking.
For more awesome nature inspired things to do in Perth click here.
Bold Park | Image credit: Nancy Hanna