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Perth is the capital city of Western Australia and is known as “Australia’s sunniest capital”. It has a total land area of 6,417.9 km2 and has a population of 2,059,48, making it the fourth most populous city in Australia. Perth is divided into 30 local government areas and is made up of over 250 suburbs.
Outside the Perth Central Business District, there are essential urban areas in the city’s metropolitan area; these are Armadale, Fremantle, Joondalup, Midland and Rockingham.
Perth was founded in 1829 by Captain James Stirling to serve as the administrative centre of the Swan River Colony. Before the arrival of the Europeans, the original inhabitants of Perth were Aboriginal Australians (Noongar People), who were believed to have lived in the area for at least 38,000 years.
The city was named Perth according to the wishes of British politician Sir George Murray who was born in Perth, Scotland.
The first years of the settlement experienced hostile encounters with the Noongar people. However, due to the number of buildings being established in and around the area, the Noongar people were gradually dispossessed of their land.
Around 1850, Western Australia became open to convicts to work in farms and businesses due to shortage of labour. Around 9,721 convicts arrived in the state in the span of 18 years. In 1856, Queen Victoria proclaimed Perth as a city. Gradually, amenities in the city improved with a hospital, town hall, park, gardens and zoo being established during that decade.
Perth today is the administrative centre for government and business in Western Australia. The economic base and population in the city have created opportunities for companies and markets to flourish.
The city’s Central Business District (CBD) is located along Swan River and Kings Park. Perth Arena, a neo-futuristic entertainment and sporting venue is found in the CBD, while St. Georges Terrace is the main street for offices.
The area of retail and entertainment in the CBD is found on Hay Street and Murray Street (pedestrian malls), while high-end fashion labels, like Louis Vuitton and Chanel, are located on King Street, also in the CBD. Cool and eclectic finds are found on Oxford Street in the locality of Leederville.
In Perth, education is compulsory for children ages 6 to 17. Children could attend either public schools or private schools that usually are associated with a religion. The city has four public universities, which are the University of Western Australia, Curtin University, Murdoch University and Edith Cowan University. The University of Notre Dame Australia is the only private university in the city. Two TAFE campuses are found in the Perth metropolitan area.
For arts and culture, the Perth Cultural Centre is home to a number of the city’s arts and cultural institutions like the Art Gallery of Western Australia, Western Australia Museum and The State Theatre Centre of WA.
The city has two airports, the Perth Airport, which has domestic and international flights and the Jandakot Airport, which is for general aviation and charter flights.
While most residents are dependent on their vehicles, Perth has plenty of public transport from buses, trains and ferries, provided by Transperth. Around the city centre, Perth provides zero-fare bus and train trips in the Free Transit Zone.
The city is also linked with the capital cities of Adelaide and Sydney through the Indian Pacific passenger rail service, which runs once per week in each direction.
Kings Park and Botanic Gardens
This 1,000-acre parkland offers beautiful views of the Swan River and Darling Range. Plants native to Western Australia and other species from South Africa and California are found here. Other areas that are a highlight in this park is the acacia garden, Place of Reflection and a water garden.
Just 25 minutes from Perth City is Swan Valley, the state’s oldest grape-growing region. Visitors here could get a taste of the fresh local produce at the valley’s highly acclaimed restaurants.