Located in the south-western corner of Western Australia, Perth is a laid-back city with beautiful natural attractions and a thriving cultural scene.
Whether you have been living in the city for a while, or you’re planning on moving there in the future, let’s take you through our eight favourite weird and wonderful Perth facts!
1. It’s the sunniest capital city in Australia
With over eight hours of sunshine each day, Perth is officially the sunniest capital city in Australia. This means that even in the colder winter months, everyone in Perth can enjoy the sunshine. With the opportunity for weekend picnics, alfresco dining and plenty of outdoor activities, all of these sunny days make Perth a pretty great place to live. Plus, Western Australia boasting the longest coastline of any state or territory in Australia means plenty of beach days!
2. Perth was first known as Boorloo
Perth City is located in the ancient country of the Whadjuk Nyoongar people, who have been the Traditional Owners of the south west of Western Australia for at least 45,000 years! The river is a sacred place for Nyoongar peoples and they preserved many stories of the Waugal, a water-serpent understood to be responsible for the creation and maintenance of the river and most of the water features around Perth.
3. It’s the only place in the world where you can see a quokka in the wild
Quokkas are small and very cute marsupials that live just off the coast of Perth on Rottnest Island. To give you a little insight into some Perth history, when Dutch explorer William de Vlamingh first came to Rottnest Island in 1696, he mistakenly took quokkas for giant rats. This earned the island the name Rat Nest before it was changed to Rottnest. Nowadays, people all over the world travel to Rottnest Island for a chance to take a selfie with the ‘happiest animal in the world.’ Another interesting Perth fact is that 5,000 years ago, you could have walked to Rottnest Island instead of taking the ferry!
4. Perth has eleven Sister Cities
Sister Cities are long-term partnerships between cities that provide citizens with the opportunity to share culture, education, trade and knowledge. The partnered cities will often share government and business contracts that provide a mutual benefit for each city’s citizens and its industries. Perth’s eleven sister cities include Chengdu in China, Houston in Texas, Kagoshima in Japan, Megisti in Greece, Nanjing in China, Perth in Scotland, Rhodes in Greece, San Diego in California, Seocho City in the Republic of Korea, Taipei in Taiwan and Vasto in Italy.
5. Perth was home to the world’s second to last Blockbuster store
Do you remember Blockbuster? The video rental store, with its recognisable blue and yellow logo, is peak ’90s nostalgia. You might recognise it more recently from movies like Captain Marvel and Deadpool. Perth was home to the second last remaining Blockbuster store in the world and the last in Australia. By the time Perth’s video and DVD rental store in the suburb of Morley closed in 2019, other Blockbusters around the world had been closed for many years. Currently, the last Blockbuster store is located in Oregon in the USA.
6. The city is one of the most isolated capital cities in the world
Being located 2,104 km away from the next closest capital city, Adelaide, Perth is known for being pretty isolated. However, Perth is also located in Australia’s largest state – Western Australia. From the desert in the east to the sparkling blue coastlines of the west, there’s so much to explore! And, with the second-highest population growth rate of all Australian capitals, there are always new people arriving in the city.
7. Perth is only five hours away from Singapore
Perth might be isolated from its Australian neighbours, but it’s super close to its Asian ones! Did you know, Perth and Singapore share the same time zone? This also means that Perth does not observe Daylight Savings Time like other cities around Australia. For international students from countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, China and Singapore, this means that it’s easier to connect with family and friends back home than it would be from elsewhere in the country.
8. Perth is nicknamed the City of Light
You may have heard Perth be referred to as the City of Light. The story behind this nickname goes back to 1962 when American astronaut, John Glenn, orbited the earth in the Friendship 7 spacecraft. When Glenn flew over Perth, everyone turned on their lights and Glenn could see the city sparkling from up in space. This earned Perth the nickname, the City of Light!