by Troy Mutton – Perth is OK
Alright so Valentine’s Day is coming up and you’ve ticked off all the usual suspects, and it’s time to impress your significant other with something a little out-of-the-box. A little less run-of-the-mill. A little…Rockingham? This February is the perfect chance to get down to this cruisy, coastal city and explore some pretty special gems. Kids are back at school and this beachside haven is yours for the taking – read on below for a bunch of suggestions on what you can do in and around our southern coastal cousin:
Get hearts racing on the sea and in the sky
If you really want to set some hearts aflutter, why not get the adrenaline pumping with some high octane action on the beach? Jet Ski Tours Perth run a couple of different tours – a cruisier Eco Tour spotting dolphins, or the 1.5hr Blast Tour heading out to Carnac and Garden Island, with a high likelihood of spotting sea lions, dolphins and more. If that’s not high octane enough for you, take to the skies on a tandem skydive with Skydiving Perth, offering unparalleled views of Rockingham’s stunning coastline.
Take a surf lesson at Secret Harbour or Wind Surfing at Waikiki
Prefer a different speed of transport when on the water? Secret Harbour is one of the metro regions most popular surf spots, with some kind of waves at most times of the year. This makes it a great spot to learn to surf, and there’s plenty of operators in the area to get you up and riding in no time. Alternatively you can have a crack at kitesurfing at one of the best places in the world to do so – Waikiki.
Bond over locally brewed craft beers or curious cocktails
Perhaps you and your partner consider yourselves to be craft beer connoisseurs? In which case we bet you didn’t know that the Rockingham region has not one, but three microbreweries slinging delicious ales to your (love) heart’s content. You’ve got the Whitelakes Brewhouse & Tavern (pictured, below) right on Lake Walyungup; Azacca Kitchen in Safety Bay; and The Collective in the Rockingham Shopping Centre. If cocktails are more your style, our Rockingham resident reckons Catalano & Co do some of the best in the west.
Play around at Perth Aqua Park
While the aquatic playgrounds along the beaches of Rockingham are plenty of fun, inland at Baldivis’ Perth Aqua Park you can add a hefty dose of adventure as well. And while you could race your SO along the huge inflatable park with over 100 different interconnected obstacles, perhaps some cable ski fun or some wakeboarding will really get your hearts aflutter.
Share a seafood platter or Spanish delights at an award winning restaurant
Coastal city means seafood delights, and you’ll find a couple of epic seafood platters at Golden Ponds in Baldivis (where you can even go fishing yourself), and Latitude 32 (pictured, below) overlooking the Rockingham foreshore. Rockingham is also home to quite possibly our favourite tapas restaurant in Western Australia, Rustico – make sure you do the degustation! If it’s a more casual daytime feed you’re after, Bayside Barista do the best brunches in town, while Caveman BBQ’s huge American-style smash burgers and grill will rattle your bones!
Spend A Day Exploring The Shoalwater Islands Marine Park
This protected ocean park located on the coast of Rockingham is a marine biodiversity hotspot, home to penguins, sea lions, bottlenose dolphins and a variety of sea-faring birds. Pull up on a white sandy beach for a day of relaxing, or go diving, snorkelling, SUPing or kayaking in waters rich with marine life (there are plenty of places you can hire the latter). A little further north you’ll find another excellent aquatic playground – Point Peron and Cape Peron.
Find true love on Penguin Island
Did you know that Little Penguins (the species found on Penguin Island) are highly monogamous with a separation rate of only around 20 per cent? If that incredibly romantic fact doesn’t get the juices flowing then a quick ferry over to Penguin Island to visit the cute little swimming birds of Rockingham surely will. Enjoy penguin feeding on the island a few times a day, or jump on a cruise to see dolphins and sea lions romping around in the wild.
Enjoy a picture perfect picnic
Rockingham is littered with prime picnic places perfect to take your better half. The obvious one is Rockingham foreshore, where a picnic on the lush green grass followed by an ice cream is basically a rite of passage. Outside of the foreshore Harrington Waters Reserve, Centenary Park, Lions Park and City Park are a few of many others kitted out with plenty of shady trees and barbecues for a romantic lunch.
Hit a hiking trail or two
If you’re chasing something a little more interesting and/or challenging, there’s a variety of great walking trails around Rockingham. Lake Richmond features a critically endangered thrombolite community, along with a variety of wild birds to spot along the 3km Anne Mueller Environmental Walk. For a full list of walking trails around Rockingham head here.
Enjoy a sunset symphony at Symphony On The Green
Okay it might be a few days after Valentine’s Day but it doesn’t mean it can’t be a romantic night under the stars. As part of the expansive Perth Festival program, Symphony On The Green features the Perth Symphony Orchestra performing a new work from Richard Walley, one weaving Noongar and Celtic stories together in a special free concert. Get more info here.
For more inspiration on what to do around Perth, visit the Perth is OK website: The ultimate local’s guide to Perth, Western Australia. A one-stop-shop for the latest news, everything to eat, drink, go, see and do in Perth and beyond.