Travel Western Australia

A Local’s Guide to Cottesloe, Perth

By on March 14, 2019

We were lucky enough to live in Perth for two years. Our final week in this beautiful city was spent staying at iconic Cottesloe Beach. We had visited Cott (as the locals say) loads of times and loved it so much we decided to have a staycation here. I’m so glad we did as we got to explore one of our favourite beachside suburbs even more. 

Cottesloe is located just an easy 20 minute drive from both Perth CBD and the popular historical town of Fremantle. The contrast of snow-white sand against turquoise water and the art deco ‘Indiana Tea House’ makes this beach one of the prettiest we’ve seen. It’s the perfect place for chilling out as well as getting active with your family and friends. 

Aside from some amazing places to eat, we found a few hidden gems that only the locals know about and some great spots that have incredible ocean views. 

If you’re a Perth local, hopefully you’ll be inspired to visit somewhere you’ve never been before and if you’re visiting Perth be sure to add a few of these things to your bucket list. 

A secret garden  

Have you heard of the Cottesloe Civic Centre? We randomly came across this peaceful hidden gem when we were staying in a cottage just around the corner. Located a short walk up the hill from the beach, these beautiful gardens are well worth a visit. Bring the kids as The Main Lawn (regularly used for wedding ceremonies) is a great spot to kick a ball. There’s also a small playground perfect for young children. 

Cottesloe Civic Centre is a hidden gem worth visiting with the whole family.

All day brekkie

Literally down the hill from the Cottesloe Civic Centre is the local’s fave John Street Cafe. We came here a couple of times for brekkie and the corn fritters were my all time fave. This lovely pastel blue art deco cafe is just a short walk away from the hustle and bustle of the beach. We’d recommend making a booking if you can as it’s pretty popular on weekends however walk-ins are welcome. 

John Street Cafe is ideal for an all-day brekkie.

Caffeine hit

It’s no secret I love a latte (or two). Many times during our two years in Perth we’d take a drive to Cottesloe and grab a takeaway coffee from Il Lido. From here you can walk a short distance along the foreshore to a great playground overlooking the ocean. This play space is divided into a toddler area and a bigger kids area. The climbing frames and nest swing were always a big hit with our boys. The perfect way to start your weekend!

A take-away coffee then a stroll to the foreshore playground is the perfect start to the day.

Fly a kite  

Up on the hill just above the golf course is the Cottesloe Rugby Union Football Club. Somehow they scored the prime position in Cottesloe with stunning views over the ocean. We came across this spot when our eldest son got to play rugby here one weekend. There’s no better place to fly a kite on a windy day!

A footy field with a view made for flying a kite on a windy day.

Get active with your kids

Next time you visit Cottesloe take your scooters or bikes and explore the Cottesloe foreshore pathway. There’s endless ocean views and if you head towards North Cottesloe you’ll find this Instaworthy circle sculpture! If you’re super fit you can continue cycling the 25 kilometres from Cottesloe to gorgeous Hillary’s in the north. 

A cool sculpture find along the Cottesloe Beach pathway.

Sculpture by the Sea

If you’re visiting Perth you should try and time your visit in with the annual Sculpture by The Sea event in March. This amazing outdoor sculpture exhibition is one of our favourites and it’s the perfect opportunity to get some unique photos of stunning Cottesloe Beach. Caution: It’s a very popular event so unless you can make it up at 5am for sunrise be prepared for crowds (especially on the weekend)

Sculpture by the Sea is our favourite annual event in Perth.

Views for days

Aside from having a swim in the ocean at Cottesloe Beach, make sure you walk out on to the rocky pier (named a groyne). You get the most spectacular views back to Cottesloe Beach and the famous Art Deco Indiana Restaurant. This is still one of my favourite views in Perth. 

The view of Cottesloe Beach from the groyne is spectacular.

Sweet treats

Funnily enough Red Spoon Gelato is one of my boys favourite places to visit in Cottesloe. We used to get a gelato then walk across the road and sit under one of the huge Norfolk pine trees dotted along the grassy esplanade. We love taking in the ocean view from here and watching the rainbow lorikeets as it heads towards dusk. Don’t forget the ice-cream toppings. 

Be sure to try a Red Spoon gelato when you visit Cottesloe Beach.

Another day comes to an end

Something that should be on everyones bucket list is watching the sun sink into the Indian ocean. There’s no better place to tick this off than at Cottesloe Beach. Finish off your day in Cottesloe by getting some fish ’n’ chips or pack a picnic and settle in for the most unforgettable nature show. Need I say more. 

Watching the sunset over Cottesloe Beach is a must.

Where to stay

If you’re wanting to experience staying near the beach in Perth, we would recommend Cottesloe. To find a house, cottage or apartment just head to Cottesloe Beach House Stays.  This is how we managed to find the charming little cottage we stayed in for a week. 

The cottage was very clean and tidy, towels and bedding were provided as well as basic laundry and kitchen essentials. The kitchen had fully stocked cupboards with plates, utensils, pots and pans. There was even a mini library out the front! Our family staycation in Cottesloe has left us with many special memories we’ll never forget. 

The Cottesloe beach cottage we stayed in was perfect for our mini family staycation.

We’re hoping to return to Cottesloe one day in the near future as it’s still one of our favourite places in Western Australia. Please feel free to ask any questions in the comments below or let us know if you have a favourite place to visit in Cottesloe. 

Belinda x

  1. Reply

    Sharee @ Inspire Family Travel

    March 23, 2019

    If I was to ever see the sun set over the ocean I’d love it to be at Cottesloe Beach. What a beautiful place to visit & sounds very family-friendly!

  2. Reply

    Mrs C Baghurst

    January 16, 2021

    It is beautiful sitting in the beach at Cottesloe watching the sun setting and listening to the lorikeets in the trees while the grandchildren are playing on the sand. We have done this so often and really miss it.

  3. Reply

    black kitchen tap

    February 5, 2021

    You must be very successful, I like what I read