Perth: Australia’s Ninth Most Liveable City

And so to the bottom three of the 11 most liveable cities in Australia survey. I have to say I’m a little surprised to see Perth in such a lowly position, although I couldn’t tell you why, I’ve not yet visited the western side of Australia.

I will, and soon, but until then I will need to rely heavily on what has been said by those who do live there and took part in this poll.

But what do I know about Perth?

Like many others I suspect, this is what I thought I knew about Perth; it is the world’s most isolated city. But with further investigation I discovered that it isn’t, that honour actually goes to Auckland, New Zealand.

Perth, it turns out, is the second most isolated city in the world, being 2139 kilometres from its nearest city, Adelaide. For those who need to know, these statistics are true for cities with a population in excess of 1 million.

Needless to say, Perth is a long way from almost everywhere…

Isolated Perth

Perth, Western Australia.

Perth, from what I’ve heard, is an expensive city these days. Why? It’s to do with the mining boom over that way. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in 2011 nearly 22% of Australia’s mining industry workforce were living in Perth.

Some say the mining boom is over, some believe it isn’t. Time will tell, but for now I’m guessing that one of the things residents of Perth will not be so keen on will be its affordability as well as the cost of housing.

From what I’ve heard of Perth, I’ll also wager that they do not like the entertainment scene too much either.

On the plus side, I’m pretty sure they will like how clean the city is, the climate and the outdoor environment. Those are my guesses; let’s see what the people who do know have to say about that.


What Perth residents like about Perth:

  • Being clean, well-maintained and unpolluted;
  • The weather;
  • Having good employment and economic opportunities.

Perth residents were not so keen on:

  • The entertainment scene;
  • The cost of living there;
  • The quality and range of affordable housing.

Well, I didn’t do bad, did I? For someone who hasn’t been to Perth, I got 5 out of 6. I’m no Sherlock Holmes though; if I was I would have got all six right. Of course I should have known that Perth was good for employment and economic opportunities, it’s where all the mining workers go!

Time for YouTube.

First up, let’s see what the glossy, ‘come and live in Perth’ type of video sees it…

In this video, we can go for a bit of a tour…

So, if Perth is so expensive, what can you do for free? Let’s have a look…

Finally, and we did this for Melbourne as well, what’s Perth like for studying? Let’s find out, here’s Linn from Denmark…

As she says, watch out for the sharks!

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{ 14 comments… add one }
  • Dev October 8, 2016, 3:20 pm |

    Perth is good but you have to know what to do. because very little will happen otherwise ! (I lived in Perth 10 years)
    I now live in Sydney..yeah,the weathers even better than Perth. The train, you forgot the train,Bob ! you can go anywhere in sydney by train.the train network is huge. Sydney cbd is probably the best cbd in world.
    also cairns is a good holiday city.probably the best party city in australia

    • BobinOz October 10, 2016, 5:16 pm |

      Yes, I went to Perth a couple of months ago, I do agree it is a good holiday city, especially if you also visit nearby Port Douglas as well.

      And Sydney does have very good public transport, not just trains, but the ferries can get you around a few places in real style. Are you really suggesting the Sydney weather is better than Perth’s though?

  • Ry February 5, 2014, 7:07 pm |

    Actually Perth is the most isolated. Auckland is only a 650km away from the NZ capital, Wellington. 🙂

    • Ry February 5, 2014, 7:09 pm |

      Gah! just seen the 1 million population disclaimer!

      • BobinOz February 6, 2014, 4:28 pm |

        Yes, sorry about that, a little bit of a trick statistic. Whichever way you look at it though, Perth is pretty isolated 🙂

  • Layla Turner September 12, 2013, 1:56 pm |

    I’ve lived in Perth, for 3 years, on and off. Before that I’ve lived in the UK all my life.
    It IS very expensive to live in, I’ve lived there as both a holidaymaker and a student and both ways of living were expensive. I have since lived in Auckland and Wellington, both much cheaper.
    Rents are ridiculously high and very competitive, tenants have now started to “outbid” other tenants, to secure a rental.
    The services/retailers have all increased their prices, this is due to many young FIFO’s who come down to Perth from up north for a couple of weeks, blow all their money, then fly back up north and earn thousands more,
    I have recently heard a hotel in Perth was charging $25 for a sandwich and an ice-cream place who were charging $20 for a banana split – I believe the group on Facebook is called “Fed Up Perth”, where they report any crazy prices.
    And if you want to go on holiday in Coral Bay, Monkey Mia or Broome, for example; you’re going to need a small loan.
    This is all apparently, caused by the mining boom.
    Groceries are astronomically high, as are rentals, medicine and holidays.
    However, I would go back tomorrow if I could. The weather is awesome, so are the beaches, Kings Park, the masses of outdoor space, the tranquility, the unspoilt magic of Shark Bay, Coral Coast and Ningaloo Reef, being able to walk around in thongs all year round and the “city with hardly any people” feel.
    I LOVE the way of life in Perth and it really depends on how much you’re willing to put up with.
    Me? I adore the place, I hate the high prices and the isolation etc. but I love it anyway. Miss you Perth.

    • BobinOz September 14, 2013, 3:05 pm |

      It’s a real shame Perth has become so expensive, because after all, not everybody works in mining. Those who don’t seem to be suffering if they want to live over that way. I certainly know what I’d tell somebody to do with a $25 sandwich or $20 ice cream!

      Is difficult for me to comment further, I’ve still not yet been to Perth, but I did have a comment from someone called Ryan the other day and he does live in Perth on a very modest budget. You can read what he has to say here, I think it’s an interesting alternative view on this debate.

      Thanks Layla for your thoughts on this, I am looking forward to visiting Perth sometime soon, sounds like I may need to save a little harder 🙂

      • Layla Turner September 16, 2013, 8:31 am |

        I just read Ryan’s post, he’s totally right, some people don’t budget well.
        I was only on $43,000, ($25p/hr) because I was an international student and could only legally work part time (20 hrs a week).
        I houseshared and I didn’t have a car but I probably could’ve afforded to run one. Would’ve been a bit of a challenge to save up for one though.
        I think that’s the key here, I say its expensive to live, although I actually lived quite well there on $43,000 and that was me and my fiance, as he couldn’t work on my visa. We never starved, we had enough to buy alcohol every now and then and I usually had enough to buy cosmetics, clothes sometimes.
        It was saving up for big purchases that was impossible sometimes, like visits home to the UK, or a car!
        Anyway, it’s totally do-able to “live” in Perth on a low wage, such as mine, but I felt extra stress and uncertainty because I was unable to claim any “financial help” if I came out of work – because of my student visa, I’m not entitled.
        So for the people on here that have two income earners, earning $50k + each, they’re either living comfortably or not budgeting efficiently. But then we all like to moan when things are expensive, no matter how much we earn. 🙂

        • BobinOz September 16, 2013, 4:18 pm |

          Thanks Layla, I think the bottom line is we all prefer it if we really didn’t have to think about how much stuff costs, but that we could just naturally afford the things, in moderation, that we like. Unfortunately for the vast majority of us it doesn’t work like that, we have to observe some kind of “budget” and restrain ourselves from spending too much on the fun things.

          Getting by in Australia isn’t usually a problem; running two cars, having holidays, buying fancy gadgets, those are things that are a little harder to come by.

  • Saffa September 9, 2013, 10:12 pm |

    Ps. Canberra – felt like the place has no soul. Honestly felt like I wanted to get out of Canberra as soon as we arrived. The weather was sunny on the day….

    Melbourne = great vibe- very European feeling … but felt way to much like London. Lived in London for 2 years… either hate or love it….

    • BobinOz September 10, 2013, 1:57 pm |

      Great roundups Saffa, always good to hear other people’s views after seeing these places for the first time. It’s funny, but I felt the same about Sydney when I first went that you have about Melbourne, that is it’s too much like London. I think the rain made you think Melbourne is like London, and the sunshine made you think that Sydney was not like London.

      When the weather changes, you might just change your opinion on that 🙂

      Cheers, Bob

  • Saffa September 9, 2013, 10:11 pm |

    Hi Bob,

    I recently did a trip to Perth, Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra. My rating:
    3) Melbourne
    10) Canberra

    I must admit – weather played major part. Sydney was stunning weather – people were open to meeting foreigners – travelling was easy. Melbourne it rained straight for 7 days! Driving in Melbourne… never stressed that much with hook turns and crazy one ways. Perth – yes it is a bit boring, but it offers everything you want. Traffic congestion is low. Something I did not like = young family capital of the world! If you do not have a family (like me) = you will not fit it 😉

    Oh… Perth is good for kitesurfing too 😉

  • nerissa singh August 24, 2013, 6:49 pm |

    I like Perth way better than Darwin, Bob, and as soon as I can, I will be moving back there! Nevermind, all the good that was listed, I will add that Perth has better childcare options than Darwin and is way cheaper to live in. If it wasn’t for work, I never would have moved at all.

    • BobinOz August 25, 2013, 9:41 pm |

      Well, as I’ve mentioned, I’ve never been to Perth so I can’t make the comparison yet. Both cities do have at least a couple of things in common I think, they are both quite remote and also both quite expensive places to live, which is almost certainly due in part to their remoteness.

      You have obviously lived in both, your preference is Perth, so thanks for letting us know, it’s always interesting to hear about the experiences of others.

      Cheers, Bob

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