Archive | March, 2013

The Essential Travel Guide to Perth

25 Mar

Perth, in Western Australia, is one of the most modern and fastest growing cities in the developed world.  Despite this, it is still what would be considered a ‘hidden gem’ when it comes to taking a holiday in Australia. Most tourism in the country centres on the huge coastal cities in the south and east, that everyone around the world knows about. If not there, then the ‘Red Centre,’ with Uluru, Alice Springs, and thousands of miles of outback, tends to enjoy much attention.

A huge city and well on course to become a global business hub in recent years, Perth offers just as much as the other areas mentioned.

To prove it, we looked at some of the great things to see, at places to eat, and at where to stay when you travel there.

Getting to Perth

Before experiencing such a great place, you need to get there first. While Perth has a major international airport taking flights from cities around the world, look to add a touch of adventure to your trip.

Travel into another major city by aeroplane, and then use a company such as Transfercar to enjoy cheap or free car hire across the country to Perth. Yes, such a journey will take a few days, but it will give you the opportunity to add another experience to your break.

Some free time will also allow you to plan what to do when you get to Perth.

Getting Your Head Down

If you are looking at the higher end of accommodation yet do not want to pay a fortune, consider somewhere like the Metro Hotel. Four stars and close to the city centre, it is clean, tidy, and comfortable, with great transport links out of and around Perth.

Alternatively, the Underground Backpackers Hostel is almost in the dead centre of the city. This location will give you great comfort at even more of a bargain price.

Finding a Bite to Eat

With hundreds of bars and restaurants, finding the best can be a chore. Depending on your tastes, Perth offers something for every palate.

The Red Cray Seafood Restaurant offers great tasting fresh dishes for lovers of fish, crab, and a range of exotic seafood. Saowanee’s Place is one of the better Thai restaurants in Perth. Sawanee’s has won awards in each of the last five years if you need any more convincing.

What to Do

As with every Australian city, Perth is a culture and heritage rich place with so much to see and do.

  • Outside of the city, head south to the popular town and wine region of Margaret River, where you will find great shops and restaurants.
  • Back in Perth, take a tour of the once notorious Fremantle Prison, a former Australian convict site now on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
  • Sea life lovers have to visit the Aquarium of Western Australia, home to the country’s largest single aquarium and one of the best such centres in the country.

There will be even more to discover when you get to Perth. Print out and keep this list for those annoying occasions when your mind draws a blank.

This article is written by Transfercar, a car rental Australia service, providing travellers free transport for major cities in Australia.

 

The MUST SEEs of Rome

8 Mar

Matt and I only had a few days in Rome, but we were able to see A LOT.  Below are some of our MUST SEEs of Rome!  And, make sure to stay tuned to CourtneyMara.com for the post containing our full Italy itinerary, which will show how we really saw so much of Italy in just 8 days!

  • Visit the Trevi Fountain

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  • Tour the Colosseum.  Book your tickets in advance (DO DO DO).  This saves you from waiting in the line that goes on forever!  Also, I highly recommend the tickets that include the upper level and dungeons.  The photo taken below was from the upper level.  You can only go there with a tour.  We booked our tickets through TickItaly.com.

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  • Visit the Vatican.  Again, I recommend booking your tickets in advance to skip the huge line and I highly recommend a tour.  We bought our tickets through the Vatican’s website.

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  • Eat a lot of gelato!   I recommend Old Bridge, which is next to the Vatican, and Giolitti.  

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  •  Visit the Aventine Key Hole.  Amazing view of St. Peter’s Basilica.  The picture below is of Matt looking through the key hole.

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  • Go inside the Pantheon!  It’s free and just incredible.  

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Enjoy Rome!