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5 Ways to Explore Australia’s Next Great City

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Western Australia has always been known more for its beaches and gorgeous scenery than for anything manmade. Enter Perth. The once humble city’s lively food, drink, and arts scene now complements the region’s natural wonders.

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Move over Sydney. Despite its well-known opera house and Finding Nemo-fame, Australia’s “it” city has shifted. Nowadays, Perth is where it’s at. For food, booze, history, and adventure, there’s no better spot. Below, five ways to dig deep into Australia’s next great city.

1. An unbeatable walking tour.
A perfect day in Perth happens on foot. The city’s easy-to-navigate grid is a walker’s paradise.

2. The Best Alternate Use for a Parking Garage
Perth rejoices in its stellar summers. Case in point: the open-air Rooftop Movies cinema, set on the top level of a parking garage in the neighborhood of Northbridge. Decorated with kitschy flamingos and astroturf, it’s like a block party for cinephiles. They enjoy the sunset with crisp lager from local Little Creatures brewery and Neapolitan-style pizzas. Then the crowd migrates to lawn chairs for the main event, which could be anything from a David Lynch classic to a down under indie. No matter the film, most nights sell out, so buy tickets a few days in advance.

3. Small bars, big charm. 
Thanks to looser liquor laws, creatives all over town have turned pleasantly odd spaces into glorious drinking spots.

4. Play hooky for a day (or a few).
Perth offers easy access to lots of memorable historical sites and outdoor excursions. The only question: How much time do you have?

5. Take a Dip
Many Australian chefs liven up bread with dukka, an Egyptian blend of spices served as a dip with olive oil. Try it at Bread in Common, with the fantastic sourdough, or make it at home. Toss a cup each of almonds, hazelnuts, sesame seeds, and pumpkin seeds with pinches of salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, and turmeric into a food processor; pulse until coarsely ground; enjoy.