(Brought to you by the City of Perth)
The City of Perth recently launched their The City at Christmas program and invited me to check it out. It sounded fantastic, because I’m always up for fun + free things for my family to see and do!
I love visiting the city during this time. The whole area comes alive with lights, decorations, activities, colour and music. And in the last few years, they’ve really struck a good thing by bringing in food markets, hawker food stalls, farmer’s markets, craft markets and open-air movies, appealing to a wide audience.
This year, the City of Perth have lots of brand new Christmas events, in particular the new “Christmas Lights Trail” featuring 16 light installations, spread throughout the city.
It comes with a map (download here), to encourage exploring around the city.
I knew my kids would love it, so I dragged them out to go exploring one evening! (Only took two kids, as the third had something else on).
This is the Giant Bauble on Murray Street Mall. During the day it looks a bit lifeless, but once the sun sets and the lights come on, it’s quite cool.
It’s a great place for photos and selfies with the family.
My first photo in this post (scroll up!) showed the Christmas Lights Tunnel in The Piazza, Northbridge. It’s a 24m tunnel made with over 5km of lights.
That was a really awesome installation too.
Our next favourite would have to be the Christmas Constellation in Forrest Place. It’s a huge array of dangling lights, in a cylindrical shape, that changes colour and animates to music. It is SO pretty and very mesmerising to watch.
As you can see, I took a lot of photos of the cool colours and I couldn’t choose which I liked the most.
After that we walked from Forrest Place and headed towards St Georges Terrace.
My kids insisted we stop at the 7-Eleven (corner of Hay and Barrack) to pick up a few $1 Slurpees, and we made our way to Cathedral Square to view the Christmas Projections at St George’s Cathedral.
This was definitely my favourite light installation. It was cute, soothing, happy and playful.
I loved the contrasting dark shadows created by the architecture.
There were so many people sitting on the grass, taking photos and enjoying the animated projections. It was a lovely atmosphere.
Then immediately across the road, opposite the Cathedral was the Council House Lights display. It uses 20,000 LED lights to animate the colours of the rainbow.
I’ve seen this display before, but I still love it because it looks so happy and cheerful.
My Visit Plan
As I mentioned before, there are 16 installations, spread out all over the city, so it’s quite a walk. Here’s the map for downloading.
I actually went into the city the day before to plan my night walk, to see all the installations, to pick out which ones were worth coming back to photograph, and which my kids would like. I did the whole walk and I was pretty tired by the end, especially after carrying all my camera gear.
So this is what I did:
I parked at the State Library CPP Car Park (in the Perth Cultural Centre) at 7pm.
We walked into Northbridge to grab some take away dinner (chicken kebabs) and went to see the Christmas Lights Tunnel (as shown in the first photo of my post)
Then we walked to Forrest Place, where there were about 5 installations. We walked to Cathedral Square, picked up some dessert along the way, sat on the grass outside the cathedral to eat our dessert and chill out.
We probably could have seen more, but we were pretty tired and we had to walk back to the car. By the time I got back to my car, it was 9pm.
It was such a fun and novel evening for us (especially on a school night!) and my kids loved it.
(This was one of the installations I didn’t take my kids to. It was the Giant Christmas Tree at Brookfield Place. It was pretty and stylish, but it wasn’t interactive.)
More information about the Christmas Lights Trail here:
Another new event for The City at Christmas program will be the Christmas Carnival at Forrest Chase, which features kiddie rides and activities.
It is a free event on Saturday 9 Dec and Sunday 10 Dec, recommended for children aged up to 10 years old. There will be fiesta balloons, merry go round, ferris wheel, human soccer table, mega-trampolines and craft workshops.
There will also be street entertainers, and food and produce market stalls set up all along the Murray St Mall, so you can grab a treat too.
More information here:
Santa in the City Competition
I also want to share that the City of Perth are running a cool Instagram competition to win a prize pack – an overnight stay at Crowne Plaza Perth (for family of four), $250 H&M voucher and Pottery Barn stockings.
Simply pick up a free cardboard “Santa on a stick” from the iCity Kiosk (Forrest Chase), take a picture of him doing something around the city, such as Santa hanging out at Elizabeth Quay, eating sushi in Northbridge or enjoying the view at Kings Park. The more creative the better!
Make sure you use the hashtag #santainperthcity to enter. Competition closes 15 Dec 2017. Pop over to visitperthcity.com for more information, full terms and conditions and boundaries of the City of Perth.
And hey, if you’re doing the Christmas Lights Trail, check out the Instagram hashtag #TheCityatChristmas and have fun!