While big kids may enjoy catching a wave or two, a day at the beach is no fun for little ones if they can’t safely get in the water. We’ve rounded up some of our favourite beaches for family-friendly fun this summer:
Watermans Bay Beach
The teeny-tiny Watermans Bay Beach sure packs a punch. South of Sorrento Beach, Watermans Bay is a picturesque beach with rocky outcrops that create secluded coves perfect for families. Little ones can splash in the calm waters of the protected bays, while bigger kids can explore the reef, perfect for beginner snorkelling. Along this stretch is one of the prettiest coastal walks in Perth, plus there’s a playground just above one of the coves for a post-swim play.
Rockingham Beach has got to be one of Perth’s best beaches, full stop – but it’s particularly great when it comes to families. Calm, shallow water extends into a protected bay, where kids can safely splash to their hearts content, plus the foreshore has plenty of barbecues, picnicking spots and a playground.
Just south of Rocko, you’ll find Palm Beach – which is just as delightful and calm. Between October and April it also has beach access matting, helping people with mobility issues access the beach – including those with disabilities, seniors, and parents with prams.
Perhaps our most iconic beach, Cott is a favourite for those who prefer calmer waters – including plenty of families. Head to a spot near the groyne for your morning dip, or set up for a picnic on the grassy, tiered esplanade underneath those mighty Norfolk pines. Crystal clear waters and bright white sand are enticing enough, but there are plenty of killer food and drink options nearby, too, if you need anything to sweeten the deal.
Hillarys Marina Beach
You can’t get much calmer than Hillary’s Marina Beach! Ensconced by the harbour, the beach is flat as a pancake and ready for a day of fun. There’s a pontoon with attached water slides that kids can swim out to, and during summer the beach explodes with colour with the arrival of the Island Aqua Park – a floating water park that features slides, a rodeo splash, monkey bars, a climbing bar and more, with all equipment provided – just remember the sunscreen. If you’d prefer to keep things a bit more simple, just south of Hillarys is Sorrento Beach – another family-friendly beach with low swells and easy access.
Home to the Omeo Wreck, Coogee Beach is a prime spot for any budding snorkellers, history buffs, or pirates! But even without the wreck, the beach is one of Perth’s best. Sheltered by Carnac Island and offshore reefs, it’s reliably pretty calm. After your swim, you can also check out the accessible walking trail along the coast, filled with historical maritime tidbits about the area.
While all of these beaches are pretty gorgeous, Yanchep Lagoon is truly striking. A reef extends from the coast like a long finger, creating a sheltered, shallow lagoon and providing excellent snorkelling. When the tide is out, it’s the perfect spot to set up for a morning of swimming and splashing – when the tide is in, be aware that there can be a strong rip pulling you out to deeper waters.
Mettams Pool is a favourite for families and adventurers alike, and it’s no surprise – along with Watermans Bay, Mettams Pool is part of the Marmion Marine Park, filled with reefs and caves for divers and snorkellers to explore. As a result, the beach is home to a crystal clear, calm lagoon, perfect for families to have a splash without worrying about waves – as well as for kids to have a go at snorkelling, or try to spot abalone or starfish in the reef.
Known under a variety of names, you may know this beach as the Lido, or as the Mandurah Children’s Beach, or Dolphin Quay, or as the Keith Holmes Beach. Amongst the twists and turns of Mandurah’s marina, you’ll find the south’s mini version of the aforementioned Hillarys’ Boat Harbour’s beach– including pontoon with slides. The mini beach is less than 50m wide, but is perfect for young ones to have fun in the water, and is neighboured by a park and playground to really tucker the kids out.
Just 700m off the coast of Rockingham, Penguin Island is one of our favourite summer day trips – especially if you’re craving the calm waters and snorkelling on Rottnest but need something a bit easier on the wallet. Home to a huge colony of Little Penguins, kids can learn all about wildlife at the Discovery Centre, explore the trails, and then get ready for some fun in the water – snorkelling around the limestone reefs, or just splashing in the calm shallows. Ferries across only take five minutes, and start at $20 return.