Looking for an everyday place to unwind in the afternoon with a gentle walk or a place to take the kids on the weekend right in the middle of the southern suburbs?
Look no further than the Spectacles Aboriginal Heritage Trail.
What is it?
Perth is home to some lovely inland lakes that run north-south in between the dune systems. Lake Monger, Herdsman Lake and Bibra Lake are all popular recreation spots along with being home for various bird and reptile species. Another of these lakes that isn’t as well known is The Spectacles in Beeliar with a number of cool vantage points to explore combined with some interpretive signs letting you know about the area and the indigenous history. Being a regional park, it is dog friendly so you can enjoy the walks with the whole family.
Where is it?
Located in the City of Kwinana and thirty minutes from Perth, take the Kwinana Freeway south and get off at the Anketell Road exit. Turn right towards the coast and then left onto McLaughlan Road where you’ll find a gravel car park on the side of the road about 100m from the turnoff. Enter the park through the gates and walk along the path until you see the information boards for the walks in the area.
What to do:
If you like walking then you’re in luck with a couple of loop trails to enjoy. The longer Spectacles Aboriginal Heritage Trail takes you right around the biggest lake in the park with a couple of side trails to get closer to the water. Taking in the largest concentration of Paperbark trees in the Swan Coastal Plain, you can really immerse yourself in another world out here. A shorter loop trail from the car park is the Banksia Trail, which takes in the remnant section of Banksias that thrive in the sandy soils of the area. Pick the right time of year (usually late summer through to winter) and you’ll get a spectacle of colour (pun very much intended) to enjoy as you stroll along the trail.
Bird watchers of Perth will know this spot thanks to the purpose-built bird hide not far from the car park, along with a wooden platform on the eastern side of the lake. Home to many bird species, being nestled on top of the wetlands makes for a great vantage point to get some amazing photos. If you’re patient and enjoy sitting in nature then you will have a lot of fun here waiting for the birds to appear.
What not to do:
Remember to be a good dog owner by keeping your four-legged friend on a lead at all times and always pick up after it. Keep to the Leave No Trace principles to make sure this little refuge for the local wildlife is left as you found it (or in better condition if pick up anything you find along the way).
If you’re interested in helping preserve and maintain these remnant bushland areas then have a look at the Urban Bushland Council’s website to find out more. They have regular events all over Perth so consider becoming a member or donating some money to keep these parks healthy if you can’t donate your time.
About the author:
Mark (The Life of Py) is a Perth based outdoor enthusiast that loves exploring the trails of Western Australia in his free time. When he isn’t out taking photos he is busy planning the next adventure. See more of his content HERE.