Perth, Western Australia (part 1)

I know it’s been very long since the last time I posted something up here. This time I’ll tell you story when I visited Perth on the way back home to Bali. The trip report for the journey from Brisbane to Perth as well as Perth to Bali can be viewed here.

After I landed in Perth (that was one and a half hour late than originally scheduled), I quickly went out of the domestic terminal (knowing that my luggage will be automatically transferred to my next flight). Perth’s forecast for that day was sunny 14-30 degrees. I waited for Transperth bus service number 37 just outside the terminal. It’s a long bus stop because there are sections for the airport shuttle buses (be it to Fremantle, Perth CBD, long-term carpark or international terminal), for the miners (remember, WA is a major mining state!), for the tourists and of course, for Transperth.
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Perth Airport is located in zone 2 of nine zones served by Transperth. The fabulous Fremantle is located in zone 2 as well. Zone 1 is located in City of Perth and surrounds (e.g. Northbridge), whereas the furthest zone (zone 9) must be located in Mandurah. Don’t ask me in which zone does places like Rockingham, Joondalup, Ballajura or Perth Hills lie on.

Two zones adult bus ticket costs just AU$3.70 (compared that to the Queensland Government rip off of AU$4.60 for two zones adult bus ticket). The tickets are transferrable within two hours from the time you purchased it. It means you can take it for another bus, train (to Fremantle perhaps) or ferry (yup, there is ferry operating above the Swan River, just like Brisbane’s CityCat) within two hours.

Unlike buses in Brisbane or Sydney which is dominantly blue and yellow-coloured, buses in Perth are dominantly green in colour. I’ll tell you features that Transperth buses have but Translink buses don’t later.

Bus service 37 passes Belmont, Victoria Park Transfer Station (similar to busway stations in Brisbane), Perth CBD (Adelaide Tce & St George Tce) before ending its journey at Kings Park. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough time to visit Kings Park thanks to Virgin Blue’s delay.

Perth also has a smart card system for its public transport system called ‘SmartRider’. In Brisbane, we call it ‘go card’. But believe me, there are only two cardreaders located on the bus (four in you-know-where). The part where you are supposed to touch your card located on the top and the screen showing how much you paid as well as your card balance located below.

The bus driver in which the bus I hopped on was of an African descent. When he is on duty, he looks like working inside a cage. I guess safety comes first for the bus driver. You know if some Aussie bogans try to make some scenes on the bus, bus driver’s safety is at risk. Unlike buses in Brisbane in which the bus platform must be lowered manually to allow passengers with wheelchairs to board the bus, buses in Perth are equipped with button to let the platform drop down onto the footpath automatically. It reduces time and gives convenience for passengers with prams, wheelchairs as well as the driver. Other than that, the rest looks similar to Brisbane’s buses.

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I took the photo above when the bus enters Heirisson Island. Heirisson Island is an island in the Swan River. That was the first Australian island I visited. Yes, I haven’t been to Straddie nor Tasmania yet. The picture shows the Swan River with its blue water. I envy Perth.

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I took another photo when the bus left the island. Almost reaching the CBD. I wonder when the murky Brisbane River will turn like this.

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Finally, I was just metres from the CBD at Adelaide Terrace. This is the point where I learn that if you want to travel around the CBD, it’s free. Just tell the bus driver where you want to go (e.g. Kings Park, Northbridge, East Perth, West Perth etc). There are also three CAT buses serving the western, northern and eastern part of the City of Perth. It’s frequent and it’s free. I wish the Brisbane City Council could take an initiative for a similar free services at least to the Valley in the north, Auchenflower/Milton in the west (Spring Hill Loop excluded) and Cultural Centre/South Bank in the south.

Also at Adelaide Terrace is the address of the Indonesian Consulate for the Perth and Western Australia region. I also noticed a Freemason building at the same road.

Perth, one day I’ll come back.

That’s all for now, back soon.

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