Up in the Darling Ranges, about 30km east of Perth’s CBD, Kalamunda is an arty-crafty little town which has the grand Kalamunda National Park on its northern border.
From up here, there are some fabulous views all the way back to Perth, challenging walking trails and climbs, several tinkling waterfalls... and it’s often a lot cooler than down on the flat.
The ancient, 950km-long Aboriginal walking track known as the Bibbulmun Trail begins in the park. The longest bush walking track in the world, it extends from here all the way to Albany in the south of WA.
Kalamunda began as a timber settlement in the late 1860s and by the early 1900s it has been 'discovered' by the madding crowd from Perth as a tranquil retreat from the pace of the city.
A little further north of Kalamunda is the John Forrest National Park - the first proclaimed park in Western Australia - which has more fine waterfalls, dams, escarpments, huge granite outcrops and wonderful vistas.