Freelance writer specialising in serendipity: the art of finding wonderful things by accident or sagacity.
No, you don't have to go to Sydney
Where to See Fireworks on New Year's Eve
It's the time of year when Perth embarrasses me. Yup, all the visitors are asking "Where's the best place to watch the New Year's Eve fireworks?" err…Sydney. Sadly, Perth doesn't have a public NYE fireworks display, preferring to save the big bangs for Australia Day. But all is not lost. With a bit of ingenuity, willingness to travel or some cash, you can bring in the New Year with the bright lights and smell of gunpowder.
photo by Billy Hicks, Wikimedia Commons
Nearby Rockingham has had a family celebration for the last 11 years. Held on the foreshore in Churchill Park, the party features a funfair, food stalls and special children's entertainment. Catch performances by Aussie bands Pseudo Echo, Hit Factory and others including the finalists from the City of Rockingham Festival of New Talent. And of course, enjoy the fireworks at midnight. Free.
Mandurah also has a family-friendly event on the foreshore featuring a youth zone and live bands. New this year is a "silent disco" where the music is broadcast to headphones rather than through speakers. Should be fun for the onlookers to watch a crowd of people dancing to nothing!
Mandurah has two fireworks sessions, one at 9 pm for the littlies and another at the more traditional time of midnight. Free.
photo by Dori, Wikimedia Commons
Greater Perth - $$ Closer to home, Cannington Greyhounds has a NYE party with children's entertainment, rides and a band after the last race, plus fireworks at midnight. Admission is $20 adults and $15 concession. Children under 18 are free but must be accompanied by an adult.
The third annual NYE on the Foreshore music festival will be held on the East Perth foreshore. Dress to impress and enjoy party music from DJs and local bands. Tickets from $65 at Moshtix.
Greater Perth - free For many years there was a NYE party with fireworks at Gloucester Park racetrack. Hundreds of people used to picnic on the other side of the river at Burswood Park to watch the show. The view over the river was spectacular as the fireworks whizzed through the air. Alas, due to problems the event was cancelled a few years ago. However, the NYE on the Foreshore music festival with its midnight extravaganza is held in East Perth just behind the racetrack and directly across from Burswood Park, so get out that esky and picnic rug.
There are free BBQs, toilets, and plenty of space, but make sure you go early to take advantage of this prime viewing spot as parking is always scarce.
There is a great fireworks display at Gloucester Park and live bands/concert afterwards. Alternately at Kings Park, you can picnic till dawn on the lawn in the lovely picturesque relaxed atmosphere and see the Gloucester Park and Cannington Fireworks go off in the distance at midnight... Hillarys Boat Harbour also has fireworks. There are heaps of Black Tie events and even roof-top pool parties which the public can buy tix for... All are uniquely West Australian experiences... what is also uniquely West Aussie is that Australia Day is the biggest day on our calendar and we celebrate it in style with a Fireworks Display to match! I grew up in Sydney and I went back there for the 2000 Millenium New Year Fireworks on the Harbour, it was simply spectacular... that was before I had children and now I would never feel comfortable battling the impossible crowds and drunken louts that at that time created part of the spectacle and atmosphere... Perth has its own events that suits the laid back lifestyle which have benefiits of their own!