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Perth, whose population is well over one and a half million, is by no means a small outback town. A panoramic picture of the cityscape shows towering skyscrapers in the background with the placid waters of the Swan River in the foreground. In many ways, this often photographed panorama depicts Perth perfectly. It is a capital city with a difference: cosmopolitan and urbane on the one hand, it retains strong ties to its natural surroundings.

Its location on the banks of the Swan River is no accident. The site was chosen because it was a safe and fertile inland location that offered easy water access to the coastal port, some 20 miles west. Back then, the Swan was the most important transport route. Today, it is equally important as the backdrop for the Perth lifestyle. Most of Perth’s most popular attractions are located around the beautiful Swan River.

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