Serpentine Falls is located within the Serpentine National Park, some 55 kilometres south east of Perth.
The falls are the main feature of the park, and its close proximity to Perth city has meant the area has been a popular day trip destination for many years.
Declared a national park in 1957, the 4,500 hectares park received its name from early settlers due to the snake-like shape of the river.
Things to see and do at Serpentine Falls
Serpentine Falls – Can you Swim?
Serpentine Falls, the main attraction in the Serpentine National Park, are a series of waterfalls located around the top of the Serpentine River.
The falls flow into a rocky pool at a height of 15 metres.
Serpentine Falls is surrounded by granite outcrops, variously sized valleys and sudden scarps, all caused by weathering.
The falls have been the focal point of the area since early European settlement, when residents would come to the shaded bushland area for rest and recreation.
Swimming at the falls is allowed and entirely at your own risk, but both climbing on the falls and jumping from them is strictly prohibited.
Walking and hiking are popular activities in the Serpentine National Park area, and there are a number of established bushwalking treks for visitors to choose from.
Two of the most well known are Kitty’s Gorge Trail, a moderately challenging 14km return walk that is perfect for viewing spring wildflowers, and Baldwin’s Bluff, a difficult 6km return walk with panoramic views of the area from the summit.
For those interested in something shorter, there is also a 200m walking trail along the Serpentine River that takes visitors to the falls.
As always, those planning on walking should beware of the hot summer months, and always wear appropriate footwear and carry enough water.
If you’d like to stay overnight, Serpentine Falls Tourist Village is a camping ground just 2km walk from Serpentine Falls.
Take in the natural scenery and breath in the fresh air.
Daily prices start from $40.
Flora and Fauna
Serpentine Falls may occupy the most attention of visitors to the Serpentine National Park area, but the location is also known for its diverse flora and fauna.
In terms of flora, the area is most well known for its vibrant wildflowers, which bloom in the spring.
Flora-lovers can expect to see spider orchids, giant sundew, dryandras, greenhoods, grevilleas and trigger plants.
The Serpentine Falls area is also surrounded by Australian native trees, including jarrah, marri and wandoo, as well as two rare tree species the Darling Range Ghost Gum, and the Salmon White Gum.
There is also a wide range of animal residents around Serpentine Falls, and visitors can expect to see native birds like the red-capped parrot, red and white tailed black cockatoos, yellow robins, as well as large numbers of western grey kangaroos.
Best Time To Visit
The best time to visit the Serpentine National Park will depend on what exactly you want to see.
Visitors who want to see the wildflowers in bloom are best to visit during the spring, while those wanting to see the falls at peak should visit in the winter.
During the summer (December – February), the park area can get very busy and when it reaches capacity the park area will be closed by rangers, so arrive early if you plan on visiting during that time.
Food and Drinks
Visitors are allowed to bring their own food to the Serpentine Falls area, and picnic and BBQ areas are available on site for visitor use.
However, visitors should be aware that no fires are to be lit, and no glass, alcohol, eskies or chairs can be taken to the site.
Also, all rubbish should be disposed of in bins on site, or taken home.
Animals at the Falls
Western grey kangaroos are quite common around the Serpentine Falls area and in the national park.
These animals, as well as some birds, may get very close to visitors, but on absolutely no circumstances should they be fed.
Feeding wild native animals can be detrimental to the environment, as well as to the animal, and people who are caught breaking this rule will be fined by park rangers.
How to get to Serpentine Falls
The best way to reach Serpentine Falls is by car.
It can be accessed via the South West Highway and Falls Road, and is approximately 1 hour and ten minutes drive from Perth city.