Pack up the car and be sure to pack your fat pants… Geraldton is a somewhat surprising spot for a WA getaway. The mid-west coastal city blew me away by it’s burgeoning café culture. I discovered some of the best Geraldton restaurants during my stay. Take a road trip from Perth to Geraldton, it will take you about 5 hours. And with the Shore Leave food festival hitting town 27th April to May 1 2022, there’s never been a better time to explore the restaurants of Geraldton. Here’s my top picks for eats in Gero:
Geraldton Restaurants & Cafes
Café Fleur is the sister venue of Geraldton stalwart The Jaffle Shack. The bustling café on Marine Terrace has plenty of tables inside and out. A quality coffee offering (Karvan) and a lip-licking brunch menu with brekkie favourites, and innovative dishes. We popped by for breakfast a couple of times.
My pick has to be the brekky croquettes ($22) triple cheese, chive and potato croquettes are served with poached eggs, aioli, bacon and rocket. The crisp croquets ooze with fetta, parmesan and mozzarella. They are delicious dipped into the roasted nut and capsicum sauce. The well-cooked food, friendly vibe and great coffee makes Café Fleur the pick of the brunch bunch.
Find Café Fleur at 186 Marine Terrace, Geraldton. https://www.facebook.com/cafefleurgeraldton
Salt Dish is a very highly regarded eatery in Geraldton, arguably it’s best. The Marine terrace spot is open for breakfast, lunch and selected nights for dinner. Salt Dish is larger than we expect. The front dining room and open kitchen leads to another dining room at the rear, and a shady alfresco courtyard beyond that.
We opted to dine outside, as it was a typical sunny day in Geraldton. We mainly shared dishes from lamb croquettes and hummus, to cornflake crusted cod and braised duck with a spring pea risotto.
Find Salt Dish at 35 Marine Terrace, Geraldton.
Skeetas is found at the new Batavia Marina precinct. The popular spot has stunning water views, making it ideal for a sunset dinner. Local West Aussie seafood features heavily on the menu. Here we enjoyed fresh Shark Bay whiting, lightly battered and served with chips, salad, and a house-made tartare sauce. A cauliflower risotto ticks boxes for those with a gluten intolerance or vegetarian diets. Tossed with garlic buttered greens, hazelnuts, parmesan and currants, it’s a very tasty dish.
Find Skeetas at 3/219 Foreshore Drive, Marina Precinct, Geraldton
For casual beach side eats, you can’t go past Gero icon – The Jaffle Shack, which pumps out gourmet toasties at several outlets in town.
Things to Do in Geraldton
When you’re not eating? What are the best things to do in Geraldton? The main street, Marine Terrace, is just one block back from the ocean and home to plenty of shops and cafes. It’s lined with vibrant street art and cute lighthouse roundabouts. My mum, who grew up in Geraldton, showed me where she used to work.
Geraldton Foreshore has been transformed. Once home to ugly railway lines and industry, the city has reclaimed the area. Now it boasts long, grassy promenades along the beach, cafes and playgrounds. The sunny city makes the most of its near perfect weather with a tone of fantastic playgrounds dotted along the foreshore. The wide footpaths make it perfect for scooters too.
A few hours spent at the Geraldton Museum will make you realise that there’s a lot to this country town. From famous ex-residents, to it’s maritime history and indigenous connection – it’s fascinating.
A visit to the poignant Sydney Memorial is a must.
Here you’ll learn about the harrowing tale of HMAS Sydney, as well as taking in the stunning view of the port town.
You’re spoilt for choice with beaut beaches in Geraldton.
You can’t miss the red and white candy stripes of the Point Moore Lighthouse.
Playgrounds in Geraldton
If you have kids in tow there are several playgrounds for them to let loose. The Youth Precinct is aimed at older kids. There’s a big emphasis on climbing and some BIG slides. There’re foosball tables, ping pong tables (BYO bat and ball) and some very cool electronic activity games too.
There’s plenty more free things to do in Geraldton. Geraldton Water Playground is brilliant for warmer months. There’s a great little playground nearby, with a dedicated toddler and crawler play area. Beresford Foreshore Playground is also a top spot for a play or picnic by the beach.
There are so many things to do in Geraldton. Whether you drive there for a holiday, or stop over as part of a longer drive to the north of WA, it’s worth a look. The mid-west port city enjoys great weather. Can you believe that it’s even sunnier than Perth?! It had been about 25 years for me, between visits. I used to visit a lot as a child, as that’s where my Nana lived. How Gero has changed. Now is the time to “Wander out Yonder” and check out glorious Geraldton!
Want more travel inspo? Check out other places I’ve visited in WA here.