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Christmas Day 2020: Beaches packed as Perth swelters

As Perth woke to a hot Christmas morning — with the temperature soaring past 30C by 8am — thousands flocked to the beach to cool off.

Some ventured in for a quick dip before heading to see family, while others packed up eskies full of food and drink and pitched their gazebo to settle in for a festive day by the ocean.

At 11.30am, Perth had recorded a scorching 37.5C.

Scarborough beach was packed by 10am, filled with people in groups playing games, drinking and eating, while others were happy with a book on a towel.

Ross Maher would usually be in Tipperary, Ireland for his Christmas, but closed borders and lockdowns means he can’t fly home to see his family. His usual Christmas jumper was this year replaced with a rashie.

“It’s nice to spend it here and not have two 24-hour flights, that’s looking at the upside,” he said.

“This is a very different Christmas, I think, to what everyone else is having. But it’s good. Champagne on the beach isn’t a bad start to the day.”

Meanwhile, Sara Dixey and her family’s Christmas tradition is the beach.

Arlie, 5, and Hadley and Parker Addink, 3, live in Kalgoorlie and can’t wait to get to the beach when they come to Perth.

“We did this last year. The girls are from Kalgoorlie, so they stay with us in Scarborough and we always go to the beach after breakfast,” Sara said.

“It’s been so hot so it’s been so nice to come down.”

Gaye and John Davis celebrated Christmas on Scarborough beach.
Camera IconGaye and John Davis celebrated Christmas on Scarborough beach. Credit: Kelsey Reid/The West Australian

For those who don’t have family in town, housemates Kacey Watson and Riley Inglis said they’re hosting an “orphan’s Christmas” for their friends, but took to the beach for a quick swim beforehand.

“Woke up this morning, listened to some Christmas music, then thought we’d come down, get an açai bowl, go for a swim, such nice weather,” Riley said.

The housemates said they did their own Christmas this morning before heading to their families, then putting on dinner for their friends.

“We’re going to watch Christmas movies, all of our friends who are strays and don’t have dinner plans, we’ll put on some food for our friends who have partners that are FIFO, or who can’t see their family,” Kacey said.

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