I could be forgiven for thinking the sun always shines in Perth, arriving as I did on an early spring day to brilliant light. It was a truly sparkling day in the harbourside suburb of Fremantle and I enjoyed every minute of it! Here are my top things to do in Fremantle:
Brunch in Fremantle
Start the day with a good breakfast or brunch at the Angel’s House. Just off Fremantle’s main street it serves delicious food and coffee.
This was an infamous convict establishment from 1850 and a just as infamous prison from 1886 until 1991. It was built (by the convicts transported from Britain) up on a hill to catch the breeze but that is where any consideration for the inmates ended.
Our guide Moira was very personable and did a great job of communicating to us the harsh conditions and regular humiliations, and the smell. There were no covered outdoors areas built until after the 1968 prison riots – until then inmates had spent up to eight hours a day in yards exposed to 40 degree Celsius heat in summer and rain in winter. The solitary confinement and execution chambers are chilling but overall it is a fascinating insight into the history of Australia.
Leaving the prison behind, it is a short walk down the hill to the Fremantle Market. Opened in 1897, it is the jewel in the crown of Fremantle’s attractive mix of colonial architecture and relaxed bohemian vibe. From cupcakes to paella, as well as quality crafts and souvenirs, the market is colourful and fun.
Fish ‘n’ Chip supper
Having a fish and chip supper is a great way to refuel after a busy day of sightseeing. There is a line of seafood ‘shacks’ along the waterfront park, including the popular Cicerellos.
Pubs and Bars in Fremantle
My day in Fremantle ended at the Little Creatures Brewery down on the waterfront. This is a big place with a lovely deck out over the water. There is a small, quieter bar next door – part of the same complex – that is a tasting room and also has bar food. The tasting platter of four beers and two ciders was free. Back in town I recommend The Monk Brewery.
If you have time while in Perth make sure you take a trip out to Rottnest Island to enjoy beaches and turquoise water, snorkelling, cycling and furry quokkas. And of course Perth is also the jumping off point for many other adventures in Western Australia.
By Natasha von Geldern
Does anyone have any more tips for things to do in Fremantle?
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