Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Fremantle
1. E SHED MARKETS
These waterside markets are only open for three days from Friday–Sunday, 9am–5pm, but also on Public Holidays. They are located in a historical warehouse that is close to the train station and next to the Maritime Museum. The alfresco terrace overlooks Fremantle’s working harbour, so you can watch the boats passing by as you sip on coffee. Stalls and attractions include international food and music, local handicrafts, arts & crafts, antiques and collectables, fashion both vintage and new, and fresh organic fruit and vegetables. http://www.
Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour is home to over 400 fishing boats and surrounded by boardwalks, restaurants, cafés, bars, entertainment and accommodation facilities. The working harbour is abuzz with fishing vessels and daily fishing industry activities that are fun for the kids to watch. It’s the best place to have a yummy Fish and Chips lunch or any other seafood cuisine that takes your fancy. Some of the restaurants include: Cicerellos, Joe’s Fish Shack, Kailis Fish Market, and Little Creatures.
3. WA MARITIME MUSEUM
The Western Australian Maritime Museum celebrates Fremantle’s past, present and future as a coastal city and port. From leisure boats and handcrafted sailing boats to commercial pearl luggers, the Museum inspires visitors to discover WA’s connection to the sea. The Museum is home to an Oberon class submarine: HMASOvens, as well as many other iconic vessels from WA’s maritime history. Open Daily, 9.30–5pm. Take note that only kids 5 years and older can visit the Submarine.
4. THE ESPLANADE & SKYVIEW FERRIS WHEEL
Fremantle Esplanade is a spacious and well kept park located between Marine Terrace and the Harbour. Here you will find the SkyView Observation Wheel which is Australia’s largest re-locatable Ferris wheel and provides fabulous views of Fremantle. It’s 46 meters high and boasts 36 gondolas with air conditioning. Six people can fit in a gondola, making a total capacity of 216 people if the wheel is full. It is lit up with hundreds of lightbulbs at night. A ride takes approximately 10 minutes.
The traditional style Esplanade Hotel overlooking the park is a lovely spot to have High Tea or indulge in some fine dining.
There is also a great children’s playground on the Esplanade, and a kiosk for drinks and light meals.5. SHIPWRECK GALLERIES
The Shipwreck Galleries are a special section of the WA Museum and are housed in a 1850s era Commissariat building which has been restored to its historic glory, right next to Fremantle Harbour. Steeped in history, the Galleries house hundreds of relics from ships wrecked along WA’s treacherous coastline, including the original timbers from the Batavia (wrecked in 1629), and countless artefacts from the Dutch shipwrecks Zuytdorp, Zeewijk
Fremantle Prison, WA’s only World Heritage listed building, is a fascinating piece of history. When you step inside you are transported back in time and the Guides will tell you amazing stories and secrets of the Prison. A Guided Tour of the Prison makes for an interesting day out – you can choose between several tours. How about taking a Torchlight Tour at night, or a Tunnels Tour exploring the labyrinth of passageways below the Prison? Take note some of the tours are for older kids only. For more details of the tours click here.
In the Prison Gallery you can view various artefacts of punishment, as well as learn details about convict life and how prisoners were treated. An interactive Convict Database features information on all convicts sent to the Swan River Colony and allows visitors to search for their convict ancestors. The Prison Galleries feature some great art exhibitions, and there is also a fascinating side to the Prison – the walls of the cells and exercise yards are covered in prisoner artwork!
If you’re looking for something scary to do this Halloween, Fremantle Prison host special Halloween Tours in October!
7. THE ROUNDHOUSE
The historic Fremantle Roundhouse is right next to the Harbour, across from the E Shed Markets. It was the first public building built in the Swan River Colony and dates back to 1831, making it the oldest building in WA. It was first used as a jail, then it housed the Water Police, and later became a storage facility before being preserved as a Heritage building to this day. A visit doesn’t take more than half an hour, and the views over the town and ocean make it worth climbing the steps to the top. Cost of entry is a gold coin donation and the knowledgeable volunteer guides make it fun and interesting. Open daily, 10:30–3:30pm.
8. THE ARMY MUSEUM OF WA
The Army Museum of Western Australia is located in the historic Artillery Barracks that date back to 1910.
The Galleries hold a fascinating collection that includes material from both World Wars as well as the South African, Korean, and South Vietnam Wars. Among others, there are displays depicting life as a Prisoner of War, and life in the Trenches of the First World War. You can also view army vehicles, artillery and other military hardware on the parade ground in front of the building.
The Army museum is open Wed–Sun, 11:00–4pm.
9. FREMANTLE TRAM TOURS
Explore Fremantle aboard a replica tram while listening to an entertaining and informative commentary provided by the driver.
The standard day tour is a Hop-on-Hop-off tour valid all day, which stops at 6 places around the town. You can take in the sights at your own pace or upgrade your experience to The Triple Tour, Tram & Prison Combo or the Tram & Lunch Cruise.
10. THE DUFYKEN
Tour one of the rarest vessels in the world … a replica of the first European ship to reach Australian shores.
Location: behind Little Creatures Brewery at 40 Mews Road, Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour.
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
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