Take a moment to indulge your senses—sounds of lapping water, tinkling conversation, buskers and wheeling gulls.
Enticing restaurant aromas encircle the docks while the salty breeze from the Indian Ocean caresses your skin. Relax; you have arrived at the iconic Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour in Fremantle, where you can escape the hustle and bustle for a day or extend your stay.
Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour is a unique destination with something for everyone, and a shipload of things to do that won’t cost the earth. You can keep it low-key and explore museums and meandering walk trails, picnic and skate in the park, or hang out at the beach.
Take it up a notch and treat yourself to a twilight sail or a slow spin on the Fremantle Tourist Wheel. Feeling adventurous? Jump on a Jet Boat thrill ride or parasail over the ocean. Did we mention that Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour is your one-stop destination for mouthwatering eats or that a brewery tour was on the cards? Here’s our ultimate guide to making the most of your visit.
Getting to Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour:
They say it’s not the destination but the journey that counts. With that in mind, here are some ways to wend your way to Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour.
- Jump aboard a Transperth train on the Fremantle line for a relaxing journey while the ocean slides past the window - to within 750m of the harbour. Trains leave every 15 – 30 minutes and take 50 minutes from Perth to Fremantle station.
- Drive from Perth city centre – 30 minutes. There are over 500 parking bays available; parking fees apply.
- Take a slow cruise to Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour aboard Captain Cook Cruises. The boat leaves Barrack Street in Perth and heads down the Swan River/Derbarl Yerrigan. The ferry takes 1.5 hours (enough time to have a drink and unwind), docking at B-Shed, a short walk from the harbour.
Things to do:
History & Shipwrecks
Those intrigued by maritime archaeology will be captivated by the WA Shipwrecks Museum on Cliff Street. Discover shipwrecks off Western Australia’s treacherous coast. Learn about the murderous mutiny on the Abrolhos Islands when Dutch ship, the Batavia, was wrecked there in 1629. Entry to the Museum is by donation.
Make your way to the Roundhouse, the oldest public building in Western Australia, open from 10:30 – 3:30 daily, initially built by convicts as a prison with eight cells. If you arrive at 1:00 p.m., you may be lucky to see or hear the cannon firing.
Fun fact: Despite its name, the Roundhouse is actually a 12-sided shape.
Whilst strolling the jetty, keep your eyes peeled for “The Jetty”, a commemoration to the local fishermen—a waterside memorial with 608 names of men and women pioneering fishers and life-sized bronze sculptures of local cray fishermen.
Rock ‘n’ Roll Royalty
Pose for a selfie with Fremantle rock royalty. Fremantle’s own Bon Scott of ACDC fame can be found in Mews Park, immortalised in bronze, posing atop a Marshall amplifier in his flares.
Fun Fact: Bon Scott’s first public appearance in WA was playing two-part harmonies on the recorder at North Fremantle Town Hall!
Picnic under the pines in Esplanade Park
Find a shaded glade in the small forest of around 100 Norfolk Pines at Esplanade Park, where play equipment suitable for kids of all ages is nestled under the trees. This grassed reserve is perfect for picnicking.
Fun Fact: Norfolk Pines can live to 100-plus years. Several of the Esplanade Norfolk Pines are on the Significant Trees List of the National Trust.
Fremantle Tourist Wheel
While enjoying Esplanade Park, view Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour from above. While you slowly spin on the Fremantle Tourist Wheel 40 metres up, you will catch sweeping harbour and Fremantle town views – even at night!
Skate Park action
Strap on your kneepads and helmet for some free skating action. Beside the railway line at Esplanade Park is the spectacular new Esplanade Youth Plaza, where you can join in or observe the fun. This iconic $1.6m facility caters to various activities, from skating, ping pong, rock climbing, slacklining and parkour.
Enjoy beautiful Bather’s Beach!
If it’s warm (or not), dip your toes or plunge into the Indian Ocean at Bather’s Beach, a sheltered beach with a stretch of pristine white sand, perfect for sandcastles! Kids and kids at heart love to explore the old jetty pylons.
Jet Boat rides and parasailing adventures on the Indian Ocean
Satisfy your need for speed by buckling yourself into the racing red Exhilarator Jet Boat for a thrill ride on the Indian Ocean, where you will reach speeds of nearly 100 kilometres an hour! Wave your arms in the air while you fishtail and turn. Sure to impress adrenaline junkies and thrill-seekers alike.
Want more excitement? Soar 100 meters above the ocean along Fremantle’s stunning coastline with WA’s only parasailing adventure without getting wet. From September to November, you can even parasail with whales.
Bookings are essential; contact Cicerello’s Jet Adventures.
Twilight Sailing into the Sunset
Sunset sailing in summer while sipping a cool glass of wine is one of life's pleasures, especially when paired with a pod of dolphins or a glimpse of a humpback whale. Charter 1’s delightful bright yellow Capella is Perth’s largest sailing catamaran. Their Fremantle Twilight Sunset Sail departs from outside Cicerello’s accompanied by a glass of sparkling and antipasto. Pack a picnic and BYO drinks, or take advantage of the licenced bar on board.
Walk tours of the harbour
Download a free Harbour Walking Trails map and explore three short trails. The 1.8 km Challenger Cray Trail will take you to the end of the jetty to catch the sea breeze, while the 900m Boardwalk and Brewery loop will whet your appetite for eats and drinks. Feel like striding out? The 4km Capo D'Orlando Marine Trail takes you past Fremantle Sailing Club and out to Fremantle Groin, where boats leave and enter the protected harbour.
Discover Cicerello’s aquariums
Feeling romantic? Recreate Baz Luhrman’s Romeo and Juliet and gaze at one another through the voluminous 40 metres of saltwater aquariums at Cicerello’s. Aquariums are free to view anytime the restaurant is open and hold a collection of sea creatures to satisfy budding marine scientists – not only can you find Nemo, but you can also stare at a stonefish or ogle a blue-ringed octopus.
Where to eat:
Fish and chips in Freo
Traditions such as fish and chips at Fremantle Boat Harbour are hard to pass up. Give in to the aromas and treat yourself.
Perched on the waterfront is fully licenced Cicerellos, home of fish ’n’ chips since 1903. Enjoy a deluxe seafood platter with lobster, or fish and chips with homemade tartare sauce - Indoor dining is available where you can bask in front of a log fire during the cooler months.
And in summer, treat yourself to homemade Gelato. Who are we kidding? Don’t wait for summer, just treat yourself!
Twin Fin Restaurant and Bar is a fast-casual licenced restaurant and bar that offers a modern take on fresh seafood. Crispy fish and chips are on the menu, served with a selection of fresh salads alongside a delicious range of tacos, burgers and freshly shucked oysters. Walk-ins, dine-in, takeaway and delivery are available. Ask about their Twinny Specials.
Steaks and seafood at Char Char
Char Char Restaurant and Bar may have one of the best restaurant views in the West! With a panoramic vista of Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour, you can enjoy a full-service menu and a fully stocked bar while watching life stroll by. Specialising in local char-grilled prime beef and freshly sourced seafood Char Char Restaurant and Bar is open seven days a week.
Share a plate or book a brewery tour at Little Creatures Brewery
For a casual dining experience, drop into Little Creatures Brewery – a Perth favourite for more than 20 years. No need to book; walk in and grab a table and a bite from the sharing menu. Indoor and outdoor seating is available. If you are a beer aficionado, you will love tasting your way through the extensive menu of house-brewed beers. Little Creatures also stocks a selection of wines.
Alternatively, book an interactive brewery tour at Little Creatures and learn from their resident hopheads about the brewing process. A 90-minute tour finishing with guided tastings and a share plate will have you wanting more! Tours available Monday to Sunday – Bookings essential.
Fun Fact: The name Little Creatures refers to the live yeast cells present in the brewing process. It was inspired by a song lyric from the Talking Heads album "Little Creatures".
Dine alfresco at Bather’s Beach House
Brush the sand from your feet following a walk along Bather’s Beach and grab a bite at Bather’s Beach House – only three steps away. You can dine in the restaurant for a full-service menu or stay sandy and enjoy food and drinks on a deckchair in the relaxing beach lounge. The share plates are delectable! Bather’s Beach House is open seven days a week.
Whether you came for a day or decided to stay, visiting this cosmopolitan corner of the world will enrich all your senses. Come down and fall in love with all Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour offers; it may be just what the (Fremantle) Doctor ordered.