Established by British in 1829, port of Fremantle is one of Australia’s best-preserved colonial port cities with a wealth of convict-era public buildings, Victorian villas and imposing boulevards. Just 20kms from the state capital of Perth, this atmospheric old port is much more easygoing. Apart from the famous fishing harbor, still the best place for fish and chips in Western Australia, Fremantle has some excellent restaurants, plenty of pavement cafes, microbreweries and produce markets. For history buffs the city offers several important colonial sites, including the Fremantle Prison, Fremantle Arts Centre and the Round House, while outdoor types can catch the ferry to nearby Rottnest Island, which is a haven for swimming, cycling, sailing and just snoozing in the sun.
Who goes there: Costa Crociere, Holland America Line, Transocean Tours, Royal Caribbean, The World, Cunard, Princess Cruises, P&O Cruises
Cruisers like: Vestiges of Fremantle’s seafaring and colonial past are everywhere to be seen. Begin your tour with a visit to the Western Australian Maritime Museum, an astonishing collection of historic water craft, followed by a tour of the World Heritage listed Fremantle Prison; a number of guided tours, including one by boat through the prison’s tunnels, are available. Shopaholics should drop into the Fremantle Markets, which are packed with fresh local produce, street fashion and craftwork – the city’s famous Cappuccino Strip is next door. Fans of craft beer should check out the Little Creatures brewhouse, which is adjacent to the new-look Fishing Boat Harbour.
Best for: Families with small kids, couples, older travellers, history buffs, seafood lovers, caffeine addicts, craft beer aficionados and beach goer.
Getting around: Cruise ships dock at either the Fremantle Passenger Terminal or at D Berth on Victoria Quay. Fremantle is an easy place to explore by foot, but free CAT buses will take you to places of interest in the city. There is a regular train service into Perth.