Walking Tour: Fremantle on Foot

  • Start Monument Hill
  • End Little Creatures
  • Length 4km; two hours

Check out Fremantle's big-ticket sights on this atmospheric amble, and absorb the town's nautical vibes en route.

Get the lay of the land (and sea) from atop Monument Hill, a lofty peak just east of the old town. Take a deep breath of sea air then head downhill to Knutsford St, turn right and cross Hampton Rd. The towering limestone walls of Fremantle Prison are ahead; slink around the base of the north wall to the entrance on The Terrace. Tours of this astonishing World Heritage–listed lock-up, fully operational until 1991, are grimly fascinating.

From the front of the prison, take Fairburn St to Parry St past the historic Fremantle Oval (home to the Fremantle Dockers women's team), then turn right onto South Tce, dubbed 'Cappuccino Strip' in less cosmopolitan days (the name has stuck). The historic Fremantle Markets are on your right: duck inside for a browse, a quick-fire bite and an earful of buskers.

Continue along South Tce and turn left on High St, the heart of the West End, lined with atmospherically weathered Victorian and Edwardian port buildings. At the end of the street over the rail line is the 1831 Round House, a former prison and WA's oldest building.

Stay west of the rail line, following it around to Peter Hughes Dr and the excellent Western Australian Museum – Maritime on Victoria Quay. There's an impressive collection of ocean-going craft here, from an Aboriginal canoe to a giant submarine – illuminating Freo's timeless bond with the sea.

Backtrack to Peter Hughes Dr, veer right onto Fleet St and head down to Bathers Beach – the only beach in WA with an alcohol licence. Abstain for now and follow the foreshore south. Cross the rails again to the excellent WA Shipwrecks Museum, a captivating space in which to wreck a few hours.

Recross the rail line and follow the waterside boardwalk around Fishing Boat Harbour to Little Creatures, one of Australia's pioneering craft-beer breweries and the perfect spot to end your hike with a pizza and a pale ale.