Weekend Getaway

No time to do the whole road trip? Tackle The Edge in sections. If you’ve got a free weekend or couple of days to spare, explore Perth’s holiday haven Rottnest Island and the urban, arty harbourside city of Fremantle.

The Edge Section: Perth’s Rottnest Island & Fremantle

A group of young people walk outside the iconic brick Fremantle Markets building to show shopping and cultural experiences to be had on The South West Edge road trip
Fremantle Markets. Image by Fremantle Tourism Association
Chapter 1

Rottnest Island

From Perth, catch a ferry from Barrack Square, seaplane from the Swan River or helicopter to Rottnest Island. Known for its tranquil waters, secluded bays and spectacular marine life, Rottnest Island offers an idyllic escape from the city. Hire a bike, join a tour, follow a walking trail or use the hop-on-hop-off bus to discover the hidden beaches, historic attractions and wildlife Including the Island's resident Quokkas! Before you head off, stop in at the Visitor Centre for Information and maps and grab a coffee and breakfast from one of the cafés at Thompson Bay. If you're looking for adventure on the water, Rottnest Island has 63 beaches and 20 bays to choose from, where you can swim, relax on the beach, snorkel, dive and surf. With just over 135 species of vibrant tropical fish and 20 species of coral and over 13 shipwrecks to explore, heading below the surface is a truly worthwhile experience, with underwater snorkel trails at Little Salmon Bay and Parker Point. Other popular beaches include Pinky's Beach, The Basin, Little Parakeet Bay and Geordie Bay. For lunch, stop In at Geordies Cafe and Art Gallery at Geordie Bay. If you prefer exploring on land, follow the Wadjemup Bidi - a series of walk trails that will take you across spectacular coastal headlands, past stunning inland lakes and to both natural and man-made attractions along the way. Made up of 5 sections, the trails boast culturally and environmentally significant landmarks to interpret and experience, including Wadjemup Lighthouse offering ultimate views across the island. Head back to Thompson Bay and enjoy evening drinks and dinner overlooking the bay at Hotel Rottnest or at Riva Restaurant or Indulge In amazing seafood at Thompsons Rottnest. one of the most spectacular beachside views on the island, enjoy locally Inspired dishes and cocktails at Pinky's Beach Club. There are a number of accommodation options available from the premium ocean view hotel rooms and apartments to budget bungalows and cabins. For something truly unique enjoy an eco-glamping experience at Pinky's Beach. The following morning enjoy breakfast at your accommodation or at one of the cafés at Thompson Bay and take in the fresh air and stunning ocean views. Before catching the ferry back to Perth, catch the Island’s 64-seat Captain Hussey train from the Settlement Railway Station to Oliver Hill admiring the beauty of the Island’s south-side along the way. Oliver Hill is located close to the centre of Rottnest Island and features military remnants from World War II including a 9.2 inch gun and maze of underground tunnels, where you can learn about the islands rich history.

Chapter 2

Fremantle

20KM

Make your way back from Rottnest Island, and take a stroll along High Street in Fremantle's West End, admiring the historic buildings. Continue south on South Terrace, known to locals as the Cappuccino Strip where you can get a coffee and breakfast from one of the many cafés before heading to the Fremantle Markets - open Friday - Sunday. Discover an eclectic mix of stalls selling homemade and unique homewares, fashion, gifts, souvenirs and produce. Next jump on the hop on hop off tram and head to the Fremantle Prison, one of Western Australia's premier heritage attractions explore the Prison's fascinating history on an entertaining tour. Continue on to the Fremantle Arts Centre, housed in a convict build neo-Gothic style building the centre Is both a fascinating heritage site and gallery. Head towards the harbour and stop at The Round House - the first permanent building in WA. Follow the whalers tunnel to Bathers Beach - a favourite with locals. Stroll on to the Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour and enjoy a fish and chip lunch from one of the seafood restaurants on the boardwalk. After lunch, head back along the harbour to the WA Maritime Museum and spend the afternoon learning about the state's maritime history through a series of world class displays and presentations. The museum houses unique galleries that explore WA's relationship with the sea as well as other state, national and international exhibitions throughout the year. Continue your journey Into WA's maritime history at the WA Shipwreck Museum - the foremost maritime archaeology museum in the southern hemisphere that houses hundreds of relics from ships wrecked along WA’s treacherous coastline. End your day with dinner at your accommodation, sunset drinks on the beach at Bathers Beach, try a craft beer at a heritage hotel or pub, dine alfresco along the Cappuccino Strip or sample fresh local produce at an award-winning restaurant.

Chapter 1

The Start

15KM

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