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Fremantle Prison

The notorious prison where convicts were transported from Britain since the 1850s before housing local prisoners all the way up until 1991.

Built all the way back in the 1850s, Fremantle Prison has its origins as a gaol built to house convicts transported from England and Ireland. It was not until 1886 that it was handed over to local authorities for home-grown prisoners, with whom it remained until it closed over a century later in 1991. Today the building is a World Heritage Site, housing a museum containing all kinds of artefacts and artwork, and a great place to go and learn more about crime and punishment through history.

You can start off by visiting the living quarters in which prisoners once lived in the Main Cell Block. The Doing Time Tour will give you a great insight into the history of the prison, including the hanging of serial killer Eric Edgar Cooke through to the last case of capital punishment in Western Australia in 1964.

On the Great Escapes Tour you’ll hear stories all about the daring bids for freedom made by old prisoners, whilst looking out at the huge walls, the rifle range and the gun towers. Listen out for the incredible story of Moondyne Joe who managed to escape straight through the prison’s limestone walls.

Take the Tunnel Tour to go deep underground and explore the routes that used to supply the patch with fresh water, dug out by those convicts who’d been sentenced to hard labour. To explore the prison at night and hear some brutal stories from the whipping post and the morgue go on the Torchlight Tour.

For a rather gentler take on the old gaol take the Prison Art Tour, on which you’ll get to see some of the paintings produced by inmates in former times. At the Vistior and Convict Centres you can also see artefacts and find out more about the history of Fremantle.

Located about 22 kilometres south of Perth, you can reach Fremantle Prison on public transport. It is open all year round except for Good Friday and Christmas Day, but it’s best to plan ahead and check the attraction’s website to find out more about all the tours on offer.

Ensure you have plenty of time at Fremantle Prison. Here are the best things to do:

For more activities, peruse our Fremantle things to do page.


Guide to Exploring Fremantle Prison


Top Fremantle Prison Hotel Deals

See all 1,041 properties near Fremantle Prison
Esplanade Hotel Fremantle - by Rydges SG$135
Esplanade Hotel Fremantle - by Rydges

Esplanade Hotel Fremantle - by Rydges

Cnr Marine Terrace and Essex St, Fremantle, WA
     
    4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in the historical district, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Fremantle Markets and University of Notre Dame Australia. Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Passenger Terminal are also within 1 mi (2 km). Fremantle Station is 9 minutes by foot.

    Hougoumont Hotel SG$128
    Hougoumont Hotel

    Hougoumont Hotel

    15 Bannister Street, Fremantle, WA
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated by the sea, this historic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Kings Square and Fremantle Markets. Fremantle Prison is 0.5 mi (0.8 km) away. Fremantle Station is only a 5-minute walk.

      Fremantle Prison YHA
      Fremantle Prison YHA

      Fremantle Prison YHA

         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in the heart of Fremantle, this hostel is within a 10-minute walk of Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Markets. University of Notre Dame Australia and Round House are also within 1 mile (2 km). Fremantle Station is 12 minutes by foot.

        Hamptons Inn SG$118
        Hamptons Inn

        Hamptons Inn

           
          4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated by the ocean, this luxury bed & breakfast is within a 15-minute walk of Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Markets. Kings Square and University of Notre Dame Australia are also within 1 mile (2 km). Fremantle Station is 15 minutes by foot.

          Fremantle Colonial Cottages
          Fremantle Colonial Cottages

          Fremantle Colonial Cottages

             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated near the beach, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Markets. University of Notre Dame Australia and Round House are also within 1 mile (2 km). Fremantle Station is 12 minutes by foot.

            Gallery Serviced Apartments
            Gallery Serviced Apartments

            Gallery Serviced Apartments

            185 High street, Fremantle, WA
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in the heart of Fremantle, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Markets. Round House and Western Australian Maritime Museum are also within 15 minutes. Fremantle Station is 7 minutes by foot.

              Townhouse on Hampton
              Townhouse on Hampton

              Townhouse on Hampton

                 
                0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Situated in Fremantle, this holiday home is within a 15-minute walk of Fremantle Prison and Fremantle Markets. University of Notre Dame Australia and Round House are also within 1 mile (2 km). Fremantle Station is 14 minutes by foot.

                Be. Fremantle SG$169
                Be. Fremantle

                Be. Fremantle

                43 Mews Rd, Fremantle, WA
                   
                  4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated near the beach, this luxury aparthotel is within a 15-minute walk of Bathers Beach and Fremantle Markets. Fremantle Prison is 1.1 mi (1.7 km) away. Fremantle Station is 17 minutes by foot.