Here's ten free activities for kids to do in the April school holidays. It’s a chance to put away the devices and experience the fresh salty air and wide open spaces in Fremantle. We’ll wager there’ll be a few you didn’t know about–feel free to spread the word.
1. Free wheeling free bike hire
This free bike hire service with bikes for adults and kids (8+ years) operates from the Fremantle Visitor Centre in Kings Square. Bikes can be used anywhere in the Fremantle area. There are a limited number of bikes available for hire so arrive early to avoid disappointment.
Image: Booyeembara Park, cnr Stevens & Montreal Street Fremantle
3. Take a spin at the Esplanade Youth Plaza
Pack up the kid’s skateboards, scooters or roller skates and spend an afternoon at one of the most popular skate facilities in the metropolitan area. There’s also places to try ping pong, rock climbing, slacklining and parkour and the playground adjacent to the plaza has swings and a giant climbing frame. Bring a picnic or grab a bite to eat from nearby cafés and restaurants all within walking distance.
4. Behind the scenes tour at WA Shipwrecks Museum
For the older kids every Wednesday and Sunday WA Shipwrecks Museum offers a free and exclusive behind the scenes tour of the WA Shipwrecks Museum through maritime archaeology and conservation works areas. Bookings essential. On the second Tuesday of every month entry to WA Maritime Museum is free (the next one falls Tuesday 11 April).
5. Freo Easter Hunt
Pick up a #Freo_Easter Hunt map from participating businesses or the local paper from Saturday 8 April and start hunting for special eggs in shop windows around Fremantle city centre. Collect all the numbers, crack the code and you can enter the prize draw.
6. Junior Fishing Clinic
Recfishwest is offering a free SunSmart fishing clinic at Victoria Quay in Fremantle on Thursday 13 April. Kids do need to be supervised by a parent or guardian and will learn fishing skills like casting and fish handling and how to fish sustainably.
7. Firing of the cannon at the Round House
Opened in 1831, Round House is the oldest public building in Western Australia. It’s open every day between 10.30 and 3.30 (except Christmas Day and Good Friday). Hear the story of why the cannon is fired every day at 1 pm – visitors can even apply to act as the honorary gunner!
8. Fremantle International Street Arts Festival 13-17 April
It really is Australia’s biggest and best street arts festival (if not the world!) and if you live in Perth Western Australia it’s right on your doorstep. This year, for the first time, there will be performances from Good Friday right through to Easter Monday from lunch time well into the evening. Download the program to plan what you’d like to see or just rock up on the day and let the atmosphere sweep you along. It’s beautiful, engaging, hilarious and simply a fabulous day out with the family.
Image: Hell's Cocky's will be performing at this year's Fremantle International Street Arts Festival 13-17 April
9. Self guided walking trails
Explore iconic Fremantle attractions, history, cultural heritage and the arts with one of the Explore Fremantle walking trails. There are seven trails to choose from including cafés, a general discovery trail and heritage highlights. The trails work on iPhone and Android devices (you can connect to FREBytes free wifi in the CBD).
10. Play giant chess in Kings Square
Almost directly under the newly unveiled Fremantle Town Hall is a giant marble chess board. You'll find the chess pieces stored under the ‘kings bench’ near the Moreton Bay fig tree. If the bench is locked pop into the Fremantle Visitor Centre and they'll open it up for you.
Late addition: kids (of all ages) will love checking out the giant fish tanks at Cicerellos!
All of the above are free which might leave some money in your pocket for a morning or afternoon treat at one of Freo’s cafés. There’s a few favourites including a milkshake and a pie from Culley’s Tearooms, fish & chips at Fishing Boat Harbour or the nature and art hub for kids (and their grown ups) at Moore and Moore Café on Henry Street.
If you are looking for more bright ideas, Fremantle story publishes an official school holiday guide full of classes, workshops and special offers that will help you keep the kids busy all through the holidays.