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Glimpse into the past by visiting the best historical sites in Perth

Glimpse into the past by visiting the best historical sites in Perth!

Perth is a city that’s not only steeped in bright lights but also in history. From its early heydays as a colony to its meteoric rise after the Second World War, the city is filled with many historical sites that still stand today.

As a history buff myself, I couldn’t be happier knowing my city is rich with iconic places that I can visit and explore myself rather than just learning about them from a book.

So if you’re someone like me who’s keen on learning more about the history of the City of Light, you wouldn’t want to miss these amazing historic sites in Perth!

The Perth Mint


Address: 310 Hay St, East Perth WA 6004, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9421 7222

Operating hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (MON-SUN)


Adult – $24

Child (5-14) – $14

Concession – $21

Begin your history-themed tour around Perth with a quick visit to one of its most iconic buildings, the Perth Mint. Located in East Perth, this place was once used to refine the gold mined across the state during the late 19th century.

It was also used to mint gold sovereigns and half-sovereigns for the British Empire. Shortly after Australia gained its independence, the Perth Mint kept its job, but this time it minted coins of the Australian dollar for circulation.

You can learn more about its history and see how coins are minted here by signing up for the Perth Mint Gold Tour. This tour will also let you see the world’s largest, heaviest, and most valuable gold coin, the 1 Tonne Gold Kangaroo Coin.

Pro tip: After your tour, don’t forget to check out the limited-edition collector coins sold in their souvenir shop! Here, you can buy some unique coins that feature historical figures and events like Queen Elizabeth II and the Battle of Britain.

In case you don’t have the time to visit their souvenir store yourself, you can still purchase these coins through this page.

Fremantle Markets


Address: South Terrace &, Henderson St, Fremantle WA 6160, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9335 2515

Operating hours: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM (FRI-SUN)

Fremantle Markets, located on Henderson Street, is a historical site that I am fond of in particular. Built in 1897, this public market is one of the oldest buildings in Perth that still maintains its original function to this day.

What really impresses me about Fremantle Markets is its impressive Victorian-style architecture. Designed by architects H.J. Eales and Charles Oldham, this market’s iconic high roof and red bricks make it stand out from the other buildings in the area.

Of course, we must not forget the 150 shops and stalls that bring life and excitement to this market. These stores will sell you a wide range of amazing stuff, from delicious food to cool souvenirs, so make sure to bring a full wallet!

Pro tips: Aside from its impressive stores, Fremantle Markets is also known for its talented buskers. You can find out which busker will be performing in the market during your visit through this page.

Fremantle Prison


Address: 1 The Terrace, Fremantle WA 6160, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9336 9200

Operating hours: 

9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (MON, TUES, THURS, SAT, and SUN)

9:00 AM – 9:00 PM (WED and FRI)


Adult – $22

Concession – $19

Child (4-15) – $12

The Fremantle Prison is an iconic historical site known as the first man-made UNESCO Heritage Site in Western Australia. The construction finished in the 1850s, and it holds the distinction of being the largest convict-built structure in the state.

An architectural marvel, it also features the longest and tallest cell range constructed by the British Royal Engineers in the entirety of Australia. Furthermore, its limestone walls were carved from a ridge overlooking Fremantle and the Indian Ocean.

Amazingly, most parts of the Fremantle Prison still remain standing to this day and can be accessed freely by visitors. During your visit, you’ll be able to learn about the prison’s iconic facilities as well as the infamous convicts that lived within its walls.

Pro tip: Are you interested in taking your tour around Fremantle Prison to the next level? 
Then sign up for their Tunnels Tour, which will take you on an exhilarating adventure as you walk along the tunnels underneath the prison that once brought fresh water to the prison’s convicts.

Some parts of the tunnels still carry water to this day, so you’ll have the chance to ride a replica convict punt (tiny boat) to explore these ones!

Blue Boat House

Photo credit: herebig11

Address: 1 Kings Park Ave, Crawley WA 6009, Australia

Contact details: +61 400 340 228

The Crawley Edge Boatshed, affectionately known as the Blue Boat House, stands as a historical site on the northern banks of the Swan River in Crawley. Built in the 1930s, this iconic structure has an interesting story worth telling.

Shortly after its construction, the boatshed came into the ownership of the Nattrass family when they purchased the nearby land in 1944. Sadly, it fell into disrepair after several decades until the family started renovating it in 2001.

During the renovation work, a family friend suggested they repaint the boatshed in blue. Today, its iconic blue colour and eye-catching design have made it the second most popular tourist spot in Perth, ahead of Elizabeth Quay and the Bell Tower.

Pro tip: It’s always a pleasure to visit the Blue Boat House at any time of the day. However, I find the hours during sunrise and sunset to be the best, as the soft light produced by the sun gives off a warm vibe in this place you don’t want to miss.

However, please remember that this place is on private property, so make sure to be respectful and avoid disturbing the surroundings.

Perth Town Hall

Photo credit: herebig11


Address: 601 Hay St, Perth WA 6000, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9461 3555

Operating hours: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM (MON-SAT)

Perth Town Hall, a magnificent Gothic-style building in the heart of Perth, stands as a testament to the city’s rich past. Constructed between 1867 and 1870 by convicts and free men, this architectural marvel is known for its Victorian Free Gothic design.

In particular, its symmetrical layout, Italianate details, and Georgian town clock add to its allure. 

And that’s not all, as once you step inside, you’ll be treated to a magnificent sight of its grand main hall, which has wooden panelling and stained glass windows.

Historically, the Perth Town Hall holds the distinction of being the only town hall in Australia that was built with the help of convicts. While it no longer serves as an administrative hub today, it’s still used for hosting special events.

Pro tip: You don’t need to visit Perth Town Hall physically to admire its historical features and artefacts! You can explore its majestic Main Hall from the comfort of your home thanks to this nifty 3D virtual tour.

Aside from the main hall, there’s also a virtual interactive tour of the town hall’s clocktower, which includes an awe-inspiring panorama of the Perth skyline.

The Old Mill

Photo credit: yasin_ausi


Address: Melville Pl, South Perth WA 6151, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9367 5788

Operating hours: 

10:00 AM – 4:00 PM (TUES-FRI)

1:00 PM – 4:00 PM (SAT and SUN)

Price: $3 per person

The Old Mill, located on Mill Point Road in South Perth, stands as a living relic from the early days of the Swan River Colony. Built in 1835, it served as a vital food source, as it ground wheat into flour for the fledgling settlement.

What makes this historical site so intriguing is that it perfectly encapsulates the pioneers’ resilience and the challenges they faced as they attempted to survive and flourish in this distant corner of the British Empire.

Its architecture, while modest, still offers a picturesque scene thanks to its riverside location. During your visit, you can explore its nooks, learn about early milling practices, and discover more about South Perth’s rich historical heritage.

Pro tip: Since you’re already in South Perth, you can make the most of your visit by checking out the fine restaurants located alongside Mill Point Road. Some places I can recommend are Ciao Italia and The Windsor Hotel

Not a fan of fine dining? Then continue walking down the road until you reach Sir James Mitchell Park, where you’ll find a tonne of food trucks and street food vendors!

Old Court House Law Museum

Photo credit: sunever_sue


Address: Perth WA 6000, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9324 8688

Operating hours: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM (TUES-SUN)

The Old Court House Law Museum in the Perth CBD is one of the most historically significant sites you can visit in the city. Completed in 1836, it’s the city’s oldest surviving public building.

Designed by Henry Reveley, this Georgian-style structure served as the epicentre of legal proceedings during the colonial era. Interestingly, this building is made purely from local materials like limestone walls, jarrah floorboards, and she-oak shingles.

After seeing its impressive exterior, you can also step into the historic courtroom and even occupy the judge’s seat. Beyond the legal artefacts, the museum also features exhibitions with broader themes of colonialism, justice, and discrimination.

Pro tip: You can still explore the Old Court House Law Museum even if you can’t go there physically. 
Thanks to their online virtual tour, you’ll have access to high-quality images of the courthouse, while information tags provide a bit of insight into every artefact you encounter.

This virtual tour can be easily accessed through the website provided above.

Government House


Address: 13 St Georges Terrace, Perth WA 6000, Australia

Contact details: +61 8 9429 9199

Operating hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (MON-FRI)

Another historical site I’m a big fan of is the Government House, located on St. George’s Terrace. Constructed between 1859 and 1864, this elegant residence has been home to every governor of Western Australia since its inauguration in 1863.

Designed by Lieutenant Colonel E.Y.W. Henderson, this place is made according to the Jacobean Revival style. That’s why it features bonded brickwork, decorated gables, ogival-capped turrets, and square mullioned windows.

Aside from its impressive architecture, the Government House also boasts a massive interior that contains 6 rooms on the ground floor and 25 on the first floor. It also has a ballroom where special functions, like Heritage Day, are held.

Pro tip: As the Government House can’t accommodate individual guests, I highly suggest you reserve a slot in one of their guided group tours. 

These free tours have a maximum size of 30 participants and tend to get fully booked quickly, so make sure to reserve your slot as soon as you can!

You can do so by sending a message with your contact details attached to their email: [email protected].  

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