PERTH 5: Day 5 = 18th September: Riverside in Perth and the trip down the Swan River to Freemantle and back again.

The Riverside Cafe where we caught the boat that went down to Freemantle and back again over the whole day.

A building on the other end of the boat jetty.

Signs advertising the Swan River (which we went on this day) and the cruise to Rottnest Island. We only wanted to go to Rottnest Island after had been to Perth in September 2022. We had made the arrangements for Perth two years ago in Brisbane, Queensland and it couldn’t be changed. Rottnest Island sounded very interesting.

Barrack Square

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Barrack Square is an open public square on the foreshore of Perth Water on the Swan River, located at the southern end of Barrack Street near the central business district of Perth, Western Australia.

It has also been known as Union Jack Square,[1] Flagstaff Square and Harper Square.[2][3][4]


The Swan Bells (See photo below of the Bell Tower), are located at Barrack Square, as well as cafés, restaurants and jetties.

There are six jetties[5] (so the area is sometimes referred to as the Barrack Street Jetties), including the Barrack Street Jetty used by Transperth. Commercial companies also use the jetties for trips to Rottnest Island and river cruises.

The West Australian Rowing Club has had a presence adjacent to the square since the nineteenth century.

From Welcome to the Bell Tower

The Majestic Bell Tower. The Bell Tower is located on Riverside Drive overlooking the picturesque Swan River. It is one of the most unique places and must see tourist attractions in Perth. Filled with fascinating historic content and boasting a unique and distinctive design – resulting from a major architectural competition – it has become an icon for Perth and Western Australia.

This historic ring of bells was given to the people of Western Australia as part of the national Bicentennial celebrations in 1988. Among its many attributes the Bell Tower includes the twelve bells of St Martin-in-the-Fields, which are recorded as being in existence from before the 14th century and recast in the 16th century by Queen Elizabeth I. Wondering what to do in Perth? Visit The Bell Tower today!

A block of offices on one of the six jetties.

The Riverside Cafe from a different position.

People having a meal or coffee at the Riverside Cafe before the boat leaves for going down the Swan River to Freemantle and back again. My awesome wife Harriet having a coffee in the photo below.

The James Stirling

The boat operates the daily Fremantle Lunch Cruise and afternoon Swan River Scenic Cruise, by night she transforms into the ideal vessel for dinners for up to 225 people.

Cruise the Swan River between the port city of Fremantle and Perth on one of the daily cruises! Stay onboard and enjoy the scenic experience or jump off in Perth and take the time to explore the vibrant city at your own leisure.

From the website: There is no better way to combine a delicious lunch and a wonderful cruise on the magnificent Swan River than on our Fremantle Lunch Cruise. Available from both Perth and Fremantle, this unique cruise includes a buffet of Western Australia’s abundant seasonal fresh produce as well as full bar facilities on board.

Upon boarding the vessel you are shown to your reserved table. Enjoy the Captain’s commentary during the cruise downstream to the port city of Fremantle. Upon the return journey, you are invited to enjoy the hot buffet complimented by seasonal salads, all followed by a scrumptious dessert buffet. With a fully stocked bar on board, why not enhance your light lunch with an ice-cold beer, chilled chardonnay, or smooth shiraz.

The boat is underway. Swan River is open to the sea so it is tidal.

History Captain Cook Cruises

Captain Cook Cruises was formed in 1980. At that time it was owned by Boat Torque Cruises as a subsidiary business and was operated completely separate to the Rottnest ferry service.

In 1982 Tony Baker was appointed General Manager of Captain Cook Cruises and John Goodbody was an Engineer with the company. After the America’s Cup Defence in 1987 the company was put up for sale. Tony and John purchased the business under the name Vyscot Pty Ltd trading as Captain Cook Cruises on the 1st July 1987. It was not associated with Captain Cook Cruises in Sydney.

The company has expanded considerably since then, when two vessels were in operation – the MV Captain Cook and the MV Swan Explorer. In May 1988 the Captain Cook was given a major refit and new superstructure. In May 1990 the vessel MV Jolly Jumbuck and the trading name Swan River Scenic Cruises was purchased. The vessel was completely rebuilt and renamed the MV Swan Princess. In October 1992 the vessel MV Perth was leased from Metrobus and we operated this vessel until our lease expired on 30th September 1997. Read further.

The magnificent mansions of Perth overlooking the river and Fremantle’s busy inner harbour.

Photograph of Ken taken by a fellow passenger.

An industrial section of Perth along the Swan River.

Trees along the bank merging into houses of wealthy people.

A little sandy beach …….. one of many along the Swan River. That was thing we liked about Perth. There were parks and beaches along the Swan River. Compared to Brisbane where we come from ….. 3,606 kms. or 2,240 miles away …… we only have Southbank as the main riverside park. You wouldn’t swim in the Brisbane river …. it is too dirty.

A man out paddling on a surf ski, brings a real personal quality to the park.

More trees along the the Swan River. It is untouched bushland which gives a sense of remoteness and distance from the city of Perth.