WA Shipwrecks Museum

On a visit to Fremantle, we decided to go on the hunt for some pirate Treasure at the WA Shipwrecks Museum which is located within an easy walking distance of Fremantle Harbour. The museum is free to enter although a gold coin donation is appreciated.

TheWA Shipwrecks Museum is recognised as the foremost maritime archaeology museum in the southern hemisphere. The Museum is housed in a 1850’s-era Commissariat building which has been beautifully restored to its historic glory.

WA Shipwrecks Museum


TheWA Shipwrecks Museum house hundreds of relics from ships wrecked along WA’s coastline. The centrepiece is the Batavia Gallery which houses the reconstructed remains of the ship Batavia, one of WA’s most famous shipwrecks. It’s a stunning room and there is an elevated viewing deck so that you can look down the stern of the Batavia and appreciate the size and scope of the wreck.

WA Shipwrecks Museum

Upstairs in the viewing gallery area is a reconstruction of the Captain’s cabin and other artefacts – including Pirate Treasure – recovered from the wreck.

WA Shipwrecks Museum

Unlike the WA Museum and the WA Maritime Museum, the WA Shipwrecks Museum does not have any dedicated areas particularity aimed at younger pre-school aged children. It does lack in interactive activities for that age group. However both my girls had great fun entering the spirit of being on a pirate adventure.

WA Shipwrecks Museum

We searched out pirate treasure – the Dutch Wrecks Gallery was a great area for all things treasure related as there is a huge display of coins, lace, pottery and maps recovered from the Dutch shipwrecks.

WA Shipwrecks Museum WA Shipwrecks Museum
We got up close and personal with lots of cannons.

WA Shipwrecks MuseumWA Shipwrecks Museum
And the girls were very interested in the skeleton on display in the Batavia Gallery which once belonged to one of the people who was murdered on the Abrolhos Islands.
WA Shipwrecks Museum

There are also several mini replicas of ‘Pirate Ships’ dotted around the Museum which was of great interest to the girls.

WA Shipwrecks Museum
We spent around an hour at the WA Shipwrecks Museum and really enjoyed our visit. During the school holidays, the Museum puts on special low-cost activities which are great fun and worth going along to.

Opening times

Open daily: 9.30am – 5.00pm
Open ANZAC Day 1.00pm – 5.00pm

Closed: Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day and Good Friday


Western Australian Museum — Shipwreck Galleries,
Cliff Street,
Fremantle, Western Australia, 6160

Phone number

(08) 9431 8469

Find out more museum.wa.gov.au/museums/shipwrecks

Find more places to visit with kids in Perth

Find more things to do in Fremantle


About Jennie McNichol

Jennie McNichol is the Co-Founder and Editor of Buggybuddys. She moved to Perth in 2010 after 11 years of living in London, working in the television industry for the BBC. She is the mother of two daughters aged 12 and 10 and loves the family-friendly lifestyle that Perth has to offer.

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