Thursday, December 6, 2018

Around Australia Cruise - Sea Princess - Fremantle / Perth

We docked in Fremantle which is right next to Perth.  Since we were in port from 8 am to 11 pm, there was no need to hurry off the ship.

The train from Fremantle to Perth is about a 15-minute walk at a slow pace (ours lol). The shortest way is to use the bridge over the railroad tracks but I understand that if you walk past the station, there is a place to cross at track level. We used the bridge.

The station was crowded with Sea Princess passengers and a large group of Asians, all trying to get tickets to catch the train. There were two rail agents helping everyone so it went pretty fast. We were soon aboard a very comfortable train for our 25 or so minute ride into Perth.

Once in Perth, we picked up the CAT bus transportation which is free. A bit of a caveat here. First, check your surroundings when you exit this station. I took a quick scan but I know if I had to find it again from streetside, I wouldn't be able to without some help (suggestion is to take a couple of pictures). Second, before arriving in Perth with plans to take the free transportation, check if any of it is on strike. Yes, strike! (Although I understand this doesn't happen too often.) In Perth, the bus lines are identified by color. And when we were there, the drivers for two of the lines were on strike. Fortunately, it didn't affect our plans.

Our first stop was the Perth Mint which has a very interesting history, existing because of Western Australia's gold rush. The mint is privately owned and its customers are bullion investors. We took the tour and enjoyed it, including seeing the largest gold coin in the world, 1 metric tonne of pure gold (around 3 feet in diameter) worth (at that time) over AUD $50,000,000.




Can see people in the background for size perspective
Our next stop was King`s Park, with Perth`s botanical garden. We started with lunch at the cafe in the park. Jerry had the fish and chips and I had the hummus platter. Both very good. The weather was great and we walked and walked and walked. Just beautiful with lots of plants in bloom and views over the Swan River and central Perth in the background.






Finally, time to head back to the ship. Fortunately, we didn't have to find our way back to the station we got off at. We caught a bus at the park and spoke to the driver. At one of the bus stops, she very nicely told us this was our stop and directed us towards one of the underground stations which she said would connect with the Perth/Fremantle train. (It did but a long walk from the platform we got off to the platform for the Fremantle train.)

For those that want to know, there is a Coles supermarket right across the street from the station in Fremantle. And we had hoped to spend some time in Fremantle but by the time we got off the train, we were exhausted. Time to head back to the ship for dinner because we wanted to see that night's show.

Princess had brought aboard the Western Australia Marching Police Pipe Band. We really enjoyed the show and recommend it.






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