(Perth, Western Australia - WA, Australia)
The museums of Western Australia are at their very best within Perth, with topics including everything from history, heritage, archaeology and anthropology, to medicine, aviation and even cricket.
Especially notable is the Western Australian Museum, which is situated in central Perth and is close to a number of very noteworthy attractions, such as the State Library, the Art Gallery of Western Australia, the city's Cultural Centre and the Old Swan Barracks.
Many of the most appealing exhibits at Perth's much-visited Western Australian Museum tend to fall within the natural history category, with the dinosaur gallery in the Jubilee Building being worth looking out for, boasting a plethora of fossils, skeletons and many other interesting dinosaur-related exhibits.
Western Australian Museum
Address: James Street, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9427 3700
There are many unexpected attractions awaiting within the Western Australian Museum and these include an egg from the extinct elephant bird - which is the size of a football, the Old Gaol - previously used for hangings and now crammed with prisoner and colonial memorabilia, the Katta Djinoong display - celebrating Western Australia's heritage, and many other displays of local city artefacts. The natural history exhibits are especially appealing and include lots of information about indigenous birds, butterflies, mammals and Aussie marine life. Also onsite is a café area and well-stocked gift shop.
Open hours: daily - 09:30 to 17:00
Museum of Childhood
Address: Edith Cowan University, Bay Road, Claremont, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9442 1373
Highly regarded throughout Australia and a part of the Edith Cowan University, the city's very impressive Museum of Childhood is dedicated to childhood heritage. Attractions include original 1833 alphabet manuscripts by William Makepeace Thackeray, dolls from around the world, historic children's books, antique toys and a large amount of Australian childhood memorabilia.
Open hours: Monday to Friday - 10:00 to 16:00, Sunday - 14:00 to 16:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for children and seniors, young children are free
Fire Safety Education Centre and Museum (FESA)
Address: Erwin Street, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9323 9468
The Fire Safety Education Centre and Museum (FESA) is housed in Western Australia's very first fire station, which dates back to 1901. Showcasing firefighting equipment from the past 150 years, the Fire Safety Education Centre features many education displays, interactive exhibits, informative videos, over 6,000 firefighting artefacts and some of Perth's earliest fire engines. The actual building is now listed by the Australian National trust and has become a tourist attraction in its own right.
Open hours: Monday and Tuesday - 10:00 to 15:00
Berndt Museum of Anthropology
Address: Hackett Drive, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
The Berndt Museum of Anthropology is home to an enormous collection of Australian Aboriginal art and cultural artefacts, and also contains comprehensive collections of historic items from Asia, Melanesia and South-East Asia. With over 11,000 objects, more than 35,000 photographs and a vast reference library, this cultural establishment was founded in 1976.
Open hours: Monday, Wednesday - 14:00 to 16:30, Friday - 10:00 to 14:00
Old Court House Law Museum (formerly the Francis Burt Law Museum)
Address: St. George's Terrace, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9325 4787
The Old Court House Law Museum, in central Perth, is dedicated to historic items relating to the history and development of law in Western Australia. Often referred to as the Francis Burt Law Education Centre, attractions here include important law-related books, journals, documents, photographs, illustrations, newspapers, mock trials in the main courtroom area, educational programmes and evidence from historic trains. The Law Museum is housed in the Old Court House, which is the oldest building in the city, dating as far back as 1836.
Open hours: Wednesday to Friday - 10:00 to 14:30
Armadale History House and Museum
Address: Jull Street, Armadale, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9399 6845
Established in 1967 by the Armadale-Kelmscott Historical Society, the Armadale History House and Museum can be found on the eastern side of Perth, next to the Memorial Park and in the Minnawarra precinct, where it is set within attractive gardens, with a large lake and scenic views. Visitors will experience a glimpse into Aboriginal life, with many well laid-out displays and local Aboriginal artefacts to savour.
Open hours: Tuesday to Friday - 10:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 16:00, Saturday and Sunday - 14:00 to 16:30
Address: 66 Victoria Avenue, Claremont, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9285 4345
Situated alongside Freshwater Bay and close to the College Park, the Claremont Museum is located within the westerly Claremont area, in a historic building dating back to 1862, which was previously used as a school. Filled with over 9,000 artefacts relating to the Claremont district, notable highlights include photographs, paintings, antiques, a schoolhouse, taped recordings, fashion items, local Claremont convict history and regular guided tours. The Claremont Museum was founded in 1975 and also features a number of temporary exhibitions and displays throughout the calendar.
Open hours: Monday to Thursday - 10:00 to 16:00, Sunday - 13:00 to 16:00
Army Museum of Western Australia
Address: Artillery Barracks, Burt Street, Fremantle, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9335 2077
The popular Army Museum of Western Australia is situated in Fremantle's military establishment, close to the very centre of the city. This attraction stands within a group of heritage buildings dating back to 1911. Featuring a large collection of military memorabilia, such as army vehicles, artefacts from the Second World War, information about peace keeping in Vietnam
, and much more besides, this military attraction was founded in 1977 and is within easy reach of the city centre, being connected by either car or bus. The Fremantle Arts Centre and Fremantle Park are both just a short stroll away and to the south.
Open hours: Wednesday - 11:00 to 15:00, Saturday and Sunday - 11:00 to 15:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for children
West Australian Cricket Association Museum (WACA)
Address: West Australian Cricket Association, Nelson Crescent, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9265 7222
Located alongside Queens Gardens and next to Gloucester Park, the West Australian Cricket Association Museum (WACA) is located next to the Swan River and celebrates the history of this important cricket ground, which was founded in 1885. Full of important and historic sporting memorabilia, displays, temporary exhibitions and photographs, guided tours of the actual WACA ground are also available every Tuesday and Thursday at 10:00.
Open hours: Monday to Friday - 10:00 to 12:00
RAAF Aviation Heritage Museum
Address: Bull Creek Drive, Bull Creek, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9311 4470
The RAAF Aviation Heritage Museum serves as a reminder of the important aviation past in this part of Western Australia. Featuring historic exhibits dating back to the early 20th century, including photographs, models, and a fibreglass replica Spitfire plane, there is also a good collection of old aircraft, such as a DH Vampire, a CAC Wirraway, a GAF Canberra and an actual DH Tiger Moth. Other attractions at the RAAF Aviation Heritage Centre include temporary exhibitions, seasonal events and a well-stocked gift shop. Nearby attractions come in the form of Gemmel Park, the Richard Lewis Park, the Ron Carroll Reserve and the Trinity Theological College.
Open hours: daily - 10:00 to 16:00.
Admission: charge, discounts available for children and families, children six years old and under are free
Western Australian Medical Museum
Address: Harvey House, King Edward Memorial Hospital for Women, Corner of Railway Road and Barker Road, Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9340 1506
The Western Australian Medical Museum, in the Subiaco district of Perth, displays important medical items from Western Australia's past. These include an authentic 1930s operating theatre, a dentist's workshop, a working iron lung, old doctor's medical instruments, Aboriginal medicines and some exciting, interactive displays. Housed in Harvey House, which was built in 1895, this medical attraction is close to the Subiaco train station and the Subiaco Arts Centre.
Open hours: Wednesday - 10:30 to 16:00, Sunday - 14:00 to 16:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for children
Other museums worth a visit in the Perth and Western Australia area include:
- Fremantle History Museum - Finnerty Street, Fremantle, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9430 7966
- Geological Museum - Clarke University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9380 2681
- Gloucester Lodge - Yanchep National Park, Yanchep, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9561 1004
- Fremantle Motor Museum - B-Shed, Victoria Quay, Fremantle, 6160, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9336 5222
- Hugh Manning Tractor & Machinery - Wellard Street, Serpentine, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9525 2129
- Kalamunda History Village - 56 Railway Road, Kalamunda, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9293 1371
- Mines Department Museum - 100 Plain Street, Perth, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9222 3333
- Museum of Western Australian Sport - Challenge Stadium Stephenson Avenue, Mount Claremont, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9387 8542
- O'Connor Museum - Mundaring Weir, Mundaring, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9295 2455
- Rail Transport Museum - 136 Railway Parade, Bassendean, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9279 7189
- Rockingham Museum - Kent Street, Rockingham, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9592 3455
- The Motor Museum of Western Australia - Lord Street, Whiteman Park, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9249 9457
- Western Australia Maritime Museum - Cliff Street, Fremantle, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9431 8444
- Western Australia Science & Technology Centre - Sutherland Street, West Perth Western Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9481 6295
- Wireless Hill Park Museum - Wireless Hill Park, Ardross, 6153, Western Australia (WA), Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 9364 7067