Fremantle - Western Australia
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Pre-America's Cup days, Fremantle was a real dump. Now with a total make over it is an attractive port town offering good accommodation and a variety of shops, restaurants and markets.
The much maligned Alan Bond played a large part in bringing the America's cup to W.A. and too many people are very quick to forget the ongoing prosperity that this brought to Fremantle.
Bond lost millions of dollars when his financial empire collapsed, lots of it was OPM, (other people's money) but greed played a big part in the losses, and banks, so keen now to wring their hands and shake their heads at the mention of his name, once showered him with unsecured loans.
Bondy's triumph is preserved for all to see with the Australia II exhibit at the Fremantle Maritime Museum.
Thankfully Fremantle did not follow Perth's example of knocking down heritage buildings and replacing them with soulless towers of concrete and glass. As a result Fremantle has retained most of the wonderful old architecture that gives the place a unique atmosphere.
Getting around Fremantle is quite easy because there are free central area transport (CAT) buses that operate 7 days a week (except Good Friday, Christmas Day and Boxing Day) and will take you to locations such as the train station, art gallery, Maritime Museum, E Shed Markets and fishing boat harbour.
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