North Fremantle Paddling Trail
An eight kilometre kayaking trail in North Fremantle. With safe beaches, swimming areas, boats, cliffs, caves, birdlife and dolphins this is a fun half day trip the whole family will enjoy.
About the Trail
Jetties, boats, cliffs and secret beaches line the lower Swan River near the sea. Dolphins are a common sight, occasionally sea lions or osprey. Terns feed in the river and you may see pelicans, silver gulls or, away from the water - wrens, wagtails, wattle birds and other birdlife.
Start at Johannah Street, North Fremantle where there's free parking and easy access to the beach to launch from.
To avoid boat traffic and current, cross the river before heading upstream (turn left). Follow the riverbank to Preston Point and the Swan Yacht Club. Keep close in to the yacht club for five hundred metres to allow the big boats and Rottnest ferries room in the deeper water.
Continue inshore through the moored boats of East Fremantle Yacht club. A small jetty and beach at Bicton is a good spot for a picnic.
Continue further upstream to see the cliffs of Blackwall Reach where cliff jumping is a rite-of-passage for local youths in hotter weather.
To return to your start point, paddle two hundred metres across the river and turn left, follow the north bank downstream. Again, stay inshore to avoid boat traffic. Paddle all the way around Rocky Bay under the cliffs, around the marina and large moored boats, and finish on the beach where you began.
Need to Know
Home to one of Western Australia's most iconic beaches, Cottesloe is famous for its swimming, surfing, Indian Ocean sunsets, lively Sunday sessions and world-class annual sculpture park exhibition. From the city, it's a 15 minute drive, or you can catch a train on the Fremantle Line, hop off at Cottesloe station and walk eastward to Cottesloe's retail hub or cross the tracks and head west to the beach. On weekends during summer, the 'Cott Cat' shuttle bus runs regularly between the railway and the water. Swimmers, kite surfers and body boarders adore Cottesloe Beach for its crystal clear water and consistent swell, while its rocks and reefs are ideal for snorkelling. For a lazy afternoon picnic, find the perfect spot under the stands of majestic Norfolk Pines that cast cool shade across the foreshore's terraced lawns. You'll find plenty of stylish eateries along and around Marine Parade, many with sweeping ocean views. Book a table for dinner and enjoy one of the finest sunsets in the world. Or, for more casual fare, grab some fish and chips, pick your spot along the shore and watch the sun dip into the sea. By day, take a stroll into the shopping heart of Cottesloe and treat yourself to a spree in the 'village' taking in the high end and trendy boutiques along Napoleon and Station Streets. Then enjoy lunch at the fresh food market, an intimate café or fine dining restaurant. By night, the Indian Oceanside pubs and bars are abuzz every evening and host some of the best Sunday sessions in Perth, with live music and DJs. If you're staying overnight, Cottesloe offers plenty of hotels, motels, apartments and house stays as well as hostels for budget-conscious travellers. Why not plan your visit to coincide with Sculptures by the Sea, a free event transforming Cottesloe Beach into an open air art gallery for three weeks every autumn. This world-class exhibit, only seen in two other places in the world, is a crowd favourite year after year.