Note: this summer I spent just over three weeks in Australia, visiting my former San Francisco roommate and one of my best friends in the world. With a home base in Perth, we explored Kali's new city, took a roadtrip to wine country, and ran a marathon (because why not?). All of my Australia posts thus far can be viewed here.
While staying with Kal in Perth, we spent a fair bit of time in neighboring Fremantle. From food spots to retail therapy, it was a total holiday dreamland.
Referred to as "Freo" by locals (and maybe Australians in general?), Fremantle is full of delicious restaurants, adorable shops, and historically preserved 19th-century buildings that give the main part of town a really cool vibe. With our home base (in Mosman Park) so close to Freo, we spent a fair bit of time hopping in and out of town to grab food, peruse shops, and generally wander around.
As a former shopgirl and small-business aficionado, I'm drawn to all things local - which is why I love the concept behind MANY (technically MANY 6160).
A former department store, the space (shown above) has been converted into "Australia's largest temporary space activation project" - filled with local designers and retailers selling everything from clothing and textiles to furniture, stationery, and perfume.
I also love a good bargain, and there are plenty of "op-shops" (in America we know them as thrift stores) as well. I found a PERFECT bright orange sweater blanket cardigan situation that I begrudgingly opted out of on a final day in town. (With limited bag space and an upcoming itinerary in Thailand, it wasn't a great purchase decision - but I still wish I'd just bought it.)
Fremantle has an awesome mix of the old buildings, new street art, cute coffee shops, and trendy restaurants - like the gorgeous Raw Kitchen (below) - part juice bar, part raw/vegan restaurant, part retail awesomeness.
In addition to seemingly endless options for food, drinks, and caffeine, Fremantle is located at the mouth of the Swan River, with great harbor views as well.
While it felt like there was still plenty left to do and see (and eat, and drink) in Freo, between karaoke bon voyage parties, girl gang meals, birthday dinners, and long talks over short macs and flat whites (I did my best to try new coffee lingo!), I think I got a good sampling of what Freo is all about.
Note: I had TONS of photos from Freo - but due to an unfortunate technology setback (or irresponsible management of electronic goods, whatever you wanna call it) I lost almost all of them. Basically what I'm saying is that this post doesn't begin to capture the awesomeness of WA. My thoughts on traveling sans technology coming soon.