This is one of Fremantle’s oldest swimming beaches. In the earliest colonial times it became a popular recreation area. One hundred years ago a tramway ran all the way from central Fremantle along South Terrace to Douro Road near the beach. A shark net protected swimmers from the dreaded marine monsters.
A hundred years later the Blue CAT bus takes you from central Fremantle along the same old tram route to South Beach and back again along Marine Terrace. And there is talk again about installing shark nets. The more things change the more they stay the same.
South Beach is quite expansive. Unlike the surf beaches of North Fremantle like Port and Leighton, the length of the beach is sheltered, making it a wonderful place to swim and very popular with families with small children. For the bigger children, there is a pontoon anchored a short distance from the shore inviting swimmers to show off their ‘bombie’ skills.
Above the beach sits a spacious, grassed area shaded by Norfolk Island pines and other coastal trees. Locals and visitors, older and younger, gather on the grass from daybreak into the evening to lounge and picnic. The more energetic jog, ride and walk along the bike trail on the edge of the grassed area, exercise with personal trainers, practice their circus skills and take part in outdoor yoga classes.
In summer, South Beach hosts the popular Sunset food markets each Saturday night. Year round, dine-in and takeaway food and coffee are available at the beach from the South Beach Cafe and Picked Fig Cafe
Parking is available at South Beach, although on hot summer weekends you don’t want to be late.