Whether it’s dining, history or the great outdoors Williamstown has a lot to offer. Plus, it’s all practically steps from the water. Read on to discover the best experiences of Williamtown.
Porters Williamstown [49 Nelson Place, Williamtown] is Nelson Place’s newest edition and a popular one at that. Focussing on contemporary-Australian cuisine with a European twist, this hot spot serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner and has something on the menu for everyone, even the kids. We can’t go past the spiced honey popcorn chicken found on the bar menu. The sleek and stylish décor creates the perfect vibes for a date night or dinner and drinks with friends.
Because where would a town by the water be without an ice cream shop? The Williamstown Ice Cream Shoppe [199 Nelson Place, Williamstown] is a family-run business that’s been in operation for 35 years and counting. With more than 100 flavours on offer, its success is inevitable. Some of the flavours include Golden Gaytime, toffee apple, tiramisu and, of course, chocolate. We’ll take all four thank you! If you want, go all out and order your ice cream in a double-dipped chocolate sprinkle cone. Bring your four-legged friend along for a treat — doggie ice-cream is also available here.
Get your history fix at the Seaworks Discovery Maritime Centre [82 Nelson Place, Williamtown]. Formerly the sight of the Melbourne Harbour Trust, this place is oozing with history just waiting to be uncovered. Be amazed by the impressive collection of artefacts and literature on display and build your maritime knowledge. The centre is open Wednesday and Sunday from 11am to 3pm, allowing four solid hours of browsing time. After your afternoon of learning head next door to the Pirates Tavern [82, Rear of, Nelson Place, Williamstown], a hidden gem of Williamstown. On Friday nights, you can catch live music here from 7pm. Check its website for opening hours as they vary.
For those who prefer a meal with a side of entertainment head to the Titanic Theatre Restaurant [1 Nelson Place, Williamstown]. This unique dining experience is more than just dinner and a show. Throughout your three-course meal, you’ll be taken along the voyage, reliving the story that made Titanic so significant (don’t worry – sinking of the restaurant not included). The show is engaging and interactive so be prepared to join in on the action and become part of the story. Bookings are essential to ensure your ‘first class’ dining experience.
Take some time out and enjoy the serenity of the Williamstown Botanic Gardens [Corner of Giffard & Osborne Streets]. Nestled by the sea, the gardens are the perfect place to share a picnic, or perhaps some local fish and chips from Rotunda in Williamstown [Esplanade, Williamstown]. Once you finish lunch, explore the many intricate pathways that snake through the gardens or take some timeout to daydream on the lush lawns. Features like the ornamental pond, palm tree avenue and dozens of garden beds make the gardens a beautiful place to visit all year round.
Ahoy! Climb aboard the Sea Sheppard’s [2 Ann Street, Williamstown] main vessel the Steve Irwin for the ultimate sailor experience. When not away at sea, the ship docks at Gem Pier on Sundays where free tours are given by the very crew that work on the ship. These conservation crusaders are passionate about their work and their vessel, making their 20-minute guided tour one to remember. If you’re after a little more adventure, jump on one of the ferries that also docks at the pier for a scenic voyage to St Kilda and Docklands.
It's time to get a little spooky! Take a walk on the dark side on the Ghost of Old City Williamstown tour with Lantern Ghost Tours [12/16 Parkers Street, Williamstown]. With the paranormal activity scale set high, this tour is sure to make even the coolest of cats jump. You’ll visit abandoned morgues, forgotten burial grounds and the hidden laneways of a historic seaport. Throughout the tour, your guide provides a fascinating and, at times, morbid commentary of the dark history that is attached to each location. Have we mentioned you’ll have as little as a lamplight for to light the way? These eerie tours take place on Friday and Saturday nights beginning at 8:30pm. Make a booking to secure a spot on this haunting tour.
Pier Farm [34 The Strand, Williamstown] offers a modern dining experience accompanied by bayside and city lights views; talk about getting the best of both worlds! The interior of this boatshed has been refurbished to create a chic and modern restaurant, while the exterior retains the historic charm of this seaside venue. Of course, Pier Farm serves up a delicious and modern take on seafood as part of its impressive Mediterranean-inspired menu. The old classic flathead and chips are a crowd favourite however, linguine with market seafood, garlic, lemon, chilli and tomato is also a menu highlight.
Built back in 1863 the Steam Pack Hotel [13 Cole Street, Williamstown] has been a local institution for more than 150 years . Despite the fact the pub has been upgraded over the years, it still holds its original charm. Nowadays, it’s known for its array of craft beers for being a popular venue to watch sport. You can still find the tried and true pub grub on the menu, so why not pop in for lunch and grab yourself a favourite Aussie combo — a pot and parma.
All information is considered to be true and correct at the date of publication.
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