Aboriginal History & Culture

Learn from the Bindjareb people of the Noongar nation.

Aboriginal History & Culture

Learn about the
Bindjareb people
of the Noongar
Nation

Kaya Wandjoo, nidja Bindjareb Noongar Kaadadjan (hello, welcome and learn from the Bindjareb people of the Noongar nation).

The first people of the region were the Bindjareb people of the Noongar Nation, who named the locality Mandjoogoordap (now Mandurah) which translates to ‘meeting place of the heart’. You can learn the stories, secrets and traditions of one of the oldest surviving cultures in earth on an Aboriginal history and culture tour, at significant sites and art galleries.

Artworks

Mandurah Eastern Foreshore – the curved design of the seawall reflects the shapes of the Wagyl, a major spirit of Noongar people. Central to their beliefs and customs, the Wagyl is a snake or rainbow serpent recognised by Noongar as the giver of life, maintaining all fresh water sources.

Mandurah Bridge – on the wall at the western end of the bridge’s footpath is a welcome to country written in Noongar dialect.

Bonu-Wongie – Message Stick – located on Mandurah’s Eastern Foreshore, this sculpture represents the invitation from the Winjan Aboriginal Community to the City of Mandurah to work together.

Bindjareb Fishing Site – located on Mandurah’s Eastern Foreshore, this site highlights the cultural significance of the waterways for the local Aboriginal people.

Yaburgurt Memorial – located on Mandjar Square, this memorial celebrates and commemorates the life of the Aboriginal leader Yaburgurt, also known as George Winjan, a survivor of the Pinjarra Massacre of 1834. The artwork consists of a spherical shape with tall glass panels that represent the six Noongar seasons as well as highlighting Mandurah’s Aboriginal ancient and contemporary aspects of life and culture.

Connection at Stingray Bay – this steel sculpture honours the spirit of the site’s traditional owners and its significance as an ancient meeting place.

Seascapes Walkway – located in Halls Head, this 3 km footpath from Halls Head to Falcon features interpretive signs with information on native species and the traditional Aboriginal use of plants and animals.

Yaburgurt Memorial Mandurah

Tours & Experiences

Manjoogoordap Dreaming

Let George Walley take you on a journey through Mandurah or the region’s bushland and waterways. Hear Dreamtime stories and visit significant sites and learn about bush tucker on a walking, boat cruise or bus tour, departing from Mandurah. Find out more.

 

Goolamwiin

Learn about the Noongar people, discover bush tucker and medicinal plants, hear storytelling and get hands on with Aboriginal tools on these Aboriginal cultural bush tours and overnight camping experiences, departing from Mandurah. Find out more.

 

Kaarak Dreaming

Step into the Dreamtime, learn about ancient dreaming stories and join in a yarning circle. Be guided on an ancient Dreaming Trail bush walk in Dwellingup while learning about traditional hunting. Find out more.

 

Bindjareb Park

This 22ha nature sanctuary in Pinjarra is home to native wildlife including rare bird species such as the red-tailed black cockatoo. When visiting, you can join a tour to learn about the bush, local Dreamtime stories and taste bush tucker. Tours run every Saturday at 10am and bookings are essential. Bindjareb Park also holds Six Season dinners throughout the year. Find out more.

 

Forest Heritage Centre

At Forest Heritage Centre in Dwellingup you can learn about the Aboriginal six seasons, traditional nutrition and listen to Dreamtime stories with Aboriginal Elders as you make and eat a damper and kangaroo supper.

 

Mandurah Community Museum

The Mandurah Community Museum has a well-established oral history program with one of its main focuses being the collection of stories and life histories of Aboriginal people in the Peel region.

arts-and-cutlure-Mandjoogoordap-Dreaming-tour-Thrombolites

Significant Sites

The Peel Yalgorup Wetlands have special significance for the Noongar people as important sources of food and water, used for ceremonial purposes and are part of the dreaming and their natural beliefs. Whilst all waterways are important to the Noongar people, some significant Aboriginal heritage sites include campsites at the Serpentine River mouth and Island Point and a ceremonial site at Egg Island. Please respect the cultural significance of these sites.

Bilya Country Story Trail© is an interactive trail map that details 13 important sites to commemorate places of historical and cultural interest to the Mandurah Bindjareb community. Please respect the cultural significance of these sites.

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Historical Buildings & Museums

Learn about Mandurah and the Peel Region’s pioneering history

Historical Buildings & Museums

Discover the Historical
Buildings & Museums

Learn about Mandurah and the Peel Region’s pioneering history and experience extraordinary stories of pioneering settlers, local characters and significant sites.

Mandurah Community Museum

Get a fascinating glimpse into Mandurah’s rich history and learn about significant people, places and events. Back in 1898, the museum was a schoolroom, later becoming the town’s police station. Both the school room and the cells can still be seen today. The Mandurah Community Museum features photographs, objects and more information about Mandurah’s journey from pre-settlement through to its development as a quiet holiday town into the city we know today. Entry is by gold coin donation. Open Tuesdays – Fridays, 10am – 4pm and Saturdays – Sundays, 11am – 3pm.

Location: 3 Pinjarra Road, Mandurah

Mandurah-Community-Museum

Halls Cottage

Built in the early 1830’s by Henry Edward Hall who was the first person to develop a fishing industry in the Mandurah district, this limestone cottage was one of the first pioneering dwellings in the state and is now a museum of local history. Open Sundays from 10am – 3pm.

Location: Leighton Place, Halls Head

Halls-Cottage-Mandurah

Edenvale Homestead

This beautiful heritage precinct in Pinjarra includes a heritage rose garden, the McLarty family homestead and other historical buildings.

Location: 2 Henry Street, Pinjarra

Halls-Cottage-Mandurah

Dwellingup History and Visitor Information Centre

The Dwellingup History and Visitor Information Centre houses a fully restored Mack fire truck and a unique collection of historical items.

Location: 4 Marrinup Street, Dwellingup

Halls-Cottage-Mandurah

Waroona Historical Museum

Located in the former Road Board building, the Waroona Historical Museum has plenty of information and historic objects about Waroona.

Location: Corner Millar Street & South West Highway, Waroona

The Old Post Office Museum Jarrahdale

Located in Jarrahdale, only a 40 minute drive from Mandurah, the Old Post Office Museum features information on the historic timber town Jarrahdale once was.

Location: 631 Jarrahdale Road, Jarrahdale

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locals
like it

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Visitor Guide!

Mandurah is the ultimate aquatic and nature playground. Trip planning and experience making is easy with our 2021 destination information guide.

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Art Galleries

In Mandurah we’re not only relaxed by nature but also inspired by it.

Art Galleries

Discover our Mandurah
Art Galleries

Nature has always had a leading role as a source of inspiration for visual artists, so it’s not surprising that in Mandurah we’re not only relaxed by nature but also inspired by it.

There’s a very passionate and vibrant art community in Mandurah and quite a few art galleries for you to visit.

Alcoa Mandurah Art Gallery

Located at the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre, the Alcoa Mandurah Art Gallery has free exhibitions on display throughout the year. It presents around 10 diverse exhibitions each year featuring contemporary, indigenous, historical, traditional, design and sculptural artworks. The Mandurah Performing Arts Centre Foyer Galleries represent emerging and early career artists.

Black Stump Gallery

Located within the Mandurah Visitor Centre, the Black Stump Gallery by local artist Emma Blyth showcases her unique artworks and gifts available for purchase. Emma Blyth’s colourful art has been inspired by the amazing beauty and colours of the Australian outback and remote coastlines and her love of Australia really shines through in her amazing pieces.

Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah (CASM)

Centrally located within the Mandurah City Centre and nestled on the picturesque Mandurah estuary, CASM supports exhibition development and partnerships with artists, arts organisations and communities by providing low cost rental spaces, a diverse workshop program and information services for artists. CASM provides a platform to assist recent graduates and emerging artists navigate early exhibition experiences. It also supports established artists presenting a body of work that is new and experimental in relation to their normal practice.

CASM’s annual exhibition program features eight diverse art exhibitions and events including:

  • A wide range of local artist groups
  • Youth artists
  • Solo artists
  • Touring exhibitions
  • City of Mandurah project exhibitions

Each exhibition features an opening launch and a free artist or curator talk.

To view upcoming exhibitions, please visit the exhibitions page.

Vivid Art Collective

Located in Smart Street Mall in Mandurah, the Vivid Art Collective exhibits artwork’s by the collective’s artists every 8 weeks, including paintings, sculptures and jewellery.

Liveringa Gallery

Located at the Edenvale Homestead Precinct in Pinjarra, this gallery features artworks and sculptural pieces by the Murray Arts and Crafts Society.

Dwellingup Arts Collective

The Dwellingup Arts Collective, located in Pinjarra, displays a wide range of superb artworks, including artworks for sale from artists-in-residence.

Discover
how the
locals
like it

Download Our
Visitor Guide!

Mandurah is the ultimate aquatic and nature playground. Trip planning and experience making is easy with our 2021 destination information guide.

Find more inspiration

Take a look at some of our best picks

Mandurah Art Trails

Artworks are all around us in Mandurah and we’re going to help you find them.

Mandurah Art Trails

Discover the Art
Scene in Mandurah,
here’s where to
find them

Mandurah is filled with incredible public art but not all of it is as obvious as the silver metal heart sculpture on Mandurah’s Eastern Foreshore. Hidden down laneways, on the pavement or on the facades of buildings, artworks are all around us in Mandurah and we’re going to help you find them.

Trail  1 – Follow the light blue trail

1. STAINED GLASS WINDOW
Artist: Cottage Leadlighting
Located inside the Mandurah Visitor Centre, this artwork is a depiction of the Wagyl, or Rainbow Serpent, that controls the balance of water, guards the sacred landscapes and is shown surrounded by Mandurah’s aquatic flora and fauna.

2. MARINE WILDLIFE 3D ILLUSION PAINTING
Artist: Jenny McCracken
A remarkable depiction of Mandurah’s abundant marine wildlife jumps out from the pavement in front of the Mandurah Visitor Centre. This 3D illusion painting was created by 3D pavement artist Jenny McCracken.

3. SNAKES AND LADDERS
Artist: Lesley King & Dudley Park & Riverside Primary Schools & Community
Step onto a mosaic of the Snakes and Ladders game with playing instructions on hand-made tiles surrounding the installation near the Eastern Foreshore playground.

4. BONU-WONGIE – MESSAGE STICK
Artist: John Kelly & Coral Lowry
Two hands holding a message stick represents the invitation from the Winjan Aboriginal Community to the City of Mandurah to work together.

5. HIMVANTA
Artist: Pornchal & Th’awan
The Himvanta Forest of the Himalayas is inhabited by beautiful Kinnaree. These half-bird, half-women are renowned for their singing and dancing.

6. ARTY BIKE RACK
Artist: Gary Aitken
This sculpture is also a functioning public bike rack with cyclists invited  to contribute by securing their bike to the decorative wheels.

7. YOU’VE GOT MAIL
Artist: Claire Bailey
In 1887 telegraph lines reached Mandurah and reduced the isolation of early settlers for whom The Post and Telegraph Office was an important
meeting centre.

8. LADY BANANAS
Artist: Lady Bananas & Ladie Poise & Pore
This series of contemporary urban murals wrap round the building to form a colourful, engaging and eye catching modern artwork.

9. ABC
Artist: Anne Neil
Based on a line drawing of books and pencils, this cast work commemorates the opening of Mandurah’s first government school in 1900.

10. THE GUARDIAN
Artist: Celestin Hutchinson
Located outside the Mandurah Community Museum, this mural tells the story of the creation of the estuary, the lifeblood of the Bindjareb people.

11. LEVIATHAN
Artist: Jerome Davenport, Blank Walls
Designed by Joe Wilson in 1915 in the nearby Agricultural Hall, the Leviathan only made eight voyages before disaster struck. The boat filled with water and sand when rough weather set in, ending her life only 2kms from when she was built at Soldier’s Cove. This artwork can be found outside the Mandurah Community Museum.

12. BLUE SWIMMER CRAB – 3D ILLUSION PAINTING
Artist: Jenny McCracken
Definitely the safest and one of the most fun ways to pose with Mandurah’s famous blue swimmer crabs. Walk across the Mandurah Bridge to view this interactive street art that was created by Australia’s most highly awarded pavement artist Jenny McCracken. Take a photo from the footprint for the best 3D effect.

13. WAR MEMORIAL
Artist: Hames Sharley
A place of reflection and tribute to the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Inspired by the poem, ‘At the Going Down of the Sun’.

14. SPRING SWING
Artist: Tahnee Kelland
Thanks to the community-run organisation Shape Mandurah this laneway was transformed into a Mandurah Instagram hotspot. Head to Tuckey’s Lane and don’t forget to get your photo taken here.

Trail 2 – Follow the dark blue trail

1. YABURGURT MEMORIAL
Artist: Peter Farmer & Little Rhino Designs
Yaburgurt Winjan was a significant Bindjareb Noongar elder. This
stunning artwork, which represents the six seasons, was created with
community to commemorate the centenary of Yaburgurt’s passing.
The project was funded through a Royalties for Regions grant.

2. FRAME
Artist: Gary Aitken
Designed by local artist Gary Aitken in 2005, this aluminium sculpture
encourages you to interact by framing your view.

3. CONNECTION
Artist: Bridget Norton
Honouring the spirit of the site’s traditional owners and the Osprey
these totems acknowledge the significance of the site as an ancient
meeting place.

4. WATER GIRL
Artist: Coral Lowry
This large and elevated sculptural work depicts a little girl with her
hair flying and playing in the waves.

5. WATER BOY
Artist: Coral Lowry
The ‘brother’ of Water Girl, this large sculpture shows a young boy
standing in the ocean and pointing at something in the distance.

6. THE GULL
Artist: Carl MacMillan
This fantasy, open decked, planked dinghy style boat with its port rail
lower than starboard side creates the impression of being beached.
This artwork is regularly taken over by children playing on it.

7. PELICAN – 3D ART ILLUSION
Artist: Jenny McCracken
Did you know that an adult pelican can eat up to 1.8 kilograms of fish per
day? Well, this one is particularly hungry and clearly doesn’t like to share!
Go to the viewpoint on the ground, get creative here and snap a fun pic.

8. ADRIFT II
Artist: Carl MacMillan
This impressive aluminium sculpture depicts a rowing boat adrift on a
stormy ocean with large fish swimming underneath.

9. JAMES SERVICE WRECK Artists: Gary Aitken, Richard Foulds, Kahil Aitken, Jarrad Steward
The suite of sculptures depicts wreckage washed up weeks after a
dreadful storm in July 1878.

10. ADRIFT I
Artist: Carl MacMillan
This follows Adrift II and presents the boat in a calm sea offering a
a different perspective to the viewer.

11. STEEL SCULPTURE
Donated to the City of Mandurah this modern sculpture in steel
soars skywards to create a dramatic spectacle.

12. ALL IN THIS TOGETHER
Artist: Carol Nicolson
This surreal piece features ceramic hand-made tiled fish with
human heads spiraling around an abandoned stormwater pipe.

13. SHOULD YOU PASS THROUGH THE SEA I WILL BE WITH YOU
Artist: Gary Aitken
Located outside the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre, this
the sculpture commemorates a 1959 tragedy when a boat carrying six
Perth nuns overturned and only two survived.

14. LOVE
Artist: Gary Aitken
Created for Stretch Arts Festival in 2008, this sculpture playfully
spells out the word Love.

Mandurah Art Trail Map
Spend a day following an art trail and experience more of Mandurah – its history and culture.

Insta-Worthy Spots

Mandurah is home to many unique and interesting spots that make the perfect Instagram photo.

Insta-Worthy Spots

Where to find
your next unique
and interesting
Instagram shot

Mandurah is a pretty seaside town and home to many unique and interesting spots that make the perfect Instagram photo. From natural attractions to man-made Venetian Canals, Mandurah is an Instagrammer’s paradise. For the culture and art enthusiasts, check out Mandurah’s Art Trails.

Mandurah Bridge

Originally built in 1894, then rebuilt in 1954 and then completely replaced and opened in 2017, the Mandurah Bridge on Old Coast Road is an iconic local landmark and traffic bridge across the estuary. There is a strong tradition of fishing under the bridge which started when timber platforms were constructed in the 1890’s and remains to this day as one of the most renowned crabbing locations in Perth. The current bridge is lit up at night in different colours which makes it popular for Instagram snaps.

Stingray Point

Stingray point is a small, grassy reserve with sweeping views of the estuary across Mandjar Bay. A large Morton Bay fig tree and the stunning backdrop of the Mandurah Bridge and Eastern Foreshore makes it a popular location for wedding ceremonies and Instagram snaps. There is also a restored gazebo and jetty which makes for some picturesque photographs.

Mandurah Beaches

With 60 kilometres of coastline and its stretches of white sand beaches, Mandurah is a delight for any photographer and Instagrammer. Favourite locations are Blue Bay Beach, Town Beach, Avalon Beach and the staircases at Halls Head Beach.

Creery Wetlands

Being a wetland of international importance, the Creery Wetlands are not only an important sanctuary and habitat for both resident and migratory wetland birds but also a great location to capture the calm and serene vibe of the place.

The Lake Clifton Thrombolites

Lake Clifton at Yalgorup National Park is a serene, beautiful spot to enjoy at any time of day or night. As there isn’t any light pollution, this spot is excellent for stargazing. It’s also a truly unique spot for some astrophotography with the Thrombolites in the foreground: these extremely rare rock-like structures are living fossils believed to be one of the first life forms on earth, dating back over 500 million years. With the beauty of the night sky in the background, you’re bound to get some insta-worthy snaps.

Venetian Canals

Venetian Canals in Western Australia! This alone is reason enough to take a snap but they also look pretty. You’ll find these lovely European-inspired canals with their luxury apartments throughout much of the city.

Mandurah Instagram Trail

Where to find your next unique and interesting Instagram shot

If you love getting the perfect Insta-worthy shot, then follow the Mandurah Instagram Trail and look out for the larger-than-life, colourful and 3D art pieces along the Mandurah Foreshore and into Dolphin Quay. Don’t forget to tag @visitmandurah and #visitmandurah to share your snaps with us.

Blue Swimmer Crab – 3D Art Painting

Location: East end of Mandurah Bridge, corner of Pinjarra Road and Mandurah Terrace

Definitely the safest and one of the most fun ways to pose with Mandurah’s famous blue swimmer crabs. This interactive street art was created by Australia’s most highly awarded pavement artist Jenny McCracken. Take a photo from the footprint for the best 3D effect.

Floral Swinging Mural

Location: Tuckey Lane (Between 5 and 8 Mandurah Terrace)

Thanks to the community-run organisation Shape Mandurah, this laneway was transformed into a Mandurah Instagram hotspot. Don’t forget to get your photo taken here.

The Heart

Location: Eastern Foreshore

Mandurah was known as Mandjoogoordap in Noongar language, which translates as ‘meeting place of the heart’. After European settlement, the name was adapted to Mandurah. No visit to Mandurah is complete without a photo in the aluminium heart sculpture which was designed by local artist Gary Aitken.

Marine Wildlife 3D Art Pavement Painting

Location: In front of the Mandurah Visitor Centre, 75 Mandurah Terrace

A remarkable depiction of Mandurah’s abundant marine wildlife seen jumping out from the pavement. Take a pic from the right spot and share your pic of this masterpiece created by 3D pavement artist Jenny McCracken. Don’t forget to hashtag #visitmandurah

The Frame

Location: Boardwalk, near Mandurah Boat & Bike Hire, Ormsby Terrace

Designed by local artist Gary Aitken in 2005, this aluminium sculpture encourages you to interact by framing your view.

Colours of Mandurah

Location: Between Ormsby Terrace and Keith Holmes Reserve

The colours that make up this colourful walkway have been chosen by locals, inspired by their connections to Mandurah. Artist Will Clark of Blank Walls has created the most vibrant of paths, linking Mandjar Square to Mandurah Ocean Marina in just 250 steps.

Seafood Nation – Giant Marine Wildlife

Location: Dolphin Quay, Zephyr Mews, Mandurah Ocean Marina

Get your photo with a giant western rock lobster, shark, bottlenose dolphins or blue swimmer crabs at Dolphin Quay. It’s a fun way to spend time while your food is being cooked.

Pelican – 3D Art

Location: Dolphin Quay, corner Dolphin Drive and Spinnaker Quays

Did you know that an adult pelican may eat up to 1.8 kilograms of fish per day? Well, this one is particularly hungry and clearly doesn’t like to share! Get creative here and snap another fun pic.

It’ll be a great way to see more of Mandurah – and take memorable pics!