De Vlamingh’s Journey: Exploring the Evidence



Monday to Friday during term

Sessions: 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm

Year Level
Year 4
120 Minutes

$240 per session (maximum 32 students)


Travel back through the centuries to the height of the Dutch spice trade era.

Join the fleet of Willem de Vlamingh as he explores the coast of the ‘Southland’, searching for lost ships, making maps, collecting natural specimens, and leaving behind what became one of the most famous objects in the Shipwrecks Museum’s collection. This interactive experience will give students the chance to handle plenty of authentic props before they explore the Museum to examine the real historical evidence of this journey.

de Vlamingh’s Journey: Exploring the Evidence is a new two-part, 120 minute, curriculum-linked package that immerses your students throughout our galleries and in a separate activity room that has been specifically developed for school groups. It assists Year 4 teachers with the following HASS questions:

  • Why did Dutch traders explore the West coast of Australia in the 17th Century? (ACHASSK084)
  • What happened on some of these early journeys to the coast of WA? (ACHASSK084)
  • What were some of the contacts, exchanges and impacts that occurred as a result of these journeys? (ACHASSK084)


At the Museum

What your class will experience

Students participating in this two-part program will:

Part A: Facilitated Activity (Education Activity Room, adjacent to the WA Shipwrecks Museum)

  • Learn about the important missions that Willem de Vlamingh was tasked with for his journey to the Southland (Western Australia).
  • Participate in engaging role-play activities which highlight the challenges and achievements of exploration in the 17th Century.
  • Recreate some of the exchanges of goods and ideas that took place in the Age of Exploration.
  • Discover whether contact was made with the local Aboriginal people and discuss the implications of ‘first contacts’.

Part B: Self-Guided Gallery Exploration (inside the WA Shipwrecks Museum):

  • Use the Self-Guided Gallery Exploration resource to learn more about the objects in the Museum linked to 17th Century Dutch exploration of the Western Australian Coast.
  • Explore Museum evidence (primary sources) of de Vlamingh’s journey, including maps, journal entries, pictures and the de Vlamingh plate and posts. 
  • Examine objects from 17th Century Dutch wrecks, that provide information on navigation, trade and daily life so that historical events can be studied and reconstructed. 
  • Discover the events surrounding the wreck of the Dutch ship Batavia, and locate source objects from the ship’s remains and surrounding islands. 
  • Download the Self-Guided Gallery Exploration resource and print one per group leader.

Download de Vlamingh's Journey Self-Guided Gallery Exploration [PDF 958KB]

Part C: Optional – Self-Guided Shipwreck Games with food & drink break (Outside the WA Shipwrecks Museum on the grass):

  • Borrow a kit of Shipwreck Games (physical activities) to play on the grass outside the Museum.
  • Rules and guidelines are provided in the kits, although parents and students can make up their own versions of the games.
  • Groups are responsible for packing up the games ready for the next group.
  • Before or after playing the games, students can have a morning tea or lunch break.
  • In wet weather Part C, will not proceed as games cannot be played inside the Museum. If this is the case, the class will spend additional time on Part B.


Booking instructions

Step 1 – Creating your Class Rotation

  • Before you book, it is important that you create a proposed rotation for your visit so that you are clear on what time your class is participating in the activity (Part A: Facilitated) and what time the class is visiting the galleries (Part B: Self Guided). This is even more important when you are booking for more than one class.
  • We can accommodate up to 5 facilitated (Part A) sessions per day, with available time-slots of 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm and 2pm during term time. Each session needs to be booked separately.
  • A maximum of 32 students (a class) is allowed per facilitated (Part A) session.
  • Up to two classes can be in the galleries at the same time for the self-guided (Part B) session.
  • If you are bringing more than two classes we can help create a rotation involving the optional self-guided games (Part C). You can print out and use the following timetable if you wish.

WA Shipwrecks Museum Education Program 3 Group Rotation Timetable [PDF 127KB]

Step 2 – Making a booking

Please send an email to with the following details and we will begin to process your booking.

  1. Program choice: Immigration StoriesShipwrecked!de Vlamingh's Journey or Strangers on the Shore
  2. Preferred visit dates and session times
  3. Number of classes & student numbers in each class
  4. Number of attending adults per class
  5. Contact Teacher name, email and mobile number
  6. School

Step 3 – Planning your visit

  • Don’t forget to read the Planning Your Visit section so you are prepared for your visit to the Museum
  • If you are booking for more than one class please share this page with your fellow class teachers

Please email or call us on 1300 134 081 to discuss other booking options if the above is not suitable.

Booking Conditions

  • We may need refuse entry if we are already at capacity at your selected Museum and you haven't pre-booked.
  • A minimum supervisor ratio of 1 adult to 10 students is required, however a ratio of 1 to 6 is preferred for this activity.
  • Bookings need to be made 14 days before the date of your visit.
  • Changes to dates and times are subject to availability.
  • Refunds are not available if you cancel your booking within 14 days of your visit.


Curriculum Links

Programs and exhibitions at the WA Museum support teachers in their delivery of the WA Curriculum to their students. de Vlamingh's Journey: Exploring the Evidence has been developed with reference to the following content description(s) from the Year 5 Western Australian Curriculum:

Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS)

  • Knowledge and understanding
    History: First Contacts

    The journey(s) of at least one world navigator, explorer or trader up to the late 18th century (e.g. Christopher Columbus, Vasco da Gama, Ferdinand Magellan), including their contacts and exchanges with societies in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania, and the impact on one society (ACHASSK084)

  • Skills
    Questioning and Researching, Analysing



de Vlamingh's Journey is a 2 hour package that consists of the following two components:

  • Part A: Facilitated Activity – 50 minutes (approx.)
  • Part B: Self-guided Gallery Exploration – 50 minutes (approx.)

Both components start on the hour with allowance for changeover.


Planning your visit

Specific to this program

  • Before arriving at the Museum please have students already organised into groups of 4-7 students, each with an adult helper, for the Part B: Self-Guided Gallery Exploration component of this program. Having your students already organised into groups will give them more time to enjoy exploring the precinct, rather than spending time splitting into groups. If you do not have enough adult helpers, larger groups will need to be arranged as all groups require supervision in the Museum. The minimum supervisor ratio is 1 adult to 10 students, however a ratio of 1 to 6 is preferred for this activity.
  • Please have the trail printed before you arrive and give a copy to your adult helpers. Make sure all adult helpers are familiar with the Self-Guided Gallery Exploration notes and the layout of the Museum. Please note that the Gallery Exploration can be completed in any order, so that gallery spaces are not congested.
  • Students will NOT require any pencils/paper or clipboards unless you specifically wish them to record their work for later use.
  • Part A: Facilitated Activity starts promptly at your booked session time. Please assemble your class in the courtyard between the WA Shipwrecks Museum and the Education Activity Room. In the event of rain, please assemble in the foyer of the Museum where you will be collected. If you are starting the program with Part B: Self-Guided Gallery Exploration, you may take your students into the Museum to commence this part on arrival.

General to WA Shipwrecks Museum

  • On arrival at the Museum, please check in at the Front Desk to confirm your student numbers, booked session times and emergency contact details.
  • The Museum is open from 9.30am for access to toilets and storage of bags etc.
  • If you are running late please contact the WA Shipwrecks Museum front desk on 9431 8469, or the Customer Relations Team on 1300 134 081.


Shipwrecks Teacher Familiarisation Sessions

Sign up to our education newsletter to be notified of the next WA Shipwrecks Museum teacher familiarisation session.


Education resources

Visit de Vlamingh’s Journey Education Resources for suggested Fremantle excursion extensions and classroom activities to explore the topic of Dutch, French and English exploration of the WA coast.