Sydney Harbour National Park
The Sydney Harbour National Park should be on your to-do list when in Sydney. With themed gardens, a variety of attractions and a chance to meet some wildlife, you can’t go wrong with a day at the National Park.
It’s easy to forget that in its modern form, Australia is only over a couple of hundred years old. The island has had indigenous inhabitants for thousands of years. However, Captain James Cook claimed the East Coast for Great Britain in 1770. So this was still a time of industrialisation, and the impact man has had on the Island is quite easy to see.
While Sydney is one of the major cities of the world, conservationists have fought to preserve some of the beautiful scenery of Sydney Harbour. Niels Nielsen, an Australian politician who was in office from 1899 to 1913, is one of the many key figures that were involved in earmarking the land of the Sydney Harbour National Park for preservation.
There’s nowhere better in the city to escape from the humdrum. Australia is known for its wildlife, its unique species and dramatic landscapes. At Sydney Harbour National Park, you get to experience all of this. Not only is the setting beautiful, but it’s also rich in aboriginal history. You can visit Cadman’s Cottage, one of a few remaining buildings that were built in the first three decades of the colony. There are aboriginal drawings and markings nearby. Spook yourself by heading over to the Manly Quarantine Station. Not only is it right by the coast, looking back down into Sydney, but there are a ghost and paranormal tours there. Get to know the history, then relive it!
Frequently Asked Questions
- How much does the park cost to enter?
The purpose of the national park was that it was preserved for everyone to enjoy so to enter is free! However, charges are mounting on parking. These vary from the carpark to carpark. For instance, Bradleys Head is $8 a day per vehicle. North Head is $5 a day, while Chowder Bay Road is $3 an hour. There is a landing fee of $7 for the Sydney Harbour islands for all vessels: boats, kayaks and so on. Plan accordingly and think about what will be most cost-effective!
- Can you go fishing at the park?
Fishing is permitted and very popular around the Sydney Harbour national park. There are not many more scenic places in the world to go fishing! You are encouraged to exercise caution and familiarise yourself with the fishing guidelines before doing so.
- What animals are in Sydney Harbour National Park?
Australia is famous for its wildlife, from creepy crawlies to soaring birds! The park has around 150 different species of bird to look out for from eagles to penguins! There are lizards, water rats and humpback whales too! The National Park is right next to the Taronga Zoo which has elephants, tigers, seals, gorillas and rhinos!
Sydney Harbour National Park is towards the mouth of the harbour. It expands from Bradleys Head and goes all the way up to Manly. It would be advisable to boat from place to place rather than drive around. There’s public transport, ferries and wharves that come with a $7 landing fee so you can see more of the park in less time.
The National Park is host to many things. We’ve already gone over some of the haunted tours, coastal walks and pastimes you can engage. Fishing is popular and throughout the park are various places to relax, eat and take in your surroundings. A lot of the park is pretty close to the central part of the city, but the confines of the park are perfect for escaping the hustle and bustle! A short ten kilometres away from the centre, it’s the go-to place to unwind. The Taronga Zoo is also nearby, and the whole of Sydney is on its doorstep!