Cockatoo Island is the largest island in Sydney Harbour. It's located at the junction of the Parramatta and Lane Cove Rivers and takes approximately 10 minutes by ferry from Circular Quay.
Off-limits for more than 100 years, come and experience first-hand the pivotal role Cockatoo Island has played in Australia’s convict, shipbuilding and industrial history. You can take a guided tour, tour at your own pace using one of our self-guided journeys, or stay overnight at the world’s first urban waterfront campground with uninterrupted views of the harbour.
Cockatoo Island is a great place to camp this New Years Eve to watch the Sydney Harbour Bridge Fireworks Spectacular! Find out more.
Tours & self-guided journeys
There are four self-guided walking journeys through Cockatoo Island that allow you to explore at your own pace. You can pick up a Visitor Guide which includes maps of your self-guided journeys at Visitor Information. Gold coin donations are appreciated in return for a Visitor Guide.
Find out more about Self-guided Journeys
You can purchase an Audio Tour from Visitor Information for $5. The audio tour takes you to 26 stops across the lower and upper island. You can do the tour at your own pace and take as much time as it suits you. Find out more about the Audio Tour.
Food & beverage
Societe Overboard offer a great range of breakfast and lunch options including fresh sandwiches, salads and burgers, accompanied with a selection of hot and cold drinks including beer and wine. Perfect for your next visit to Cockatoo Island. Find out more about Societe Overboard.
The Island Bar
At The Island Bar, a hip watering hole constructed from old shipping containers (a nod to Cockatoo Island’s maritime past), you can order wood-fired pizzas and cocktails and relax in a deckchair on the edge of Sydney Harbour. Find out more about the Island Bar
Cockatoo Island Marine Centre
Check out Cockatoo Island's newest cafe located at Camber Wharf on the Southern Apron. The Pop-up Airstream Cafe is a family friendly environment serving a variety of sandwiches, snacks, coffee, tea and cold drinks including beer and wine. Find out more about the Cockatoo Island Marine Centre
Picnics and BBQs
Pack a picnic and soak up the view from one of our scenic picnic spots. Both the lower island and upper island have shady picnic areas. Free electric BBQs are available near the campground on the lower island as well. Tap water on Cockatoo Island is safe to drink.
Serve it up on our grass court with some of the best views of Sydney. Bookings are essential. Contact the Island Office on (02) 8898 9774. Find out more about the Tennis facilities
Explore Cockatoo Island and beyond from the water in one of the Cockatoo Island Marine Centre’s hire boats. Suitable for up to 4 adults and with fuel and all safety equipment included, they can be hired for 2 hours to all day. No boat licence is necessary and collections from the mainland can be arranged.
Contact the Cockatoo Island Marine Centre for more details.
Make a grand entrance by kayak at Slipway Number 2 where the historic ships were once built. Kayaks can be left at this slipway, but please remember that items are left at your own risk so take any valuables with you. Please note, kayaks are not currently available for hire on Cockatoo Island.
Cockatoo Island offers unlimited inspiration for budding photographers. Capture the gritty industrial buildings on film or take that awe-inspiring image of the Harbour Bridge from one of Cockatoo Island’s many vantage points.
Convict Clues Challenge or Ship Shape Challenge
Duration: 1 hour
Pick up a free activity booklet at the Visitors Centre so children can discover the history of Cockatoo Island in an interactive way.
Best for children ages 7-12. Find out more about Kids Programs
Why not escape to Cockatoo Island for the whole weekend? You can stay in a luxury Harbour View Apartment or a Heritage Holiday House. You can also stay right on Sydney Harbour if you try camping, glamping or hire your own campsite. Find out more about accommodation on Cockatoo Island