Nature around Sydney Harbour
Sydney Harbour is a beautiful meandering waterway, famous around the world. It’s also a natural playground for Sydneysiders and visitors who use it for sailing and cruising as well as swimming at beaches, walking around the foreshore and picnicking on its islands.
About Sydney Harbour
Surrounded by hundreds of kilometres of shoreline, national parks and historic sites, the sparkling waters of Sydney Harbour are synonymous with the NSW capital city. Alive with the movement of ferries, yachts and kayaks, Sydney Harbour is also a gateway to access other parts of Sydney as well as a prime spot for spending a day out on the water.
Part of Port Jackson, which is made up of Middle Harbour and North Harbour as well as Sydney Harbour, it's one of the largest natural harbours in the world.
A great way to experience the beauty of the harbour is to catch an iconic Sydney ferry. Passing by some of the harbour’s famed landmarks, including the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the city’s waterways offer plenty of scenic vantage points.
Head out on foot and enjoy a short scenic tour around the foreshore, or spend an evening dining on one of the most magnificent natural harbours in the world.
The islands in Sydney Harbour, including Fort Denison, Shark, Clark, Rodd, Goat and Cockatoo Island, hold both great cultural and historical significance. Some of the sites are rich with Aboriginal history, while others reflect the city’s European past with convict-built structures and defensive forts.
Cockatoo Island is one of 11 Australian convict sites that have been included on the UNESCO World Heritage list, while Fort Denison’s sandstone Martello Tower is the only one of its kind in Australia.
Sydney Harbour National Park incorporates many of the harbour’s islands as well as large stretches of foreshore, ideal for a harbourside walk. Spend time enjoying the sights offered by a section of the challenging Sydney Harbour Bridge to South Head Walk or wander through areas of bushland, such as the surrounds of Bradleys Head.
Keep an eye out for native wildlife and from coastal headlands in the park, watch for whales passing by on their annual migration from May to November.
Make your way to Sydney Harbour during the Vivid Sydney festival to see some of the city’s popular waterside icons illuminated after nightfall or stake out your spot, either on the water or on land, on New Year’s Eve to enjoy a mesmerising fireworks display.
Held annually, both events attract thousands of visitors and offer a different way to soak up the city’s sublime night-time views and spot Sydney’s most popular attractions.