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Posts Tagged ‘Opera House’

Cockatoo Island is a great place to explore.

Located in Sydney Harbour at the junction of the Parramatta and Lane Cove rivers, it’s just a short ferry ride from Circular Quay.  Pete and I visited the Biennale exhibit there a couple of weeks ago, and were so blown away by the island itself that I felt it deserved a post of its own.

Sydney turned on her shiniest spring weather for our trip.  The free Biennale ferry took us past the Opera House and under the Harbour Bridge. We really do live in one of the most beautiful cities in the world…

The 18ha (44 acres) island operated as a penal colony in the mid-1800s, and as one of Australia’s largest and longest running shipyards from 1857 to 1991.  The view from the restored houses at the top of the cliffs is breathtaking…

The island was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 2010…

The dock below was built by convicts in the 1800s…

The island is a huge seagull nesting site – I didn’t want to get too close with my iPhone camera to the dark coloured chicks, many of whom were nested on the ground in the care of their parents.  The sky was full of gulls, riding the winds…

Some of the old buildings are still standing, although many were demolished when the shipyard closed in 1991…

The island is dotted with heavy machinery from a previous era…

…and remnants of its penal colony past…

There are two tunnels cutting through the cliffs from one side of the island to the other.  We weren’t sure if the lighting in this one was utilitarian or an art installation…

Cockatoo Island is a fascinating landmark, and definitely worth a visit if you ever get a chance.  The ferry ride alone is worth the trip!

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