imageWeek 7… really happy with the idea for this weekend.

Initially we toyed with the idea of touring the new UTS Gehry (crumpled paper bag) building, but after some investigation during the week learnt that it wouldn’t be open this weekend. Perhaps in 37 weeks or so!

Last year, while walking the inner harbour foreshore, we caught a ferry to Watsons Bay from Circular Quay. On the way there, it made stop at Garden Island. This surprised us, as we had always thought that Garden Island was closed to the public.

Photo: metaljar

Photo: metaljar

After a little investigation we learnt that about 10 years ago, the northern point of the island was opened to the public with the building of the Royal Australian Navy Heritage Centre, the official museum of the Royal Australian Navy, which opened in 2005.

The Heritage Centre includes a museum and some heritage buildings. The museum has some fascinating exhibits – stuff about the Japanese midget submarines that attacked Sydney Harbour during World War II etc.

The public part of the island is only accessible via ferry. It’s Crown [Navy] land and is a fully functioning base. Every arrival is met at the wharf by a security guard who’s been there for 11 years and is both a font of knowledge and a bit of a know-it-all!

The cafe, museum and gardens are open between 10am and 4pm each day.

We caught a ferry from Huntley’s Point (Riverside Girls’ High) to Circular Quay, and then changed there for the Watsons Bay Ferry. We arrived a bit late so didn’t spend hours and hours there.

Entry is free. The museum is really well laid out with some interesting stuff, all well labelled so making your way ’round the exhibits is easy.

There’s some initials carved into an exposed rock with a 1788 date making it the oldest settlement artifact on the east coast of Australia. The signal tower (an easy couple of flights of stairs) gives a terrific view of Sydney, Kings Cross and the harbour

View from the top of the signal tower Image: metaljar

View from the top of the signal tower
Image: metaljar

We just had a coffee at the cafe and didn’t really look at the menu.

I think it’s the sort of place that Probus clubs and the like might go during the week. I’ll enjoy going back one day.

Once again, we both commented that when you hear overseas visitors commenting on what a beautiful city Sydney is, they’re right. There’s so much to discover in out own back yard, and it’s really quite cool to be doing things here that we’ve never done before.

Garden Island Info website

Ferry timetable (you can ONLY access the public areas of Garden Island by ferry.)

Image: metaljar

Image: metaljar

View from the top of the signal tower

Image: metaljar

Image: metaljar

And the periscope actually works! 360 degree view of the harbour.
 image OK. I will

Image: metaljar

Image: metaljar

An historic 18′ skiff at Clarke Island
 IMG_0036 Beautiful Port Jackson Fig
IMG_0033 Simply gorgeous!
 IMG_0026 Signal Tower
IMG_0025 Signal Tower
 IMG_0045 From near the wharf
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