Cockatoo Island – Sydney, Australia - Atlas Obscura
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Sydney, Australia

Cockatoo Island

Cockatoo Island is a Heritage-listed island in the middle of Sydney Harbour. 

The island, the largest in Sydney Harbour, has been used as a prison (for those already transported to the Australian penal colony in the 19th century) and as a large shipyard, where Australian and other allied naval vessels were serviced during World War II. It operated as a shipyard until the 1990s.

Due to the many old buildings still standing and in various states of disrepair, much of the island resembles a hideout for a James Bond villain that you can explore with impunity. It is easily accessible by Sydney Ferries, and is in continuous use today as a historical venue, touring, water sports, concerts, and art exhibitions, and camping on the island overnight is also an option.

Know Before You Go

Take Sydney Ferries on the Woolwich/Balmain route, or bring your own kayak or boat.