Har­bour Cruis­ing: Syd­ney ex­plored by sea

Where Sydney - - Contents -

SYD­NEY’S ICONIC HAR­BOUR

has pretty much seen it all since then Lieu­tenant James Cook ar­rived aboard the En­deav­our in 1770 and named it Port Jack­son. It was here that the first set­tlers set up camp in 1788 and the har­bour has been an im­por­tant part of city life ever since, used for trans­porta­tion and recre­ation.

Lit­tle won­der it is widely re­garded as the great­est leisure har­bour in the world. On any given day, the har­bour is alive with boats of all shapes and sizes, be it pas­sen­ger fer­ries, state-of-the-art yachts or kayak­ers. This is par­tic­u­larly true dur­ing the tra­di­tional Box­ing Day launch of the Rolex Syd­ney to Ho­bart yacht race, when hun­dreds of craft fol­low the rac­ers out of the har­bour. And on New Year’s Eve, there’s no bet­ter spot to be than on a boat be­neath the Syd­ney Har­bour Bridge as the breath­tak­ing fire­works dis­play takes place in the skies above.

While the Har­bour Bridge and Syd­ney Opera House are its two most fa­mous land­marks, the har­bour has plenty more sights up its sleeve. Cir­cu­lar Quay, Luna Park and Anzac Bridge are all accessible and vis­i­ble from the wa­ter along with hun­dreds of bays, coves, beaches and water­ways. Sev­eral is­lands can also be found in the har­bour, the most no­table be­ing Fort Deni­son, Shark Is­land and Cock­a­too Is­land.

His­to­ri­ans will no doubt want to head round to Green Point in Wat­sons Bay where the re­mains of for­ti­fi­ca­tions de­signed to pro­tect the har­bour from a sub­ma­rine at­tack in World War II can still be seen. The net an­chor points are still in place and one of the midget sub­marines caught up in those de­fences in 1942 is now on dis­play at the Aus­tralian War Memo­rial.

With so much to see and do, it pays to plan ahead and the good news is that there are plenty of ways to get out on the wa­ter, de­signed to suit all bud­gets, time frames and in­ter­ests.

Multi-award win­ning Cap­tain Cook Cruises of­fers pre­mium din­ing, sight­see­ing, ferry and whale watch­ing cruises. The new Har­bour Story cruise com­bines pre­mium sight­see­ing with the sto­ries of Syd­ney’s most fas­ci­nat­ing char­ac­ters ev­ery day at 10am and 2.15pm from Cir­cu­lar Quay. Up­grade to the pre­mium pack­age in­clud­ing a glass of sparkling wine, morn­ing af­ter­noon tea se­lec­tion and cof­fee to or­der.

The Hop On Hop Off Har­bour Ex­plorer cruise com­bines the fun and flex­i­bil­ity of a rocket ferry with the com­fort and ease of a cruise with com­men­tary. Your 24 hour ticket lets you hop off at up to nine har­bour­side at­trac­tions in­clud­ing Taronga Zoo, Manly, Wat­sons Bay, Fort Deni­son, Shark Is­land, Gar­den Is­land, Luna Park, Dar­ling Har­bour and Cir­cu­lar Quay ev­ery 30 to 45 min­utes. Save up to 95% on at­trac­tion en­try with a Cap­tain Cook cruise and at­trac­tion combo ticket in­clud­ing en­try to Syd­ney’s most pop­u­lar water­front at­trac­tions. The com­pany’s flag­ships Syd­ney

2000 and John Cad­man 2 take Syd­ney Har­bour din­ing to an im­pres­sive level. A com­pre­hen­sive range of break­fast, lunch, high tea and din­ner op­tions op­er­ate daily with a choice of con­tem­po­rary Aus­tralian buf­fet, à la carte, and six-course de­gus­ta­tion menus.

Cel­e­brate Christ­mas in July on Syd­ney Har­bour with all your favourite win­ter treats on spe­cial lunch cruises de­part­ing 22 to 30 July. For the more ad­ven­tur­ous, book a Whale Watch­ing cruise on­line and save up to 35% aboard Cap­tain Cook Cruises’ spa­cious ocean cata­ma­ran. Cruises op­er­ate daily with a whale guar­an­tee and ex­pert com­men­tary. For a great value, full-day, ad­ven­ture try the Taronga Zoo and Whale Watch­ing combo priced at only $99.

Ex­pe­ri­ence the best of Syd­ney Har­bour with the Eco­hop­per 24-hour hop-on hopoff sight­see­ing pass. Visit pop­u­lar har­bour lo­ca­tions; Manly, Dar­ling Har­bour, Wat­sons Bay, Taronga Zoo, Fort Deni­son, Quar­an­tine Sta­tion, Cir­cu­lar Quay, Rose Bay, Pyr­mont Bay and North Syd­ney.

Photo: Lana Bo­gunovich.

Cap­tain Cook Cruises.

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