What To Do On The Island
Immerse Yourself in History
Pick up a map from the Information Desk at the ferry terminal and explore the island by foot. Imagine life as a prisoner in the Convict Precinct, walk through the spooky tunnels that cut through the middle of the island and marvel at the size and scale of what was one of Australia’s biggest shipyards.
Enjoy the View
Biloela House, a sandstone residence built in 1841 for the island’s Superintendent, has a stunning view of Sydney Harbour. It also houses the “Shipyard Stories” exhibition.
Find Yourself in the Movies
Cockatoo Island has been the set for several blockbuster movies. In 2008, “X-men Origins: Wolverine” was filmed on the island, with remnants of the film set used as Stryker’s laboratory and a “mutant containment area” left behind. The Angelina Jolie film “Unbroken” was filmed on Cockatoo Island in 2013, representing Japan’s notorious Prisoner-of-war camp Naoetsu.
Where to Eat
There are two cafes on the island. Societe Overboard is right near the ferry terminal and serves light breakfast and lunch. Marina Café & Bar is located on the other side of the island, through the Dogleg Tunnel from the main ferry wharf or through the Main Tunnel from the campground. They offer more substantial options such as pizza, nachos, toasted wraps and more, including vegetarian options.
Where to Stay
While most visitors day trip to Cockatoo Island, there is also accommodation available in the heritage housing or the option to “glamp” overnight in a tent overlooking the harbour. A tent, bedding and toiletries are provided, along with access to hot showers and a communal camp kitchen.
Getting to Cockatoo Island
Catch the F3 Parramatta River ferry to the island.