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North Head Sanctuary

Sydney sightseeing

North Head Sanctuary is on the old School of Artillery sites, near Manly on North Head. You can access this wide and remote area from Manly. The sanctuary contains some of Sydney's most natural bushlands, and you could spend the entire day taking different tracks and exploring the history and nature on offer.

The Quarantine Station is a historic building in the area, along with other historic buildings and constructions with militaristic natures due to the location at Sydney Harbour's entrance. The early Australian colony realised they needed to protect their new country from possible invasion from the water. This threat was also relevant in World War II, and the hillside is scattered with tunnels, lookouts and hideouts built for the purpose of surveillance and attack.

Local indigenous Australians also have a long history and find cultural meaning from the North Head area. The countryside showcases both prominent and hidden middens, rock engravings, artworks, burial grounds and ceremonial locations. North Head was used as a gathering place for spiritual and physical healing ceremonies.

Today, you can explore the North Head Sanctuary on your own or join in one of the formal tours to learn about both the Aboriginal and early settler history at this intriguing and beautiful location.


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