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The Rocks Walk

Sydney sightseeing

The following walk will take you around the principal sights of The Rocks, covering a distance of about three kilometres. The walk will take about an hour, but allow longer if you want to do more than just glance at the buildings.

Start from the Sydney Visitor Centre, turning left at the door and going down the steps besides the building. Immediately you will see Cadman’s Cottage on your right. Turn right and walk to the Museum of Contemporary Art. Next to this building is the First Fleet Park.

Turn right into and through the park and then right again into George Street. 135 George Street is the Vault Restaurant, formerly the English, Scottish and Australian Chartered Bank with attractive old leaded windows. Next door at no. 133 is the old Police Station with its impressive stonework. See the lion’s jaws holding a truncheon.

On the other side of the road, 100 George Street houses the Billich Gallery, but was originally the Seamen's Chapel, notable for its interior design and lofty ceilings. 47 George Street was the Union Bond Store built in 1841. It has seashell fragments visible in the mortar, due to a lack of lime at the time. The next building is the former Australian Steamship Navigation Company office, featuring a turret design. The Rocks Market closes off the road from here on at weekends.

At the end of George Street, turn left into Lower Fort Street. Dawes Point Park has good views of the harbour, and, on the other side of the road, Colonial House Museum is devoted to exhibits related to The Rocks. At the end of the street, on the corner of Argyle Street, is the Garrison Church, with strong military connexions, as may be judged from its name. The eastern window is its most notable feature. Ahead is Observatory Hill, reached by climbing the steps, and the Sydney Observatory. Turn back under the approach to the Harbour Bridge and then right into Gloucester Street, where Susannah Place is to be found.

Now left down the steps, and left again into Cambridge Street. Soon you will come back to Clocktower Square and Argyle Street. Turn right into and down Argyle Street, right into Harrington Street, left into the very narrow Suez Canal and left again into Nurses Walk. Cross Argyle Street into Kendall Lane. Just down a lane on the right is The Coachhouse and behind is the Puppet Cottage. Returning to Kendall Lane, you will find yourself at The Rocks Square, full of restaurants and souvenir shops. When you have finished here, just two minutes’ walk down Mill Lane will take you back to the Sydney Visitor Centre.


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