Sydney Travel Guide

The Rocks Sydney

Also check out * The Rocks Restaurant Guide * The Rocks Hotel Guide *

* The Rocks Pub Guide * The Rocks Shopping Guide


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The Rocks Sydney is one of the main tourist attractions in they Sydney city district. The Rocks is adjacent to Sydney Harbour and was the area that was first settled by the English when they first arrived in Australia on the First Fleet in 1788. Still today there are many examples of the original buildings that were constructed as part of the first settlement. The site was chosen as the settlers had found a fresh water supply (Tank Street).


Cadmans Cottage The Rocks Sydney

Cadmans Cottage


Cadman's Cottage was built in 1816 and was originally called Coxswain's Barracks. The Coxswain ran the small fleet of official boats which were crewed by convicts to bring ashore the important supplies brought to the settlement by boats from England. It was built in the Georgian architecture as an attempt to build respectable government buildings in the new colony. The first Coxswain was Bernard Williams followed by David Smith, John Weis and then John Cadman who lived at the barracks for 19 years from the 27th January 1827.


The Rocks Discovery Museum

The Rocks Discovery Museum


The Rocks Discovery Museum is an old sandstone building located in Kendall Lane The Rocks. The building was an 1850s warehouse. The museum is open every day (except Christmas and Good Friday) and has free entry. The museum tells the story of The Rocks area from pre-settlement to today.


The Rock's is home to Sydney shortest street, Atherden Street. Located just off Argyle Street is it only 28 meters long. The street was named in 1880.

Atherden Street Sydney's shortest street

Tours of The Rocks Sydney

Sydney Photography Tours have 3 hours tours that venture through the Rocks with a professional photographer who gives you lessons on photography. $99 tours.

Ghost Tours of the Rocks go along on a lantern lead tour to hear macabre tales of murder, suicide, hangings and ghost hauntings in the birthplace of Australia. Tours leave out the front of Cadman's Cottage corner of George St and Argyle St The Rocks, Opposite the Orient Hotel. April - September 6.45pm October - March 7.45pm. Tours last around 2 hours.

Pubs in the Rocks

There are some great pubs in The Rocks with unique charm. The Rocks has the oldest pub in Australia, The Fortune of War (1828) and some of the most popular pubs including The Australian Hotel, The Harbour View Hotel and The Mercantile Hotel (an Irish Pub which is jam packed on St Patrick's Day). Now don't get confused with the term Hotel, as there as drinking establishments rather than places offering accommodation. Check out our Pub Guide to the Rocks.

Shopping in the Rocks

The Rocks is packed with shops selling a range of products including aboriginal art, modern art, tourist souvenirs, jewelry and some Australian produce including wine, beer and honey. Check out our Shopping Guide to the Rocks.

How to get to the The Rocks

The Rocks is located at the end of George Street, the main street that runs the full length of Sydney city area. There are various buses that travel down George Street. From Town Hall Station, The Rocks is around a 15 minute walk. You can also get a train from Central Station or Town Hall and get off at Circular Quay which is located right next to The Rocks. Or if you are coming from Manly or other locations on the Harbour you can get a Ferry to Circular Quay.


Last updated 3rd July 2012

Observatory Hill The Rocks Sydney

Observatory Hill The Rocks Sydney


Observatory Hill in The Rocks Sydney has one of the best views over Sydney Harbour, great for photographer. At Observatory Hill you will find the Sydney Observatory which was built between 1857 and 1859 as a functional astronomers observatory as well as a time keeping role for the navigation of ships in the harbour. The observatory is open daily from 10am to 5pm except on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and Good Friday. Entry is free. Inside there is a museum with some great information about astronomy as well as classic photos of Sydney harbour in the past. There are still 2 functioning telescopes in the observatory and there are regular night viewings available to the public, see the Sydney Observatory website for more information.

Sydney Observatory The Rocks

Sydney Observatory


Sydney Observatory


The Argyle Cut, pictured below, was cut by convicts using chisels and hammers starting in the 1843 to make easy passage from Sydney Cove at the The Rocks to Millers Point and Darling Harbour.

The Argyle Cut The Rocks


Along the waterfront of the Rocks at West Circular Quay is the old historical sandstone building Campbell's Storehouse. This building dates back to 1839. The building was built by convicts to store tea, sugar and liquor shipped in from the Far East. The building is now heritage listed and has now been converted into a row of restaurants over looking the harbour.

Campbell's Storehouse The Rocks


The Rocks Markets


The Rocks Markets are open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday selling products which are all from Australia. There is a range of fashion, jewelry, native art work, local produce and freshly cooked food. The Rocks Foodies Markets Fridays 10am - 4pm and The Rocks Weekend Markets Saturday and Sunday 10am - 5pm.

The Rocks Markets


Restaurants in The Rocks


The Rocks has a great selection of restaurants from all around the world. With some fine dining restaurants, casual pubs and hotels serving pub meals and cheaper alternatives everyone will find something good to eat in The Rocks. Check out our Restaurant Guide to the Rocks.


Where to Stay in the Rocks


The Rocks has a range of hotels to suite all budgets, from 5 star hotels to backpacker hostels. Check out our Rocks Hotel Guide.


The Russell Hotel (reviews) is a boutique hotel located in the Rocks, just across the road from Circular Quay and the Museum of Contemporary Art. Room prices start from $146 per night. For more photos, online booking and hotel reviews for the The Russell Hotel click here.

The Russell Hotel The Rocks Sydney budget hotel


Harbour Rocks Hotel (reviews) 34 Harrington Street The Rocks Sydney Ph: 8220 9999. Room rates from $223. Located in the historical Rocks area of Sydney, easy walking distance to Sydney Harbour, Circular Quay and the Sydney CBD. For more photos, online bookings and hotel reviews for the Habour Rocks Hotel click here.

Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney




























































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