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WorldAustraliaNew South WalesSydney
Port of Entry
33°49.505'S, 151°16.606'E Chart icon.png
lat=-33.82508 | lon=151.27676 | zoom=12 | y

Sydney is Australia's largest city, and largest / principal sea port. It is the capital city of New South Wales, and located on the East Coast of Australia roughly half way between Brisbane to the north and Melbourne to the south.


Charts of Sydney Harbour are readily available, but the harbour pilots contained in the cruising guide mentioned above, along with a depth sounder, are your best guides. Sydney Harbour is wide and deep throughout, and except at the far reaches of Middle Harbour or the Lane Cove River there is very little to hit.

See also New South Wales.


See New South Wales.

Sources for Weather forecasts:



Hawkesbury River Region Sydney Harbour (Port Jackson)
Cogra Bay (accessible only by water)
Dangar Island
Little Wobby {accessible only by water)
Long Island
Peat Island
Pelican Island
Rileys Island
Scotland Island
Spectacle Island
St Huberts Island
Clark Island
Cockatoo Island
Fort Denison
Goat Island
Rodd Island
Shark Island


Sydney harbour is a busy place on the VHF channels, and the preponderence of tall masts (headland radio beacons), tall buildings, and tall cliffsides makes HF reception tricky at best, and HF transmission all but useless.

Marine Rescue NSW (formerly the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol and The Australian Volunteer Coast Guard which have since been amalgamated) can be reached easily on VHF channel 16 from anywhere in the harbour, and can provide assistance for yachties in trouble, and also broadcast regular weather reports and tide updates during the day and night. SeaTow provide a useful service for members at a competitive price, when all you need is a battery replaced or started, or possibly a short term fuel top-up.

Other than that, expect to hear a lot of vessel to vessel calling on VHF 16 as well as what amounts to probably far too much chatter for a calling/emergency channel.

See also New South Wales.


The mouth of Sydney Harbour is wide, deep, and well sheltered. The main channel (which splits into two as it turns south into the harbour proper, one either side of Sow and Pigs reef), is dredged to 13 metres deep. You will have no trouble approaching Sydney Harbour from any angle in any weather conditions.

The lighthouse at South Head is visible for some miles offshore. North Head itself is very hard to miss, and is well lit and signed. There are no significant reefs or shoals either at the harbour mouth or inside, except for Gowilland Bombora (off Middle Head) and Sow and Pigs reef (just inside the main harbour), both of which are well marked. Even close to the headlands the waters are quite deep -- get well inside the harbour before attempting to drop anchor (and in any case most of the harbour mouth is a no-anchor zone)!

If you are passing Sydney and simply wish to anchor for the night, in northerly conditions secure anchorage can be found in Spring Cove off either Store Beach or Collins Beach, taking care to anchor outside the restricted areas marked by bouys and shore signs. In southerly conditions swell invades this area and it may be necessary to go in as far as Rose Bay to find comfortable anchorage in a reasonable depth of water.

Obstructions and Restrictions

  • Some overhead obstructions include the Spit Bridge (which can be passed only at opening times, and sails must be down to make the bridge passage), and some of the road bridges in the upper parts of Middle Harbour and the Lane Cove River.
  • Be aware of no-anchor zones, there are many of these. The most prominent (and tempting) are the penguin colony areas inside North Head (which carry heavy fines for anchoring, and are regularly patrolled), the areas near the navy base at Garden Island (don't anchor near a boat with larger guns than yours), and in and around the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
  • Be aware of the recent speed/zoning restrictions introduced around the Harbour Bridge -- 15 knot speed limit (not a concern to most yachties), and there is no drifting, anchoring, etc.
  • The use of lights on the harbour at night is a must. Several incidents have occurred over the years with smaller boats being run down while travelling without lights, one high profile and tragic one in 2006 included.
  • At all times be aware that Sydney Harbour is a busy place, and a careful watch must be maintained at all times. Sydney Harbour Ferries (carrying orange diamonds) and cargo / tanker vessels (restricted in their ability to maneuver, or restricted by their draft) must be given way to.
  • There is also a large population of small stink-boats / pleasure craft, often piloted by inexperienced skippers who have chartered the boat for the day or are members of "walk-on/walk-off" boat ownership clubs (where they may get out on the water only once per year) who may not always obey all of the collision regulations, occasionally requiring evasive maneuvers by vessels that otherwise have right-of-way.


Sydney is a port of entry for Australia. For details see Entrance: Australia.

The customs office is in Neutral Bay as is the customs wharf. Telephone contacts are as follows:

Office hours: 02 8339 6607
After hours: 0418 215 192
Facsimile: 02 8339 6281

The customs wharf is in Neutral Bay at approx. 33°50.6'S - 151°12.95'E. If arriving out of hours tie up there and contact customs on the number above. Be aware of the advance notice requirements. On notifying customs of your arrival they may give you further directions depending on the planned use of the wharf.

Updated contact details are on this page.

All other check in / check out procedure is as per the Australian Immigration & Customs notes given elsewhere.


Sydney Harbour is loosely divided into three separate areas. These are:

  • North Harbour, the area north of a line drawn between, say, the southern tip of North Head, and the southern tip of Dobroyd Head (Grotto Point). This encompasses Manly, Fairlight, Seaforth, and the bays and anchorages on the western (inside) end of North Head.
  • Middle Harbour. This is the area west and northwest of a line drawn between Grotto Point, and Middle Head. This includes Clontarf, the Spit, the Middle Harbour Yacht Club, and all of the area west and northwest of the Spit Bridge. It is also loosely divided into two areas, these being:
    • Outer Middle Harbour, including the area east of the Spit Bridge; and
    • Inner Middle Harbour, including the area west and northwest of the Spit Bridge. The Spit Bridge is an important dividing line because it is a lifting bridge with a low clearance when closed (lower than the masthead of most sailboats), and it opens only at certain times of the day (the latest opening being at 9:30pm). To get to the Inner Middle Harbour, you must pass the Spit Bridge, which you can only do at opening times.
  • South Harbour, or the main harbour. This is all of the rest of Sydney Harbour, once you pass a line between Middle Head and South Head. This includes the outer harbour (east of the Sydney Harbour Bridge), and the inner harbour (west of the Sydney Harbour Bridge), however note that the Harbour Bridge clearance is over 30m, so even the tallest rigged boats can sail under it at any time. (there are 6 ocean going vessels world-wide that are known not to be able to get under the bridge).

In addition to Sydney Harbour itself, the navigable waterways that are part of the Sydney metropolitan area include:

  • Botany Bay' and the Georges River, south of the city, and forming the south/south eastern suburbs' main waterways.
  • Port Hacking on the southern extremity of the city.

Additionally, there is the Hawkesbury region north of the city. Although the inner part of the Hawkesbury is considered part of the Sydney area, most of it forms part of the Central Coast region of NSW. See the Hawkesbury wiki page for more details.

Marinas & Yacht Clubs

North Harbour

North Harbour

Davis Marina

Davis Marina/wiki/Sydney#Davis_Marina
Berth icon Davis Marina [[Sydney#Davis Marina|Davis Marina]] 33°47.984'S, 151°16.121'E

Limited facilities. Marina berths and moorings are available, but usually booked out and casual berths or moorings are rarely available. Mooring and berthing prices on this page: Prices Approx $500/month for a mooring, $1000/month for a berth, for a 42' yacht. 7 day tender service at extra cost.; Tel: +61 2 9948 3750; Fax: +61 2 9948 1716; VHF channel 72
Address: Gourlay Ave, Balgowlah, NSW 2093, Australia
Hours: Weekdays 9 am to 5 pm (6 pm Public Holidays); Weekends 9 am to 6 pm (5pm in Winter)

Manly Boatshed

Manly Boatshed/wiki/Sydney#Manly_Boatshed
Berth icon Manly Boatshed [[Sydney#Manly Boatshed|Manly Boatshed]] (Treharne's Marina) 33°47.977'S, 151°16.264'E

There are no permanent berths, only moorings, although boats may be brought alongside the wharf for short periods by arrangement with the Marina staff. The moorings are usually full and need to be booked in advance, there are rarely if ever any casual moorings available. Toilets, Shower, Water Taxi Access. Mooring rates approx $400 / month for a 42' yacht. Berths not available. Weekends only tender service included in the price. Facilities are limited -- single toilet available in the boatshed during operating hours only. Has a slipway (tonnage capacity unknown but it slipped my 38ft/14 tonne steel boat without difficulty), rigger, boatmaker, engine repair facility, water, and power. Office staff are friendly and helpful, and the tradesmen are knowledgeable and highly skilled (being amongst the best known and best respected boatbuilders in Sydney Harbour, although slow to get around to tasks and often understaffed).; Tel: +61 2 9948 3473; Fax: ++61 2 9907 6897; VHF channel XX
Address: 1B Bolingbroke Parade , Fairlight NSW 2094, Australia; PO Box 119, Seaforth, NSW 2092, Australia
Hours: Monday to Friday 8 am to 5 pm; Saturday and Sunday 8.30 am to 5 pm

Manly Yacht Club

Manly Yacht Club/wiki/Sydney#Manly_Yacht_Club
Berth icon Manly Yacht Club [[Sydney#Manly Yacht Club|Manly Yacht Club]] (MYC) 33°48.169'S, 151°17.123'E

No moorings or berths available, no tender service. MYC operates a drop-off facility only, but it is the only one within walking distance of the Manly town center. Racing is on Friday nights (twilights) during the summer, and Sundays all year round. Worth coming by after a race on Friday night for a good feed with fellow sailors at a reasonable price.; Tel: +61 2 9977 4949; Fax: +61 2 9977 3573; VHF channel XX

Outer Middle Harbour

Outer Middle Harbour

Clontarf Marina

Clontarf Marina/wiki/Sydney#Clontarf_Marina
Berth icon Clontarf Marina [[Sydney#Clontarf Marina|Clontarf Marina]] 33°48.268'S, 151°15.134'E
Port of Entry

64 Modern Floating Marina Berths, 18 Protected Swing Moorings. Toilets and Showers, fuel. Probably the best prices in the northern part of Sydney Harbour. Moorings are available at short notice, there are a limited number of marina berths that are rarely available. Has a slipway and other facilities but services are known to be expensive. Moorings available, around $500/month for a 42' yacht. Berths are shallow draft only and not suitable for keelboats. 7 Day Tender Service. Moorings and berths available to members only, mostly occupied by race boats. Boatyard and all repair services. It is close to public transport.,; Tel: +61 2 9949 5399; Fax: +61 2 9907 9507; VHF channel XX
Address: Sandy Bay Road , Clontarf
Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am to 4 pm; Sat, Sun & Public Hols 8 am to 5 pm and till 6 pm during Daylight Saving; Closed on Christmas and New Years Days.

Middle Harbour Yacht Club

Middle Harbour Yacht Club/wiki/Sydney#Middle_Harbour_Yacht_Club
Berth icon Middle Harbour Yacht Club [[Sydney#Middle Harbour Yacht Club|Middle Harbour Yacht Club]] (MHYC) 33°48.407'S, 151°14.917'E
Port of Entry

103 berth floating marina and 9 swing moorings. These are mostly available to members only, and are usually occupied by race boats. This club welcomes visitors staying in the area, whether on club moorings or further up in Middle Harbour and offers them use of the club facilities. Has bar & bistro.; Tel: +61 2 9969 1244; Fax: +61 2 9969 3326; VHF channel XX
Address: Lower Parriwi Road, The Spit, Mosman, NSW 2088, Australia; PO Box 106, Seaforth, NSW 2092, Australia

Ferguson’s Boatshed Marina

Ferguson’s Boatshed Marina/wiki/Sydney#Ferguson.E2.80.99s_Boatshed_Marina
Berth icon Ferguson’s Boatshed Marina [[Sydney#Ferguson’s Boatshed Marina|Ferguson’s Boatshed Marina]] °'N, 151°14.847'E
Port of Entry

100 superior quality, modern floating marina berths for up to 30m/100′ boats, designed for Super Yachts, with individual pedestals for power and water utilities. Disabled and wheelchair access to all walkways on and around the marina has been purpose built. Lighting and Security key access for entering and leaving. Individual 240V overload protected outlets up to 63amps and water. Berths range up to a maximum of 30 m/100′. Grey waste and fuel services available upon request.; Tel: +61 401 159 053; VHF channel XX
Address: The Spit , 83 Parriwi Road, Mosman, NSW 2088, Australia
Hours: Open 7 days a week

Inner Middle Harbour

Inner Middle Harbour

As noted above, these marinas can only be reached by passing the Spit Bridge, which can only be done at certain times of the day (opening times). The advantage is that mooring and berthing rates are generally lower than on the outer part of the harbour, and protection from the weather is generally better.

Near The Spit

d' Albora Marinas The Spit

d' Albora Marinas The Spit/wiki/Sydney#d.27_Albora_Marinas_The_Spit
Berth icon d' Albora Marinas The Spit [[Sydney#d' Albora Marinas The Spit|d' Albora Marinas The Spit]] 33°48.293'S, 151°14.705'E

The Spit, Mosman offers 192 berth marina, kayak storage and 60 swing moorings in Quakers Hat and Pearl Bay. It is a full service marina with all facilities, fuel berth (24hr). Also swinging moorings with ferry service. Note: d'Albora Marinas have several locations around Sydney and elsewhere, and offer reciprocal berthing rights. Contact the marina directly for more information.; Tel: +61 2 9960 7700; Mob: +61 1300 300 360; Fax: +61 2 9960 4501; VHF channel XX
Address: The Spit, Mosman, , Sydney, NSW 2088, Australia

Quakers Hat Bay

Quakers Hat Bay/wiki/Sydney#Quakers_Hat_Bay
Berth icon Quakers Hat Bay [[Sydney#Quakers Hat Bay|Quakers Hat Bay]] 33°48.935'S, 151°14.168'E

There are periodically moorings available here, usually advertised in AFLOAT magazine. I will try to find a copy with some advertised and put the details here.

Cammeray/Willoughby Bay

Cammeray Marina

Cammeray Marina/wiki/Sydney#Cammeray_Marina
Berth icon Cammeray Marina [[Sydney#Cammeray Marina|Cammeray Marina]] 33°49.099'S, 151°13.356'E

Cammeray Marinais a modern marina that has a range of swing moorings and marina berths available, suitable for vessels of varying sizes (up to 65'. Located in a sheltered area of Middle Harbour, the Marina offers a secure and tranquil place to keep your craft. For your convenience we offer a range of facilities to make your stay more pleasurable including shower, laundry, power, water and BBQ facilities. Free ferry service. Boatyard with all repairs possible.; Tel: +61 2 9953 4761; Fax: ++61 2 9953 4752; VHF channel XX
Address: 6 Cowdroy Avenue, Cammeray, NSW 2062, Australia
Sailors Bay

Northbridge Marina

Northbridge Marina/wiki/Sydney#Northbridge_Marina
Berth icon Northbridge Marina [[Sydney#Northbridge Marina|Northbridge Marina]] 33°48.348'S, 151°13.293'E

Has 24 marina berths and 60 moorings available in wind protected bay.

For the latest prices see Price Listing.

XX@XXX; Tel: +61 2 9958 1261; Mob: +61 419 207 883; VHF channel XX
Address: Widgiewa Rd, Northbridge

Castlecrag Marine

Castlecrag Marine/wiki/Sydney#Castlecrag_Marine
Berth icon Castlecrag Marine [[Sydney#Castlecrag Marine|Castlecrag Marine]] 33°48.242'S, 151°13.390'E

Situated at the head of Sailors Bay in Middle Harbour. A small marina (max. length 6m) and also swinging moorings. A boatyard specializing in restoration of older craft. 35 ton (50ft) slipway.; Tel: +61 2 9958 0425; Fax: +61 2 9958 0206; VHF channel XX
Address: Rockley Road , Castlecrag, 2068, Australia

Northside Shipwrights

Northside Shipwrights/wiki/Sydney#Northside_Shipwrights
Berth icon Northside Shipwrights [[Sydney#Northside Shipwrights|Northside Shipwrights]] 33°48.212'S, 151°13.508'E

Only moorings are available.

XX@XXX; Tel: +61 2 9958 4947; Fax: +XX XX XXXX-XXXX; VHF channel XX

Sailors Bay Boatshed

Sailors Bay Boatshed/wiki/Sydney#Sailors_Bay_Boatshed
Berth icon Sailors Bay Boatshed [[Sydney#Sailors Bay Boatshed|Sailors Bay Boatshed]] 33°48.320'S, 151°13.685'E


XX@XXX; Tel: +61 2 9958 8869; Fax: +XX XX XXXX-XXXX; VHF channel XX
Address: End Sailors Bay Road Clive Park Northbridge
Roseville Chase (upper reaches)

Roseville Bridge Marina

Roseville Bridge Marina/wiki/Sydney#Roseville_Bridge_Marina
Berth icon Roseville Bridge Marina [[Sydney#Roseville Bridge Marina|Roseville Bridge Marina]] 33°46.682'S, 151°12.467'E


XX@XXX; Tel: +61 2 9417 4788; Fax: +61 2 9417 7909; VHF channel XX
Address: 15 Normac Street, Roseville, Chase, NSW 2069, Australia

Main Harbour, East of the Harbour Bridge

Harbour Bridge, East

d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay

d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay/wiki/Sydney#d.27Albora_Marina_Rushcutters_Bay
Berth icon d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay [[Sydney#d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay|d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay]] 33°52.406'S, 151°13.957'E
Port of Entry

Full service marina in a bay on the eastern side of Sydney Harbour, just 1.5 miles from the Opera House. All facilities, fuel berth (24hr).

Berthing rates for a 42' yacht approx $2000/month, and these are rarely available. Expect to pay top dollar for anything this end of Sydney.; Tel: +61 2 9328 7666; Fax: +61 2 9327 1808; VHF channel XX
Address: 1B New Beach Road, Rushcutters Bay NSW 2027, Australia

Main Harbour, West of the Harbour Bridge

Harbour Bridge, West

Lavender Bay

Lavender Bay/wiki/Sydney#Lavender_Bay
Berth icon Lavender Bay [[Sydney#Lavender Bay|Lavender Bay]] (Sailcorp) 33°50.705'S, 151°12.475'E

40 swing moorings for vessels up to 65 ft in Lavender Bay for lease on a short, medium or long term basis.

Moorings approximately $550/month (up to 55ft). 7 day tender service included, operating 9:30am - 4:30pm + 1 hour in daylight savings periods, every hour on the half hour. There is little if no anchoring room in this bay.; Tel: +61 2 9955 2537; Fax: +XX XX XXXX-XXXX; VHF channel XX
Address: The Lavender Bay Boatshed, 23a King George St (PO Box 7130), McMahons Point NSW 2060, Australia

Berrys Bay Marina

Berrys Bay Marina/wiki/Sydney#Berrys_Bay_Marina
Berth icon Berrys Bay Marina [[Sydney#Berrys Bay Marina|Berrys Bay Marina]] 33°50.585'S, 151°11.976'E

Berrys Bay Marina in Woodley's Boatshed has closed down and is no longer operating. There is increased anchor room in this very sheltered bay, and there may be some fore-and-aft moorings for rent from Sydney Superyacht Marina although they have no presence or facilities in the bay. There are toilets and a shower but they are only operating periodically and aren't maintained except by some volunteers. There is no tender service, but a "parking area" for dinghies is available.


Balls Head Bay

Balls Head Bay/wiki/Sydney#Balls_Head_Bay
Berth icon Balls Head Bay [[Sydney#Balls Head Bay|Balls Head Bay]] 33°50.345'S, 151°11.599'E

There is only one marina in this bay, it is privately owned and useable only by those who have apartments in the nearby complex. There is, however, free anchoring space for visiting (international) yachts, in a reasonably sheltered bay with good beach access, with a close walk to nearby transport (Waverton or Wollstonecraft railway stations).


Woolwich Marina

Woolwich Marina/wiki/Sydney#Woolwich_Marina
Berth icon Woolwich Marina [[Sydney#Woolwich Marina|Woolwich Marina]] 33°50.642'S, 151°10.128'E

Berths are available now to suit vessels from 10 to 18 metres. Water and power to every berth. New toilets and shower facility. Convenient 24 hour unrestricted parking. 24 hour security access. Full vessel maintenance facilities including 3 slipways & rigging yard. Toilet and Shower facilities are available on site at the Marina. Tender service available but it's $15 each way each trip. For the latest prices see Price Listing.; Mob: +61 416 238 880; VHF channel XX
Address: 2c Margaret St, Woolwich, NSW 2110, Australia; PO Box 317, Hunters Hill NSW 2110, Australia

Balmain Marina

Balmain Marina/wiki/Sydney#Balmain_Marina
Berth icon Balmain Marina [[Sydney#Balmain Marina|Balmain Marina]] 33°51.242'S, 151°10.222'E

Marina berths up to 75 feet, moorings up to 60 feet . Mooring rates approx $295/month.

Birchgrove Yacht Service operate from here, I have found them to be one of the better marine diesel service centers on Sydney Harbour, especially when it comes to uncommon / European engines. Ph: 9810 6267 ask for Alan Clark.; Tel: +61 2 9555 7049; Fax: +61 2 9810 1208 ; Mob:+61438 002 918; VHF channel XX
Address: 1-3 Phoebe St, PO Box 155, Balmain, NSW 2041, Australia

Cameron's Marina

Cameron's Marina/wiki/Sydney#Cameron.27s_Marina
Berth icon Cameron's Marina [[Sydney#Cameron's Marina|Cameron's Marina]] 33°51.295'S, 151°10.256'E

A small, family run marina located in the picturesque Figtree Bay at Balmain. It also has swinging moorings. Able to haulout. Painting/anitfouling and some repairs possible.; Tel: +61 2 9810 7808; Fax: +61 2 9810 7855; VHF channel XX
Address: 5A Phoebe St, Balmain NSW 2041, Australia

Birkenhead Point Marina

Birkenhead Point Marina/wiki/Sydney#Birkenhead_Point_Marina
Berth icon Birkenhead Point Marina [[Sydney#Birkenhead Point Marina|Birkenhead Point Marina]] 33°51.345'S, 151°09.897'E

Located at the entrance to Iron Cove Bay and adjacent to the Parramatta River. Has over 200 berths in a variety of size options ranging up to 45 metres in length. All facilities. Close to restaurant, shops and all type of provisioning.; Tel: +61 2 9819 6949; VHF channel XX
Address: Suite 411, Henry Lawson Building, 19 Roseby Street Drummoyne, NSW 2047, Australia
Hours: Monday - Friday 7:00 am to 5:00 pm; Saturday - Sunday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Gladesville Bridge Marina

Gladesville Bridge Marina/wiki/Sydney#Gladesville_Bridge_Marina
Berth icon Gladesville Bridge Marina [[Sydney#Gladesville Bridge Marina|Gladesville Bridge Marina]] 33°50.605'S, 151°08.785'E

Has 50 large marine berths, 44 swing moorings and full slipway service, Gladesville Bridge Marina is recognised as one of Sydney's premier full service Marinas. Slipway and repair services.

XX@XXX; Tel: +61 2 9181 2014; Fax: +61 2 9181 4838; VHF channel XX
Address: 380 Victoria Place, Drummoyne, NSW 2047, Australia

d' Albora Marinas Cabarita Point

d' Albora Marinas Cabarita Point/wiki/Sydney#d.27_Albora_Marinas_Cabarita_Point
Berth icon d' Albora Marinas Cabarita Point [[Sydney#d' Albora Marinas Cabarita Point|d' Albora Marinas Cabarita Point]] 33°50.574'S, 151°07.324'E
Port of Entry

There are 91 berths. It is located on the Parramatta River. A full service marina, laundry fuel berth (24hr). Previously called Westport Marina.; Tel: +61 2 9743 6277; Fax: +61 2 9743 6270; VHF channel XX
Address: 138 Cabarita Rd, Cabarita, NSW 2137, Australia

Swing moorings are available from NSW Maritime and should be considered if you're settling in Sydney permanently, or even visiting and planning to stay for more than 3 months. Annual rates of $711pa are available west of the bridge, although you will also need to purchase mooring tackle since non-commercial swing moorings are privately owned. On transfer of ownership of a yacht these licences become invalid and anyone on the waiting list for the area (if any) has priority. As at May 2012 there were vacancies at France Bay (Concord) and Morrison Bay for yachts in the 12m range.

Main Harbour, Health Warning

Due to the manufacture of Agent Orange and other "nice" stuff by Union Carbide in Homebush Bay over 40 years ago, the NSW Government has issued a warning about eating fish from anywhere in the main harbour. Fish caught west of the harbour bridge should be thrown back, while it is permissible to eat 150gm of fish per month if caught on the east side of the bridge. The levels of dioxins are well over recommended dosages in most cases, especially close to the source of this contamination.

Further details can be found by following this link


Details of all safe anchorages in the area:

Note: Sydney Harbour has pretty good holding all around, but is quite deep. Typically 25 meters or so in the main channels, and can be up to 15 meters deep even quite close to shore. So you have to get well in and look around for anchoring spots. Sydney Harbour is littered with bays and small coves, so many that it's almost impossible to list them all here.

Watsons Bay

Watsons Bay/wiki/Sydney#Watsons_Bay
Anchorage icon Watsons Bay [[Sydney#Watsons Bay|Watsons Bay]] 33°50.651'S, 151°16.774'E
I really like Watsons Bay. Deceptively sheltered for just inside the heads, and you can usually find an anchoring spot just outside the moorings or tie up to an unused mooring for a very short period of time (long enough to grab some fish and chips from Doyle's on the Wharf -- tell them I sent you, although don't tell them I told you to grab someone else's mooring). --Delatbabel

Farm Cove

Farm Cove/wiki/Sydney#Farm_Cove
Anchorage icon Farm Cove [[Sydney#Farm Cove|Farm Cove]] 33°51.637'S, 151°13.083'E
Farm Cove is OK for anchoring, good holding in sand/mud, nice and close to the city with plenty of places to pull up the dinghy alongside, and a 24 hour time limit. Don't overstay your welcome, you're between the water police and the naval base. Also don't be tempted to anchor too far out into the bay overnight as commercial harbour cruise boats do tend to circle the bay and some of them aren't very manouverable.

Sydney Cove and Circular Quay

Sydney Cove and Circular Quay/wiki/Sydney#Sydney_Cove_and_Circular_Quay
Anchorage icon Sydney Cove and Circular Quay [[Sydney#Sydney Cove and Circular Quay|Sydney Cove and Circular Quay]] 33°51.449'S, 151°12.708'E
Warning: If you miss Farm Cove, don't even think about anchoring in the next bay along -- Sydney Cove and Circular Quay, unless you happen to like the water police impounding your boat.

Bantry Bay

Bantry Bay/wiki/Sydney#Bantry_Bay
Anchorage icon Bantry Bay [[Sydney#Bantry Bay|Bantry Bay]] 33°46.757'S, 151°13.868'E
One of the more picturesque anchorages in Sydney is Bantry Bay at the north end of Middle Harbour. You need to pass the Spit Bridge to get there, so check the opening times. There are 8 free public moorings as well as ample anchoring space. During most of the year a mooring should be available if you arrive early in the day, they tend to fill up by evening and are often full all weekend in the summer. In the absence of a free mooring, anchoring space is plentiful on the west side of the bay, away from the moorings.

Other popular anchoring spots for long distance cruisers are:

Blackwattle Bay Anchorage

Blackwattle Bay

Blackwattle Bay/wiki/Sydney#Blackwattle_Bay
Anchorage icon Blackwattle Bay [[Sydney#Blackwattle Bay|Blackwattle Bay]] 33°52.346'S, 151°11.223'E
Blackwattle Bay -- and the nearby Rozelle Bay are very popular anchorages with visiting cruisers. There is a very tight marked anchoring area, easy dinghy landing on a pontoon (although not safe for long stowage periods and you might want to consider locking your dinghy) and right near the fish markets for a good feed. The nearby Glebe offers a wonderful collection of restaurants and coffee shops. Sadly the anchorage is usually filled with long term liveaboards, some of who have been there for years, leaving limited room for visitors.

Balls Head Bay

Balls Head Bay/wiki/Sydney#Balls_Head_Bay
Anchorage icon Balls Head Bay [[Sydney#Balls Head Bay|Balls Head Bay]] 33°50.448'S, 151°11.504'E
Balls Head Bay as mentioned above. Beware of the detritus littering the bottom of the bay, it has been known to foul anchors. In fact an old Sydneysider's story is that to anchor in Balls Head Bay you merely lower your chain, snorkel down and shackle it to whatever you find on the bottom. Other than that holding is pretty good. Note that you should avoid the next (sub-) bay to the west, Gore Cove, because of regular traffic from oil tankers.

These offer no-time-restricted anchoring for boats that are not registered in NSW. If your boat is registered in NSW you must use a marina or mooring for long term storage.


Water Nearly all marinas offer water at the dock, and places such as Baileys Marine Fuels and Clontarf Marina have water available at the fuel dock.
Electricity Nearly all marinas have power to all berths
Toilets In the marinas
Showers In most of the marinas
Laundry Most areas of Sydney have one or more coin-operated laundromats, or more frequently bag wash services where you can drop a bag of dirties and pick it up clean the next day. Check with the marina or other locals as to where you might find the nearest.
Garbage Garbage disposal in Sydney is always a problem -- check with the marina or nearby locals as to where council bins might be located. Councils usually only clear away rubbish left in specific bins by residents, and the residents are often on the look out for any unwanted dumper
Fuel Fuel docks are available at many places around Sydney Harbour, some of the ones I have frequented include the following:
  • Baileys Marine Fuels at White Bay, on the south side of the harbour just past the Harbour Bridge. They have the cheapest prices on the harbour that I have encountered, as well as free water, pump-out facilities, and they are open 24x7 if you have a credit card.
  • Clontarf Marina just before the Spit Bridge in Middle Harbour. Because of its location it's probably the most stable and sheltered fuel dock in inclement weather.
  • d'Albora Marinas at Rushcutter's Bay also has a publically accessible fuel dock that is available 24x7. There was once a pump-out station on the fuel dock, last time I checked it had gone although there were rumours that it was about to be replaced.
Bottled gas ?
  • Whitworths is the best known marine chandlery in Sydney, and operates 5 stores.
  • BIAS Boating Warehouse is also a good supplier of all marine equipment. Their showrooms are more widely distributed than those of Whitworths.
  • Bargain Boat Bits sell boat bits, sometimes at a bargain price. Caveat: shop around, as the name of the store may not reflect any relation to having consistently the lowest prices.
  • Classic Boat Supplies Operates from a shop in Belrose, but also accepts online orders. Has a good range of bronze deck hardware and bits for wooden boat repair, epoxy, etc. Australian distributor for Davey & Co.
  • The Boat Warehouse Online-only chandlery although they do allow pickups from their Sydney depot, but you need to order ahead. Has a wide range from many of the major brands such as Harken, Ronstan and Oceansouth. Will send orders internationally.
  • Aquatronics in Brookvale are probably the best suppliers / installers / repairers of anything electronic on your boat.
  • Oceantalk have a good range of specialist electronic equipment. Although they are distributors they are usually able to be spoken to on the phone, and will offer product advice and let you know where to purchase the gear they distribute. Norm Bretherton was the guy to talk to last time I dealt with them.
Repairs There are many repair yards around Sydney, mostly are of generally OK quality but the prices are somewhat higher than others in the region. Some that I have frequented include:
  • Sydney City Marine almost directly under the Anzac Bridge at the entrance to Blackwattle Bay.
  • River Quays Marina at Mortlake.
  • Treharne's Manly Boatshed at North Harbour -- however last I heard from them they were no longer slipping boats for repair due to damage to the slipway. Hugh Treharne is one of the most respected shipwrights on the harbour, having had the distinction of being the tactician on Australia II when it won the America's Cup in 1983.
Internet It's quite tricky to find free or even cheap WiFi in Sydney although many cafes now provide free WiFi with purchase. MacDonalds are one restaurant chain that always has free WiFi, and Burger King/Hungry Jacks have it in most stores as well.
Mobile connectivity ?
Vehicle rentals Nearly all major car rental companies are represented in Sydney, from the executive fleet to rent-a-ruffy. Some picks include:

In addition, Sydney has an innovative car share scheme called goGet. For a membership fee of approx. $25 per month you get to rent cars by the hour, paying only an hourly fee. Fuel is paid for, and the cars are serviced regularly. Inner city and harbour areas of Sydney have many goGet cars located on the streets, check out the web site for your nearest car.


Australia has a duopoly of major grocery stores, those being Coles and Woolworths. Ask any local where the nearest Coles or "Woolies" is and you'll get directions, usually to a major shopping mall many of which are scattered throughout Sydney.

It's worth checking out some of the other smaller stores such as:

  • IGA -- usually can be found in large and small centres, and often carry a range of more exotic lines spurned by the major supermarkets.
  • 7 Eleven

Eating out

Sydney has many eateries of every possible persuasion, and then some. Web sites that are worth checking out include:


Sydney has an excellent train network, a passable ferry and bus network, and many other forms of public transport. Taxis are easy to find but somewhat expensive.

Sydney is served by Kingsford Smith Airport which has separate international and domestic terminals (connected by the Sydney train network) with flights to most domestic locations and connections to many international locations. This includes daily flights to the USA West Coast, SE Asia, Europe and South Africa.



Give a short history of the port.

Places to Visit

There are many things to do ashore in Australia's largest city, many people live their entire lives there and never leave. To attempt to list them all here would be futile -- check some of the "what's on" type links in the links section, check out the happenings in the local newspaper (Sydney Morning Herald) and also check one of the tourism web sites such as or Destination NSW (both run by the State Government).


  • Bondi Beach
  • Kings Cross
  • Sydney Opera House
  • The Rocks


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)


Sydney is a popular tourist, business, and cultural destination being the largest city in Australia and the largest in the region. There are a great many sites offering everything from a "quickie" to 5 star escorted tours of the city and hinterlands. Here is a small selection of the most appropriate sites:

References & Publications

See also Australia.


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