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COVID-19 updates

Planning to visit Cockatoo Island? Ahead of your trip, check this page for updates, including the steps being taking to ensure a safe visitor experience during COVID-19.

The health and safety of visitors to Cockatoo Island remains paramount and we continue to work closely with the NSW Government to ensure our operations are in line with the latest advice on coronavirus.

    Visitor health and safetyarrow
  • We are carrying out a heightened level of cleaning across the island and continue to direct visitors to follow social distancing rules and practice strong hygiene, including around shared public facilities.

    Visitors are advised to bring a bottle of water with them, or purchase water on the island as all bubblers have been turned off. Further, if you feel unwell or have any flu-like symptoms, please do not visit the island. Also, consider downloading the Government’s COVIDSafe App. This mobile app helps state and territory officials find and notify close contacts of COVID-19 cases.

    Visitor centrearrow
  • The volunteer-run Visitor centre is currently closed (except for accommodation bookings) and audio tour headsets are temporarily unavailable; however, please pick up a free map outside the Visitor Centre to assist with your self guided visit. We look forward to welcoming back our volunteer visitor service team in 2021.

    Our accommodationarrow
  • Cockatoo Island’s heritage accommodation and waterfront campground are available for bookings.

    [Note: Our campground capacity has been reduced to one quarter of normal capacity, and we are enforcing a limit of 100 guests in the campground, to enable people to adhere to social distancing regulations. The capacity of our campground will increase over time, in line with Government restrictions.]

    Public programmingarrow
    • Tours: We have paused our schedule of regular tours, including Ghostyard, Haunted History and the Audio Tour; however, a selection of our tours are available for group bookings. To book a private tour for your group, complete our ​tour booking form.
    • Education programs: We are currently accepting bookings for school excursions to Cockatoo Island; however, we have reduced the permitted group size. Our primary and high school programs support several key syllabus areas of the NSW Curriculum and are an opportunity for students to enjoy an interactive learning experience at one of Sydney’s most historic destinations. Unable to visit Cockatoo Island with your class? Don’t worry – we’ve transformed our popular primary school program, Convict Times, into an immersive virtual excursion.


    Public transportarrow
  • Ferry services

    The easiest way to get to Cockatoo Island is by Public ferry. The F3 and F8 services operate to Cockatoo Island, departing from Circular Quay and Barangaroo as well as from wharves along Parramatta River. Additional shuttle ferries will run between Barangaroo and Cockatoo Island from 9.45am to 6pm on weekends only.

    Reduced capacity

    Be aware that ferries currently have capacity restrictions to ensure safe physical distancing between passengers. If a ferry has reached capacity, you will need to wait for the next service with available capacity. If you are visiting on a weekday, avoid travelling during the morning and afternoon peak period. For travel on weekends, be mindful that ferries are typically busiest on weekends, especially Sundays. Consider these factors when planning your trip and allow for extra travel time. For further information, including ferry timetables and COVID-19 travel advice, visit the Transport NSW website.

    Woolwich Wharf

    Woolwich Wharf will be closed for upgrades from mid-June. Ferry services will relocate to a temporary wharf at Clarkes Point (also known as the Deckhouse Wharf) during this period.


    Digital experiencesarrow
  • The Harbour Trust has launched four online initiatives to help visitors – and the wider Australian community – to stay connected with extraordinary places on Sydney Harbour, including Cockatoo Island. 

    • Virtual Excursion: Convict Times is an immersive online history lesson that transports students (Kindergarten to Year 4) to Cockatoo Island’s convict era. It has been designed to activate children’s imaginations and encourage them to use primary and secondary sources. Register your class for this self-paced excursion today.
    • DigiTalks: Running select Wednesdays, DigiTalks is a series of online talks, virtual tours and webinars that offer attendees rich insights about our heritage destinations as well as Sydney Harbour.
    • DigiTales: This series of articles, by our team of volunteers, acquaints readers with historical figures synonymous with our heritage places on Sydney Harbour. They also capture the distinctive voices of our passionate and knowledgeable volunteers. Above all else, DigiTales are intended as entertaining yarns. We hope you enjoy them!
    • Kids Corner: Updated weekly, Kids Corner features fun activity sheets and project ideas designed to keep kids engaged and happy, whether they’re at home, in the backyard or stretching their legs outside.