EN language selector search
EN arrow Contact search

Convict Escape Attempts Tour

arrow Book Now
cost.svg
Cost
  • $16 per adult
  • $5 per child (12 and under)
hour.svg
Hours
  • 10:30am and 3pm on select Saturdays (21 and 28 December; 4, 11, 18 and 25 January)
Transport0.svg
Transport
  • Ferry
  • Water taxi
  • Private boat
  • Kayak
meeting point.svg
Meeting point

Visitor Centre, Cockatoo Island, Sydney Harbour NSW

Google Maps

Today, Cockatoo Island is a popular escape for Sydneysiders and tourists alike. Rewind to the mid-1800s, however, and people were singing a very different tune.

That’s because – from 1839 to 1869 – the island was a notorious convict penal establishment, where inmates suffered through grim living conditions and backbreaking work.

This brand new, all-ages tour will introduce a line-up of brave, foolhardy and desperate convicts who dared to escape, including fabled bushranger Captain Thunderbolt.

As you explore the island, you’ll hear about successful and ill-fated escape attempts involving disguises, sewers, shark-infested waters, stolen boats and a volley of bullets.

Tickets

Tickets for all scheduled tours are $16 per adult or $5 per child (12 years and under). Subject to guide availability, we also accept private bookings for groups of at least ten people. To arrange a private group tour, complete our enquiry form. Note: Private group tours are not available on Saturday nights. 

Single Column Escape Attempts Tour 01
Grab Your Tickets
Meet the convicts who dared to escape Cockatoo Island – book tickets today!
arrowBook now

Plan ahead

Content warning arrow

Although this is an all-ages tour, people under 18 must be accompanied by an adult as our guide will address potentially confronting.

First Nations disclaimer arrow

The tour contains stories (and may contain images and/or visuals) of deceased people.

Island conditions arrow

The tour involves a steep incline and some uneven surfaces, and it is not suitable for wheelchairs and mobility scooters. A moderate level of fitness and mobility is required.

What to bring arrow

Suitable walking shoes and wet weather clothing (if needed).

Weather conditions arrow

This tour will proceed regardless of weather conditions except in the event of extreme weather.   

Update (12/12/2019): Bushfire smoke continues to affect greater Sydney and, as a consequence, air quality has been deteriorating. For most people, smoke causes mild symptoms like sore eyes, nose and throat. The Harbour Trust wishes to advise that participating in this tour may not be suitable for people with existing lung and heart conditions like asthma, emphysema and angina. People with such conditions should follow their medical action plans and seek medical advice if they are concerned.

Terms and conditions arrow

Ahead of your visit, we encourage you to read the terms and conditions for this tour. 

Escape Attempts Single Column 01

Helpful links

Looking to visit, stay at or tour Cockatoo Island? Here are some useful links...