Sydney Botany Bay


A fine harbour can be found just a few kilometers from Sydney’s central business district, Botany Bay is the site for Australia’s largest airport, Kingsford Smith International Airport or simply Sydney Airport.

Here just some historical facts of Botany Bay what happend centuries ago.

  • April 28, 1770 – Lieutenant James Cook arrives in the Endeavor (English barque) at Botany Bay (then called Stingray Bay) with two botanists, Dr. Daniel Solander and Mr. Joseph Banks.
    It is also important to note that this is the first place the colonizers came across the locals of the continent, the Aborigines.
  • .January 17, 1788 – The first fleet into Botany Bay was brought by Captain Arthur Phillip. His intention was to establish a penal colony. But on closer inspection, he found it unsuitable (no water, infertile soil, insufficient anchorage, and shallow reefs) for this purpose and moved on to Port Jackson which was a much better location to build the first penal colony.
Sydney botany bay


  • A few days after Phillip’s landing, Jean Francois de Galaup, Comte de Laperouse, the French explorer arrived at historic La Perouse (named after him) on Botany Bay. He disappeared with his fleet after leaving Botany Bay.
  • 1815 – Botany Bay on Kurnell became a British colony and the first farm, Alpha farm, was established by James Birnie

A little less that 450 hectares, Botany Bay National Park is a mixture of cultural and natural history. It is located at the site of the first meeting between Lt. Cook and the Aborigines of Australia and the first landing place of the Comte de Laperouse.

Present day Botany Bay, on the Kurnell area, was once occupied by Aborigines of the Dharawal nation called Gweagal for more than 10,000 years before Cook’s expedition to Australia (which was then called New Holland).

Features of Botany Bay National Park:

  • Laperouse Museum and the Discovery Centre – features colonization and exploration stories.

  • Banks-Solander Track – named after the two botanists who first came in contact with Botany Bay’s rich vegetation, it gives an insight into what these botanists must have seen when they first arrived at this harbour.

  • Cape Baily Coast Walk – the views here are great, from breathtaking coasts, emerald green heaths, and colonial sites.

  • The southernmost part of the bay is dedicated to historic and cultural events for visitors such as festivals, cultural activities, historic walks and improved tourist facilities.

Activities at Botany Bay:

  • Whale Watching – Cape Solander offers a great view of this spectacular occurrence during whale migration season

  • Family Picnics – less crowded and leisurely

  • Fishing

  • Snorkeling

  • Scuba-diving

  • Walking Tracks – historic and cultural