Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Secluded beaches, quiet coves and soaring headlands predominate this harbor,
which is considered one of the world's most beautiful.

Port Jackson, containing Sydney Harbour, is the natural harbour of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. The harbour is an inlet of the South Pacific Ocean. Widely considered to be one of the world's finest harbours, it is known for its beauty, and in particular, as the location of the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge which connects central Sydney with the Northern Suburbs region extended metropolitan area. Its entrance is between North and South Heads, where naval and military stations are located.

The location of the first European settlement in Australia, the harbour has continued to play a key role in the history and development of Sydney. The city itself lies on the southern shore. The Parramatta River forms the harbour's western arm. Many recreational events are based on or around the harbour itself particularly the Sydney New Year's Eve celebrations and the starting point of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race.

Rev: "it is very beautiful and i want to live there because of that and many more attractions are there too nice city nice food nice people really love to go there again"
The land around Port Jackson was occupied at the time of European discovery and colonisation by various tribes including the Gadigal, Cammeraygal, Eora and Wangal peoples. The Gadigal people are said to have occupied the land stretching along the south side of Port Jackson from what is now South Head, in an arc west through to Petersham. The Cammeraygal lived on the northern side of the harbour. The area along the southern banks of the Parramatta River, west of Petersham to Rose Hill, was reported to belong to the Wanegal. The Eora people lived on the southern side of the harbour, close to where the First Fleet settled.

Rev: "Even though the day was overcast the River-cat trip up to Parramatta from Circular Quay was great. There was plenty of room on the boat, we stopped along the way for people to get off and on, there were some lovely old homes to look at on the way. A most enjoyable trip. We had to get a bus to finish the journey, as it was low tide but the bus was there waiting and included in the tariff. We then walked from the normal ferry stop to the railway and got the train back to the city"
The first recorded European discovery of Sydney Harbour, was by Lieutenant James Cook in 1770 - Cook named the inlet after Sir George Jackson, (one of the Lord Commissioners of the British Admiralty, and Judge Advocate of the Fleet). His ship's log notation states "at noon we where...about 2 or 3 miles from the land and abrest of a bay or harbour within there appeared to be a safe anchorage which I called Port Jackson."

Eighteen years later, on 21 January 1788, after arriving at Botany Bay, Governor Arthur Phillip took a longboat and two cutters up the coast to examine Cook's Port Jackson. Phillip first stayed over night at Camp Cove, then moved down the harbour, landing at Sydney Cove and then Manly Cove before returning to Botany Bay on the afternoon of the 24th. Phillip returned to Sydney Cove in H.M. Armed Tender Supply on 26 January 1788, where he established the first colony in Australia, later to become the city of Sydney.

Rev: "We had just landed from a 22 hour trip and took the coffee tour. It was the perfect way to begin seeing Sydney with this relaxing tour providing us a beautiful overview of the city."
In his first dispatch from the colony back to England, Governor Phillip noted that "...we had the satisfaction of finding the finest harbour in the world, in which a thousand sail of the line may ride in the most perfect security..." In 1942, to protect Sydney Harbour from a submarine attack, the 'Sydney Harbour anti-submarine boom net' was constructed. It spanned the harbour from Green (Laings) Point, Watsons Bay to Georges Head, Mosman, which is on the other side of the harbour. On the night of 31 May 1942, three Japanese midget submarines attempted to enter the harbour, one of which became entangled in the western end of the boom net's central section.

Unable to free their submarine, the crew detonated charges to destroy it, killing themselves in the process. The anti-submarine boom net was demolished soon after World War II, and all that remains are the foundations of the old boom net winch house, which can be viewed on Green (Laings) Point, Watsons Bay. Today, that Japanese midget submarine remains on static display at the Australian War Memorial.

Rev: "Great restaurant,nice staff, tasty food, stand out quality and presentation. A bit expensive, overpriced, except that, all great."
The Sydney Harbour Bridge is a steel through arch bridge across Sydney Harbour that carries rail, vehicular, bicycle and pedestrian traffic between the Sydney central business district (CBD) and the North Shore. The dramatic view of the bridge, the harbour, and the nearby Sydney Opera House is an iconic image of Sydney, New South Wales, and Australia. The bridge is nicknamed "The Coathanger" because of its arch-based design.

Under the directions of Dr J.J.C. Bradfield of the NSW Department of Public Works, the bridge was designed and built by British firm Dorman Long and Co Ltd of Middlesbrough and opened in 1932. The bridge's design was influenced by the Hell Gate Bridge in New York. It is also the sixth longest spanning-arch bridge in the world, and it is the tallest steel arch bridge, measuring 134 metres from top to water level. It was also the world's widest long-span bridge, at 48.8 meters wide, until construction of the new Port Mann Bridge in Vancouver.

Rev: "The Sydney Harbour is an exceptional site, and all areas surrounding it are worth exploring on foot! Do not skip the Rocks area and Darling Harbour as well!"
A number of former fortifications line Sydney Harbour, some of which are now heritage listed. The earliest date from the 1830s, and were designed to defend Sydney from seaborn attack or convict uprisings. There are four historical fortifications located between Taronga Zoo and Middle Head, Mosman, they are: the Middle Head Fortifications, the Georges Head Battery, the Lower Georges Heights Commanding Position and a small fort located on Bradleys Head, known as the Bradleys Head Fortification Complex. The forts were built from sandstone quarried on site and consist of various tunnels, underground rooms, open batteries and casemated batteries, shell rooms, gunpowder magazines, barracks and trenches.

Rev: "A trip to Sydney wouldn't complete without having experience to walk around Sydney Harbour. Must go take picture at iconic Opera house and Harbour Bridge. Take a ferry Darling Harbour at least you could get the to take the picture of both in one frame on boat. Walking across the bridge from The Rocks to the other side really worth all the time and energy."
Geologically, Port Jackson is a drowned river valley, or ria. It is 19 km long with an area of 55 km². The estuary's volume at high tide is 562 million cubic metres. The perimeter of the estuary is 317 kilometres. According to the Geographical Names Board of New South Wales, Port Jackson is "a harbour which comprises all the waters within an imaginary line joining North Head and South Head. Within this harbour lies North Harbour, Middle Harbour and Sydney Harbour."

These three harbours extend from the single entrance (known as Sydney Heads (North and South Heads)). North Harbour is the shortest, and is really just a large bay extending to Manly. Middle Harbour extends to the north-west. It is bridged at The Spit and Roseville. Its headwaters lie in Garigal National Park. The longest arm, Sydney Harbour, extends west as far as Balmain, where it is fed by the estuaries of the Parramatta and Lane Cove rivers.

Rev: "Cruising around Sydney Harbour is one of the great visual experiences of a lifetime. I particularly enjoyed the iconic Sydney Bridge and Opera house."
Port Jackson is bridged by the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the ANZAC Bridge (formerly known as the Glebe Island Bridge). A tunnel, the Sydney Harbour Tunnel passes underneath the Harbour, to the east of the bridge, and in 2005 it was proposed that a third harbour crossing, this time a railway line, be constructed to the west of the bridge. The harbour is heavily embayed. The bays on the south side tend to be wide and rounded, whereas those on the north side are generally narrow inlets. Many of these bays include beaches. Sydney's major central business district begins at Circular Quay, a small bay on the south side that has, over time, had its semicircle reclaimed by land to the point where it is a rectangular quay. The northern side of the harbour is mainly used for residential purposes. The waterways of Port Jackson are managed by the NSW Roads and Maritime Services.

Rev: "Sydney Harbor/Circular Quay area has many activities in one spot. There are many ferries one can catch to visit other parts of Sydney, the hop-on-off bus starts there, The Rocks bar/restaurant area abuts the harbor, The Opera House, and many more attractions."
There are several islands within the harbour, including Shark Island, Clark Island, Fort Denison, Goat Island, Cockatoo Island, Spectacle Island, Snapper Island and Rodd Island. Some other former islands, including Bennelong Island, Garden Island and Berry Island, have subsequently been linked to the shore by land reclamation. Exposed at low tide is Sow and Pigs Reef, a well-known navigation obstacle near the main shipping lane.

Sydney Ferries is an agency of the New South Wales Department of Transport, providing ferry services on Sydney Harbour and the Parramatta River in Sydney, Australia. Most ferry wharves, aside from those concentrated around the Central Business District, lie on the northern banks of the harbour, or on the southern bank, east of the Harbour Bridge.

Rev: "My young daughter and I often spend time in the city. We start at Luna park and then walk over the bridge. It has an amazing view and is full of history we have also walked at night there are security but may get a little hairy as in some parts it is dark just before the steps."
There is a lesser concentration of ferry wharves in the western areas of the harbour. A service runs to Parramatta, along the Parramatta River, which is serviced by the RiverCat vessels, a large catamaran type ferry. In addition to the state owned ferry service, private ferry operators run a fast commuter service between Manly and the city during peak times. Fast services on this route are now offered by private operators, following the Government decision in December 2009 to cease the premium service operated by Sydney Ferries. Finally, a small number of water taxi and water limousine operators are active on the harbour, offering transport to individuals and groups who do not wish to travel by ferry. These water taxis are not restricted by timetables or specific routes, and can also provide a service to or from private wharfs and houses on the waterfront.

Rev: "The Sydnet Harbour is the best in the world. Not just the 'big bit', get in and around the inner harbour via the ferry system and you'll discover another world."
The building of the bridge was under the management of Bradfield. Three other people heavily involved in the bridge's design and construction were Lawrence Ennis, Edward Judge, and Sir Ralph Freeman. Ennis was the engineer-in-charge at Dorman Long and Co and the main on-site supervisor (Bradfield visited occasionally throughout the project and, in particular, at many key stages of the project, to inspect progress and make managerial decisions), Judge was chief technical engineer of Dorman Long, and Freeman was hired by the company to design the accepted model in further detail. Later a bitter disagreement broke out between Bradfield and Freeman as to who actually designed the bridge. Another name connected with the bridge's design is that of Arthur Plunkett.

Rev: "Apart from being a very busy place, there is so much to see and do every day. Would highly recommend doing the Opera House tour which is only for an hour but so worth it."


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