Exploring Sydney by Ferry

Exploring Sydney by Ferry

Sydney Ferries offers a relaxing, convenient and affordable way to explore Sydney.

One of the best ways to explore the city from your Sydney accommodation is by taking a ferry ride. Sydney Ferries operates a fleet of 32 ferries connecting 36 wharves on nine routes across a 37-kilometre stretch of the famous Sydney Harbour.

The iconic green-and-gold watercraft carries local commuters and tourists to and from Circular Quay, the main ferry transport hub near your Sydney accommodation.

Circular Quay also has a train station that connects to the main Sydney CBD line, so it’s easy to book a ferry trip even if you’re from out of town. Check out this page for the complete Sydney Ferries routes and timetable.

Can’t decide which ferry route to take? Why not consider some of the unmissable destinations below?

Manly Ferry- Best View of the Sydney Opera House

Manly Ferry: Best View of the Sydney Opera House

Everyone who visits Sydney must include Manly on their checklist, and the ferry ride from Circular Quay is the best way to go there.

The most popular ferry ride from your Sydney accommodation is also one of the best value ferry rides in Australia. Hop on board and enjoy scenic views as you enter the beautiful Sydney Harbour.

From the deck, you will get an up-close view of famous landmarks such as the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, but there are also plenty of things to do in Manly – why not head to the beach, chill at a café, or explore a walking trail? The Spit Bridge walk and the Manly North Head walk both offer a majestic hiking experience.

Manly Ferry Route Points of interest

  • Bennelong Point
  • Bradleys Head
  • Fort Denison
  • North Harbour
  • Manly Cove
  • Shark Island
  • South Head
  • Sydney Cove
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge
  • Sydney Opera House


Cockatoo Island Ferry- Heritage-Listed Urban Park in the Middle of Sydney Harbour

Cockatoo Island Ferry: Heritage-Listed Urban Park in the Middle of Sydney Harbour

At the meeting point of the Parramatta and Lane Cove rivers, you will see the largest island in Sydney Harbour. This UNESCO-listed world heritage site has a rich history – from an Aboriginal fishing site to convict prison to a Commonwealth naval shipbuilding yard.

Situated right in the middle of the harbour, Cockatoo Island is a truly unique urban park. You can pitch a tent and camp while enjoying a magnificent view of the harbour bridge and the city skyline, all while surrounded by headlands, suburbs and the sea.

While on the island, you can tour on your own by following a printed brochure, rent a digital audio player, or take in a guided tour available if you want to see the relics through a transit tunnel that runs under Cockatoo Island close to sea level.

Cockatoo Island Points of interest

  • Harbour and river views
  • Convict prison relics
  • Industrial heritage relics
Mosman Ferry- Explore the Harbour in Your Downtime

Mosman Ferry: Explore the Harbour in Your Downtime

This short but pleasant ferry ride only takes 10 minutes from your Sydney accommodation to Cremorne Point.

Pass by Luna Park, Admiralty House, the residence of the Governor-General, and the Kirribilli House, where you might catch a glimpse of the Prime Minister.

When you alight at the Cremorne Point wharf, take a dip in the MacCallum seawater pool, or join the Cremorne Point circuit walk which is a 3-kilometre foreshore trail in the lower north shore – break a sweat while enjoying panoramic views of Mosman Bay and the city skyline.

Why not explore the Cremorne Reserve and Robertsons Point Lighthouse as you walk past charming gardens and impressive old mansions? Maybe you could grab a bite at Mosman Rowers before heading back to the dock.

Mossman Ferry Points of interest

  • Cremorne Point Wharf
  • South Mosman Wharf
  • Old Cremorne Wharf
Watsons Bay Ferry- Australia's Oldest Fishing Village

Watsons Bay Ferry: Australia’s Oldest Fishing Village

Watsons Bay is one of Sydney’s most popular weekend destinations. This ferry ride will take you to pristine beaches, quaint cafés, and a beautiful circuit walking track from your Sydney accommodation.

The 25-minute ferry to the oldest fishing village in Australia gives you a glimpse of the affluent Eastern Suburbs, including the multi-million-dollar Point Piper mansions that line the Pacific Ocean coastline.

Watsons Bay Ferry Points of interest

  • Woolloomooloo Bay
  • Garden Island Naval Base
  • Clark Island
  • Rose Bay Wharf
  • Parsley Bay
  • Watsons Bay
Taronga Zoo Ferry- More Than Just a Trip to the Zoo

Taronga Zoo Ferry: More Than Just a Trip to the Zoo

While many people do take this ferry to visit the zoo, the route also brings you to other exciting destinations worth exploring and the Taronga Zoo ferry is the best way to reach these sites if you’d rather leave your car at your Sydney accommodation than drive through some of Sydney’s highly congested roads.

One of the highlights of this ferry ride is the popular walking track from Sydney Harbour to Balmoral Beach; make a quick beeline across the harbour and enjoy some fantastic views along the way.

Not only is the ferry trip a picturesque warm-up for your zoo visit, but the ferry wharf is situated at the entrance of the cable car taking you directly to the zoo – the only cable car in Sydney that lets you fly above zoo animals with an elevated view of Sydney Harbour.

Taronga Zoo Ferry Points of interest

  • Taronga Park Zoo
  • Middle Head
  • Georges Heights
  • Bradleys Head
  • Balmoral Walking Trail
  • Taylors Bay
  • Little Sirius Cove
Rivercat Ferry- A Tranquil Journey Up and Down the Parramatta River

Rivercat Ferry: A Tranquil Journey Up and Down the Parramatta River

There are heaps of things to see along the Parramatta River – The Harbour Bridge, The giant grinning face at the entrance of Luna Park, and the scenic wharves around Walsh Bay and Pyrmont; but what makes the RiverCat journey truly unique is the peace and quiet it offers once you pass Balmain and Cockatoo Island.

No water vessels, no choppy waves, no city noise, just a massive row of mangroves and the clear blue sky.

By contrast, he vibrant city of Parramatta has plenty to offer: trendy bars, all-world cuisines along food streets, riverside cycle paths, and world heritage sites like the 18th-century Old Government House.

Rivercat Ferry Points of interest

  • Dawes Point
  • North Sydney
  • McMahons Point
  • Barangaroo
  • Canada Bay
  • Huntleys Point
  • Cockatoo Island

More Ways to Explore Sydney

Been there, done that? Book these less-popular but equally exciting ferry trips from your Sydney accommodation:

  • Neutral Bay Ferry
  • Goat Island Ferry
  • Balmain East Ferry
  • Pyrmont Bay Ferry
  • Double Bay Ferry
  • Shark Island Ferry

Hopping on a ferry is one of the most convenient and affordable ways to enjoy the beauty of Sydney. It’s a great way to relax and explore, whether you’re a local who hasn’t gone beyond Manly or a visitor about to see the harbour for the first time.

If you are staying at The Savoy Hotel Double Bay, simply ask the front desk to book a ferry trip for you or, to get to Circular Quay from alternative Sydney accommodation, just purchase an Opal Card and tap as you go.

Share This Post