Just a touch of History on Norfolk Island

Norfolk Island is located 1600km north-east of Sydney and an external territory of Australia.

Norfolk is home to the descendants of the Bounty mutineers and boasts its own language, a colourful convict history, dramatic coastal scenery, pristine beaches, coral lagoons, great restaurants and cafes, one of the world’s most scenic golf courses.

With such fun activities such as snorkelling, kayaking, mountain biking and scuba diving along with trekking and horse riding complemented by heritage and nature tours, fine dining and cliff top seafood feasts at sunset.

Interpretive history tours are available at the Kingtson Arthur’s Vale Historic Area (KAVHA) on Norfolk Island. KAVHA is of outstanding historic significance as a convict settlement spanning the era of transportation to eastern Australia between 1788-1855.

Tours available of Colonial Cemetery, The Landing Place,  Gaols & Industries, Polynesians, Beaches & Bridges, Historic Arthur’s Vale, First Settlement Heritage Tour 1788 – 1814 and No. 10 Quality Row Open House.

Although, as a place of secondary punishment it developed a reputation as one of the harshest and cruellest of Australia’s penal settlements, it was also a place where humanising experiments in penal reform were conducted. It is also significant as the only site in Australia to display evidence of early Polynesian settlement, and the place where the Pitcairn Island descendents of the Bounty mutineers were re-settled in 1856.

Norfolk Island has more than 65 activities available, from World Heritage nominated history to world class fishing, diving and cultural activities related to the island’s descendants of the Bounty Mutineers and their Tahitian wives.

Contact Heritage Tourism for tour details


Colony History Sydney walking Tour

historic buildings sydney Take a walking tour of the city’s most popular monuments and bustling piazzas starting from the Customs House where shipping was cleared and goods passing through the port of Sydney were taxed and cleared for sale or export,to Millers Point , a precinct where old 19th century sandstone buildings live side-by-side with redbrick structures created in the first decades of the 20th century by the Sydney Harbour Trust. During our 3  hours walking tour we will admire historical buildings.

Painting The Rocks: the loss of Old Sydney

Museum of Sydney
Saturday 7 August — Sunday 28 November, 2010

Against the backdrop of slum clearances, wharf rebuilding and debates about working-class living conditions, a group of artists set out to capture ‘Old Sydney’ before it disappeared in the city’s transition to a modern metropolis.

The first decades of the 20th century saw countless buildings from our colonial past torn down and whole streets disappear as Sydneysiders embraced the march of progress.

Rocks Sydney NSW PaintingRemarkably, in the midst of this change a conservation movement began to arise.

Giving voice to the people who worked and lived in The Rocks, this exhibition places the often romantic and sentimental 1902 artists’ paintings alongside the stark realities of government-commissioned photography, inspection reports and remodelling plans.

A joint initiative of the Historic Houses Trust and Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority

Location: Corner Phillip and Bridge Streets, Sydney NSW 2000
On the site of First Government House
Contact: 02 9251 5988
Admission:Adult $10, Child/Concession $5, Family $20
Members of the Historic Houses Trust free
Hours: Daily 9.30am — 5pm

At the Museum of Sydney you will meet our city’s first people, inspect models of the First Fleet ships and peer at the archaeological remains of first Government House and the intriguing objects uncovered by a number of digs on the site. Fast forward through 200 years and you will learn about the distinctiveness of this great city, its harbour, transport, people and particular personality via a changing exhibitions program.

Image credit: Clyde Street [detail], Sydney Long, c 1901. Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales. Call no: ML 319. © Ophthalmic Research Institute of Australia

Heritage Honour for Iconic Alps

One of the nation’s most outstanding and breathtaking mountain landscapes, the Australian Alps, has been awarded Australia’s highest heritage honour with its inclusion in the National Heritage List.

The Australian Alps National Parks was the largest and most complex National Heritage assessment to date, encompassing 1.6 million hectares of national parks and reserves across eleven national parks and nature reserves in the ACT, NSW and Victoria.

Known as the High Country in Victoria, Snowy Mountains in New South Wales and the Brindabella Range in the Australian Capital Territory, the listing of the Australian Alps National Parks recognises the outstanding natural, Indigenous and historic values of this iconic landscape.

The high altitude peaks, some rising above 2000 metres, and plateaus, glacial lakes and alpine and sub-alpine ecosystems of the Australian Alps are rare in our mostly flat, dry and warm continent. The Alps are home to the snow gum and unique alpine species like the mountain pygmy possum, as well as in the summer months providing spectacular arrays of alpine wildflowers.

The distinctive snow covered slopes of the Australian Alps provide a playground for broad-scale snow recreation in the nation.

The Australian Alps have a strong association with Australia’s natural and cultural history. They are an important place of dreaming and gathering for Aboriginal people and of recollection and discovery as former grazing land once traversed by stockmen, gold prospectors, pastoralists, migrants and botanists of early settlement.

Places on the National Heritage List are afforded protection under the Australian Government’s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act and we will continue to work together with NSW, Victoria, and the ACT to ensure the protection and proper management of the outstanding heritage values of the Australian Alps National Parks.

For the people of New South Wales the majestic Snowy Mountains have long been a place of outstanding natural beauty and a key part of our colonial heritage.

Grand hiking and superlative fishing add year-round appeal to the Snowy Mountains, easily reached from Sydney. The Snowy Mountains, often just called ‘the Snowies’, is the only part of the Australian mainland cold enough for skiable snow to form. In winter, cross-country and downhill skiing have thousands of devotees. There are plenty of top-class resorts to enjoy, among them Thredbo Alpine Village, Perisher Blue Ski Resort and Selwyn Ski Resort.

The fun is not confined to winter. At the heart of the Snowy Mountains, Kosciuszko National Park is renowned for its spring displays of alpine wildflowers, trout-filled mountain streams and sparkling lakes. The park extends over 690,000 hectares, where walkers can relish breathtaking wilderness vistas and bracing mountain air.

Witses Hut – off the Nungar Creek Fire Trail

Images couresty of Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts

Blue Mountains NSW

Many people know of or have been to the Blue Mountains. Set 120kms west of Sydney, this stunning national park is forested with deep ravines and breathtaking bushland. But although it is quite easy to visit and access now, it wasn’t always as simple.

For the first 25 years of colonisation in Australia, European explorers were frustrated as they could not seem to scale the huge rocks. As the colonies started to expand, it was imperative for them to conquer the mountains so that growth of townships could continue into the west.

By 1813, there was a long list of men that had tried and failed in their attempts to cross the Blue Mountains including William Paterson, George Bass, Matthew Everingham, John Wilson, Francis Barrallier, and George Caley. After the many disappointing efforts by explorers, Governor King had declared that the plight to cross the mountains must be ceased.

Finally in 1813 grazier, William Lawson and William Charles Wentworth set off with four servants, five dogs and four packhorses to great success. They followed the mountain ridge tops and after 17 days they arrived at Mount York seeing the plush Western Tablelands on the other side of the Blue Mountains.

Flash forward to today and the Blue Mountains are well and truly enjoyed by all who visit them. The area is a nature and history enthusiast’s delight with well-marked walking tracks which pass streams and waterfalls, descend into pristine gorges and wind around sheer cliffs where the views are never ending and the dimensions are almost unfathomable. There are a range of operators that provide guided tours and have a wealth of knowledge to share on the area, its wild life and history.

The area’s best-known rock formation is The Three Sisters, a group of pinnacles which are best seen from Katoomba, the largest of the 26 mountain towns and villages. The other towns include Wentworth Falls (situated near a stunning waterfall of the same name) and Faulconbridge. The town of Blackheath, full of colonial history, is well known for its Rhododendron Festival held every November.

When it comes to accommodation, the Blue Mountains offer a wide choice of options to suit every taste, budget and requirement. The range of backpackers hostels are simple, yet perfect for those that will be busy off walking the trails or enjoying the history of the area.

When it comes to indulgence; the Blue Mountains offer Bed and Breakfast cottages that are truly amazing. Families are also catered for with self contained cabins, holiday houses, resorts and camping style accommodation.

The reasons for visiting the Blue Mountains are plentiful – stunning scenery, great walking trails, luxurious day spas, fun festivals, creative art galleries, and for the adrenaline junkies there’s abseiling, rock sports and four-wheel driving. It really is a destination that will appeal to every taste!

Images: Heritage Tourism Collection, Aaron Smart, Nick Rains and NSW Tourism