Little Sirius CoveLocation: Sydney Harbour
A small and sheltered corner of Port Jackson, Little Sirius Cove is reached by taking the Taronga Zoo ferry and taking the path to the left on arrival. Follow the narrow ribbon of bushland outside the zoo, then down some steps to Whiting Beach. Further on is Sirius Cove Reserve on Little Sirius Cove. It has a sandy beach and has a few sets of steps which go down to the water. It has shaded grassed areas, toilets and picnic tables and offers good harbour views. All the northern Sydney Harbour beaches are relatively safe to swim in under normal low wave to calm conditions.
Little Sirius Cove is a dog-friendly beach, meaning dogs can be let off-leash all day during the week and before 9am and after 4pm on weekends. This makes it a popular place for an early morning or afternoon stroll with the kids and pets. Facilities: childrens playground, toilets, picnic tables.
Little Sirius Point and Little Sirius Cove were named after the flagship of the First Fleet, HMS Sirius, which was careened here in 1789.
Public transport: ferry to Taronga Zoo.
Curlew Camp site
Little Sirius Cove is the site of Curlew Camp where several famous Australian artists, including Arthur Streeton, Tom Roberts and Sidney Long, used to come in the late 1800s for sketching opportunities. One of the artists had obligingly marked the spot by carving the name and the year into a nearby sandstone rock. At Curlew Camp, Streeton, Thomas and their bohemian friends lived in tents for several years, painting some memorable images of the area. Sirius Cove (c1895), by Streeton is perhaps one of the most adventurous, showing a long slice of the harbour and its sandstone rocks. On the headland a narrow path is visible this is the path leading up to the camp where the artists stayed.
"The Camp, Sirius Cove" (1899), by Roberts, shows the collection of huts and tents nestled in the bush that was Curlew Camp. Both Streeton and Roberts nostalgically returned to the themes they explored during their time at Curlew Camp in later years. In 1897, Streeton (possibly during a stay in London) painted Sydney Harbour: A souvenir. The final painting Tom Roberts completed before his death in 1931, Ring a Ring a Roses, is a version of a landscape he originally painted of Cremorne, during his time at Sirius Cove.
"The Camp, Sirius Cove" (1899)
Australia's most well known zoological gardens, it has a large collection of native and exotic animals all housed in picturesque surroundings with the unforgettable panoramic vistas of Sydney Harbour as its backdrop. Entry fee applies. A flat area of ground that is today part of Taronga Zoo was once the site of a coal mining venture in the 1890s. The site had been cleared and levelled but mining was stopped by an act of Parliament brought about by public pressure to stop mining in the immediate area. The mining company lost £3,500 in the venture.
Public transport: ferry from Circular Quay UBD Map 217 Ref A 14. Bradleys Head Road, Mosman. Open 7 days 9.00am - 5.00pm.