Geographical Features: Middle and North Harbour

Middle Harbour

Grotto Point: Named after a nearby cave with shells in it. It was named by Capt. Phillip on an exploratory trip around Port Jackson before the First Fleet moved north from Botany Bay in January 1788.

Parriwi Point: The Aboriginal name for this point, east of the Spit.

Shell Cove: refers to the abundance of shells found here.

Chinamans Beach: recalls Chinese market gardens and salt pans which existed here in the 1800s.

Wyargine Point: name of Aboriginal origin. Its meaning is not known.

Edwards Beach: named after a pioneer resident, John Edwards, a retired whaling captain, who acquired 20 acres here in 1839 and erected a stone house near the beach. His son, John (junior), opened a pleasure ground and dance hall here in 1862, establishing Balmoral as a place of leisure and recreation.
Rocky Point, Balmoral

Rocky Point: descriptive.

Balmoral Beach: derived from the suburb which in turn was named after the royal palace at Balmoral, in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

Hunters Bay: named in 1788 after Captain John Hunter who explored the area.

Cobblers Bay / Beach: the reason for its name is not known although it could relate to the cobble style stones found at its water edge.


Quakers Hat Bay

Quakers Hat Bay: from the shape of a rock just above the waters edge.

Long Bay: descriptive.

Willoughby Bay: the name is taken from the suburb. However there is some conjecture on the name's origin. The most likely is that it commemorates Sir James Willoughby Gordon, who was the Quartermaster-General when the First Fleet set sail in 1788. Another possibility is that it was named after a Mr. Willoughby, an under-secretary. Alternately, it might honour Sir Nesbit Josiah Willoughby (1777-1856), an offspring of a long established family of Nottinghamshire, who entered the Royal Navy in 1790 and excelled by his unruly conduct which led to his discharge in 1800. He rejoined the navy in 1803 when war broke out with France. The locality was originally known as Penny's Point after the original land grantee.


Folly Point

Folly Point: named after a builder who repeatedly built a house on the point using salt water in the mortar. The house collapsed on each occasion.

Fig Tree Point: a giant Port Jackson fig tree once grew on the point. Aboriginal name: Cooroowal.

Sailors Bay: origin unknown.

Mowbray Point: origin unknown.


Sugarloaf Bay

Sugarloaf Point / Bay: sugar used to be packed in loaves for storage. Rocks in the bay, and near the point, resemble a loaf of sugar.

Crag Cove: named after the nearby suburb Castlecrag.

Camp Creek: Lt. Bradley and a survey party camped here on 18th April 1788.

Castle Cove: named after the nearby suburb Castlecrag.

Yeoland Point: origin unknown.

Echo Point: believed to be thus named as the voice echoes across the water in the narrow valley here.

Killarney Point: named after Killarney in Ireland (right). The name was first used in the area for Killarney Picnic Ground, once located at Killarney Point. Possibly named by Irishman John Dunbar Nelson who began bringing tourists to the point in 1856.


Moores Creek

Moores Creek: recalls Thomas Moore who owned 'Echo Farm' from the 1880s and land on the plateau of East Roseville. Moore probably used the access track now known as Griffith Avenue to reach the area near Roseville Bridge where he carried out boat building. Moore's Farm was on the present Roseville Golf Course. It was the site of the only Army Engineers training camp in Australia during World War 1 and in 1919 was resumed by the water board for use as a sewerage farm. Roseville was however saved from this fate when sewer mains were built beneath the harbour at The Spit.

Goblin's Glen: from a book which uses the actual location as the setting for a story about goblins. Written and illustrated by Harold Gaze for the entertainment of his children, the book, called Goblin's Glen, was published in 1924. The book uses the old Moores Creek track and its surroundings as a setting for a surreal tale of the adventures of fairies and goblins enjoyed by Harold, his niece and nephew. The book took much from "Alice in Wonderland" and Gordon Lindsey's "Magic Pudding". Using plays on words and conundrums, it turns the Moores Creek setting into an European forest with high mountains, snow fields and underground caves.


Gordon Creek

Gordon Creek: believed to commemorate Sir James Willoughby Gordon, who was the Quartermaster-General when the First Fleet set sail in 1788.

Bates Creek: believed to honour Thomas Bates, a convict attached to a farm at Pennant Hills who later ran his own farm here.

Carroll Creek: origin unknown.

Flat Rock Beach / Creek: refers to a large flat rocky platform near the head of the cove where Lt. Bradley and a survey party stopped for lunch on 18th April 1788.

Pickering Point: named after local residents, the Pickering Bros (William, Harry and Fred), it being a favourite camping spot of theirs.


Bantry Bay

Bantry Bay: said to be named after Bantry Bay in County Cork, Ireland. It was here on 23rd December 1796 that the French suffered a major defeat at the hands of Sir Edward Pellew of the British Navy over their defence of Irish Catholicism. The name was in use long before Irishman John Dunbar Nelson began bringing tourists through the area in 1856 but who named it is not known.


Powder Hulk Bay

Powder Hulk Bay: bay in which hulks of retired ships were moored during the latter half of the 19th century. They housed Sydney's gunpowder supplies.

Seaforth Bluff: its proximity to the suburb of Seaforth.


Fisher Bay

Fisher Bay: formerly known as Parsley Bay. It is not known who Fisher was.

Castle Rock: named because of a rock nearby which resembles a castle.

Clontarf Point / Beach: believed to have been named by an Irishman involved in the residential development of the surrounding area as its recalls Clontarf, a suburb of Dublin. Aboriginal name: Warringa.

Sandy Bay: descriptive name.

The Spit: descriptive name for the point of the peninsula jutting into Middle Harbour. Aboriginal name: Parriwi.

North Harbour


North Head

North Head: descriptive name. Aboriginal names: (outer) Boree; (inner) Garungel.

Quarantine Head: named because of its proximity to the Old Quarantine Station.

Cannae Point: recalls Canna, the Aboriginal name for the Manly area. Formerly known as Flagstaff Point as a flagstaff was set up here to guide ships to the Quarantine Station.


Store Beach

Store Beach: named so because stores were landed here for the Quarantine Station.

Spring Cove: so named because of a spring in the rocks. Aboriginal name: Kayoo-may.


Collins Beach

Collins Beach: named after Judge Advocate George Collins who accompanied Gov. Arthur Phillip to the area in September 1790. On that occasion Phillip was speared in the shoulder by an Aborigine on this beach.

Little Manly Point / Manly Point / Manly Cove: Named by Gov. Phillip when visiting the area for the first time in 1788. He gave the name in reference to the male Aborigines there who impressed him with their noble and manly bearing. Aboriginal name: Kay-yee-my.

Smedleys Point: at one time it was owned by Mr Smedley of Ambrose, Thornley and Smedley, Architects, who erected a very fine home, one of the first on the eastern hill of Manly.

Fairlight Beach: beach to the nearby suburb of Fairlight which was named after the home of Henry Gilbert Smith (1802-96), who developed the area as a resort and residential area.


Forty Baskets Beach

Forty Baskets Beach: The name arose from a 40 basket haul of fish caught here in 1885 and sent to a contingent of Australian troops returned from The Sudan who were in quarantine at North Head. Forty baskets was traditionally recognised as a typical day's catch.

Reef Beach: named due to its proximity to a reef.

Dobroyd Head: The name Dobroyd Point was originally given this headland by Simeon Lord early in the nineteenth century. Dobroyd Castle was the home of his mother, Ann Fielden, prior to her marriage in 1764.


Crater Cove

Crater Cove: named because of its close proximity to the crater-like Crater Valley.

Washaway Beach: so named because the beach is said to disappear each winter, and return every summer.

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