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The Rocks Discovery Museum

Certificate of Excellence
The Rocks
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Address: Kendall Lane | The Rocks, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, Australia
Phone Number:
+61 2 9240 8680
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 10:00 - 17:00

The Rocks Discovery Museum is a free, family friendly museum which tells...

The Rocks Discovery Museum is a free, family friendly museum which tells the story of The Rocks area of Sydney from pre-European days to the present. Housed in a restored 1850s sandstone warehouse, The Rocks Discovery Museum is home to a unique collection of images and archaeological artefacts found in The Rocks. The exhibits are filled with interactive fun, using touch screens, audio and visual elements to bring the history of the area alive.Learn about the area's traditional custodians, the establishment of the English colony and the time when sailors, whalers and traders made The Rocks their home; through to the 1970s union-led protests which preserved this unique part of Sydney for future generations to explore and enjoy.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 302 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 129
  • 114
    Very good
  • 18
  • 5
  • 0
Old Sydney At Its Best

Wonderful little museum in the heart of the Rocks. I wanted to learn about the history of Sydney and this place provided everything I wanted, and more. Interactive displays... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 1 week ago
Lameece S
San Dimas, United States
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302 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 266: English reviews
San Dimas, United States
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

Wonderful little museum in the heart of the Rocks. I wanted to learn about the history of Sydney and this place provided everything I wanted, and more. Interactive displays, artifacts, indigenous people information, British settlers, and individual stories made my visit very satisfying.

Thank Lameece S
Arundel, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
300 reviews
121 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Set in an old building down a side street in The Rocks area, this free museum is a great intro to the area, early settlers and how it has evolved since. Four rooms, two up narrow stairs with low headroom. Loads to take in so you may have to flit between exhibits if your time is tight! Very good.

Thank OutnAbout007
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
1,213 reviews
746 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 369 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We stumbled upon a tour - which was nice - since it provided additional info relating to the various exhibits. I didn't see any elevators to get to the top two floors. Stairs were a bit narrow. A nice touch is that they had exhibits displayed lower especially for kids.

Thank Diane K
Greeley, Colorado
Level Contributor
124 reviews
75 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

This is a "pocket museum" built in a modest historic brick building and includes four rooms of exhibits. Two rooms are on street level, two rooms are up old wood stairs...watch the headroom! "The Rocks" refers to an enclave of low historic buildings along the waterfront (near the Opera House) in Sydney which included a mix or housing, shops, warehouses... More 

Thank John G
Victoria, Australia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Yes it is small and 3 stories, but this place is a wealth of knowledge and all free of charge. With interactive areas for young children, give them the time to beat the high score on the games whilst you walk around and enjoy Sydney's history. Dating from the First Australian to the Current Australian dive into this free and... More 

Thank KAMQ13
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
84 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Well laid out, informative museum which is easy to follow and understand. Whilst small, it is not at all crowded, and the building of which it is in gives it an authentic feel. Full of artefacts with explanations, and helpful friendly staff. As a free attraction it is well worth visiting when in Sydney, to learn more about The Rocks... More 

Thank LouP456
Level Contributor
53 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We stumbled across this small but beautifully formed free museum by accidient on our 2nd day in Australia. It made for a fantastic introduction to the history of the docks, Sydney and Australia, with lots of informative panels and short films on the local indegenous clans, the arrival of the europeans and much since. We leant such a lot in... More 

Thank brixtonbelle
Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
62 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

This is a very small museum free of charge at The Rocks. Understand the simple history of Sydney. Take 10 min only.

Thank Stewartli
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
172 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 195 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This museum is small but it's free and covers the history of The Rocks, which is the birthplace of Sydney. I think it's a gem for what it is. Most of the information has to be read on displays, although there are some videos and books as well.

Thank MissNinja
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
1,104 reviews
451 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 412 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

The museum was quite small but informative. I prefer the ones with audio tours or guides as I learn a lot more than reading 200 signs. They have a special war stories exhibit on the top floor as well. It's worth stopping in if in the area as it is free but we found the Hyde Park Barracks museum and... More 

Thank Shelliu

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Staying in The Rocks

Neighbourhood Profile
The Rocks
The first residents of the Rocks were convicts and sailors from the old nation. As the oldest neighbourhood in the city, the area's cobblestone streets host more than 100 heritage sites and buildings, including the oldest house in Sydney, Camden Cottage, which was built in 1816. Taste a “midi “ or a “schooner” of beer and dine “al fresco” on the waterfront at some of the oldest pubs in Sydney. The weekend markets at the Rocks are where you can find local artists' hand-made souvenirs, organic food and designer jewelry in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. To enjoy some of the best Australian and international contemporary art, the MCA museum is open every day and select evenings. At the end of a long day of sightseeing, be sure to save energy to dance the night away at the area's many late night entertainment venues.
Explore this neighbourhood