Discover The Historic Sites Of Sydney's Hunters Hill

Hunters Hill is Australia’s oldest garden suburb & is one of the most historically significant local government areas. Many buildings date back to early colonial times with over 500 places listed in Environmental Heritage. Enjoy discovering the wealth of history in Hunters Hill.

Hunter's Hill Council

Hunter's Hill Town Hall

The original Town Hall was built in 1866 for £750 and enlarged in 1903 and 1938. In 1978 it was almost destroyed by fire with the loss of valuable records. The rebuilt Town Hall preserved most of the original façade and was opened by Sir Roden Cutler, State Governor, in 1980. 

Hunters Hill Museum

The museum opened in 1967 and holds artifacts and records of local families and buildings and scenes going back to the early 1800s.  The museum is run by Hunters Hill Historical Society Inc, made up of volunteers from the local community. 

Garibaldi Village Square (Garibaldi Hotel)

The hotel was a focal point for supporters of the Italian national hero, Giuseppe Garibaldi. It was built in 1861 of the local golden sandstone as Hunters Hill’s first hotel by John Cuneo, who came from Genoa in 1854. The Cuneos were shopkeepers, yachtsmen and had a jazz band.

All Saints Anglican Church

Formerly Seymour’s Pleasure Gardens. The foundation stone was laid by the Bishop of Sydney in 1885 and the building was dedicated in 1888. The stained glass windows are considered some of the finest in Australia and include the only Burne-Jones/Morris & Co. windows in Sydney.

St Joseph's College

Built by the Marist Order on land purchased from Didier Joubert, a temporary wooden building was erected first in 1876. By 1881, 55 boarders, mainly from an earlier school in Harrington Street, Sydney, were accommodated there. In 1882, three sandstone buildings were erected.

St. Peter Chanel Church

 On land that was originally part of Jeanneret’s 30-acre estate, this church was built in two stages between 1890 and 1901 and was supported by the early Irish community. The church commemorates the French Marist missionary, Peter Chanel, killed on the island of Futuna in 1841.

Woolwich Baths

Opened in 1907, the Baths had a diving tower and turnstile and charged for admission. The caretakers included Mr Gale from Collingwood Street and after him Mr Mooney. 

Woolwich Dock

Previously known as Mort’s Dock, then the largest dry dock in Australia. Ships were repaired in the dock and new vessels, including ferries and warships, were built on slipways on Clarkes Point.  The dock closed in 1959 and the site was abandoned until 1963. 

Woolwich Pier Hotel

 The hotel was built in 1890 on land owned by George Fesq, wine merchant from Bordeaux, France, and leading developer of Woolwich. It was patronised by dock workers living in the vicinity and sailors from the ships in dock. 

Holy Name of Mary Parish (Villa Maria)

The sandstone church, Holy Name of Mary at Villa Maria, was built in 1871. It was initially the monastery chapel. The Monastery was built in the 1860s as a haven for Marist Fathers who were Catholic missionaries in New Caledonia, the Solomon and Woodlark Islands and Vanuatu.

St Mark's Anglican Church

The oldest public building in Hunters Hill. It was originally known as Figtree Chapel. It was designed by Weaver and Kemp and built in 1857 as a schoolhouse and chapel on the corner of Church and Joubert Streets.


A heritage-listed worker's cottage. Ann O’Donnell and John Jacob Hellmann (later Hillman) built this stone cottage in 1871, naming it Carrum Carrum. Hillman, the district’s first lamplighter, was a shoemaker and Ann had a dairy and an orchard next door.

Kelly's Bush

The battle for Kelly’s Bush is well known as the ‘Battlers’ who spearheaded the protest to save the bush for their children and the community. With the help of the NSW Builders Labourers’ Federation, the world’s first green ban was applied in Sydney at Hunters Hill in 1971. 

The Haven

The house was built in 1858 by Jules Joubert. Maybanke Anderson (1845-1927), reformer and activist for women’s and children’s rights and one of Australia’s most remarkable women, lived here for the last seven years of her life.


Passy was financed by Didier Joubert and built by his brother Jules between 1855 and 1856 for Louis Francois Sentis, Consul of France and the Sicilies. Sir George Dibbs, Premier of NSW, lived here from 1897. Edmund Biddulph Henning bought Passy in 1906-07 and his sister, the author Rachel Henning (1826-1914), lived here.  

Hunters Hill Hotel

The Fig Tree Hotel, built in 1880, stood on this site. The area was then known as Figtree, named from Mary Reibey’s 1830s Figtree Farm, which extended down to the Lane Cove River. The hotel was demolished in the 1930s to make way for the present building, Hunters Hill Hotel.

Discover more of the sites and history of Sydney's Hunters Hill.

Credits: Story

Courtesy, Hunters Hill Museum
Cover image by Robinson and Harrison Higinbotham
Contributed By National Library of Australia [] (Maps Collection)

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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