Culture and heritage

Maritime heritage

Illawarra

MAP - NSW maritime heritage sites

The Illawarra is a long, narrow coastal region. To the west are steep, sandstone cliffs. These are stunning views of sweeping, coastal plains and picturesque harbours. At the same time, the cliffs discourage large river systems. Natural harbours are also rare. However, the Illawarra includes the beautiful and expansive Jervis Bay as well as the large, constructed ports of Wollongong and Port Kembla.

Coal, dairying and resorts are important to this region. Maritime activity remains strong in the industrial towns of Wollongong and Port Kembla. In other areas jetties, lighthouses and harbours are reminders of past coastal shipping industry.

One of the early maritime industries was fishing. This included the official Sydney based fishing fleets that moved seasonally up and down the coast. As in most parts of the NSW coast, it also included an unofficial fishing industry. This unofficial industry was operated by Chinese and provided fresh fish to local communities. In much of the Illawarra, fishing is again the dominant maritime industry.

Page last updated: 31 August 2012