Located just south of Sydney, the Sutherland Shire is known as the "Birth Place of Modern Australia", because of the 1770 landing of Lt James Cook near the location of present-day Kurnell. The Sutherland Shire is blessed with breathtaking natural beauty, as you can see in this shot, taken by one of our Lakewood High School exchange students. Beaches, waterways and nearby bushland are easily accessible, including Royal National Park. This is Australia's first national park and was dedicated in 1879. It is the second oldest national park in the world after Yellowstone in the USA.
Whale watching in “The Shire” is possible without ever setting foot in a boat! Each June and July, about 2000 humpback whales and southern right whales migrate north along the New South Wales coastline to their breeding grounds in warmer waters. Then, during September thru November, they return south. At the peak of the migration, it’s possible to see up to four whales pass every hour!
Note how the series of curves of the Jorn Utzon-designed Sydney Opera House are continued in the arch of the Harbour Bridge. The Harbour is surrounded by hundreds of kilometres of shoreline, national parks and historic sites, and it is alive with ferries, yachts and kayaks. As one of the world’s natural harbours it is also a gateway to other parts of Sydney.
8,000 thousand miles apart
Jefferson County and the Sutherland Shire have a unique relationship. Through our student exchange program, Jeffco high school students host an Australian student for six months, then live and attend school for 6 months in Australia. Lifelong bonds are forged between newfound friends whose homes are 8,000 miles apart.