The Tank Stream & Hidden Laneways, Walking tour.

Sydney Walking Tour

Looking out over the city from the Sydney Tower, it’s hard to believe that this sprawling metropolis was once a small, squalid, penal colony populated by convicts and soldiers.

Today Australia’s oldest and largest city has a population of more than 4 million and flourishing arts, food and leisure scene.

But, as this easy stroll around the central city and parks demonstrates, Sydney hasn’t forgotten it’s past.

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The Tank Stream is the hidden reason why Sydney is here and not a few kilometers further north or south. Today, however, almost nothing is even visible of Tank Stream itself.

For over 40,000 years, Aboriginal people selected campsites for two good reasons: food and water. Excavations in the vicinity of the original course of the stream revealed a high concentration of flaked stone artifacts made from water-worn pebbles. So Tank Stream not only provided the Aboriginal people with water and fish but also with other resources for their daily life.

Captain Arthur Phillip, too, had to select an appropriate campsite for the new settlement which provided a reliable source of water. When he noticed a little stream discharging into the salt water of Sydney Cove he must have sighed with relief. The townsite of Sydney was found.

Embarking on our tour will help you explore its more than 230 years of history, starting at Pitt Street and then walking you through the city to important buildings such as the Customs House, as well as historical places to note as you walk by, such as the Cadman’s Cottage.

Our Tour

Sydney was settled around a freshwater stream that formed the back boundary of properties fronting the earliest main streets,
and a series of informal paths provided rear access to gardens, stables and storage areas.
In time, these laneways became formalized, oblivious to any planner’s grid. Other laneways developed to provide access to the rear of commercial buildings that came to dominate the area. Charming walkways or grungy service lanes, today they contribute complexity to the tapestry of the city.
Explore Sydney’s hidden sights on this 2-hour walking tour along the historic Tank Stream. Discover the bizarre backstories and incredible histories of the city’s sights as you take the least-walked path through downtown Sydney – a great local experience!

Experience Sydney from a local perspective by checking out the major sights and learning about the city’s history without feeling like a tourist. This Sydney tour is factual, funny, irreverent, and anecdotal – a great local experience!

See all the city icons, including The Rocks, Sydney Harbour Bridge, and the Sydney Opera House, but explore them in a way most tourists don’t. You’ll be taken on the least-walked path through Sydney and meander through this fascinating city’s tumultuous history and into the modern day.

Among others, we will walk on the Tank Stream, which today runs silently through a city drain below the pavement of the Tank stream Way, walk through narrow lanes such as Palings Lane, which despite its very contemporary feeling, has been on or close to here for a long time.
We will end our walk by following in the footsteps of the nineteenth-century working-class man that will lead us through The Rocks district.
Let us show you our city and inform you about its history and culture.


Price: 1-2 people $240

1-4 people $300

1-6 people $400

  • Location: The Strand Arcade  412-414 George Street, Sydney NSW 2000
  • Departure time : 10:00 a.m
  • Duration: 2 to 2.5 hours
  • Walking pace: Easy

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Notes & Clarifications

Keep in mind that this is a private tour and possible to customize to meet your desires. Should you want to change the itinerary please do not hesitate to contact us by sending us a request through the inquiry form.

Weather: In the event of potential inclement weather, the threat of weather or natural disasters, on the day of a scheduled tour, the tour will be canceled or postponed and you will be fully refunded.

Dress Code: Please wear comfortable walking shoes and bring your camera! And an umbrella just in case!


If you are happy with the services provided by your local guides a tip – though not compulsory – is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many world destinations. Please consider this when budgeting for your extra expenses on this tour.

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Office phone number: +61406671948
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This is a daily tour.

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