The Rocks Dreaming for Schools

Illi Langi - Tailored for schools

The Rocks Aboriginal Dreaming Tour

For schools only.
A 90 minute walkabout connecting students to nature based ways Aboriginal people have used land, water and skies since creation to modern day - in The Rocks.


Experienced Aboriginal Teacher Margaret Campbell is also a Culture holder of Dreamtime Knowledge. An Elder from Dunghutti Jerrinjha Nations (NSW) Margret designed illi Langi tour content with Sydney & NSW Aboriginal community groups and education staff to connect school curriculum to share with students and teachers.

Students and Teachers will learn about Aboriginal people's origin history through the Dreamtime eyes. hear about Dreamtime characters from our ancient past (sun, moon, water, lands) in creation stories, and role models during the English contact period: Patyegarang, Bungaree, Colebee, Arabanoo, Pemulwuy Bennelong and their roles and responsibilities during the colonial settlers arrival in The Rocks, Circular Quay, Parramatta River, and Harbour. Students explore the science in the shapes of boomerangs and other tools, music clap sticks, fishing equipment, shells, seasonal calendar of native plants, rubbish and caring for mother earth.

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Each tour itinerary location shows students how to become a CUSTODIAN of Country, linked to school subjects including:

  • The excursion offers teachers an ideal resource to support key learning areas of geography, history, Aboriginal studies - human environment showing Aboriginal Family/Clan land Boundaries today. In addition, religion and ancient history, and the Dreamtime sciences in the use and practice in caring for totems inclusiveness across a sustainable Aboriginal conservation protocol.
  • Songlines how and why its connected to Self- Family-Community- Nation - geography more so today.
  • Interactive up close with trees + plants. Learnhow an Aboriginal child's totems are given via their birthday.
  • Have fun learning Aboriginal language - songs, play clap stick instruments.
  • Aboriginal stories of unbelievable reactions from 1st Fleet contact.
  • Aboriginal Guides are trained by Dreamtime Culture Knowledge holders.

Suitable for Kindergarten, Years 1 - 6 (Primary) and YearS 7 - 12 (Secondary). The tour can also be tailored to pre-schoolers and Vacation Care Groups.

Itinerary Landscapes

Cadman’s Cottage Is the meeting + start point for the tour, and before students "walk country". A 1st level interactive Welcome To Country shows how Aboriginal people acknowledge Earth Mother, using 1 of her sacred OCHRE colours by marking student wrists/hand, before speaking of her history and creation of landscapes. Via the dreamtime Gaze Aboriginal Language words introduced.

Bligh and Barney Reserve 1st Dreamtime Story - hear origin of Custodianship of homeland country - introduce students to environmental characters ie (whon why, how) earth, sun, moon, waters and connect to Aboriginal Identity - saltwater, freshwater people. Students have opportunity 'hands-on culyural artefacts. Aboriginal language words for area - geography of Clans - Cadigal, Cameragal, Wanegal + others.

Argyle Cut Earth Mother shows origin of ochre colours in sandstone rock. Students discover meaning of colours on Aboriginal flag red-black and yellow, and when and how white ochre used by Aboriginal People in ceremonies. Aboriginal language words for sandstone - Dallahwaladah.

Cumberland Walk Walking higher terrain, students see, touch and smell seasonal flora connected to Sydney's Coastal Dreamtime Identity. Aboriginal language words for plant and diverse uses - medicinal options. Walking to Harbor Bridge elevation to lower levels and its significant Aboriginal site use.

Dawes Point Under Harbour Bridge and amazing harbour views. Tour focuses on a source of white ochre colour - Aboriginal language words - TARRA. Girls and Boys preparing for learning culture rules (protocols) - connected to the Whale Visits and Aboriginal sites, such as the depth (mouth) of the Parramatta River flowing into the other aread, and the use of small harbour islands of Cockatoo - Goat - Shark - For Denison and Clarke.

Hicksons Reserve Students as they look over Sydney Harbour are presented with scenario - to imagine what Aboriginal People thought when they saw the "white Ochre people" arrive in strange canoes. hear a unique cultural Dreamtime interpretation of Aboriginal Clans reaction to strange visitors (in 1770's) landing in Woccunmagulli - now Bennelong Point / Opera House / Circular Quay / The Rocks. Aboriginal Language to places and rocky - tree lined plant systemd in landscape changes in 1788.

Campbells Cove Students hear about the local Aborginal connection with water, Identity saltwater and freshwater people, etc. The harbour and its connection with River and the science involved in seasonal plants and fishing, clans lifestyle and clothing, purpose of a fresh/saltwater meeting site. Aboriginal language words - hands on equipment.

Circular Quay West Walk along OPT Cruise ship promenade site (pictures) show Cadigal people fishing - Aboriginal language words for trees students see (1) origin source of weaving technique for fishing nets/bags. Through-out the tour students will hear Aboriginal language (including place names) and discover Aboriginal beliefs and value how we all belong to Country.

Tour ends back at Cadmans Cottage.

Represents our Birth grandmother and the genetic lineage. These connecting fingers are the basis of our Women’s Business The fingers on the opposite right hand - relate to Men’s Business.

* Please contact us for more information

School Excursions


10.30am to 12noon - 90 minutes (1.5hrs)
Other times available on request.



$14.00 per Student (Suitable for K –Year 12 and can be tailored for Pre-Schoolers)
FREE for teachers



illi-Langi The Rocks Aboriginal Dreaming Tour departs in all weather conditions.
Please remind students to bring wet weather gear (jackets, umbrellas) if it's raining or likely to rain.


Terms & Conditions and Cancellation Policy


Tour Departs fom: Cadmans Cottage
110 George Street, The Rocks

Guests must arrive 15 minutes
prior to departure time


Tripadvisor Traveler Rating
241 reviews
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Recent Traveler Reviews
  • “Amazing experience. Learnt so much and helped me feel more deeply connected to beautiful mother earth....” more
  • “We spent an informative and inspiring afternoon tour with Margaret today. We learned a great deal...” more
  • “I wanted to make sure that my 9-year-old learns about the history of the First Nation...” more
  • “Our tour guide, Donia asked what we were interested in & she talked to those points...” more