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Direction Island Heritage Trail

Bush Walk inIndian Ocean Islands

Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands

  • 1-3 hours
  • 3.5 km
    • Bush Walk Grade 1

As with most other islands in the Keeling group, Direction Island has a fascinating history. This easy 3.5 kilometer trail takes walkers from end to end and past interpretive panels telling its story.

Explore Direction Island along the Heritage Trail
Earn 1 Point

Trail Start

Get directions

The Direction Island Heritage Trail starts and finishes at the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo, adjacent to the jetty.

Adventure snorkel off the southern end of Direction Islands

Swim, snorkel or jump off the pontoon!
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Direction Island sits to the north east of the atoll and is accessible twice a week by the local ferry service from West and Home Islands. The jetty sits adjacent to the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Interpretive Gazebo and the Trail Head.

The Trail has a west and east loop, intersected by the Trail Head and Gazebo. The Direction Island Heritage Trail has 25 interpretive panels along its 3.5km course. The island is very flat and well shaded, however the west end of the trail may have palm frond litter.

Direction Island has a wood BBQ, covered picnic tabels and drop toilets. A great place to swim, snorkel and relax, the trail allows walkers a chance to learn about the establishment of the Cable Station, life and times of the Station, the Emden and Sydney WWI story, the Ayesha story, WWII history, military units based on the islands, Catalina flights and more recent history associated with international yachts mooring at the islands.

An easy trail with each loop taking approximately 1 hour, suitable for families and those with moderate fitness levels and abilities. There is no drinking water on Direction Island, and always cover well from the effects of the sun and mosquitos.

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Be trail ready for Direction Island Heritage Trail

Here is everything you need to know before visiting this trail.

Time / Duration

2 hours


The trail head forms the beginning of two x 1 hour loop walks for a total 3.5km

What To Pack

Group B (Bushwalks and/or longer trails) required.

Trail Start

The Direction Island Heritage Trail starts and finishes at the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo, adjacent to the jetty.

Get directions

Trail End

Bush Walk

Grade 1

No bushwalking experience required. Flat even surface with no steps or steep sections. Suitable for wheelchair users who have someone to assist them. Walks no greater than 5km.


There is no paving or hard surfaces on Direction Island. The water tank is unsuitable for drinking water. There is a Wi-Fi hotspot under the main shelter.
  • BBQ Facilities
  • Camping
  • Picnic Area
  • Public Toilet
  • Shaded Area
  • Sheltered Area

Best time of year

All year round


Fees for ferry.

Trail Access

The local ferry service travels to Direction Island every Thursday and Saturday.

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Trails are free and bring so many benefits to our community by providing opportunities to have fun, get fit, socialise, explore and challenge yourself. But they also have to be managed and maintained which only is made possible through terrific sponsors, donations and/or volunteering.

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