First Fleet voyage

first fleetThe First Fleet: a timeline of the journey
13 May 1787 : sailed from Portsmouth, England. There were eleven small ships in the First Fleet: two naval ships, six convict ships and three storeships for supplies.Captain Arthur Phillip was in charge of the fleet Onboard were about 1500 people: 722 convicts including 17 child convicts, the soldiers who were to guard them, soldiers’ wives, sailors, and ship’s officers.

3 June 1787 : arrived at Tenerife in the Canary Islands, stayed a week and took on supplies of fresh food

5 July 1787: crossed the Equator

7 August 1787: arrived at Rio de Janeiro, stayed for a month repairing sails, collecting plants and seeds to be grown in New South Wales.

13 October 1787: reached Table Bay (now CapeTown), Cape of Good Hope after surviving tremendous storms in the Atlantic Ocean. Stayed a month, and took on livestock (horses, sheep, goats).

25 December 1787: the Fleet was in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

1 January 1788: Adventure Bay, Van Diemen’s Land (now Tasmania)

18 January 1788 : arrived at Botany Bay after sailing south of Van Diemen’s Land, then north to New South Wales. It was decided that Botany Bay was not a suitable site for the settlement because water supply and soils were poor. The Fleet sailed on.

26 January 1788 : The members of the First Fleet went ashore at Port Jackson to start a settlement. Arthur Phillip named the place of landing Sydney Cove, after Lord Sydney, an official who had helped to organise th voyage.

More information can be found at: