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Sylvania Waters, New South Wales facts for kids

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Sylvania Waters
SydneyNew South Wales
Sylvania Waters
Population 3,169 (2016 census)
Postcode(s) 2224
Elevation 4 m (13 ft)
LGA(s) Sutherland Shire
State electorate(s) Miranda
Federal Division(s) Cook
Suburbs around Sylvania Waters:
Sylvania Georges River Taren Point
Sylvania Sylvania Waters Taren Point
Miranda Miranda Caringbah

Sylvania Waters is a suburb in southern Sydney located in the state of New South Wales, Australia, 21 kilometres (13 miles) south of the Sydney central business district in the local government area of Sutherland Shire.


The naming of Sylvania is unclear, but ‘sylvan’ which means inhabiting the woods, relates to the setting of this suburb. Politician Thomas Holt (1811–88) owned the land that stretched from Sutherland to Cronulla. Holt had built Sutherland House on the foreshore of Gwawley Bay in 1818, on the eastern side of Sylvania. He established the Sutherland Estate Company in 1881 and a village grew there, with a post office opening in 1883. The school opened in 1884 but closed in 1891 and was not reopened until 1925. Sylvania Heights Public School opened in 1955.

Sylvania Waters Estate was developed by L.J. Hooker in the 1960s, as the land offered had water frontages with boating facilities. James Goyen won the tender to design the estate, construct the houses, and promote the new suburb. Streets were named after Australian rivers to emphasise the association with water, such as Shoalhaven, Tweed, Murrumbidgee, Hawkesbury and Barwon.


Sylvania Waters was a 1992 reality television program which followed the lives of the Donaher family living at Macintyre Crescent. The suburb became infamous when the series screened across Australia and internationally.

One of the artificial islands in Sylvania Waters (James Cook Island) was used in the filming of the movie Superman Returns (2006) as the location of Lois Lane's house.


In the 2011 census, Sylvania Waters have a population of 3,125 people. The median age of people in Sylvania Waters is 41 years, slightly older than the national median of 37 years. Children aged under 15 years make up 18.3% of the population, and people aged 65 years and over make up 16.9% of the population. Almost one-third (32.3%) was born overseas, similar to the national average of 30.2%, with the top countries of overseas birth being China 4.5%, England 2.2%, Hong Kong 2.0%, New Zealand 1.9%, and Egypt 1.8%. 62.7% of people speak only English at home; the next most common languages spoken at home being Greek 7.9%, Cantonese 5.4%, Mandarin 3.8%, Arabic 3.8%, and Italian 2.7%. The most common responses for religious affiliation are Catholic 29.7%, Anglican 16.7%, Eastern Orthodox 16.3%, No Religion 13.8%, and Buddhism 3.3%. The great majority (78.9%) of households in Sylvania Waters are separate houses, 8.8% were semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses etc., and 12.3% were flats, units, or apartments. The average household size was 2.9 people.


Sylvania Waters is home to the Sylvania Waters Athletics Track, a state-of-the-art facility which holds many local and state events. Next to this is the Sylvania Waters Tennis Court Complex and the home ground of the Southern Districts Rugby Club.

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