Leeuwin II is Western Australia's own Tall Ship, a 3-masted barquentine with over 810 square metres of sail and an overall length of 55 metres. Leeuwin II is a working ship and all participants are expected to be involved in most aspects of ship operations, from sailing, steering and navigating to cleaning the ship and climbing the masts.
Leeuwin operates under the principle of "challenge by choice” - where the level of the challenge is up to each individual. Our 28 years of operation clearly demonstrate that the more each participant is willing to challenge themselves, the more they take away from the experience.
We have a sailing option to suit everyone, from three hour short sails to week-long voyages, as well as four-hour school sails. We also run Ultimate Challenge Voyages that are specifically tailored to young people with a physical, sensory or intellectual limitation that prevents them from participating in a Youth Explorer Voyage so they can experience a lifechanging adventure in a safe and supportive environment.
Our mission is to challenge and inspire young people to realise their personal potential and make a positive contribution to the wider community, through the unique medium of a tall sailing ship. Donations to the Leeuwin Ocean Adventure Foundation are most welcome, and your contribution will assist us to continue our pursuit for positive youth development.
Historically, the Leeuwin (Dutch for "Lioness") Galleon was a Dutch ship that discovered and mapped some of the southwest corner of Australia in March 1622. In this way it became only the seventh European ship to sight the continent.
Unfortunately the Leeuwin Galleon's logbook has been lost, so very little is known of the voyage. For example it is not known who captained the ship. However, Dutch East India Company letters indicate that the voyage from Texel to Batavia took more than a year, whereas other vessels had made the same voyage in less than four months, suggesting that poor navigation may have been responsible for the discovery.
The south-west corner of Australia was subsequently referred to by the Dutch as 't Landt van de Leeuwin ("The Land of the Lioness") for a time, subsequently shortened to "Leeuwin's Land" by the English. The name Leeuwin still survives in the name of Cape Leeuwin, the most south-westerly point of the Australian mainland, so named by Matthew Flinders in December 1801.