About Us


The STS Leeuwin II is Western Australia’s very own tall ship, a unique three-masted 1850’s style barquentine. The ship is used to run youth programs aiming to develop core skills or support high school students with their WASSA and WACE unit. Joining a Leeuwin Explorer Voyage will change a young person to be more resilient, and giving them this edge boosting their employability.

It is the best thing I have ever done. I learnt so much, especially about myself — Kacey from Leederville, November 2018


STS Leeuwin II also offers a unique opportunity for the general public to sail for a day on-board a tall ship, and have a memorable experience as a family.


Foundation Funding

The Leeuwin Foundation is a trusted and established not-for-profit organisation based on Victoria Quay in Fremantle. Since 1986 we have welcomed more than 40,000 young people on-board the STS Leeuwin II. 

In 2016 we celebrated our 30th anniversary.

The Leeuwin Foundation is funded through grants, corporate sponsorships by various organisations, as well as through generous donations by the general public.


The Ship

This ship will bond you to her for life – Roger Hales

STS Leeuwin II is a three-masted sail training ship designed in an 1850’s barquentine style. The ship was launched in 1986.

It is 55 metres long and 33 metres tall. It has 16 sails with a total of 810m2 of canvas.

Sail Training Tall Ship Leeuwin II

  • Specification: Three masted barquentine, 1850’s style rig
  • Launched: 2 August 1986
  • Construction: Steel hull, teak deck
  • Length overall: 55 metres
  • Length on deck: 40 metres
  • Beam: 9 metres
  • Draught depth: 3.4 metres
  • Height of the main mast: 33 metres
  • Displacement: 344 tonnes
  • Sails: 16 sails, over 810 square metres of fabric
  • Accommodation: 15 crew and 40 trainees
  • Designer: Len Randell A.R.I.N.A
  • Builder: Transfield (ASI) Pty Ltd, Henderson WA
  • Survey: 1B, 1D
  • Safety System: Australian Maritime Safety Authority ISM Certification

Our history

What’s in the name?

The original Leeuwin (Dutch for “Lioness”) Galleon was a Dutch ship that discovered and mapped some of the southwest corner of Australia in March 1622, only the seventh European ship to sight the continent.

The Leeuwin Galleon’s logbook has never been recovered, so unfortunately very little is known about the voyage, including the name of the Captain. Interestingly, Dutch East India Company letters indicate that the Leeuwin’s voyage from Texel in the Netherlands to Batavia (now Jakarta) took more than a year, whereas other vessels made the same voyage in less than four months. This suggests that poor navigation may have been responsible for the Leeuwin’s appearance at Australia’s coast.

The south-west corner of Australia has historically been referred to by the Dutch as’t Landt van de Leeuwin (“The Land of the Lioness”) which was later shortened to “Leeuwin’s Land” by the English. In addition to STS Leeuwin II, 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.

Awards and recognition

The Leeuwin Ocean Adventure Foundation has received acknowledgment by many local, national and international awards throughout its many years of operation:

  • Sail Trainer of the Year: Under 25 Volunteer Category | 2016 | Winner Rachel Norrie
  • WA Industry Collaboration Award WA Training Awards | 2016 | Finalist
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award Fremantle Chamber Business Awards | 2015 | Winner
  • Billy Can Award Australian Sail Training Association | 2014 | Winner
  • Gold Medallion Bravery Award Royal Lifesaving WA Bravery Awards | 2014 | Winner
  • Outstanding Personal Achievement Award Fremantle Chamber Business Awards | 2014 | Winner – Captain Sarah Robinson
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award Fremantle Chamber Business Awards | 2014 | Finalist
  • Supporting Volunteers Award Department of Sport and Recreation Awards | 2014 | Finalist
  • Orange Seed Project Grant Award Jack in the Box and Seven West’s Orange Seed Project | 2014 | Finalist
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award Fremantle Chamber Business Awards | 2013 | Winner
  • International Sail Trainer of the Year Sail Training International | 2013 | Winner – Captain Sarah Robinson
  • Fair Go Award Pride of Australia Awards | 2013 | Winner – Captain Sarah Robinson
  • International Sail Training Organisation of the Year Sail Training International | 2010 | Winner