As far back as 1606, Dutchman Willem Janszoon and his crew on the Duyfken made the first European landing on the Australian continent (at Pennefather River on the Gulf of Carpentaria). Many Dutch explorers, including Dirk Hartogand Abel Tasman, followed.
Some of the Dutch journeys to Australia did not end well. So far, four Dutch shipwrecks have been found in Australian waters, including the Batavia and the Zuytdorp. At least three more are still missing, among them the Aagtekerke and the Fortuyn. In 2016, the Netherlands and the Australian not-for-profit group Wreck Check jointly searched for the Fortuyn near the Cocos Keeling Islands and Christmas Island.
All relevant links:
- Magazine PDF: Boemerang, Australia - The Netherlands 400 years
- Netherlands and Australia chart new course for our maritime heritage
- Australische archeologen op zoek naar Nederlands VOC-wrak
- Concerning the locations of the missing Dutch East Indiamen Fortuin (1724) and Aagtekerke (1726) by P.A. Boorsma Mendoza
- Decoding the Fortuyn – Season 1 report
- Closing in on the Fortuyn – Season 2 report
- Closing in on the Fortuyn – A progress report by Graeme Henderson