One of Tasmania’s most well known and mystical places is Port Arthur.
Originally built in 1830 the town has survived a very turbulent history. Port Arthur originated as a timber station in 1830 and quickly progress to a well know penal colony for the less reformed convicts of both British and Irish descent. These convicts were found to be unchanged by their deportation to Tasmania and were often second offenders once they arrived.
The prison which was completed in 1953 and became known as the “Inescapable Prison” due to its location and lack of connection to the main land of Eagle Hawk Neck. Though many escape attempts were made, the most successful being through seized boats, most were thwarted and lashes doled out in punishment. The prison was abandoned in 1877 and was ravaged by fire in the 1890 and has remained as a ruin since.
Port Arthur is now a well known popular destination for exploration into the past. The prison makes up only one part of all there is to offer in this beautiful town. The gardens and grounds transport you back into the past, you feel yourself become a part of the history. You can imagine the people of colonial Tasmania a new town being built up around them, the convict farms situated only a few hundred meters away, trying to eke out a living in a new inhospitable land.
Port Arthur offers a multitude of ways to explore the heritage listed site, both by your on recognisance and a multitude of walking tours or harbour tours running all day. There are tours to over 40 historical parts of Port Arthur with experienced guides to show you this historically beautiful town.
This town is a not to be missed destination for your Tasmanian experience holiday.
For more information on tours see http://www.portarthur.org.au/