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Port ArthurAustralia

Discover the dark history of this former colonial outpost on the Tasman Peninsula, where eerie penal ruins contrast with the coastline’s superb natural beauty.

Some of Tasmania’s most nightmarish tales originated in Port Arthur, a quaint village with a forbidding past perched on the tip of the Tasman Peninsula. Explore the town to find preserved relics from Australia’s brutal convict history, including the crumbling ruins of a sandstone prison, coal mines and an evocative museum. Discover the town’s dramatic coastline when you visit its geological wonders and oceanfront vistas.

The town’s key attraction is the Port Arthur Historic Site, a significant World Heritage site comprising of over 30 buildings and ruins across 100 acres (40 hectares) of landscaped estate. Established in 1830, the penal colony earned a reputation for hellish conditions over its 47 years of operation. Learn the dark tales of life as a convict as you explore solitary-confinement cells and restored period homes. Go on a cruise to the burial grounds at the Isle of the Dead, check out the Point Puer Boys Prison or return in the evening for a Ghost Tour. The museum offers an in-depth insight into the convict experience.

Port Arthur is situated amid some of Tasmania’s most striking coastal landscapes. Visit fascinating sites, such as Remarkable Cave or Crescent Bay. This sweeping arch of sand has a backdrop of immense dunes and can be reached via a pleasant walking trail from the cave. Another popular hike links two geological wonders on the coast, the Totem Pole and the Candlestick. Go on a cruise to see these fascinating “sea stacks” from the waters surrounding Cape Hauy. Snap photographs from the viewing platform at the Maingon Bay Lookout.

Outside of the township, experience more local history at the Coal Mines Historic Site. Stroll around the trails and find a series of convict relics and scenic viewpoints. Breathe in the sweet floral aroma at the Port Arthur Lavender Farm and pick up fantastic homemade lavender products.

Port Arthur is located on the southern edge of the Tasman Peninsula and is approximately 90 minutes’ drive from Hobart. The town has a range of accommodations, including holiday cottages. Add the town to your road-trip itinerary or join a tour of the magnificent peninsula.

Top hotels in Port Arthur

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Stewarts Bay Lodge
Stewarts Bay Lodge
3.5 out of 5
6955 Arthur Highway, Port Arthur, TAS
The price is AU$236 per night from 26 Sep. to 27 Sep.

Situated in Port Arthur, this beach hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Stewarts Bay State Reserve and Port Arthur Historic Site. Long Bay Conservation Area and ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (695 reviews)

"Location, Location, Location! Tranquil setting, lovely outlook. Friendly and helpful staff and a great place to stay and spend a weekend exploring the Tasman Peninsula"…"

Reviewed on 19 Mar. 2020

Stewarts Bay Lodge
NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
3.5 out of 5
Garden Point Road, Port Arthur, TAS
The price is AU$126 per night from 11 Oct. to 12 Oct.

Situated in the historical district, this campsite is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Stewarts Bay State Reserve and 1.6 mi (2.5 km) from Port Arthur Historic Site. Long ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (327 reviews)

"Lovely spot, staff were lovely. Everything was clean and well kept."…"

Reviewed on 31 Aug. 2020

NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
Port Arthur Villas
Port Arthur Villas
4 out of 5
52 Safety Cove Road, Port Arthur, TAS
The price is AU$149 per night from 12 Oct. to 13 Oct.

This family-friendly Port Arthur motel is located by the ocean, within 2 mi (3 km) of Port Arthur Historic Site and Tasman Golf Course. Isle of the Dead and ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (222 reviews)

"The villa was clean and tidy. It was really comfortable and had all the amenities needed for cooking. The host was really friendly and help us with the booking of the Port Arthur Site visit."…"

Reviewed on 2 Feb. 2020

Port Arthur Villas

Holiday Rentals in Port Arthur

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
3.5 out of 5
Garden Point Road, Port Arthur, TAS
The price is AU$126 per night from 11 Oct. to 12 Oct.

Situated in the historical district, this campsite is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Stewarts Bay State Reserve and 1.6 mi (2.5 km) from Port Arthur Historic Site. Long ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (327 reviews)

"Lovely spot, staff were lovely. Everything was clean and well kept."…"

Reviewed on 31 Aug. 2020

NRMA Port Arthur Holiday Park
Bay Retreat Port Arthur
Bay Retreat Port Arthur
3.5 out of 5
229 Safety Cove Road, Port Arthur, TAS

Situated in Port Arthur, this beach cottage is 0.7 mi (1.2 km) from Tasman Golf Course and 1.8 mi (2.9 km) from Port Arthur Historic Site. Safety Cove State ...

4.3/5Excellent! (12 reviews)

"Beautiful view Great barbecue Close to Port Arthur Historical site Washing machine and dryer Good heating"…"

Reviewed on 20 Jan. 2020

Bay Retreat Port Arthur
Eaglehawk Pavilions
Eaglehawk Pavilions
3.5 out of 5
86 Blowhole Road, Eaglehawk Neck, TAS

Situated by the sea, this apartment building is within a 5-minute walk of Pirates Bay Nature Recreation Area and Tasman National Park. Eaglehawk Bay State Reserve ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (17 reviews)
Fabulous view from the pavilion

"The studio pavilion was comfortable, spacious, well equipped & had an amazing outlook as well. Couldn’t ask for more really. Our 4 night stay was terrific & we enjoyed the attractions of the Tasman peninsula from our base at Eaglehawk pavilions."…"

Reviewed on 5 Mar. 2020

Eaglehawk Pavilions

Popular places to visit in Port Arthur

Port Arthur Historic Site
Image for Port Arthur Historic Site

Port Arthur Historic Site

4.5/5(191 reviews)

Step back into Tasmania’s past as a penal colony and learn about the lives of convicts who were sent to one of the harshest settlements in the British Empire.

Tasman National Park
Image for Tasman National Park

Tasman National Park

4.5/5(76 reviews)

Peer over soaring dolerite cliffs to see the rugged capes and sea stacks that notch the coast of the Tasman Peninsula or take on one of the challenging coastal hikes.

Top activities in Port Arthur

Entry Pass to the Port Arthur Historic Site
Image for Entry Pass to the Port Arthur Historic Site

Entry Pass to the Port Arthur Historic Site

AU$42
Per adult
88% of travellers recommend
The Ultimate Tasmania Pass
Image for The Ultimate Tasmania Pass

The Ultimate Tasmania Pass

AU$120
Per adult
The Ultimate Australia Pass
Image for The Ultimate Australia Pass

The Ultimate Australia Pass

AU$199
Per adult
Port Arthur Historic Site Ghost Tour
Image for Port Arthur Historic Site Ghost Tour

Port Arthur Historic Site Ghost Tour

AU$27
Per adult
80% of travellers recommend
Tasman Island Wilderness Cruise, Port Arthur
Image for Tasman Island Wilderness Cruise, Port Arthur

Tasman Island Wilderness Cruise, Port Arthur

AU$92
Per adult
100% of travellers recommend
Full-Day Richmond, Tasman Peninsula & Port Arthur Adventure from Hobart
Image for Full-Day Richmond, Tasman Peninsula & Port Arthur Adventure from Hobart

Full-Day Richmond, Tasman Peninsula & Port Arthur Adventure from Hobart

AU$130
Per adult
80% of travellers recommend

Reviews of Port Arthur

4.6

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
112
5 - Excellent 67.06586826347305%
4 - Good
49
4 - Good 29.34131736526946%
3 - Okay
5
3 - Okay 2.9940119760479043%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
1
1 - Terrible 0.5988023952095808%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

5 Mar. 2020

Great walking options and great attractions

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

15 Feb. 2020

Worth visiting

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

12 Feb. 2020

Memorable history lesson.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

3 Jan. 2020

Loved the experience and entertained my ‘hard to engage’ kids!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

31 Dec. 2019

Great history, great conservation.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

27 Dec. 2019

Lots of great attractions near by such as the Unzoo, Lavender farm and the historic site.

Cities near Port Arthur

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