If you’re looking for a destination of historical importance in Tasmania, then a visit to the Port Arthur Historic Site is one of the top things to do.

This historic town is located on the Tasman Peninsula and is known for being a 19th-century penal settlement, where the remains of the penitentiary are still there.

Today the small town is an open air museum giving tourists a chance to see a glimpse into Australia’s darker past.

The Port Arthur Historic Site is located a 90-minute drive from Hobart along the Tasman and Arthur Highway and forms part of the Convict Trail Touring Route – a journey through rolling farmland and coastal forests, and seaside villages.

Port Arthur is one of Tasmania’s most fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites and was a former settlement used to house convicts and criminals for more than 50 years.

It became well known for its dark past in which prisoners lived under harsh conditions, contrasting with its remarkable architectural and natural beauty.

Surrounding the ruins are manicured gardens and lush forests, but it wasn’t always a pretty sight. It was founded by the British Empire in 1830 as a humble timber station but quickly rose to fame as a colony for prisoners.

Port Arthur was a functioning town. It was known for its shipbuilding, brickmaking, shoemaking, and smithing industries. In the 1840s, they constructed a hospital and a huge flour mill and granary, which was later turned into a penitentiary.

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