In 1830 the beautiful Tasman Peninsula was chosen by Governor Arthur as the site for a penal colony to house Britain's worst offenders. It was considered an excellent location for a prison because the narrow isthmus at Eaglehawk Neck connecting the Tasman to the mainland acted as a natural barrier. As a centre of industry with fine buildings, shipping, mining and milling, Port Arthur was much more than a convict station.
Nonetheless, it's difficult to imagine how tough life must have been here in the 1800s, especially considering the breathtaking beauty of the surrounding landscape on the peninsula. Today there are numerous things to do at Port Arthur, which help make it one of Tasmania's premier tourist attractions. Your entry pass allows access to the interpretation centre, a guided walk and a cruise. Port Arthur Cruises also operate tours further afield and Tasmanian Seaplanes have flights over the region.