We left Sorell fruit farm happily and drove towards our next destination, Port Arthur. Port Arthur is a small town and former convict settlement on the Tasman Peninsula. The historic site was entered on the UNESCO World Heritage register in 2010 and is the best-preserved convict settlement in Australia and among the most significant convict era sites in the world.
After a quick lunch at the café, we went on a guided tour around the historic site. The tour was a combination of rich history and scenic beauty. We were brought back in time to the convict era and followed with great interest the history of Port Arthur, from timber camp to industrial powerhouse and prison at the forefront of criminal reform methods. The lovely guide also shared with us many interesting stories about the lives of the different convicts - their background, crimes and how did they end up.
We did not have the chance to tour all the 30+ buildings and covered every corner of the beautiful site as it started to rain quite heavily with strong winds blowing. But I must say we enjoyed the educational tour very much especially for our primary school-aged children. Together with the fun activity booklets and games, the tour helped the children understood and enjoyed history as they explored the site.
After the historic site tour, we visited the Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park where the kids had the chance to come face to face with the "Devils" and lots of kangaroos.
While they once roamed widely across Australia and on islands around the coast, the Tasmanian Devils are now found only on the island of Tasmania. Devils are meat eating marsupials and have very strong jaws capable of crushing large bones. Truly Devils!
We spent the night at the Ben's Beach Retreat in Port Arthur. The view in front of the cottage was simply amazing and the cottage itself was new and fully equipped.
Nestled between a beach, a forest, the ocean, a national park and Australia's profound Port Arthur Historic Site, this is truly a place to relax, recharge and rejuvenate. We should have stayed here longer.