Underground Tunnels. Chapel. Solitary Cells. Gallows.
Uncover the hidden secrets of this internationally significant convict site – located right in the heart of Hobart CBD!
Tales of crime and punishment abound at the Penitentiary Chapel Historic Site; all that remains of the 2-acre sprawl that was the Hobart Prison Barracks – the processing center for all 42,000 male convicts sent to Van Diemen’s Land.
Built by Colonial Architect John Lee Archer in 1830-1834 as an extension to this bleak complex, the chapel’s design included thirty-six solitary confinement cells beneath the chapel floor.
Ten years later when convict transportation ceased, the barracks became the Hobart Gaol, and two wings were refitted as the Supreme Court – connected to the gaol by grim underground tunnels.
Today access to this significant convict site is strictly by guided tour only; visiting the courts, chapel, tunnels, solitary cells and the gallows, which moved to the site in 1857.
The tour also includes a screening of the film Pandemonium, located in the chapel itself.
Tours last approximately 90 minutes. For bookings and tour times – please see below:
The Penitentiary is also available for private bookings, school tours and conference cocktails – please contact us for more information.
Terms and Conditions of Entry
When visiting a National Trust Tasmania property, from 15 December 2021, please read and follow the Terms & Conditions of Entry.
The major points being:
- Practice social distancing
- Use safe hygiene practices
- Don’t visit if you are feeling unwell
- Prebook your visit wherever possible
We thank you for helping to keep properties open and the community safe.
Penitentiary Chapel Historic Site tour
This guided tour provides daytime access through the court rooms and tunnels to the chapel, where you will be immersed in the chaos of Convict life in Van Dieman’s Land through the immersive film experience ‘Pandemonium’.
Projected four metres tall onto the walls of the Penitentiary Chapel where the convicts actually sat, the film delivers an experience that drives right to the heart of Tasmania’s dark past, contextually connecting the convict sites around the state, and exploring the journey – from conviction, to transportation and beyond – of our convict ancestors.
This unique and memorable immersive experience is currently available Wednesday to Sunday, via guided tours at 10am, 11:30, 1pm and 2:30.
Hobart Convict Penitentiary Ghost Tour
Come and tour the Hobart Convict Penitentiary after dark and hear the stories of those that experienced Heaven and Hell in the Chapel and the solitary cells beneath, those that were sentenced for their crimes in the court rooms, the lives that were ended at the Gallows, and the spirits that remain haunting every wall.
Paranormal Investigations – Convict Penitentiary
Keep an eye out for some special opportunities. Join us on a 3 hour Paranormal Investigation with a passionate team of investigators in one of the country’s most significant convict sites. Or, if a Paranormal Investigation isn’t enough, our special Paranormal Lockdown events are sure to satisfy even the most ardent ghost hunter.
If you are interested please contact us at email@example.com