Australian Convict Sites


The Australian Convict Sites World Heritage Property is a series of eleven outstanding heritage places across Australia. Collectively they are representative of the global phenomenon of the forced migration of convicts.The Australian Convict Sites World Heritage Property was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List on 31 July 2010.


The sites included in the serial listing are:

Kingston and Arthur’s Vale Historic Area, Norfolk Island (1788–1814 and 1824–1855)

Old Government House and Domain, Parramatta Park, New South Wales (1788–1856)

Hyde Park Barracks, Sydney, New South Wales (1819–1848)

Brickendon & Woolmers Estates, Longford, Tasmania (1820–1850s)

Darlington Probation Station, Maria Island National Park, Tasmania (1825–1832 and 1842–1850)

Old Great North Road, Wiseman’s Ferry, New South Wales (1828–1835)

♦ Cascades Female Factory, South Hobart, Tasmania (1828–1856)

Port Arthur Historic Site, Port Arthur, Tasmania (1830–1877)

♦ Coal Mines Historic Site, Norfolk Bay, Tasmania (1833–1848)

Cockatoo Island Convict Site, Sydney, New South Wales (1839–1869)

Fremantle Prison, Fremantle, Western Australia (1852–1886)

Each site represents key elements of the story of forced migration of convicts and is associated with global ideas and practices relating to punishment and reform of criminal elements of society during the modern era. The eleven sites that form the Australian Convict Sites World Heritage Property are outstanding examples of this story in Australia’s rich convict history, however, more than 3,000 other convict sites still remain around Australia. This is unique in the world today.

As a means of making men outwardly honest, of converting vagabonds, most useless in one country, into active citizens of another, and thus giving birth to a new and splendid country, a grand centre of civilization, it has succeeded to a degree perhaps unparalleled in history.
— The Voyage of the Beagle, Charles Darwin 1836