Our Latest News

Parks and Wildlife Service in tourism awards

15/10/2018

Two key Parks and Wildlife Service enterprises have been listed as finalists in this year's Tasmanian Tourism Awards.More

Tasmania's Next Iconic Walk

28/09/2018

The call is out to find Tasmania's next world-class walking experience.More

Changes to private vehicle access to Dove Lake

25/09/2018

From 22 October 2018, private vehicle access into Cradle Mountain National Park will be restricted during shuttle bus operating hours to ensure visitor safety.More

Sarah Island

Introduction

The ruins of the new penitentiary

The ruins of the new penitentiary

The Sarah Island Historic Site is Tasmania's oldest convict settlement, operating from 1822 to 1833. Located within the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area on the rugged west coast and separated from the settled east by a vast tract of mountainous wilderness, Sarah Island was proposed by Lt Governor Sorell as a "place of banishment and security for the worst description of convicts" and as such developed the reputation as one of the severest of the penal settlements established during the history of transportation.

However, the island was also a successful center of industry. Pining and shipbuilding were among the trades carried out by the convicts. Indeed, in its day, Sarah Island was the largest shipbuilding yard in Australia.