Port Arthur cruises

No call here is complete without visiting the UNESCO Port Arthur Historical Site, the once-feared prison colony whose ruins you can now explore together with 30 or so restored houses, including that of the commandant. Nearby, the Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park offers a chance to see the famously bad-tempered and increasingly rare marsupials.

Excursions

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

  • Eco Boat Adventure

    Discover the spectacular Tasman coastline on a custom sightseeing Eco RIB style boat.

    Eco Boat Adventure

    Your exclusive sightseeing RIB style boat will take you along the spectacular coastline between Eaglehawk Neck and Port Arthur, and travel beneath the highest vertical cliffs in the southern hemisphere. The Naiad vessels are ideal for exploring the Tasmanian waters and rugged coastline that forms part of the Tasman National Park.

    You’ll pass by Tasman Island, a great landmark of the Southern Ocean with its slender white lighthouse, which is still a beacon for seafarers entering Storm Bay. The continental shelf runs close to Tasman Island bringing an up surge of nutrients from the ocean's depths. This creates a buffet for all in the complex food chain of the sea and attracts birdlife, such as albatross, dolphins and southern right whales.

    During your boat ride, enjoy an interesting commentary, whilst keeping an eye for wildlife and admiring the beauty of the surrounding landscape.

    ACTIVITY EXCURSIONS
    You and all those in your party should be aware that, in undertaking activity excursions, you will be involved in a degree of physical exertion and/or activity such as hiking, biking, snorkelling, kayaking, diving etc. By booking the excursion you confirm that you and all those in your party are in good physical and mental condition, with no history of conditions such as seizures, dizziness, fainting, heart condition, respiratory problems or back/neck problems (by way of example only). You should also ensure that no one in your party is taking medicine that carries a warning about impairment of physical or mental abilities. If you are pregnant this type of excursion may not be appropriate for you. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fit and well enough to take part in the activities booked and you are reminded to take care for your own safety. Because of the risks associated with activity excursions, you may be asked by the excursion provider to sign a document which may affect or limit the excursion provider’s liability. Comfortable flat walking shoes are recommended.

    LIABILITY
    Cunard will arrange for the excursions to be performed by the relevant excursion provider. Cunard does not provide or supply the excursion services. Cunard will exercise reasonable care and skill in the selection of the excursion provider, but will not in any circumstances have a greater liability than the excursion supplier and Cunard shall not be responsible for the negligent acts/omissions of the excursion supplier. Please note that in relation to all excursions Cunard is not responsible or liable for any loss, damage, or injury sustained by you unless such loss, damage or injury arises out of a breach of legal duty of Cunard.

    TRAVEL INSURANCE
    Before booking any activity excursions it is essential that you ensure your travel insurance extends to cover the specified activity. It is your responsibility to obtain adequate insurance.

    This excursion will operate by by coach and rigid inflatable boat (RIB).This tour has limited places and early booking is advised. The cruise is around three hours. Guests must have a degree of agility to embark the RIB boat and be in good physical condition. This tour is not suitable for those with back or neck injuries or conditions, which may be affected by the bumpy ride. Pregnant women and children under 10 may not participate. The route is dependent on weather conditions and is subject to change. For those prone to seasickness please take the necessary precautions. It is advisable to take a warm jacket, sunscreen and a bottle of water. Guests will be provided with wet weather jackets. Wildlife sightings cannot be guaranteed.

    Tour code

    POA_004

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • Tasman Peninsula, Lavender & Chocolate

    Admire the Tasman Peninsula, combined with the Port Arthur Lavender Visitor Centre and a taste of Federation Chocolate.

    Tasman Peninsula, Lavender & Chocolate

    The Port Arthur Lavender Visitor Centre is nestled within 18 acres of lavender fields, surrounding rainforest and lakes overlooking the coastline as Long Bay. Here, you can immerse yourself in one of nature’s finest fragrances. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the visitor centre, and absorb the lovely surroundings and enjoy a delicious scone with lavender cream. Tea or coffee will also be served.

    Federation Chocolate is a local family-run business that produces high quality Tasmanian chocolate. The passionate owners use an array of fine Tasmanian ingredients including Tasmanian wilderness mountain water and Tasmanian butter. Here, you’ll enjoy chocolate tasting and perhaps purchase some of the lovely flavoured chocolate bars as a souvenir.

    During your tour, absorb the spectacular coastline as you drive along the Tasman Peninsular. At Eaglehawk Neck you'll see the Tessellated Pavement, Officer's Quarters and the Dog Line, once guarded by savage dogs to prevent convicts escaping from Port Arthur.

    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This tour involves walking over some uneven ground, slight inclines and steps. Flat, comfortable shoes are recommended. This tour involves chocolate tasting only and guests will not experience the process of chocolate making.

    Tour code

    POA_001

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Historic Site Behind the Scenes

    An exclusive experience that takes you ‘behind the scenes’ at the Port Arthur World Heritage Historic Site.

    Historic Site Behind the Scenes

    Your local historian guide will join you and take you on a fascinating walk around the Port Arthur Historic Site. Visit the magnificent Government Gardens, where you’ll gain an insight into how archaeology, science and horticulture have assisted in recreating the magnificent 19th Century pleasure garden. Next, you’ll visit the collection processing laboratory and see objects rediscovered by archaeologists after having spent over a century buried amongst the ruins of the site. You’ll also be able to see some of the interesting historical collection items.

    Your final visit will be the famous Separate Prison, one of the more recent and large scale conservation projects. View where the convicts were locked in single cells for 23 hours each day and where they ate, slept and worked with just one hour a day allowed for exercise. You’ll also have the opportunity to talk with the heritage experts involved in bringing this ruined building back to life.

    At the end of your guided tour, enjoy some time to further explore the historic site or browse the gift shop for souvenirs.

    This excursion will operate on foot. There is limited space on this tour and early booking is advised. This tour involves around two hours of walking over varying terrain which includes some uneven ground and steps. Flat, comfortable walking shoes are advised. This tour is not recommended for children. It is advisable to take a bottle of water, sunscreen and a hat.

    Tour code

    POA_005

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    2½ hours

  • Coal Mines & Convicts

    Visit Norfolk Bay Mines and the Port Arthur Historic Site on a fascinating discovery of Tasmania’s past and convict era.

    Coal Mines & Convicts

    The World Heritage Norfolk Bay Coal Mines Historic Site is significant to the history of Tasmania and was the very first operational mine. Here, explore the ruins of the coal mines, which formed part of the system of convict discipline and punishment on the Tasman Peninsular. View remnants of houses, barracks, offices and punishment cells and gain an insight into the isolation and hardship that many endured. It is believed that almost 600 prisoners, along with their gaolers and families, lived and worked at the mines.

    The Port Arthur Historic Site, also part of the World Heritage Site list, is one of Australia’s most important heritage sites. Enjoy tea, coffee and a sweet snack before taking a 45 minute introductory walking tour. Your local historian guide will bring the past alive and show you the most important areas of the site. Afterwards, you can enjoy some free time to take the short harbour cruise or if you prefer, explore more of the historic site, before returning to the pier to join the ship.

    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This tour involves around two hours of walking over varying terrain including uneven ground, slight inclines and steps. Flat, comfortable walking shoes are recommended. It is advisable to take a bottle of water, sunscreen and a hat.

    Tour code

    POA_003

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    4½ hours

  • Ghostly Daytime Walking Tour

    Discover a different side to the Port Arthur World Heritage Historic Site and uncover ghostly tales, strange happenings and unexplained events!

    Ghostly Daytime Walking Tour

    Your specialist guide will take you on a daytime walking tour of the Port Arthur Historic Site to areas that hold mystery and intrigue. Listen to creepy encounters and happenings that baffled and alarmed even the convicts, and tales of ghosts and other phenomena.

    One of the highlights of your tour is a visit to the Senior Surgeon’s basement, where medical research was carried out. This building is not open to the general public during the day, but you’ll have exclusive access to explore and discover the ghostly goings on.

    To round off your tour you may wish to browse the gift shop for a souvenir of your visit.

    This excursion will operate on foot. There is limited space on this tour and early booking is advised. This tour involves around two hours of walking over varying terrain which includes some uneven ground and steps. Flat, comfortable walking shoes are advised. This tour is not recommended for children and those with a nervous disposition. It is advisable to take a bottle of water, sunscreen and a hat.

    Tour code

    POA_006

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    2 hours

  • Guards & Gaolers Walking Tour

    Discover the history of the ‘free men’ at the Port Arthur World Heritage Historic Site, on this fascinating small group walking tour.

    Guards & Gaolers Walking Tour

    Join a local historian guide on a walking tour of the Port Arthur Historic Site to the most iconic buildings that housed the administrators of the settlement and visiting dignitaries. Whilst life for the prisoners at Port Arthur was unimaginably tough there is another side to the story. Port Arthur was of course home to many ‘free men’ who ran the daily operations of the site. Your walking tour will offer an insight into life from their perspective in comparison to the conditions of the convicts they guarded.

    Venture into the Commandant’s House, the Visiting Magistrate’s House and the Junior Medical Officer’s House. Hear stories of notable figures from Port Arthur’s past, and gain an insight into what life was like for the free men and women who lived at Port Arthur.

    At the end of your tour you may wish to browse the gift shop for a souvenir of your visit.

    This excursion will operate on foot. There is limited space on this tour and early booking is advised. This tour involves around 2½ hours of walking over varying terrain which includes some uneven ground and steps. Flat, comfortable walking shoes are advised. This tour is not recommended for children. It is advisable to take a bottle of water, sunscreen and a hat.

    Tour code

    POA_007

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    2½ hours

  • Tasman Peninsula Panorama

    Gain an insight into the convict era, together with the dramatic coastal scenery of Tasmania, on this lovely panoramic tour.

    Tasman Peninsula Panorama

    Setting off from Port Arthur, you’ll drive along the forested peninsula to Eaglehawk Neck, a narrow strip of land that separates the peninsula from the rest of Tasmania. Here, you’ll take a short walk to view the Tessalated Pavement, the Officers' Quarters and the Dog Line where guard savage dogs once stood to prevent convicts escaping from Port Arthur. At the Pirates Bay Lookout, admire the spectacular coastline views of white sands and rugged rocky cliffs.

    Next, you’ll head to a geological wonder, the blow hole, to view the sprays of spouting water from the build-up of pressure in the eroded rock. Depending on the weather on the day, a stop will be made at the Devils Kitchen or the Tasman Arch, both natural rock formations. Located upon rugged cliffs, these geological features are nature's marvels, whose softer layers of rock have been eroded by the waves, leaving the stronger top layers withstanding the forces of nature.

    To round off your tour, sit back and enjoy more of the Tasman Peninsular scenery as you take the return drive to Port Arthur.

    This excursion will operate by coach. This tour is predominantly by coach with photograph stops where some leisurely walking is required. The ground may be uneven in parts and flat, comfortable shoes are recommended.

    Tour code

    POA_002

    Features

    • Activity low

      Activity Level: Low

    Duration

    3 hours