Trial Bay Gaol

Step back in time on a guided tour of Trial Bay Gaol, soaking up the history and the amazing coastal views that surround it.
The gaol opened in 1886, after 13 years of construction. It must have been a strange feeling building a prison in such a beautiful setting. The prison labourers were there to construct a breakwater to make Trial Bay a safe harbour between Sydney and Brisbane. Unfortunately the scheme failed, however you’ll still be able to see the remains of the breakwater from the guard tower lookout. During World War I the gaol became an internment camp for people of German descent who were feared to be enemy sympathisers.
Today, this picturesque historic ruin stands as a testament to those who lived and died here, with a museum and memorial for visitors to get a better idea of life in those days. Feeling energetic? Try the nearby Powder Magazine walking track or Monument Hill walking track.

Nearby events

  1. South West Rocks Running Festival

    Sunday 09 June 2019 , South West Rocks

    The South West Rocks Running Festival, formally the Macleay River Marathon, in its 35th year, is a scenic riverside run along the banks of the beautiful Macleay River and back to Trial Bay Gaol. It is held every year on the June long…

    09 Jun
  2. GermanFest

    Thursday 01 August 2019 , South West Rocks

    The Seabreeze Beach Hotel in South West Rocks will be turned into a Bavarian heaven once again for this year's 11 day GermanFest. GermanFest is a celebration of all things Bavarian including food, drink and entertainment with a special…

    01 Aug
  3. Sculpture in the Gaol - Opening Day

    Monday 05 August 2019 to Sunday 01 September 2019 , South West Rocks

    Sculptures in the Gaol exhibition will be on again this year. Trial Bay Gaol will once again be transformed into dramatic artistic landscape, with an abundance of sculptures to be displayed in the historic precinct. The Sculpture in the…

    05 Aug - 01 Sep