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Old Melbourne Gaol

Experience the harsh justice of the 19th century and trace the final footsteps of bushranger Ned Kelly at this award-winning museum.

Old Melbourne Gaol offers comprehensive and sometimes chilling insight into the criminal justice system in Australia in the 19th and early 20th century. Closed in 1929, the oldest remaining penal establishment in Victoria has since found new life as a popular museum. The gaol’s cells have been converted into mini-exhibits that cover prison life, punishment and stories about the institution’s notable inmates.

Learn about wrongly hung inmate Colin Campbell Ross, and be horrified by the gory story of serial killer Fredrick Bailey. Learn about the punishment methods and spirit-crushing solitary confinement that prisoners endured. Many of the cells contain death masks. These wax or plaster casts of deceased prisoners’ faces allow you to stare into the eyes of some of Melbourne’s most notorious criminals.

To really experience what the gaol was like, sit in on a reenacted trial in the Old Magistrates’ Court. Or, become a prisoner yourself during the Watch House Experience, where you’ll be formally arrested and locked up in a cell before taking an interactive tour of prison life.

Among the 133 prisoners hung at Old Melbourne Gaol was Australia’s most famous outlaw, Ned Kelly. Examine Kelly’s famous homemade body armor that he wore at his final shootout with police. You can also see his death mask and pistol, and the gallows where he and so many others were hung.

If you feel a strange presence while in the jail, you’re not alone. Many believe the gaol to be haunted. There are regular night tours where trained actors recount chilling stories of ghosts and explore the gaol’s dark past. Bookings are essential and can be made via the Old Melbourne Gaol’s website.

Old Melbourne Gaol is located in downtown Melbourne. It’s best to get there by public transportation; the free City Circle tram stops nearby and Melbourne Central train station is a few minutes’ walk away. The gaol is open daily except Christmas Day and Good Friday.


Guide to Exploring around Old Melbourne Gaol


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Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel ¥8,099
Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel

Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel

60 Market Street, Melbourne, VIC
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    This family-friendly Melbourne aparthotel is located in the entertainment district, steps from Collins Street, Flinders Lane, and Yarra Riverfront. SEA LIFE Melbourne and Bourke Street Mall are also within 10 minutes. Flinders Street Station is 9 minutes by foot and Flagstaff Station is 11 minutes.

    Oaks Melbourne on William Suites ¥7,555
    Oaks Melbourne on William Suites

    Oaks Melbourne on William Suites

    350 William Street, Melbourne, VIC
       
      4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Flagstaff Gardens, Hardware Lane, and Queen Victoria Market. Melbourne Central and Emporium Melbourne are also within 15 minutes. Flagstaff Station is only a 2-minute walk and Melbourne Central Station is 7 minutes.

      Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel ¥6,468
      Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel

      Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel

      480 Collins Street, Melbourne, VIC
         
        4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Collins Street, SEA LIFE Melbourne, and Flinders Lane. Yarra Riverfront and Hardware Lane are also within 10 minutes. Flagstaff Station is 9 minutes by foot and Southern Cross Station is 7 minutes.

        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne ¥5,429
        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne

        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne

        300 Spencer Street, Melbourne, VIC
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this motel is within a 15-minute walk of Marvel Stadium, Melbourne Central, and Queen Victoria Market. Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex and Bourke Street Mall are also within 1 mi (2 km). Flagstaff Station is 6 minutes by foot and Southern Cross Station is 7 minutes.

          Avani Melbourne Central Residences ¥10,531
          Avani Melbourne Central Residences

          Avani Melbourne Central Residences

          60 A'Beckett Street, Melbourne, VIC
             
            4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Melbourne Central and State Library of Victoria. Queen Victoria Market and Bourke Street Mall are also within 10 minutes. Melbourne Central Station is only a 3-minute walk and Flagstaff Station is 8 minutes.

            Pegasus Apart'Hotel ¥7,746
            Pegasus Apart'Hotel

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              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

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              Oaks Melbourne on Lonsdale Suites ¥8,289
              Oaks Melbourne on Lonsdale Suites

              Oaks Melbourne on Lonsdale Suites

              23 33 Lonsdale St, Melbourne, VIC
                 
                4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

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                Milano Serviced Apartments ¥4,413
                Milano Serviced Apartments

                Milano Serviced Apartments

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                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

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