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J Ward Museum Complex, Ararat

4.7
#1 of 9 in Museums in Grampians
Specialty Museum Museum
J Ward Museum Complex provides a historical glimpse at the Australian penal system. Starting in 1859 as a jail for miscreants of the local goldfields, J Ward started housing the criminally insane when the gold ran out less than three decades later. Today, you can tour the defunct prison and hear stories about its inmates from local volunteers. A visit provides a break on the Melbourne-Adelaide road, if you're passing between the two cities. J Ward Museum Complex is just one of the many highlights you can arrange to see using our online itinerary creator, Ararat Edition.
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144 reviews
  • J Ward tour was very informative. We divided to take the tour last minute. Very interest and opened our eyes to the treatment of the criminally insane during the 20 century. Well worth the visit.  more »
  • A visit to nearby Ararat from The Grampians and so worth the visit to J Ward. The guide was very knowledgeable. The tour lasted over an hour. Make a visit part of your itinerary (not the children thou...  more »
  • We went on the 11:00 Wednesday tour 1 1/2 hours it was fascinating to see inside a real lunatic ward that was previously a jail. The tour guide was knowledgeable and humorous. I can recommend this gre...  more »