J Ward Museum Complex, Ararat

4.7
#1 of 13 in Museums in Grampians
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. Put J Ward Museum Complex at the forefront of your travel plans using our Ararat online trip builder .
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J Ward Museum Complex Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
175 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • Very informative about the history. Fun. A must do. Steve gave us all a great time. It was fun scaring each other.  more »
  • This was my first 'asylum' / jail tour and I found it really interesting. The tour was delivered by Jim, an ex prison guard from Pentridge. Jim really knew his stuff and added anecdotes from his perso...  more »
  • Very informative one of the best i have done. Guides were knowledgeable about the history a would recommend this.  more »
Google
  • Great tour with some good history about the town. Friendly staff!.... had a great time!
  • Fantastic experience...Steve, the guide, did a brilliant job. Thoroughly recommend the J Ward tour. Cheers
  • An amazing piece of Victoria's history. Not to be missed. Wonderful Guides with interesting narrative and displays. Excellent.
  • Very interesting tour with lot's of information by the guide on this historical prison for the criminally insane. It was quite eerie down in the kitchen area and adjoining room. The ghost tour would not be for the faint hearted.
  • Can’t say enough about the volunteers that run the tours at jward and Aradale, they have gone out of their way to help 15 people left high and dry and out of pocket by another company. At a moments notice they organised a tour of Aradale asylum for us and gave up 2 hours of their time so we could experience Aradale and not have to go home disappointed. Was absolutely wonderful experience and very informative. Would highly recommend that you only book tours with the local tour guides as they are the ones that care about the tourists and community.

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19 days in Brisbane Region, Northern Territory & Great Western BY A USER FROM CANADA July, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 3 days in Halls Gap BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Halls Gap BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA April, popular PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Grampians BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Grampians BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Ballarat, Halls Gap & Melbourne BY A USER FROM VIETNAM April, culture, outdoors, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: April, culture, outdoors, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Halls Gap BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA April, kids, popular PREFERENCES: April, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 34 days in Australia BY A USER FROM BELGIUM February, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Grampians BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA April, popular PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Grampians BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, wildlife, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 15 days in Ballarat BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA July, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 3 days in Ararat & Halls Gap BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA March, kids, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: March, kids, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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