5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

Add your review

  • Address: Queens Square, Macquarie Street
  • Hours: Open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Good Friday and Christmas Day.
  • Admission: Adults $10 AUD, Children (under 15) $5 AUD

Sydney ATTRACTIONS See all

Hyde Park Barracks Museum

The foundations of Sydney were built on convict labor, and the Hyde Park Barracks are where criminals who were sentenced to live out the rest of their days in Australia were housed. Opened to hold male convicts working on the government projects and later to house orphan girls escaping the Irish famine, it was after that also used as a female immigration depot, an asylum for impoverished women and a courthouse. All through history, it was the place where people in Australia certainly did not want to end up. Now, as a museum, the barracks tell the stories of those unlucky enough to pass through its doors. 
The building itself was also built with convict labor, after it was decided that housing the criminals in one place would improve productivity as well as their moral character. The structure looks nothing short of imposing with its massive shingled roof standing above a simple, durable façade of sandstock brick. It impressed Governor Macquarie so much that the convict who had been assigned to design it, architect Francis Greenway, got a full pardon out of it. But while he earned his freedom, many others weren't so lucky. A guardsman once described the barracks housing up to 1,400 men as “a perfect accumulation of vice and infamy."

When restoration on the building began in 1975, archaeologists were able to pull thousands of personal items out of cracks and from beneath floorboards. This collection, together with displays and stories, now make up the museum and teach about the living conditions of the men and women who once lived here. 

Practical Info

Located at the southern end of Macquarie Street, the barracks are only a five-minute walk away from the St James train station and the Elizabeth Street bus station. The Hyde Park Barracks Museum opens daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is only closed on Good Friday and Christmas Day. 

Tours & Tickets

See all

Sydney Attraction Pass Including Taronga Zoo, Sydney Opera House, SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium

4.5 star rating: Recommended 377 Reviews

Want to see Sydney Opera House, SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, Taronga Zoo, Sydney Harbour and more? A Sydney attraction pass is the smart travel companion for ...  Read more

Location: Sydney, Australia
Duration: Flexible

From USD $77.03

Private Tour: Sydney Sightseeing Experience

4.5 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

See the very best of Sydney on a private tour that takes in the city’s historic center and beaches, colonial heritage and natural beauty. Admire the historic ...  Read more

Location: Sydney, Australia
Duration: 4.5 or 7.5 hours

From USD $124.72

Sydney Combo: VIVID Dinner Cruise and Sydney Attraction Pass

3 star rating: Worth doing 2 Reviews

Make the most of your time in Sydney by taking a 2-hour standing buffet dinner cruise included as one of the attractions in your Sydney Attraction Flexi 5 and ...  Read more

Location: Sydney, Australia
Duration: Flexible

From USD $113.71

See all

Viator uses cookies to improve your experience on our website. Learn more about how we use cookies and how to change your cookie settings | Close message