Friday, April 11, 2008

Exploring our local area: Maitland Gaol



Isn't it amazing how we visit tourist attractions and explore an area while travelling, but don't explore our local area. I'm trying to rectify that!

Today a friend and I took our kids to visit a local attraction - Maitland Gaol. The gaol was built in 1848 and closed in 1998 after 150 years - it was the longest continuously operating prison in Australia. It's now been turned into a tourist attraction. During it's time it housed some of the country's most notorious prisoners, including serial killer Ivan Milat.

We took a self-guided audio tour - it was absolutely fascinating. The tour took us almost 2 hours, just going at our own pace (like a snack stop mid-way). The kids seemed to enjoy it - luckily some of the commentary went over their heads - I wasn't looking forward to answering questions about some of it! It wasn't gruesome, just factual, but terms I'd rather not be explaining at this age.

I'd like to go back one day and hear the bits that I missed while kid-wrangling, but I really enjoyed what I heard!!



5 comments:

libby said...

It's great when kids get old enough to do this kind of thing. We realized this last year and started having a monthly family day out. It certainly opens up a whole new world of opportunities.

Libby

molly said...

Hi Kez

It was interesting to see the goal, my aunt & uncle lived in maitland until a couple of years ago,they loved it there.

Blessings

Mrs. Pivec said...

A very cool adventure, kez. I find learning more about the area in which I live helps me feel even more connected to the place. That said, I lived in MN 17 years - many of them in the Twin Cities - and never made it to the capitol building (St. Paul is the capitol of MN)! I wasn't there in elementary school and so never got to take a field trip like it is sure they would have. Now, of course, I wish I would have. So, I think your idea is a great one!

Thanks, by the way, for the kind comment left on my blog. It's funny. Just this morning I was thinking about a post, so I won't likely send it into oblivion any time soon. Still, I think a break is in order...

Also, love your participation in the weekly lights out. My SIL was here when the worldwide one happened and she said she remembered growing up doing that very thing. I think we'll have to join in too. We're a little late, but better late than never! :)

Kris said...

I've been thinking about how little I see of our area, and how we make the effort to see other things so much further afeild. Must rectify, heaven knows there's enough jails down here ...

Laurie said...

Looks like a lovely place...teeheehee. I love going to our touristy places here but I'm amazed how many people have never been to our wonderful History and Art museums! If nothing else, the buildings themselves are amazing to look at (they were built for the 1904 World's Fair). I am gaining a love of local history as we do more and more in our area. ;)