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School excursion

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Hartley historical tour

Stage 3 (Years 5-6), History, Hartley Historic Site


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On this interactive Stage 3 (Years 5-6) History excursion, students visit key sites in the Hartley Historic Site colonial village: the courthouse, the gaol and St Bernards Church. They'll explore the history of how this key colony developed and take part in fun re-enactments with our Discovery Rangers. 

Read more about Hartley historical tour

Students will participate in a mock trial, spend time in a gaol cell and hear stories of Hartley’s colonial history. Hartley, on the edge of Blue Mountains National Park, was a pivotal place when settlement moved west beyond the Great Dividing Range. The rise and fall of the town coincides with major happenings such as the Gold Rush, the birth of the coal and oil industries and the introduction of rail travel.

As students investigate the story of Hartley and the surrounding farms, they’ll gain a rich insight into Australian colonial life, including its impact on the environment and existing Indigenous residents.

For program outline, safety and practical information about this excursion, see info for teachers

Stage Stage 3 (Years 5-6)
Learning area History
Student outcomes

HT3-1. Describes and explains the significance of people, groups, places and events to the development of Australia

HT3-2. Describes and explains different experiences of people living in Australia over time

HT3-5. Applies a variety of skills of historical inquiry and communication


Students will:

  • Explore the beautifully preserved site of an early colony
  • Conduct a historical inquiry using both physical elements of the site, and written and spoken historical accounts
  • Investigate various aspects of early life in an Australian colony.

Excursion details


Monday to Friday during school term. 1hr 30min to 2hrs, depending on group size.

Guided. Also available on request.
1.5-2 hr
Easy. Students will be moving between closely situated buildings in a village setting.

$11 per student (includes GST). Group minimum 60 students. Maximum 120 students.

No wheelchair access
Meeting point
Outside the courthouse, Hartley Historic Site.
If you would like to organise a NPWS school excursion please get in touch with local staff or use the 'Enquire' link for the online form.
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