Perched above Newcastle Harbour, this intriguing military site was constructed during the Crimean War to protect the city against a feared Russian invasion. During WWII the fort returned fire on a Japanese submarine, making it the only Australian fort to have engaged in a maritime attack. It's free to enter, but the guided tours are worth taking, as you venture into the fort's labyrinth of underground tunnels. Head to the shop for tickets or for a self-guided-tour brochure.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Newcastle attractions

1. Nobby's Beach

0.17 MILES

Surfers should goofy-foot it to Nobby's Beach. The fast left-hander known as the Wedge is at its northern end, which can also offer good kitesurfing…

2. Newcastle Beach

0.33 MILES

Surfers and swimmers adore this picturesque patrolled beach at the eastern end of the town centre. Nearby accommodation and eating options mean that you…

3. Lock-Up

0.43 MILES

These days artists in residence, rather than prisoners, occupy this former police station (1861). There’s a dynamic contemporary-art program, artists…

4. Nobby's Head

0.65 MILES

Originally an island, this headland at the entrance to Newcastle Harbour was joined to the mainland by a stone breakwater built by convicts between 1818…

5. Christ Church Cathedral

0.66 MILES

Dominating the city skyline, Newcastle's Anglican cathedral is filled with treasures like a gold chalice and a remembrance book made from jewellery…

7. King Edward Park

0.83 MILES

This magnificently landscaped ocean-side park offers sweeping views, lots of grass and plenty of shady spots for lounging around. The best views are from…

8. Newcastle Art Gallery

1.07 MILES

Ignore the brutalist exterior, as inside this remarkable regional gallery are some wonderful works. There's no permanent exhibition; displays rotate the…