North Coast Sights

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Fort Scratchley Review

This was one of several forts built on headlands along Australia's shore in the mid- to late 19th century to defend the colony against a possible Russian attack. Built in 1882, its guns had never been fired in anger until June 8, 1942, when the fort returned fire from Japanese submarines in a little-known World War II confrontation called "the shelling of Newcastle"—the city sustained 34 shells but neither damage nor loss of life. The fort, situated on Flagstaff Hill in Newcastle's east end (not far from the railway station), was occupied by the Australian Army until 1972, after which it became a historic site. Although admission is free, a tour of the fort's tunnels is A$12, and a tunnel and fort tour is A$15. Tours run from 10:30, with the last one at 2:30.

Updated: 01-16-2014

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