What is Australia's oldest structure? Elizabeth Farm in the Sydney district of Rosehill is commonly regarded as the oldest building in Sydney and Australia. It was built around 1788 by Welsh settlers as a farmhouse.
It has been listed on the New South Wales State Heritage Register since 1984. The property is now owned by the University of Sydney, which uses it for teaching and research purposes.
Elizabeth Farm is significant as evidence of the early settlement of Australia and as an example of colonial architecture. The building exhibits features of both English and Welsh descent with its cross-shaped floor plan and diagonal timber framing. It also uses brick instead of stone for its construction which is a rare feature for farmhouses at that time.
The property was originally part of a larger parcel of land called "Elizabeth Farm". The house was built by Thomas Jones, a wealthy farmer who had emigrated from Pembrokeshire, Wales. He made his money through trade with India and China and later became one of the first merchants in Sydney after the colony was founded in 1788. After Thomas' death in 1807, his son Richard then continued to run the business.
This is Sydney's oldest historical district, located just beneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge in the city's core... and well worth a visit on your Australia holiday. It was the site of the first European colony, which was created in 1788 when convict-carrying ships arrived from England to establish the colony of New South Wales. The area's historic buildings date back more than 200 years, with many having been built between 1820 and 1850.
Today, The Rocks is a national monument with over 150 buildings dating back to between 1790 and 1950. It contains important scientific and educational institutions as well as numerous restaurants and bars. There are also several museums in The Rocks including the Australian Museum and its submarine gallery, and the State Library of New South Wales. In addition, a section of The Rocks has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its exceptional collection of colonial architecture.
The area is spread out, so allow some time to explore it at your own pace. If you're looking for something to do while you're there, check out these suggestions: take a tour of the historic buildings, eat at one of the many restaurants, or visit the famous Chinese Garden. For a more active option, go for a walk along the waterfront or through the streets market. The choice is yours!
The Rocks is accessible by ferry, bus, or car. Drive under the Harbour Bridge and follow the directions given on screen. The journey will take about 30 minutes.
Fawkner Mansions in St. Kilda, Melbourne, is considered to be the oldest surviving apartment complex, having been completed in 1910. The Melbourne Mansions on Collins Street were constructed in 1906 but have since been demolished. Both apartment buildings were designed for the elite and had elevators and a concierge. They are also among the first apartments to have electrical wiring and plumbing inside the walls instead of on the exterior.
Another old apartment building is the University of Melbourne's Chancellor House, built in 1841. It is one of only two remaining classical revival university residences in Australia (the other being King's College Cambridge).
Fawkner Mansions and Chancellor House are listed on the Victorian Heritage Register. They are also classified by the National Trust of Victoria and hold an icon status with the National Trust.
Other old apartment buildings include the University of Sydney's Curlewis Hall which was built in 1842, the University of Adelaide's Read Hall which was built in 1843, and the University of Queensland's Ross Smith Building which was constructed in 1889. All four buildings are listed on the South Australian Heritage Register.
Curlewis Hall is now used as administrative offices while Read Hall is a faculty of education facility. Ross Smith Building is currently used as the UQ Institute of Cognitive Science.
There are also several old apartment buildings in Brisbane.