Situated in an exceptionally stunning location at the foothills of Mt Wellington, Hobart is the capital of the island state of Tasmania and is Australia’s southernmost and second oldest capital city after Sydney. Enjoy the city’s captivating history, stunning architecture, scenic water views and culinary delights. Hobart is an ideal destination to visit for a week or even just a few days and has something of interest for the whole family.
Salamanca Market was established in 1972 and is Tasmania’s largest market boasting over 300 stalls. It is located at historic Salamanca Place, next to the Hobart Waterfront and operates every Saturday from 8:30am to 3:00pm. Local Tasmanian producers and designers make Salamanca Market very unique and the stalls include stylish handmade clothing, jewellery, organic produce, artwork health and body care, plants, locally produced cheese and wine, delicious takeaway food, pet products and so much more. The market has won many tourism awards for excellence and is Tasmania’s most visited tourist attraction.
The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) is located within the Moorilla winery on the Berriedale peninsula in Hobart and can be accessed via The Mona Ferry which departs from Brooke St Pier and takes roughly 25 minutes. The museum is renowned for its quirky and sometimes eerie display of ancient, modern and contemporary art collections. The actual museum building is a work of architectural amazement and the interior of the museum has a spiral staircase that leads down three larger levels of labyrinth display spaces built into the side of the cliffs around Berriedale peninsula. As well as housing over 1,900 artistic works from the founder David Walsh’s private collection the museum displays frequent exhibitions from upcoming and well-known local and international artists as well as seasonal arts festivals and live music. Guests can spend the day at MONA exploring the art displays and then enjoy a delicious lunch or drink at one of the many onsite eateries including the cellar door, museum café, wine bar and void bar. These eateries showcase fresh local Tasmanian produce and wine and are a wonderful place to relax with friends and family.
Visiting the Historic Site of Port Arthur is a memorable experience for the entire family. Being Australia’s most intact convict site, you can immerse yourself in its history and roam the ruins of over 30 buildings set on beautifully landscaped grounds. This open air museum will leave you with a lasting memory of one of Australia’s most significant heritage areas and a comprehensive understanding of life in a penal colony.
Visitors have the opportunity to take a 40 minute guided introductory walking tour around the historical site or simply take a self-guided tour at their own pace. A popular tour to take after dark is the famous Port Arthur ghost tour which is a 90 minute guided tour around the grounds and buildings at Port Arthur all whilst being guided by lantern lights. Some people say the souls of the departed have never left the grounds and many accounts of paranormal activity have been recorded over the years at the site. Another interesting tour to be involved in is the Isle of the dead and point puer boys prison tour which involves a cruise across Port Arthur’s harbour to visit two of the site’s most mysterious places where over 3000 prisoners were held captive.
Discover the natural beauty of the charming Bruny Island, abundant with wildlife, superb beaches and magnificent landscape. Bruny Island can be accessed via the SeaLink Bruny Island ferry which departs every 30 minutes from the Oyster Cove Marina in Kettering.
Bruny Island offers delicious locally produced food and wine and you will find an abundance of handmade chocolates, fresh berries, cheeses and freshly shucked oysters throughout the island and there are some excellent restaurants and cafés scattered across the island’s small townships. It is a wonderful island to explore by car, walking trails and eco cruise boat and a range of accommodation options are available for those wishing to spend a few days on the island, these include camping, self-contained cottages and B&B’s.
There is no other city in Australia that has a view like Mt Wellington, a stunningly wonderful wilderness experience just a short 20 minute drive from Hobart City. You can drive all the way to the summit on a sealed road or alternatively day tour companies such as Gray Line operate tours to the summit. It is frequently snow covered (sometimes even in summer) and connects the city to the bush and mountains to the channels. The landscape on top of Mt Wellington changes from mild rainforest to sub-alpine vegetation and glacial rock formations on the summit. There is an observatory lookout at the summit which is the ideal place to view the spectacular views of Hobart and the Derwent River and on a clear day you can also see out to Bruny Island.
How to get to Hobart
As Australia’s only island state, access to Tasmania is by air and sea only. Regular flights depart from Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane and fly direct to Hobart and Launceston.
Alternatively many visitors travel to Tasmania from Melbourne by sea on the Spirit of Tasmania. Departing from Melbourne and arriving in Devonport where you would drive from Devonport to Hobart. This option has the added benefit of letting you bring your own car and make the most of Tasmania’s self-drive potential.
An excellent way to visit and explore Hobart is by taking a Day Tour with Gray line Day Tours departing from Brooke Street Pier in Hobart. We offer wonderful tours in the region which include a visit to Port Arthur Historical Site, Hobart City sights tour, Mt Wellington, Russell Falls and the famous MONA gallery and museum. More information about our Hobart Day tours can be found at https://www.grayline.com.au/australia-sightseeing/tasmania-day-tours