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20 + great things to do in Hobart

29 June 2011 No Comment

Hobart waterfrontTasmania boasts some really vibrant communities, especially the capital, Hobart.  Devote at least 2 days to this lovely harbour city, and you will be rewarded with a truck load of history and culture.  There is a great variety of excellent hotels in Hobart that are dotted throughout the city, all within easy walking distance of everything exciting you will want to see and do.

Visitor Information sheets are readily available to help you plan your days, but there are some very interesting things to do that you may not find in your visitors’ guide.

After settling into your hotel head down to the harbour to sample the wonderful seafood restaurants and admire the gaggle of boats tied up at the docks, including Australia’s Antarctic fleet, especially the orange painted supply vessel, the Aurora Australis.  After your fish and chip feast, and perhaps an amazing icecream from Mures, go for a wander along to Elizabeth Pier, keeping your eyes peeled for a little white, square-rigged sailing boat, The Lady Nelson.  You can go sailing on this lovely little replica of the first ship to sail through Bass Strait, as she takes willing landlubbers out for a 90 minute harbour cruise each Saturday.  The low cost charged means everyone can enjoy this amazing sail. Kath is the very helpful lady who can tell you all you want to know about sailing on the Lady Nelson at enquiries@ladynelson.org.au .

Hobart is renowned for good, wholesome food – and also for some very ,very tasty treats.  Sweet tooths will be well rewarded by a trip to the Cadbury chocolate factory in Claremont, or the Island Produce fudge factory in Degraves Street, South Hobart.  The fudge factory site has an interesting but slightly bizarre history. The original sandstone building started out as a distillery, but in 1828 it was turned into a prison, where up to 100 women prisoners and their children lived and died in crowded, insanitary conditions over the next 50 years. Most of that sandstone building has fallen down, but the fudge factory runs an interesting tour of what is left, as well as the lovely garden they have dedicated to all those women and their children.  So go along , eat some sensational fudge, and immerse yourself in Hobart’s intriguing penal history.

While you are in South Hobart, you can stop in at another place with a great convict connection, the Cascade Brewery, Australia’s oldest continuously operating brewery.  The idea for the brewery came to the founder, Peter Degraves, in 1824 as he served time in Old Hobart Gaol for not paying his taxes.  The brewery runs three really interesting tours – the Brewery tour, the Heritage tour, and the Food and Drink matching tour. Check out their web site for prices and bookings.

If you want to be scared out of your wits, join in the Ghost Tour at the Old Hobart Gaol in Campbell Street.  The whole of the gaol is frightening, but the Ghost Tour is really scary.

No visit to Hobart on a Saturday is complete without a visit to the amazing Salamanca market, but you could spend days and days exploring the many other interesting and historical sites dotted throughout the city, so keep these in mind when planning your next holiday to Hobart. Staying in a hotel near Battery Point would give you great access by foot.

  • Go for a stroll around Sullivan’s Cove, to find the Tide House and the old ship’s mast semaphore system sticking out of the grass in the park
  • See the Tasman Fountain in front of Parliament House and the historic buildings at Battery Point
  • Catch a show, concert or event at the historic Theatre Royal, Australia’s oldest continually operating theatre, or at the Peacock Theatre in Salamanca Place.
  • See how fast you can make it down Kelly’s Steps at Salamanca Place, to the free standing door leading to the Batter Point Garden Studio.
  • If you like museums, check out the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, the Transport, Maritime and Allport museum, and the Narryna Heritage Museum.
  • On sunny days the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens are a must see, as are St David’s Park, Fitzroy Gardens and Waterworks Reserve.
  • Feast on Tasmanian gourmet delights in fine restaurants at Salamanca Place and Elizabeth St, North Hobart.
  • For a piece of new history, go along to Australia’s first casino at Wrest Point.
  • See what it is like to be an Antarctic explorer at either the Antarctic Adventure Centre in Salamanca Place or the Australian Antarctic Division in Kingston.
  • Hop on a city tour bus any time of day or evening for a bird’s eye view of the city and its beautiful surrounds.
  • If you like to walk, book into an escorted Historic Hobart walk, or take yourself with a self-guided walking map.
  • If you like to read, check out the Carnegie State Library in Argyle St, built with a gift from American philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.
  • Enjoy a round of golf on the challenging 18-hole public course at Rosny, or at the Royal Hobart, located just 20 minutes east of the city, or at Claremont, where you are bound to get distracted by the delectable smell of chocolate coming from the nearby Cadbury factory.

Hobart is a fun city, with good weather, plenty to do, great food, and fabulous places to stay.  Don’t forget to check out hotels in Sandy Bay which are an easy walk to the city.  Be sure to make Hobart your next holiday destination.

Image: benedan1 via Flickr

Disclaimer: This article was sponsored by Hotel Club

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