Tasmania’s state capital Hobart is a pleasant if mostly unspectacular place (other than a few things at the end of this post), particularly strong on heritage and it’s connection with Antarctica, worth exploring for a few days. It felt like a larger version of Dunedin, with a similar natural setting, climate and relative absence of modern buildings.dsc02294

Mawson’s Huts Replica Museum
Absolutely fascinating replica of Mawson’s Huts on Antarctica with the visitor fees going toward maintaining the originals. Amazing how 18 men survived in the windiest spot on the planet with little heating or any personal space for several years. Would love to see similar replica’s of Scott and Shackleton’s Huts.dsc01286-mawsons-huts dsc01292 dsc01301

Salamanca Market
Famous Saturday morning markets, great spot to buy an Australasian necessity, a sun hat!dsc01252-salamanca-market

The Domain and Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens
Hobart has surprisingly few green spaces near the city centre (particularly compared with other Australian state capitals) but does have the sizeable Domain, home to the war memorial, an abandoned zoo, Soldiers Memorial Avenue and the Botanic Gardens. The gardens aren’t huge but nicely laid out, particularly the conservatory, Japanese garden and the unusual sub-Antarctic greenhouse, kept at 4C, refreshing!dsc01329 dsc01341 dsc01400 dsc01348 dsc01349 dsc01352 dsc01383 dsc01381 dsc01372 dsc01358 dsc01361

Tasmanian Museum and Arts Gallery
A beautifully laid out museum, with an eclectic collection, my favourite being the section on Antarctica and the Southern Oceans (which oddly I didn’t take any photos of!).dsc01309-tasmanian-museum dsc01473 dsc01474 dsc01479dsc01423dsc01424 dsc01480

The Tench (Penitentiary Chapel Historic Site)
Very informative one and a half hour guided tours take you around the remains of the once sizeable penitentiary, where the holding cells and courts were still in use up until 1975!dsc01443 dsc01463 dsc01465

Narryna House and Markree House
Owned by the Tasmanian Museum these are well preserved examples of an 1840s Georgian style villa and a 1920s arts and crafts inspired house, only five minutes walk from each other.dsc01127 dsc01519 dsc01499

The Waterfont
Less well connected to the sea than I was expecting, but there are a number of restaurant and shop filled wharves and marinas along the waterfront.dsc01265 dsc01283

Mt Nelson lookout
An easy drive or a somewhat tougher than expected 12km run from where I was staying up to the 352m high summit of Mt Nelson provided good views of the bay, though the city centre was somewhat hidden. Running back down through the bush, coming across wallabies, was the highlight.dsc01593 dsc01599

Mt Wellington
For better views, though less running friendly (though there is a half marathon from town to the summit), the 1,271m high Mt Wellington is hard to beat. Tricky light but you get the idea of Hobart, a relatively small population (220,000 people) spread over a vast area. Makes Auckland look compact!dsc01325-mt-wellingtondsc02118 dsc02132 dsc02171 dsc02115 dsc02141 dsc02153

Tasman Peninsula and Port Arthur
For a great day trip it is hard to beat a morning on a boat exploring the beautiful Tasman Peninsula and an afternoon exploring the huge former British penal colony at Port Arthur. Here’s a few photos but there’s so much to cover expect a couple of separate posts on them individually.dsc01736 dsc01778 dsc01813 dsc01918

MONA (Museum of Old and New Art)
One of the most fascinating, challenging, and exhausting art galleries I’ve ever visited, MONA is understandably one of the most popular attractions in Tasmania, putting Hobart on the international art map. It’s deliberately unlike most art galleries, with no white washed walls, instead there is a labyrinth like dark underground complex. There is no signage by artworks, instead you use an iPhone with headphones in a far more involving and effective manner than the usual enter a number and hear a short audio clip. This amount of information made it more tiring than usual gallery wandering so though, allow plenty of time and energy to explore.dsc02177 dsc02186 dsc02193 dsc02197 dsc02199 dsc02207 dsc02212 dsc02222 dsc02223 dsc02230 dsc02242 dsc02245 dsc02248 dsc02258 dsc02265 dsc02293 dsc02311

Author: jontycrane

7 thoughts on “Hobart

  1. Your post brought back some fond memories of Hobart. I haven’t yet visited GONA so your tips are helpful. Will have to try to get back to Tassie soon. Your photos are great. Thanks for posting.

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