With its stunning harbor, mountains soaring in the backdrop, and enchanting old town, Hobart reels you in effortlessly. Tasmania's capital is full of history, cultural energy, and is close to pristine wilderness. What more could you ask for?
Also known as Mount Wellington, Kunanyi offers incredible views across one of Australia's most picturesque cities.
Parts of Hobart offer a portal into the Victorian age. Most of all, Battery Point is a delight, with its cottages, churches, and pubs.
Hobart has some fine museums. MONA is the highlight, with its provocative art collection, but it's rivaled by the Tasmanian Museum and the Narryna Heritage Museum.
Sports in Hobart revolve around cricket. Catch a game at the Bellerive Oval or learn about the sport at the Tasmanian Cricket Museum.
Why not use Hobart as a base and visit local attractions like the penal settlement at Port Arthur, the gorgeous Tasman Peninsula, or the trails around Lake St Clair?
Located on the southern edge of the harbor district, Salamanca Place is both a beautiful historic neighborhood and a thriving market center, and it's somewhere that very few tourists avoid when they head to Tasmania's capital. if you want to stock up on glassware, wood carvings, or craft fabrics, the Saturday open air market is a must-visit, but throughout the week Salamanca is home to a profusion of artists' galleries, sandstone warehouses from the early 19th century, and small stores that beg to be explored.
Situated on the Berriedale peninsula in an old vineyard, MONA is a jewel of a museum. Presented in a contemporary style and opened as recently as 2011, it's a vibrant gallery, with plenty of hands-on interactive exhibits, an amazing selection of very old aboriginal works, and cutting edge work by Hobart's current hotshots. But, above all, it's a gallery that seeks to provoke and stimulate visitors. Expect some shocking pieces, and thought-provoking imagery, and keep an open mind. If you do, you'll be enthralled by what's on offer.
For a change of scene and a burst of color and beauty, the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens can't be beaten. Located on Lower Domain Road to the north of the city center, the Gardens are full of variety. Tour collections of native plants like the Huon pine, more outlandish biomes like the Sub-Antarctic Plant House, or take it easy in the elegant Japanese Gardens, which are designed to dazzle in every season. And with gorgeous views of the Derwent River, it's an idyllic place to relax.
Tasmania and Hobart have a fascinating history, encompassing discovery, ancient aboriginal cultures, convict settlements, and the sad story of aboriginal extermination - and you can find out all about this past at the Tasmanian Museum. Standouts include exhibitions on extinct beasts like the Tasmanian tiger, and the epic voyages of 19th century whalers, but there are also short-term exhibitions that showcase anything from exotic trees to aboriginal print-making. In any case, you'll find something diverting and engaging whenever you visit the museum.
When you arrive in Hobart, you'll instantly be struck by its soaring neighbor: the 1,270 meter high Kunanyi (or Mount Wellington as the colonials called it). Aside from the miles of forested trails around the slopes, the main attraction at Kunanyi is the lookout, which is perched at the summit, some 14 miles from downtown Hobart. If you can make the trip (there's a road to the peak), the views are simply incredible. But, if you don't fancy the full ascent, there are other beauty spots like the 700 meter high Springs, or the Myrtle Forest in Collinsvale.
Tourism season in Hobart peaks between December and February, when the sun blazes down. Try March or April for mild weather and less competition for accommodation.
Hobart International Airport (HBA) has connections to Sydney and Melbourne. The Redline airport shuttle costs A$18, while taxis into town will cost around A$45.
If you are driving from Launceston take Highway 1 across Tasmania. From destinations further west, take the A10 instead.
Redline runs buses from most major Tasmanian towns straight into Hobart's CBD (Central Business District).
Leading accommodation options near Hobart harbor include the Henry Jones Art Hotel and the historic Salamanca Wharf Hotel.
Battery Point - built in the 19th century, Battery Point is a charming suburb with beautiful houses, churches, and fine dining options everywhere you turn.
Salamanca Place - Hobart's waterfront neighborhood, Salamanca hosts a lively market and plenty of bars, including the Glass House and the Whaler.
Hobart CBD - the Central Business District is Hobart's commercial hub. Head there to shop, find luxury hotels, and eat at fine restaurants like Templo.
Public buses will take you almost anywhere in Hobart. The best option is to pick up a Day Rover ticket in the morning for A$5.30.
Expect taxis in Hobart to charge a meter drop of A$3.60, followed by around A$3 per mile after that.
Car rental companies in Hobart include Thrifty, Budget, and AAA, and rates will be around A$13 per day.
If the Saturday market's in full swing, head to Salamanca's waterfront to pick up clothing and craft bargains. If not, try the Elizabeth Street Mall to explore its wide range of boutiques and chain stores.
Grocery stores in Hobart include Woolworths and Macquarie, and you can expect to spend around A$4.70 on 12 eggs.
Seafood is Hobart's favorite cuisine. Some of the finest places to try it include the Drunken Admiral, which serves up mammoth platters; the Ball & Chain Grill; and Cultura, an Italian cafe restaurant in the CBD. Meals should come to around A$30-35 per head.