Hobart’s residents will agree the city has undergone something of a renaissance over the past decade. The arrival of the Museum of Old and New Art has boosted the number of tourists to the area and a burgeoning wine industry in the Coal River Valley gives visitors an experience of what life is like away from the city – while only being a 20-minute drive down the road.
But this is just a taste of what’s to come in Tasmania. Here’s a guide on how to make the most of 24 hours Hobart.
Like in mainland Australia, brunch is a bit of a religion in Hobart. Head to one of the cafés near the harbour for coffee with a view, or if it’s a Saturday follow the crowds to Salamanca Market where it’s best to grab breakfast to go while exploring the huge range of local food, gifts, jewellery and much more.
If the crowds of a busy market don’t appeal, then head around the corner from Salamanca Market and up a short but steep hill to Battery Point. This quaint suburb also features some of the city’s most historic buildings, and from the very top of the hill fantastic views of the harbour. As a reward for making it to the summit, visit Jackman & McRoss – its display of breads, cakes and patisserie will tempt every appetite. For an even more impressive view, head to the top of kunanyi / Mount Wellington, which is an easy and scenic 30-minute drive from the city.
Even a fleeting visit to Hobart wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). The arrival of MONA has caused something of a stir in the city – it is truly an art museum like no other and visitors can expect to be amazed and confused in equal measure. Even those who aren’t too keen on art will be able to appreciate the incredible architecture and design of the place.
Hop on one of the two camouflaged ferries and head up the River Derwent to visit the museum, making sure to nab a window seat to see the impressive building loom into view. Staff say you need at least three hours in the MONA, but if it all gets a bit much then there is a handy winery just next door. Taste Moorilla’s excellent selection of wines while overlooking the rolling hills beyond the valley and try to remember that the MONA is not designed to be taken that seriously.
A day of touring works up quite an appetite, and fortunately Hobart’s restaurant scene does not disappoint. While the majority of the city goes to sleep around 5pm, the harbour comes to life in the evening. Head to Elizabeth Street Pier for fish and chips next to the water, and for dessert Van Diemens Land Creamery has an inventive range of ice creams and sorbets – find its shop moored in the dock.
For a more upmarket experience, Aloft serves an unusual and delicious tasting menu with Asian influences on the top floor of Brooke Street Pier, where the MONA ferry leaves from, with beautiful views of the ocean. Dier Makr in town is hidden behind a wine bar and only has two sittings for dinner, so book well in advance. Don’t expect to be handed a menu, dishes will suddenly appear at the table, and make sure to peruse its impressive selection of wine – housed in a separate glass room inside the restaurant.