Convicts, maritime adventures and stately colonial towns – Tasmania's history is colourful and exciting, leaving a tangible imprint on the state today.
Exploring the island's historical attractions is a must-do for locals and visitors alike, as there is so much to learn and enjoy. Start your journey down history lane at these historical attractions.
1. Salamanca Place and Battery Point
Hobart is home to some of the most beautiful historic sandstone buildings in Australia, and none are finer than the waterfront warehouses that line Salamanca Place.
A stroll around the area will give you glorious views of the architecture. After walking around the waterfront, make your way behind Salamanca to the suburb of Battery Point, one of the finest examples of colonial-era buildings in Australia. Grand homes sit alongside worker's cottages, each one telling a story of Tasmania's past.
2. Port Arthur Historic Site
A former convict settlement, the Port Arthur Historic Site is one of the most significant heritage sites in Tasmania. A World Heritage property, it consists of remnant penal sites that still echo the colonial expansion and convict labour of the 18th and 19th centuries. There are 30 convict-built structures as well as ruins to explore.
Port Arthur also happens to be located in a superbly beautiful natural setting on the Tasman Peninsula, 100 kilometres south east of Hobart.
3. Woolmers estate
Dating back to the early 1800s, Woolmers estate is an outstanding example of a pioneer farm. It is another of Tasmania's World Heritage Convict Sites and is well worth a visit, as it gives a glimpse of life on a colonial pastoral estate.
The original buildings still stand, with the blacksmith's shop, stables and gardener's cottage all adding to the rich architectural heritage.
4. Cascades Female Factory
The grim-sounding Cascades Female Factory offers a fascinating look at what life was like for women convicts. Around 25,000 female convicts were sent to Australia. This was less than 20 percent of the population, but they played an important role in the development of the colonies.
5. Theatre Royal
Combine history with modern entertainment with a visit to the Theatre Royal in Hobart. This is Australia's oldest working theatre and stepping inside is a beautiful experience. You can take a tour to discover the secrets of the gilded mouldings and central dome, as well as getting a peek backstage, or simply book tickets to one of the vibrant and exciting shows.
The theatre is dedicated to Tasmanian companies and stories for a truly local experience.
Your exploration of Tasmania won't be complete without a stop at Mood Food – we serve up the kind of meals that make history.