I spent a weekend in Hobart, Australia’s smallest and most historic capital city. Three things to do were high on my to-do list: a wilderness walk, tucking into local produce and a visit to Salamanca Market.
This historic market is in Salamanca, down by Hobart’s popular waterfront precinct. The warehouse and storage area has been there since the 1830s. It’s celebrating its 40th birthday this year as a tourist attraction – the state’s most popular.
The market is a celebration of Tasmania’s culture, artisans, musicians and producers. It brings the waterfront alive with colours, sounds and aromas every Saturday. Locals and tourists wander through beautiful Georgian sandstone buildings and visit 300 stalls selling everything from hand-made pieces to delicious cheeses.
When you’ve worked up an appetite, there is no end of places to enjoy a meal.
I ducked around a corner to Salamanca Place and settled on Smolt. It offers modern Australian dining with Italian and Spanish influences. You can have a quick tapas, pizza or enjoy a full meal. Delicious breads, pizzas and many dishes are made from scratch in their kitchen each day. Think about tasting their locally grown Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir made from grapes of the Coal Valley.
For somewhere fantastic to stay, you just can’t go past the Henry Jones Art Hotel which comes with a fascinating history.
Henry Jones was born in 1862 and when he was 12 began work in Peacock’s jam factory, pasting labels on tins for 10 hours a day, 6 days a week. From his humble beginnings, Henry Jones’ entrepreneurial talents saw him rise to fame and fortune over five continents with interests in jam, fruit, timber, mining and shipping. It would be hard to find a kitchen table in Australia which has never held a tin or jar of IXL jam, the clever brand name stemming from Henry’s motto – “I excel in all the products I make”.
Now an elegant three storey, 56 room hotel, rooms are a mix of old and new. Most have harbour views while the rest look over the glass and timber atrium. There are soaring timber ceilings and the beautiful, original staircase has been carefully preserved.
Leading and emerging Tasmanian artists are invited to show their works which may be purchased.
The Jam Packed Café in the atrium overlooks Hobart’s waterfront. A café style menu is full of Tasmania’s specialities.
The IXL Long Bar is the place to meet for a drink. It has an amusing array of cans from the jam-making era, bound to bring back many memories.
Salamanca on Hobart’s waterfront.
WHAT TO WEAR
Layers, this is Tassie m’darling.
Equally fantastic in the winter months, try the warm ‘gluvine’ wine from the local pubs.
This is an easy linking point to MONA and day trips on the water.
Head to The City of Hobart’s website to read up more about Salamanca Markets.