This weekend will see the Tall Ships event transform the Hobart Wharf. As we discovered for the Wooden Boat Festival, the precinct will be jumping. Of course, the summer months in Tasmania also provide an influx of tourists arriving by cruise ship. Today, we introduce the “quieter side” of the docks, a great place to visit regardless of the season.
Hobart Wharf: Action Stations
There’s no need to fear the Hobart Wharf area. It is a working port, but the tourism zones are nicely separated from dockside workers wielding cranes, forklifts and loaded containers. There’s also plenty of room for everyone during major events, so don’t be deterred by the prospect of a crowd. These images are from our own photo collection showing the state of play during a regular day in Tasmania.
We were actually quite impressed by the sight of the Hobart Wharf as seen by passengers arriving via cruise ship. We snapped these images during a tour aboard the Celebrity Solstice. Please just excuse the weird colour… the windows were heavily tinted with bright blue. As usual, the writer’s photos are included to support and enhance the text, as opposed to being overly fancy!
Macquarie Wharf No. 2
Speaking of fancy, that’s exactly what passengers will get with the brand new cruise ship terminal on the Hobart Wharf. Future arrivals (depending on the number of boats in town at once, we presume) will disembark via the polished concrete floors. They’ll be mere minutes from the hub of Franklin Wharf, the adjacent docks (Victoria and Constitution) and Elizabeth Street Pier.
Macquarie Wharf No. 2 Cruise Terminal is also equipped to accommodate large conferences and events on the waterfront. Think 1,000 guests mingling in the massive space, with 100 staff on hand to cater. There’s an additional outdoor section available as well, for the extra-gigantic festival, for example.
Notwithstanding the outstanding winter success story of Dark MOFO, many events and festivals in Hobart are held during peak tourism season: summer, with a shoulder period sneaking into both spring and autumn. That coincides with the welcome Tasmanian invasion by cruise ship passengers from October to April. Who gets precedence in this combination space of cruise ship terminal and conference venue, we do not know.
Princes Wharf No 1.
With the excitement of new and ongoing developments on the Hobart Wharf, some may gloss over the importance of Princes Wharf Shed No 1. Until very recently, Princes Wharf 1 was the “new kid on the block” having only re-opened for business in August 2011 after a serious revamp. Also a huge venue for hire, the word “shed” really doesn’t do it justice. Most famous as the principal setting for The Taste Festival, side doors open onto Castray Esplanade and face all the action of Salamanca Place. On Saturdays, the entire location comes alive with the bustle of Hobart’s iconic Salamanca Market.
Hobart Wharf at Work
L’Astrolabe is a research vessel based in Hobart. It makes regular voyages to transport personnel and supplies to Dumont D’Urville, a French research station in Antarctica.The vessel also carries passengers and cargo for the joint French and Italian station of Concordia, and conducts marine science missions and oceanographic cruises. It’s not unusual to see international ships come and go from the Hobart Wharf, still a true working port.
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