One of the most popular search terms for our website is Things to Do in Tasmania with Kids. We like to give you what you’re looking for, so it must be time to compile another top ten list.
We published a similar article back in December 2011: Things to Do in Tasmania with Kids. That article is still one of our most popular with Internet searchers. Another more recent article called What’s on For Kids has also been widely read. So we thought it would be a snap to gather together a list from the places we’ve been in 2012. There was just one problem with that idea: too many stories to choose from!
As you may know, we’re not just a directory. We only feature places we’ve actually been to in person, so we can give readers an honest, first-hand account. The same applies here, but we still had way too many options to include in a single article.
So we’ve resolved to publish several more compilation articles in the niche of Things to do in Tasmania with kids. And when I say “kids” I don’t just mean little tackers. There will be something for everyone, including teenagers and the more-mature-in age-but-young-at-heart kind of kids!
Firstly, because we did have too many articles to include in one go, we had to choose a way to divide them. Should we group them together in History, Eat and Drink, Transport… or any other myriad of possible categories. Or should we go for regions and towns? We’ve decided to give the latter a try and hope it suits everyone.
Back in April 2011, we published another very popular article called Things to Do in Launceston. So to even up the score, we’ll start this series with a top ten list for Hobart and then work our way around. We hope that sounds fair?
1. Theatre Royal
We’re not exactly the number one patrons of the theatre in Hobart. In fact, we haven’t been to a show since the Terrapin Puppet Theatre performance of The Gatekeeper. You might know how it is… busy lives, young kids: school and sport and work commitments; and need we mention babysitters? But browsing the program for Season 2013 at Theatre Royal reveals plenty of shows that are actually family friendly and even designed with kids in mind.
2. Cascade Gardens
How’s the serenity? That’s how Dale Kerrigan described his ideal family holiday destination in the 1997 movie “The Castle”. Well Dale, Think Tasmania has found another lovely place for a family to sit back and embrace the serenity: the Cascade Gardens. At the foothills of Mount Wellington is the very well known, iconic Tasmanian Cascade Brewery. But did you also know of the beautiful Cascade Gardens, with BBQ facilities, a lovely playground, a running creek and sweeping lush lawns set in a woodland setting? All this, and less than 5kms from Hobart.
3. Rivulet Cafe
Picture this: a café by a river in a quiet, bush-land setting. Plenty of parking; no fighting with traffic; modern facilities; fully fenced playground; great food & coffee. And service from the most welcoming, happy people. Well we’ve found it. The Rivulet Cafe is set at the bottom end of Anglesea Street in South Hobart (over the Hobart Rivulet). It’s nestled into the hills that surround it and it’s such a surprise!
4. Adventure Cruise
Joining a full-day tour with Bruny Island Cruises means boarding a bus at the Hobart waterfront. Immediately, you’re on a journey rather than just a drive. Rob Pennicott’s staff are all amazing. Our driver was upbeat and knowledgeable, pointing out features in Hobart like the Shipwright’s Arms Hotel as we drove through Battery Point; then Wrest Point Casino in Sandy Bay.
The three-hour cruise itself is not for the faint-hearted and definitely earns the adventure tag. Passengers will experience wildlife, caves and ocean waters and then enjoy a hearty lunch before returning to Hobart.
5. Female Factory
The Cascades Female Factory is situated in South Hobart on Degraves Street close to the Cascade Brewery about 4km from the city. This World Heritage listed site is well worth a visit on a fine day. Tours run every day at scheduled times and you can choose from: “Her Story”, Heritage Tour and “Tea with Matron”. We like to consider something to suit everyone, and this option is perfect for families looking for an interesting taste of history when considering things to do in Tasmania with kids.
6. Botanical Gardens
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “Earth laughs in flowers”. With this in mind, the Hobart Botanical Gardens are having a good giggle! The gardens are situated in Hobart and surely a must see when in Tasmania. Entrance to the gardens is free; they only ask for gold coin donations. You will be happy to donate a coin once you have indulged in the fresh air, beautiful scenery and enjoyed a relaxing time. On warmer days you could grab a picnic blanket and head to the gardens for some fun family time.
7. Tasmanian Devils
Capturing Tasmanian Devil photos seems to be a firm family favourite. There’s plenty of options around the state for visitors to get up close and personal with the iconic creatures. Brighton is an outer suburb to the north of Hobart, and where you’ll find Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary. Once there, you’ll capture photos of the Tassie Devils and the kids can meet wombats, kangaroos, koalas, birds and other friendly Tasmanian animals.
8. Lady Nelson
A modern replica of the Lady Nelson built in the late 1980s commemorates a part of Tasmanian history with graceful dignity. She now operates as a sail training ship crewed by volunteer workers based at Hobart. During summer on most weekends, the Lady Nelson takes passengers for a sail on the Derwent River. For the younger folk there are organised sessions providing an exciting opportunity to join the crew aloft and learn how to handle sails.
9. Wild Thing
Gavin and the kids took a ride with Wild Thing Adventures. When they returned from the adrenalin-fuelled trip, they were overflowing with enthusiasm. Awesome was one word bandied around quite freely! While they were enjoying their one-hour cruise, I bought a hot chocolate at a nearby restaurant and took in the sights and sounds of the waterfront as people prepared for the Taste Festival and the Sydney to Hobart yacht race.
10. Hobart Surrounds
Lonely Planet listed Hobart as one of the top 10 places to visit in 2013. Anelda had the pleasure of showing her parents, who were first-time visitors around, and was very proud to show them all that Tasmania has to offer, but especially Hobart and surrounds. She couldn’t resist sharing this with all the readers of Think Tasmania. The places she chose for her article all provide unique and interesting views and include things to do in Tasmania with kids and we can definitely recommend the Taroona Shot Tower as a memorable experience.
And there you have the first in what will be a series of articles about things to do in Tasmania with kids. Of course, if you own a business (or know of one) that you’d like to see featured in our articles, we’d be happy to hear from you… whether your clients are five or potentially 55! Regardless of where you’re located in the state too. Just contact Think Tasmania and we’ll make it happen.
Thanks to the great team we have at Think Tasmania for the contribution of articles and stunning photos that have been included in this compilation.
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