Hobart is the capital of Australia's island state of Tasmania, which sits on the River Derwent and offers plenty of wonderful destinations that you can visit with your kids. From museums, parks, beautiful beaches, parks, geographical locations, boat cruises and plenty of other attractions, you’ll have a blast with your kids when you take them to visit. With so many wonders to discover, you’ll want to make sure you pull together a great list of attractions when you come to visit.
Visit beautiful beaches in Hobart with the kids
1. Splash away at Sandy Bay Long Beach
Sandy Bay Long Beach is a great beach to visit with kids, and they’re sure to have a joyous time. With beautiful, sandy beaches and clear waters, it’s a great spot to sit back and relax and maybe even have a picnic. Your kids will have fun splashing around in this laid-back environment, building sandcastles, and if they are older, they might be able to go snorkelling too. While you’re watching your kids have their fill of fun, you’ll be able to sit back and sunbathe and read a book while listening to the calming water. Since it’s not a huge tourist spot, there’s a good chance that you’ll have the beach to yourselves, and you can even watch the sunset to end the day.
2. Visit Kingston
Kingston is another place to visit if your kids love swimming and building sandcastles on the beach. In addition to having fun splashing around, Kingston is also a town and has plenty of things to do besides swimming and lounging on the beach. Some attractions include having a scenic walk at Picket Hill Track, having fun playing at Tas Laser Skirmish, hopping around in bouncing houses at Kidz Bizzzz, racing the tracks at Hyperdrive Kart Racing. If they’re older, they can also play a round of golf at Kingston Beach Golf Club. With so many attractions, there are tons of things to do for various age groups. You can either start or finish at the beach then venture into the town to explore.
Visit the many attractions in Tasman Peninsula with the kids
3. Step back into time at Port Arthur
Port Arthur is listed by World Heritage as the best-preserved convict site in Australia, meaning you can easily step back into time when you visit. While maybe not the most suitable for younger kids, older kids interested in history will enjoy learning more about this infamous site. There are two tours: the Commandant's Tour and the Escape From Port Arthur Tour. In the Commandant's Tour, you’ll walk through and see sights such as the Penitentiary, the Separate Prison and the Convict Church. While you’re strolling along, your tour guide will be able to clue in on the people who used to live, work and were imprisoned here. For a more immersive tour that might better appeal to kids, there’s also the Escape From Port Arthur Tour which features staff members portraying the brave men and women that sought to escape from Port Arthur.
4. Sailing on the Tasman island boat cruise
Tasman island boat cruise is a 3 hour-long cruise that’ll be able to give your kids an impressive overview of the Tasman Peninsula. In this cruise, your kids will enjoy zooming around on an accelerating speedboat while catching glimpses of the coastline’s rocky cliffs, eroded rock formations and plenty of caves. Especially if you’re on a shorter timeframe and cannot extensively investigate the beauty of the Tasman Peninsula, this experience will offer a great overview. As a bonus, depending upon the season you take the trip with your kids, you might even be able to spot wildlife such as dolphins, sun-bathing seals, and flocks of seabirds.
5. Explore The Tasman Arch and Devil’s Kitchen
The Tasman Arch and Devil’s Kitchen is another attraction to visit when you’re in the Tasman Peninsula. The Tasman Arch is an impressive arch that has been carved out by the sea after millions of years and is a surefire way to not only expose your kids to the wonders of geology but also spark their imaginations, making them frolic wild. After you’re done visiting and snapping pictures, you’ll want to make sure to take the walking track back around the arch so you can spot some panoramic views of the coastline. From here, it’s only then a short distance of a hundred meters to the Devil’s Kitchen. At the Devil’s Kitchen, your kids will be able to gaze deeply down into the gorge and hear the fearsome sound of powerful waves thrashing back and forth below.
Explore museums in Hobart with the kids
6. Walk through the subterranean museum of MONA
MONA (Museum of Old and New Arts) is accessible by a spiral staircase which is sure to capture your kids’ interests before they even look at any of the exhibitions. While MONA has exhibits that are mostly for adults, there’s still plenty that kids can see, and a staff member can help you pinpoint them. These exhibits include the Madonna Room, which features a white box with beanbags and TVs showcasing wannabe Madonna fans singing along to her music; Snake, which is a Sidney Nolan art piece composed of a snake comprised out of 1620 images, spanning 5.6 metres tall and 44 metres wide, and would be the same size as an Olympic size swimming pool; Bit.Fall, which controls falling streams and drips of water, creating words and images only visible for seconds; and an outdoor trampoline that creates music while your little ones jump about.
7. Discover wonderful family activities at The Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery
TMAG is a lighter themed museum than MONA and is equipped with plenty of fun family activities, especially for younger kids. The first highlight is the monthly hosted Family Days which focuses primarily on enriching the imagination and creativity of children ages three to eight with a wide roster of various events and programs. Another highlight is The Art and Museum Carts which provides gallery-based activities. At Museum Toolkit, kids ages 4 to 7 will pick their own personalized toolkit from the Visitor Information desk, guiding them to different discoveries in the museum. With an emphasis on creating an immersive and interactive experience, even kids who sigh, thinking of museums as boring places to visit, are sure to have a lot of fun.
8. Exploration at The Mawson’s Hut Replica Museum
The Mawson’s Hut Replica Museum can further enhance your kids’ imagination as well as teaching them vital history. Here, your kids can learn about the famous South Australian Geologist Sir Douglas Mawson, who led a scientific expedition from Hobart to charter the Antarctic coastline. In addition to learning more about the man himself, your kids will also learn about the ocean between Australia and Antarctica and Macquarie Island. While the island is on the smaller side, it’s still a wonderful experience and can be sandwiched between other activities for the day.
Visiting an abundance of wildlife
9. Feeding kangaroos at Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary
Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary is an excellent spot to visit if your kids are interested in making some new furry friends. Here your kids will be able to get up close and personal with animals, who many are endangered. Since it’s not a zoo, the sanctuary offers a more interactive experience, and when you buy a day pass, not only will you be offered a tour through the facility, but you’ll also be gifted a free bag of food to feed kangaroos. Of course, kangaroos aren’t the only animals here. You can expect to meet wombats, koalas, Tasmanian devils, echidnas, super gliders and quolls. You can even arrange private tours for a more personal experience, and you can also visit at night as well.
10. Breathing in the fresh air at Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens
Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens is another great spot to visit which covers an area of approximately 14 hectares. With various unique collections of different gardens, including a Japanese garden section and Australia’s only Subantarctic Plant House, your kids will be in awe as they gaze at the gardens’ natural beauty. Whether you want to have a quick stroll or are interested in a 50-minute tour, this spot is a great place to explore. Your kids will also be able to do some birdwatching, and there’s a cafe that you can stop by to refuel as well as a speciality shop selling homeware, gifts, books and jewellery.
Eating many delicious food with your kids in Hobart
11. Indulging in local treats at Salamanca Markets
Salamanca Markets is a great place to refuel and fill your bellies in between visiting the many attractions of Hobart. This wonderful and delicious market has over 300 stalls with Tamasinan fresh produce, handmade crafts and gifts and plenty of delicious cooked and baked foods. Some foods include curried scallop pie and myrtle salmon sausages. Whether you’re dropping by for a quick pit stop or find yourself spending the whole day at the market, you’ll be glad you visited.
12. Visiting the Farm Gate Market
Farm Gate Market is another local market that’s definitely worth the visit. Although only open on Sundays, if you’re able to squeeze this stop in your trip, you and your kids will be glad. For fresh, locally sourced produce, this market has you covered. Whether you want to pick up a few treats or do some shopping for food you can cook at home as you’re relaxing for a day or two on your travels, Farm Gate Market is a sure bet. Additionally, the market comprises a lively community, and when you visit, you’ll often see buskers and street performers, which is sure to leave your kids with wonderful memories to cherish.