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Historical Buildings

In the city centre, Macquarie Street and Davey Street together house almost sixty National Trust-listed buildings. Walk from City Hall up Macquarie Street to Harrington Street, down towards Salamanca Place and back along Davey Street to see them all. These important buildings were constructed between 1808 (the Commissariat store) and the late 1800s and are not only intrinsically beautiful, but offer an intriguing vignette into life in the new colony.

Salamanca Place and Constitution Dock

Just by the water at Sullivan's Cove, the fine Georgian sandstone buildings of Salamanca Place and Constitution Dock look out over the boat-filled harbour and provide a wonderful atmosphere for diners, shoppers and walkers. These buildings were built between 1830-1850 and, although they were built as warehouses, it's a testament to the designers of the times that they form a cohesive streetscape relating so well to the dock. On Saturday mornings Salamanca Place becomes a huge outdoor market selling stunning local crafts, artwork and fresh produce. For a detailed look at these historic sites through the eyes of a local expert, take one of the Hobart Historic Tours (03) 6230 8233.

Battery Point

This area of the city was first settled at the beginning of the city's European history in 1804, but not named until 1818 when a battery of guns was mounted on the headland. Battery Point avoided the development booms of other cities to maintain its Colonial, Georgian and Victorian cottages and houses. It's not just the odd house that has been restored, but whole streets, giving it an historic integrity rare in Australia. Particularly quaint is Arthur's Circus. The nicest thing about Battery Point is that it is still a real place where people live. Walk up Kelly's steps from Salamanca Place and be surprised at the sheer charm of it all, or take the National Trust Heritage Walk Tour and see it more thoroughly (03 6223 7570).

St George's Church

Built between 1836-38 with the tower, designed by James Blackburn, being added in 1847. With its elegant decorative work and impressive Doric portico, it is the regarded as the best example of a Greek Revival church in Australia. Blackburn's tower was inspired by the Tower of the Winds in Athens, and was intended by Blackburn (a pardoned convict and later City Surveyor of Melbourne) as a landmark for sailors. So strong is the church's connection with mariners, sailors, shipwrights, seamen, fishermen and customs agents that is is known as The Mariners' Church and holds a dedicated annual Mariners' Service near the anniversary of Trafalgar Day (21st October). Take the Historic Churches WalkingTour (Wednesdays) to see this and Hobart's other historic churches (03) 6231 4033.

Other buildings of particular historical interest in Hobart are:

  • 1808-10 – the Commissariat Store, 40 Macquarie Street
  • 1814 – Angelsea Barracks, Davey Street, including:
    • 1814 – the Officers Quarters
    • 1818 – the Hospital
    • 1824 – the Old Drill Hall
    • 1838 – the Guard House
  • 1823-24 – the Old Court House in Murray Street, which incorporates:
    • 1859-64 – theTreasury Offices and
    • 1884 – the Deeds Office
  • 1824 – the Bond Store, behind the Commissariat
  • 1837 – the Theatre Royal, Campbell Street – Australia's oldest theatre
  • 1840 – St Joseph's Church, Macquarie Street
  • 1846 – the Tasmanian Club, Macquarie Street
  • 1863 – the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
  • 1864 – the old Town Hall, complete with a stunning Georgian ballroom
  • the Royal Tennis Club
  • Parliament House, next to St David's Park in Davey Street – first used in 1855
  • Customs House Hotel, Murray Street – first licensed in 1844
  • Hobart’s waterfront – the Old Wharf, Sullivans Cove, the Gasworks, Constitution Dock and Victoria Dock

For all these and other parts of Hobart, contact the relevant tour organisers:

  • National Trust Heritage Walk Tour (03) 6223 7570
  • Historic Churches WalkingTour (Wednesdays) (03) 6231 4033
  • Hobart Historic Tours (03) 6230 8233, including Historic Dinner Tour, Historic Pub Tour, Historic Walk Tour and Breakfast Walks Tour
  • Sandy Bay Historical Walk (03) 6223 6703
  • Historic Pub Tour, including four pubs and a drink in each (03) 6255 4806
  • Hobart Walking Tours 0413 383207

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