Salamanca Place is undoubtedly one of the liveliest parts of Hobart, bustling with activity thanks to the many cafes and restaurants, galleries and of course, the famous Salamanca Markets.
The Salamanca precinct is lined by dusty yellow sandstone warehouses, inspired by Georgian architectural style and built in the 1830s.
Now these buildings are home to many different kinds of shops and eateries, while they were once home to items like grain, whale oil, wool and apples – items the old Tasmania thrived upon.
The Salamanca Market
The Salamanca Market is a particularly popular place on Saturdays for both tourists and locals, operating between the hours of 8:30am to 3:00pm.
Here, there are endless goods and crafts to buy – you never know what treasures you'll find at the next stall.
You can walk to Salamanca Place from most locations in the city, as it's on the fringe of the central business district. If you ever find yourself lost on the way, just ask a friendly local to point you in the right direction – everyone knows where it is! It's also close to Hobart's waterfront area, so in the unlikely scenario you run out of things to do, you can always take a picturesque walk by the sea.
Speaking of which, there are over 300 stallholders at the markets each weekend. These include organic vegetables, fresh fruit, hot potatoes, and coffee and baking, and that's just the food!
You'll also find arts and crafts like hand-worked glass, paintings, Tasmanian timber, ceramics, fashion, handmade toys and more. In the background of all this, you'll hear buskers hard at work entertaining the crowd, perhaps playing a harp, strumming their guitar or crooning an old jazz song.
Nearby is a fine place for a picnic, with plenty of green lawn space and sheltered by swaying palm trees. It's a true delight, especially on a summer's day.
Or, sit by Salamanca Square's cool fountain, where buskers will still be out in force entertaining visitors.
While Salamanca Place and its markets are spectacular to visit at any time of year, Christmas is a particularly special time to take a peek at its offerings. That's because everyone really goes all out when it comes to Yuletide spirit, with decorations, blinking lights and all things red and green.
At the markets in the weeks leading up to Christmas, you might find some unique decorations to dangle off your Christmas tree, or you may simply enjoy wandering the lanes of stalls listening to the Christmas carols on the air.
The best of the rest
Salamanca Place isn't just lively in the daytime, either. At night the area is popular for its laid-back street-back restaurants and cafes, most of which are heated by braziers and can be covered over in the rain. That means you can enjoy the street even in the cooler months.
Bars and pubs are never far away, with plenty of choice for the young, or young-at-heart, eager to dance the night away.
Music is always a central focus even once the sun goes down, with all sorts of intimate jazzy gigs at bars to attend as well as the ever-creative buskers and street performers to watch outdoors.
Throughout the year special events sometimes spill into Salamanca, such as the annual Taste of Tasmania, which takes place over the New Year period, with some of the festivities taking place on the Salamanca lawns. Always keep an eye out for these kinds of festivities on Hobart's events calendar to make sure you don't miss out.
With endless activities year-round, why wouldn't you pay a visit to Salamanca Place?
Image Credit – Dale Baldwin