Located just a 10-minute drive outside of Hobart, Kangaroo Bluff Historic Site is an unmissable destination for people who have a genuine love of history.
The gun emplacement and fort at Bellerive were built by the Public Works Department in 1800 for a cost of about $16,300 in today’s money.
It was designed to protect Hobart Town from enemy vessels and shelling, as well as support the Queens Battery and the site at the aptly named Battery Point.
And while it still unclear why locals were keen to build this defence base, it is widely thought that Russian warships sighted in the River Derwent in 1873 were a motivating factor.
In 1884 the first gun shot was fired and since then the site has undergo a number of transformations.
The artillery site was manned up until the 1920s, and in the 1930s the Commonwealth took over the land and turned Kangaroo Bluff into a public park.
But it wasn’t until the 1970s that the military support base was recognised as a Historic Site.
Visitors to the site are welcome to explore the gun emplacement and walk alongside the nearby moat for a true taste of Tasmania’s early military history. The view across to the city and Mt Wellington is one which locals know well … now you know too! With other vistas straight down the harbour toward the Iron pot, and across to Mt Nelson it is a great ‘first part of the day’ excursion out of town on the way to the village of Bellerive, or even Richmond.
Adjacent is another piece of history – The Rosny Barn, dating from around 1818, when Richard Morgan, an ex Norfolk Island convict farmed on what is now part of the Public Golf Course. The farm house is now a small museum with the barn used as a performance space and Market area for the community.