Travel Postcard: 48 Hours in Hobart, Australia

Fri Sep 9, 2011 6:25am EDT
 
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By Pauline Askin

HOBART, Australia (Reuters) - Flanked by mountains and the sea, Hobart is Australia's most southern city. In late December through early January each year it becomes a "maritime Mecca," with yachts sailing across the finish line in the grueling Sydney to Hobart race.

The abundance of sailors converging on the city then resembles its early days of white settlement when Hobart, the capital of Tasmania, was a bustling whaling port and former penal colony.

Hobart, a 70-minute flight from Melbourne, is also a base for Antarctic expeditions engaging in research from the deep south, and it's not unusual to see these massive research vessels moored along the quay wall.

Reuters correspondents with local knowledge help visitors get the most out of a 48-hour visit.

FRIDAY

5 p.m. Check into one of Hobart's newest hotels, The Henry Jones Art Hotel, located on 22 Hunter Street, which offers waterfront and mountain views. www.thehenryjones.com

Then head out to soak up the waterfront ambience and stroll over to The Customs House Hotel, just five minutes away. Australia's oldest brewery is in Hobart, so enjoy a drop of local Cascade beer before dinner. www.customshousehotel.com

8 p.m Nearby is Muir's Upper Deck restaurant. Nestled between Victoria and Constitution Docks, the establishment owns its own fishing fleet, guaranteeing a fresh catch daily. www.upperdeck.com.au   Continued...

 
<p>Fishing boats and pleasure crafts are seen docked at Constitution Dock in Hobart August 28, 2011. REUTERS/Martin Passingham</p>