Hobart, Tasmania Australia 5-Day Itinerary Without A Car JetSettingFools.com

Hobart without a car: Our 5-day itinerary

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When we first starting planning our trip to Hobart, Tasmania, everything and everyone told us we would need a car. Our research made us wonder if we might feel trapped without our own wheels. Our quirk of not driving while sticking to a budget (meaning no expensive tours) has become an increasingly pesky impediment, but we are determined to make it work. And, in the end, it did! Not only is Hobart an extremely walkable city, there is ample public transportation that is affordable and efficient. Read our 5-day itinerary in Hobart without a car.

Hobart without a car means finding bus stops

Hobart without a car: Day One (Wednesday)

Mount Nelson

Hobart without a car: Mount Nelson by bus

Not nearly as tall as Mount Wellington, we thought the views of the bay and islands were still pretty spectacular. A signal station, built in 1811, still stands on the hill. Inside, there is a fun little history lesson on signal stations and their importance. We set off on a few of the walking tracks – and even caught sight of a couple of wallabies. The café looked inviting, but we had a bus to catch!

Getting There: Bus 58 from Franklin Square on Macquarie Street. It takes about a half hour and drops off at the Mount Nelson carpark. Click here for route details. 

 

Cascade Brewery 

Hobart without a car: Cascade Brewery

Cascade Brewery has been brewing beer since 1832 and is the oldest brewery in Australia that is still in operation. The iconic building has a mysterious look to it, which somewhat matches the uncanny history of ownership. Not too keen on a tour, we just wanted to pop into the tasting room. We got there just in time for last call, so a check of the hours of operation is suggested!

Getting There: Bus 44, 46 and 47 from Franklin Square on Macquarie Street. You will see the building before the stop, but let the driver know you’re going to the brewery and they’ll make sure to stop there.  Click here for route details. 

 

Lark Distillery Cellar Door 

Hobart without a car: Lark Distillery tasting

Lark Distillery was established in 1992, but uses time old traditions and Tasmanian ingredients to produce their whiskey. Tastings are available in full or half measure – and a range of other beverages are also offered.

Getting There: Walk! It’s at 14 Davey Street.

 

Fluke & Bruce 

Hobart without a car: Fluke and Bruce

Originally built in 1842 and named the Hobart Hotel, the corner pub has held many other names over the years. In 2014, it underwent a major renovation and re-opened as the Fluke & Bruce with warm and casual pub appeal and plenty of craft beer on tap. UPDATE: The pub now called Tom McHugo’s!

Getting There: Walk! It’s on the corner of Macquarie and Argyle.

 

Miyabi in North Hobart

Hobart without a car: Miyabi in North Hobart

Situated in North Hobart’s popular restaurant row, Miyabi is a little gem. The small, dimly lit and intimate dining room is accessed by a set of inconspicuous stairs. With affordable options on both the prix fixe and tapas-style menu, it was difficult to make a choice!

Getting There: It is about a 20 minute walk up Elizabeth Street from the waterfront, but it is uphill. Several bus lines service Hobart’s northern suburbs and take Elizabeth Street as the route out of town. Catch a bus from the Hobart City Stop, the north corner of Elizabeth and Macquarie, opposite Franklin Square. Ask the driver if they stop on Elizabeth in North Hobart.

 

Hobart without a car: Day Two (Thursday)

Mount Wellington

Hobart without a car: Mount Wellington

Mount Wellington stands at 1270 meters and looks stunning in the distance from the city. But, the better views are from the top looking down. We semi-challenged ourselves by taking the shuttle bus up and then hiking down to Fern Tree, but quickly learned just how challenging it can be to hike through snow! Read about our hike by clicking here.

Getting There: Public buses don’t go to the Mount Wellington summit, but the Hobart Shuttle Bus makes the trip 2-3 times a day. A round trip ticket is $30 and the one-way/hike down ticket is $20. If hiking down, in Fern Tree, catch bus 44, 45, 46, 47, 48 or 49 back to the city. On weekdays (except Friday), the last bus leaves at 5:52pm; make sure you have enough time to hike down to catch the bus…it’s a long walk back to Hobart! Click here for route details. 

 

Hobart without a car: Day Three (Friday)

Moorilla Estate

Hobart without a car: Moorilla Estate

Since we arrived in Australia, I’ve been trying to get to a winery using public transport and in Hobart it’s possible! The Moorilla Estate, a small, boutique winery founded in 1947, is located 15km north of Hobart on the banks of the Derwent River next to the MONA museum. The Moorilla winery tour was casual and entertaining, mostly due to our superb and enthusiastic tour guide. Before we even left the lobby, we had a glass of sparkling wine in our hands. As we toured different sections of the winery, a bottle of what was appropriate for the story was opened and shared. We poured directly from casks and barrels and finished off the tour with several more tastings in the tasting room.

*If visiting the MONA museum is also on your list of things to do in Hobart, consider the Winery Museum Lunch Transportation package

Getting There: Bus 42 to Austins Ferry at the Hobart City Stop. Click here for route details. 

 

Rektango at Salamanca Arts Center Courtyard 

Hobart without a car: Rektango

Rektango happens every Friday night from 5:30 to 7:30 as musicians take the stage in the courtyard of the Salamanca Arts Center. We could feel the energy the moment we walked in. The place was packed and the music was fantastic!

Getting There: Walk! Follow the signs on Salamanca Place.

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Hobart without a car: Day Four (Saturday)

Salamanca Market

Hobart without a car: Salamanca Market

On Saturdays from 8:30am to 3pm, Salamanca Place turns into Salamanca Market. Tents are set up along the entire stretch of the road offering fresh produce, homemade crafts and prepared food. And, in addition to all the sights and sounds of the busy market, there are also several street performers to keep the crowds entertained.

Getting There: Walk! Salamanca Place; you can’t miss it.

 

Battery Point Self-Guided Walking Tour

Hobart without a car: Battery Point Self-Guided Walking Tour

It’s lovely to stroll through the Battery Point neighborhood, but for history lovers, the added information provided in this Battery Point Self-Guided Walking Tour provides an interesting background. Along the way, we stopped at the famed Jackman & McRoss bakery for some mid-afternoon fuel.

Getting There: Walk! Start at Kelly’s Steps on Salamanca Place.

 

Hobart without a car: Day Five (Sunday)

Farm Gate Market 

Hobart without a car: Farm Gate Market

Much smaller than the Salamanca Market, the Farm Gate Market focuses on in-season produce and prepared food using fresh ingredients. The Farm Gate Market is held on Sundays from 8:30am to 1pm.

Getting There: Walk! It’s on Bathurst between Murray Street and Elizabeth Street.

 

Constitution Dock for views and Fish & Chips

Hobart without a car: Constitution Dock

Constitution Dock is Hobart’s harbor for fishing boats and yachts alike. Walk toward the IXL Jam Factory building and then turn around for a fabulous view of Mount Wellington. There are plenty of fish and chips options in the area, but we preferred the casual take-away style from the floating restaurants. The combination plate for two from Flippers was phenomenal.

Getting There: Walk! Start at the corner of Argyle Street and Davey Street.

 

Lady Nelson 

Hobart without a car: Lady Nelson

The Lady Nelson is a replica ship completely manned by volunteers. On our 90 minute trip, we motored upriver to the Tasman Bridge. Since they encourage participation, we helped let out the sails and even momentarily took the helm. As we sailed downriver, we had phenomenal views of Hobart and Mount Wellington. *Note: Lady Nelson only sails on Saturday and Sunday, twice each day.

Getting There: Walk! You’ll find it docked on the Pier at Constitution Dock next to Fish Frenzy and T42°

 

Tips for visiting Hobart without a car:

 

Where To Stay

During our visit to Hobart, we stayed in this awesome Airbnb Apartment on Elizabeth Street in North Hobart (which was about a 30 minute walk from the waterfront, but a convenient bust stop is right out the door). {Not already a member of Airbnb? Use this link to create an account and save money on your first stay!} We have found that staying in apartments is often less expensive than hotel rooms – with the added benefit of a kitchen and, usually, more space. Lisbon holiday apartments can also be searched on FlipKey (which is part of TripAdvisor) or on VRBO – Vacation Rentals By Owner

However, for those who prefer staying in traditional accommodations, there are many Hobart hotels to choose from in – or close to – the city center. Or, find a deal on a hotel room by bidding on Priceline

Budget travelers can search for Hobart Hostels. For a true bargain – and a unique experience – search for hosts on Couchsurfing, where travelers stay with locals for free

 

Getting There

From Australia’s mainland, Hobart can be reached by plane, which is our preferred method of getting anywhere (we are JetSetting Fools, after all!) and when we do need to purchase plane tickets, we start our search for the best deals on airline tickets on Skyscanner or Flight Hub.

As previously stated, we aren’t keen on driving abroad – and we don’t think it is necessary to have a car in Hobart. However, if exploring more of Tasmania, renting a car can save time and money (especially when traveling with more than two people) – and it allows for greater discovery. However, there are multi-day sightseeing tours that might work for your schedule and budget, like a 3-Day Hobart to Launceston tour that includes Port Arthur, Cradle Mountain and Freycinet National Park. 

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Before You Go

  • Hobart is a walkable city…but only if you have the right shoes! Don’t forget to pack a pair of lightweight and comfortable walking shoes for your trip. I (Sarah) have traveled with these shoes by Columbia, Skechers and Reef. Kris prefers wearing these shoes by Merrell and Sanuk.
  • We’re certain you’ll be snapping tons of photos during your trip. Rather than relying on your mobile phone to capture the sights, upgrade to an actual camera for higher quality photos (that can later be beautifully compiled into a travel photo book). We travel with a Canon Rebel (which takes amazing photos, but can be a bit clunky) and a Canon PowerShot ELPH (which takes beautiful pictures, is slim and lightweight – and the new models are wifi enabled so you can share your trip pics to social media in real time!).
  • It’s easy to get turned around in any foreign city! Make sure to have a good city map and/or guidebook before arriving.
  • We think travel insurance is essential! If you haven’t already obtained travel insurance for your trip, travel protected with World Nomads.

Want more travel planning tips? Head over to our Travel Planning page for our complete packing list and other travel resources!

 

We want to know: Have you visited Hobart without a car? What would you add to our list of things to do? Tell us in the comments!

 

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2 thoughts on “Hobart without a car: Our 5-day itinerary

  1. BBQboy

    We’re the same as you, just don’t feel comfortable driving in places we don’t know, especially Europe. Planning on going to South Africa in January and I’d like to drive a bit but Spanky doesn’t like it…so like you we’ll try to find some public transport alternatives.
    Some of the mountain views quite spectacular. Mount Nelson looks very pretty.
    Frank (bbqboy)

    • We got around Cape Town without a car alright, but we definitely missed some of the highlights of the area. Is that where you are headed? We were able to get out of the city to Simon’s Town to see the penguins, but we couldn’t go much further south onto the Cape Peninsula. The beaches – down to Hout Bay – have great bus service. But, to get to the wineries, we had to use the Hop On Hop Off tourist bus. What are your plans while you are there?

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