Financial Counselling Australia 2018 conference is being held at the Grand Chancellor Hotel in Hobart, Tasmania

Exploring on your own

Stay Another Day (or 2)

Things to do in Hobart and Surroundings

Hobart is a compact city with so many wonderful things to do and see. Use the opportunity to explore  a little, as life is short.  They certainly eat and drink the good stuff in Tassie, and there seem to be lots of alcohol, brewery, distillery tours, foodie tours and more. Check out TripAdvisor – ‘What’s there to do in Hobart?’

Hobart Walking Tours – we tried this out when we were checking out Hobart, and it is great. Robyn is a social historian and made this walking history tour fascinating.  The building opposite the hotel is built by convicts who built their individual stamps into their chiselled blocks. We could have been colonised by the French and had bagettes, wine and French cheese instead of pies and ale.

Robyn is offering our delegates a 20% discount off any of her regular tours.  Book online directly and use the 20% discount code: FCA2018. See the website or email Robyn.

MONA (Museum of Old and New Art) – The ferry leaves from the pier right near the hotel (2 mins walk). Perhaps book the ferry before you leave home to make sure you get on it. It's an awesome way to approach the museum (but this way of entry has stairs that will harden your gluts.. MONA has a striking art collection, which excites many and offends some. Find out why this controversial gallery has put Hobart on the international art map. To enter the museum you enter a glass lift that goes down into the bowels of the earth, and the adventure begins. You can tell, I'm excited.  Drive, cycle, bus or take the ferry to an unforgettable experience. Click here to learn more.

Salamanca Market – We are right around the corner, well 5 minute walk from the conference hotel. The famous Saturday market is one of the quintessential Hobart experiences.  Located at near the waterfront at Salamanca Place. Click here to learn more. It's quaint. It's arty, and only open on a Saturday.

Battery Point – is where the Salamanca market starts. It's a very old area with colonial era houses. Great place for a stroll, and a coffee. It's like stepping back in time. Nice sea views too. You'll want to move here and open a B&B. It's charming.

Eat your way to pleasure – there are some very cool restaurants in the conference/Battery Point area, but if you're a foodie and are set on a particular restaurant with great review, book before you leave home because we saw lots of packed restaurants.

Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens – A half hour walk away from the Grand Chancellor the gardens host the world’s only subantarctic plant house as well as the Southern Hemisphere’s largest collection of mature conifers. Centrally located and with a variety of garden styles the Gardens are a great free activity. Click here.

Cascades Female Factory Historic Site –  Did you know that convict women were brought out to work essentially as slave labour in the ‘women’s factory’? Why has this been a secret when we all know about Port Arthur? This is the single most significant historic site in Australia associated with convict women, and its in Hobart, on the way to the Cascade Brewery.  I caught a local bus there. However, we recommend doing on a tour, as the ruins alone are underwhelming (it says a lot that the National Trust didn’t preserve it until recently). There is a great play called ‘Her Story’ which takes place there most days (check) Click here to learn more.

Hobart Penitentiary Chapel – Take a guided tour through the ‘tench’ and learn more about Hobart’s convict history in an immersive experience through Tasmania’s convict history of crime and punishment. It’s authentic. You wouldn’t want to spend times in those cells. Sends a shiver … Click here. It’s not far from the hotel.

Mt Wellington – past the Cascade Brewery. You’ll need transport (although 20 years ago I caught a taxi but that probably wasn’t the best idea). Bet, despite the passing of time that it is still stunningly beautiful, and still freezing. I reckon the day I went it was about 20 degrees colder than Hobart on the top of that mountain. You’re warned. Take coats and hats, and enjoy the natural beauty and the view. Worth a visit with warm clothes.

A day trip (with a stop at some pretty towns on route)

Port Arthur Historic Site – Visit Port Arthur, an historic site of Australia’s colonial past, including heritage gardens, just an hour and a half drive from Hobart. With numerous tours and the Port Arthur Gallery there is plenty to do. It’s a great place. You can even stay overnight and do ghost tours (check they’re still running). It’s a pretty cool place.  Click here.

Bruny Island – supposed to be awesome. Check out tours on TripAdvisor.


Stay Longer

Wednesday night free time to chill

Wind-down drinks, 4.30 pm to 6 pm Wednesday 16th May

We know some flights home are later or the next day, so …

Join FCA and whoever is around after the conference for “Wind Down Drinks” (that’s a mellow event with no surprises, just good company and a glass of wine. Chill out before your flight, or if you’re doing post-conference workshops the next day. First drink is our shout.