Heritage and history
Tasmania's history tells a tale of a brutal convict past, maritime adventure, mining, industrial development, Antarctic exploration and world-famous environmental campaigns to preserve Tasmania's great wilderness. And unlike most other places this rich cultural and built heritage is still well-preserved today.
Tasmania's architectural heritage survives in the cities and towns around the island, with fine examples of buildings from Georgian, Victorian and Federation periods. Many of these have been restored as tourist accommodation, restaurants or attractions.
The city of Hobart has some of the finest sandstone buildings remaining in Australia, including the stately Town Hall on Macquarie Street and the historic waterfront warehouses that line Salamanca Place. And behind Salamanca Place is Battery Point with its workers’ cottages and grand stone homes making this the best preserved colonial-era suburb in Australia.
In Tasmania's north are charming colonial villages and large country estates that paint a picture of early life in Tasmania. Longford is a country town full of colonial charm, lovely convict-built buildings and grand estates while the pretty riverside village of Ross, built by convict labour in the early 1800s, has been so well preserved that visitors can still enjoy a genuine piece of history today.
The island's fascinating beginnings and dark stories of the past can also be uncovered at any of the five UNESCO World Heritage-listed convict sites found around the state, while many of the buildings and features that were built using convict labour during early settlement still stand today.
In a world that increasingly displaces the old for the new, the past is always present in Tasmania and stories can be found just about everywhere, if you take the time to look.