Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
This is one of the biggest ocean racing events in the world and began in 1945 as a planned cruise along Australia’s east coast and quickly became an annual race. Attracting competitors from all over the world it starts in Sydney on December 26th and the winners usually arrive in Hobart on December 29th just in time to commence the city’s New Year’s Eve celebrations. The festivities last for days with a carnival atmosphere taking over the whole city as each boat which finishes gets its very own special welcome. If you’re in or near Hobart around these dates, be prepared to party.
Suncoast Jazz Festival
Taking place in St. Helens during the last weekend in June, this is now an annual event attracting over six hundred musicians from all over the world. With street parades, free open air concerts and music emanating from every corner of the northeastern Tasmanian town, the atmosphere is excellent. St. Helens has a population of less than five thousand but it still manages to stage one of the best Jazz Festivals in Australia and every business gets behind the festival with late opening hours and numerous special ‘Festival Offers’. And, as well as the music, the area is also home to some of the state’s most impressive beaches and adventure sport locations so you’re guaranteed to have a good time.
Ten Days on the Island
A unique festival celebrating the concept of island culture which is apparently quite different from that of the mainland, Tasmania’s ’10 Days on the Island’ is a celebration of this special culture through music, dance, storytelling, poetry, drama, art, sculpture and craft. One of Australia’s premier arts festivals, it attracts performers from all over the globe including Iceland, Ireland, Madagascar, Singapore and New Zealand and you can catch one exposition or another at one of the thirty-two host locations scattered around the island. Taking place in late March every year, the atmosphere during the festival is relaxed and fun filled and makes for a great visit.
Hobart Summer Festival
This truly is a festival with something for everyone. Taking place from the end of December to the end of February, it includes the ‘Downtown International Buskers Festival’, the ‘Texicali Rose’ featuring a variety of Tex Mex music, entertainment, food and drink, ‘the Australian Wooden Boat Festival’, ‘Taste of Tasmania’ and numerous other events. With numerous free events every day this is the perfect destination for the budget traveler and the fact that the festival takes place over two months gives you ample opportunity to fit it into your Australian itinerary.
Tasmanian Craft Fair
Taking place in Deloraine in November every year, this craft fair is now the biggest of its kind in the southern hemisphere. When it began the fair attracted about thirty exhibitors from the local area. It now attracts over two hundred Tasmanian craftspeople as well as over thirty thousand visitors. With over two hundred stalls and fifty varieties of art and craft including glass blowing, puppet making, basket weaving, lace and patchwork and candle wicking making it now takes over the town for the four days which it is taking place. And, where you have thirty thousand visitors to a town, you can rest assured that as well as being entertained by the artists during the day, there is even more entertainment going on at night. Also a brilliant place to pick up some original souvenirs and gifts to take home at the end of your travels.