Though Tasmania’s excellent festival “season” is now year round, January is a particularly good month for them. To kick things off, you have a choice of food and music or music and food.
For those wanting to be amongst the city atmosphere in Hobart, the Taste of Tasmania takes over Princes Wharf and spills onto the lawns at Salamanca.
This year’s Taste hosted more than seventy stallholders, offering wine, cheese, seafood, and much more. With the recently arrived Sydney to Hobart yachts dotting the scene, musicians and other performers entertaining, and so many things to taste, it’s lucky this festival sticks around for a full week and boasts free entry-you might need more than one visit.
The Hobart waterfront is a popular place to bring in the new year, with a large fireworks display to mark the occasion. A decision must be made each year however, because the New Year’s period is also when Falls Music and Arts Festival is happening over at gorgeous Marion Bay. This year marked the 15th anniversary, and 16,000 people came out to party. The food choices just get better every year, and the activities on offer range from comedy shows to yoga to zip lining.
The real feature though, is of course the music, with Falls attracting the biggest bands Tasmania gets all year. 2018 was welcomed in by Peking Duk and The Kooks, after three days of artists such as Foster the People, Thundamentals, and Flume.
Only days into the new year and already so many great choices! The celebrations in January are a marathon though, not a sprint.
By the second weekend it’s already time for the Cygnet Folk Festival and Mona Foma. The Folk Festival is now incredibly in it’s 36th year, and sees the tiny town of Cygnet taken over by local and international talent; swarming with music lovers, food, and art against the backdrop of this very special community.
Mona Foma, or Mofo, is now in it’s 10th year and has branched out to include a weekend in Launceston now, as well as one in Hobart. Expect to see anything and everything at this contemporary festival, which includes experimental performance of all genres and has come to be a staple in the summer calendar, for locals and visitors alike.
If none of these take your fancy then there’s probably still something for you this month, with other festivals centred around such topics as beer, tennis, food harvest, and polo. And this is just how we start the year!
For an island at the bottom of the world, with only half a million residents, Tasmania certainly knows how to have a good time.