Down in Salamanca Place on market day in Hobart, amongst the colourful stalls, bustling crowds and lively buskers, an old man with a weathered face and a stockman’s hat leans on a hand-carved wooden lectern and recites with a lilting cadence:
I’m in the Tasmanian capital of Hobart, not Mount Kosciusko in the Snowy Mountains, but he brings Banjo Paterson’s famous verse alive for a transfixed crowd. You don’t get much more Australian than this!
Salamanca Market is one of the best I’ve been to around the world and here’s a snapshot of what is one of Hobart’s top attractions:
The produce is fresh and delicious, I know because we bought a load and ate it over subsequent days as we explored Tasmania’s Western Wilderness, got up close to cute Tasmanian Devils and relaxed on the East Coast beaches.
The food stalls are full of ethnic variety, the goods for sale are good quality and the people are friendly. As well as the above-mentioned folk reciter an Irish band had toes tapping and children dancing.
All this against the elegant backdrop of Hobart’s waterfront maritime industrial architecture.
Tasmania is well known as a hotbed of, I don’t know how to say it, “alternative” or “hippy” activity. I just mean people who think it’s important not just to sit on your comfortable arse but to actively live your life in a way that will positively impact our world. A world which, let’s face it, could do with some saving.
So there’s plenty of that at the Salamanca Market.
Combining the save-the-world ethic with Hobart’s maritime heritage – one of the Sea Shepherd ships was in dock and the crew could be spotted around Salamanca Market enjoying the atmosphere.
As well as maritime friends of another sort.
Tucked away behind the market is Salamanca Square, where you’ll find the Arts Centre, more cafes, buskers and this lovely fountain:
It’s all full of colour and character, there is truly something for everyone.
By Natasha von Geldern
Salamanca Market is one of my favourites; what is the best market you’ve visited in the world?