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Southern treats

The festival is an invitation to experience Tasmania's best produce.

Head south over Bass Strait, with a flight time of just under an hour from Melbourne and you will arrive in Australia's southernmost capital city, Hobart. Nestled among the lush green hills and mountains in the south of Tasmania, Hobart could almost be considered a forgotten treasure by many mainland residents. However, this gem has a lot to offer. From year round festivals to prestigious sporting events such as the Sydney to Hobart yacht race, to the world renowned Museum of Modern Art (MOMA). Hobart also boasts the first legal casino in Australia, Wrest Point which opened in 1973.

One of the festivals well worth attending is the Taste of Tasmania. Situated by the docks in the picturesque Salamanca Place, the Taste of Tasmania has been running annually since 1988. It is held in the last week of December, perfect for locals and visitors alike to go and wind down after the Christmas rush in a fun and relaxing atmosphere.

It was originally conceived as a welcoming event at the finishing point for competitors in the Sydney to Hobart. However since its inauguration, the festival has gone from a few humble stalls to Tasmania's largest food festival. It is a showcase of the state's best produce, ranging from beef to seafood, dairy, fruit and wine.

The Taste festival has free entry with the exception being New Year's Eve. No matter what culinary delight you're craving it will most likely be available for purchase at one of the many stalls. There are tables located both inside the large pavilion and outside by the water. It's a fun experience to hear the crowd of diners cheering encouragement at the participants as they sail across the finishing line. There is also live music and other entertainment to check out while deciding what to eat.

Late December is a wonderful time to visit Hobart. The weather pleasantly hovers around the early twenties, which is perfect for being out and about and discovering everything that is on offer. The residents are warm and welcoming and they take pride in endorsing their city, and in particular their esteemed festival. It truly is a delicious celebration of the state's diversity.

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