15 October, 2018

Taste the good life at these top Tasmanian summer events

Diaries at the ready! You don’t want to miss these fantastic festivals, fairs and frolics.

When the hurly-burly of Christmas and New Year is over, get away from it all in the island state. Tasmania’s calendar is packed with exciting events between January and early March, from one of Australia’s coolest arts festivals to delicious celebrations of local food, wine and spirits.

Music and more!

On 11-20 January, Hobart’s game-changing Mona brings its Festival of Music and Art – better known as MONA FOMA – back to Launceston. It promises to be another daring, genre-defying program of culture, including superstar Italian pianist-composer Ludovico Einaudi’s new immersive project, Seven Days Walking, and a psychedelic audio-visual performance by LA multi-tasker Flying Lotus 3D. Get in quick for tickets!

Ludovico Einaudi (Image: Mona Foma)

Party in the Paddock, one of Australia’s best music festivals, is back on 6-8 February. The 2020 line-up includes locals like Matt Corby, Hermitude, Dune Rats and Briggs, plus internationals such as Mahalia from the UK and New Zealand’s The Butlers. There’s also stand-up comedy, yoga classes, market stalls and more when the White Hills near Launceston are alive with the sound of music.

Party in the Paddock (Photo: Stephen Slogget)
Party in the Paddock (Photo: Stephen Slogget)

Another highlight summer music fest is the Cygnet Folk Festival on 10-12 January. As always, expect a huge line-up of folkies from Tasmania, interstate and abroad, plus poets, dancers and speakers including Bob Brown. There’s also plenty of arts, crafts, food and drinks at this feelgood festival that began way back in 1982. Prefer music in a vineyard? Raise a glass when 80s chart-toppers Diesel and The Choirboys headline Ghost Rock winery’s Concert in the Vines on 29 February.

Cygnet Folk Festival (Image: Steve Pearce)
Cygnet Folk Festival (Image: Steve Pearce)

Eat, drink and be merry

Celebrate the state’s gourmet goodness at Launceston’s Festivale on 31 January-2 February. Eat and drink your way through more than 80 stalls showcasing all that’s great and local, from beer and berries to seafood and cider. Take a food or beverage masterclass with top Tassie producers, and watch chefs like Karen Martini in action. Then kick back and enjoy live tunes by the likes of Vanessa Amorosi, Russell Morris and The Whitlams.


There’s more fabulous food and drinks at A Taste of the Huon on 8-9 March, just at the harvest’s peak. Now in its 27th year, it’s a showcase of the produce and creativity in the Huon Valley, just south-west of Hobart. Stallholders include Tasmanian Saffron, Hartzview Vineyard and Fat Pig Farm of TV’s Gourmet Farmer fame. There’s also live entertainment, and scenic helicopter flights for just $50.

If you’re into gin, plan a trip around Gin-uary in Hobart on 25 January. The third outing for this celebration of Tasmania’s distillers is a great opportunity to meet the makers and sample more than 40 local gins in one place. Cheers!

Poltergeist Gin at Gin-uary ( Image: Jemima Phleps)

Take a sporting chance

The national Big Bash League’s fast and furious T20 cricket action continues through the summer. Be in the eye of the storm when the Hobart Hurricanes play on home turf at Blundstone Arena, as well as in Launceston. For a quirky blast from the past, don’t miss the National Penny Farthing Championships on 22 February. It’s a highlight of the Evandale Village Fair just outside Launceston.

Feeling sporty enough to get off that seat and on your feet? Tassie Trail Fest on 7-9 February is open to runners of all capabilities. From the two-kilometre kids, fancy dress and dash-for-cash runs, to multi-day, multi-trail options for trail-running nuts, it’s all happening in the north-west’s wondrous wilderness.

National Penny Farthing Championships
National Penny Farthing Championships


Information included in this blog is correct at the time of publishing. Please contact individual operators for further information.

Book now

Come aboard and experience the joys of sailing for yourself. Book now

Geelong Terminal

Discover Spirit of Tasmania Quay, Geelong, the new Victorian home of Spirit of Tasmania. Geelong Terminal


Read our latest blogs on experiences in Tasmania and the mainland Discover
Close Window