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One of Hobart’s oldest and most historic areas, Battery Point stands as one of the most authentic ways to step back in time. Buildings made of sandstone have stood since very near the community’s founding. It is famed as one of the more exclusive areas and has a number of large, well built homes, apartments, and even historical cottages. Connected to Salamanca by Kelly’s Steps, constructed back in the 1830’s out of massive sandstone blocks, Battery Point is on of those places that needs to taken in on foot to really get a good feel for the place.
The area can be accessed through Sandy Bay Road and Hampden Road, from the edge of Hobart. Like the nearby Sandy Bay area, those who live in Battery Point have shown themselves to be willing to fight to preserve their way of life against pressures to modernize overly much that might destroy the historic nature of the area.
Then again pressures on the area have created some modernization, bringing the area forward in time enough to have lights on the streets, for example. It is this kind of thing that makes the step back in time more like a century then the nearly 180 years that it could be with the age of the structures in question themselves. While the location traces the name back to 1818, the development fell into place in the decades following, and to day tourists vie to stay in historic bed and breakfasts in the area, rent exclusive apartments there, or even enjoy day visits because at times staying inside the boundaries of Battery Point is well near impossible.
If one should be moved to try to place a label on the flavor of Battery Point then oddly what comes to mind is “Cornish Fishing Village”. This is odd because it is in the middle of the largest and oldest city in Tasmania, and nowhere near anyplace “Cornish”. Of course the the mariners and gardsmen who lived there a century, or nearly two, may have been homesick for English soil and thus transplanted the things missed the most to this new and exotic location.
Visiting Battery Point would not be complete without seeing Arthur’s Circus, which represents the “village” green that the entire suburb is built around. The Colonial Museum, Narranya, also is a stop to not overlook, with its displays of things from yesteryear.