Dark Mofo

Provocative midwinter festival created by the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA).

WHAT SPARKS YOUR INTEREST?

Dark Mofo: Winter Feast
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo: The Burning
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Park - The interactive art precinct of the Dark Mofo festival.
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo: Winter Feast
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo: Dark Park
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo: The Burning
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo: Dark Park
Image thanks to: Adam Gibson

Dark Mofo

This provocative midwinter festival was created by the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) and began in 2013. Celebrating dark and ancient pagan rituals, attendees will revel in extreme merry-making and create memories that will last a lifetime. Everywhere you turn in Hobart (and beyond), there is music, art, food, and film that explore the links between ancient and modern mythology, dark and light, birth and death. Image thanks to Adam Gibson.

Gaining in popularity every year, nearly half a million attendees from around the globe come to celebrate this much anticipated annual event. Visiting artists and musicians share their talent in museums and on stage, stretching imaginations and dropping jaws with their artistic expression. As a festival that values independent thinking, Hobart becomes a virtual playground for the fun-loving, yet twisted fantasies of residents and visitors alike.

Key Events

Each year there is a variety of new exhibits and artists, as well as old faithfuls, that bring an enthusiastic crowd back over and over again.

A popular event that has created numerous headlines is the nude solstice swim. In celebration of the return of the light after the longest night of the year, courageous crowds rush into the cold waters of the River Derwent at sunrise. As the name suggests, they “bare all”, which seems to add to the fun! Try if you dare.

Another event that draws a crowd and is based on an Indonesian spiritual cleansing ritual is the ogoh-ogoh parade and burning on the solstice night. Thousands witness sculptures traditionally burned after being paraded through the streets. This is meant to represent the start of a new year and is aimed at restoring the natural balance between the seen and unseen worlds of Balinese Hinduism. Image thanks to Adam Gibson.

For those that enjoy fantastic visual shows, the lasers at Dark Park are a must-see. This abandoned shipyard transforms into a night fun park that will keep you and the family entertained for hours with light, art, and film exhibits galore.

Dark Mofo: Winter Feast, Tasmania, AustraliaThe Winter Feast is held almost every day of the festival, and provides exceptional food and drink for when you’re ready to put your feet up and sink your teeth into local cuisine. Discover why Tasmania is home to world-class, award-winning food and drink. Wear loose-fitting clothing and don’t say we didn’t warn you. Image thanks to Adam Gibson.

Musical acts may vary, but the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra is a gold standard that creatively blends its talent with visiting artists, as well as gifting audiences with its own mesmerizing sound.

Curated, themed shows are created each year to keep the audience on its toes and represent a wide variety of talent. Examples of past visiting artists and musicians include Hermann Nitsch (Austria), Ulver (Norway), Marina Abramovic (Serbia), United Visual Artists (UK), Ryoji Ikeda (Japan), The Irrepressibles (UK), Chris Levine (UK), Chelsea Wolfe (USA), David Lynch presents Chrysta Bell (USA), along with Pussy Riot (Russia), and more.

For film buffs, Dark Mofo will not disappoint. There is an entire film program created to entertain those interested in macabre entertainment.

These are just a handful of the dark delights that can be expected at this daring festival!

When Is It?

Every June in Hobart (exact dates vary but coincides with the Winter Solstice)

Where?

The city of Hobart is lit up (literally) and major exhibitions can be found all over town, including at the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG), and the Federation Concert Hall, among many other venues. A public art playground called Dark Park in an abandoned shipping yard is a popular place to visit, and international musicians and artists perform around the city at local theatres and public venues. Events take place in surrounding suburbs of Hobart as well. Consult the schedule each year for details on exhibits and shows. Image thanksto Tourism Australia & Graham Freeman.

Getting There?

Although most interstate and international visitors arrive at the Hobart airport, some even come via cruise ship from Sydney. Be sure to book in advance, as this is an extremely popular event that draws hundreds of thousands of people into Hobart.

Food/Drinks

Almost every night of the festival, the Winter Feast is the place to be for any dedicated foodie. A gastronomic paradise, attendees have a vast option of local food and drink to please the palate. Whether you install yourself inside under the red neon lights at one of the elongated tables, or gather around a pit fire outside while listening to an array of musical performances, you’ll find yourself in jolly spirits with good food and wine (and warm cider). Image thanks to Adam Gibson.

Hobart is also home to world-class cuisine and restaurants that feature a variety of local and international flavours. As with accommodation, be sure to book in advance for popular destinations to ensure you may obtain a reservation.

Where to Stay

Dark Mofo

Hadley's Orient Hotel

Hobart - South East

Located in Hobart Central Business District, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of St. David’s Cathedral and Salamanca Market. Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens and Cascade Brewery are also within 5 km.
This smoke-free hotel features a restaurant, a bar/lounge, and a conference center. WiFi in public areas is free. Additionally, a business center, conference space, and concierge services are onsite.
All 71 individually decorated rooms feature free WiFi and minibars. For a bit of entertainment, flat-screen TVs come with digital channels, and guests can also appreciate conveniences like refrigerators and coffee makers.

Book Hadley's Orient Hotel
Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

  • Lowest price guaranteed
  • Search over a million flights, hotels, packages, and more
  • Lowest price No Expedia cancellation fee to change or cancel almost any hotel reservation 24/7

Mona Pavilions

Berriedale - Hobart

Situated on a river, this luxury hotel is steps from Moorilla Estate and Museum of Old and New Art. Claremont House and Tasmanian Transport Museum are also within 5 km.

Star rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

MACq 01 Hotel

Hobart - South East

Located in Sullivan's Cove, this hotel is within 2 km of Hobart Cruise Terminal and Salamanca Market. Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens and Cascade Brewery are also within 5 km.

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

Old Woolstore Apartment Hotel

Hobart - South East

Located in Sullivan's Cove, this luxury apartment building is within a 15-minute walk of Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery and Salamanca Market. Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens and Cascade Brewery are also within 5 km.

  • Bar/lounge
  • Restaurant
  • Free WiFi
  • Self parking (surcharge)
  • Luggage storage
Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

RACV/RACT Hobart Apartment Hotel

Hobart - South East

Located in Hobart Central Business District, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of St. David's Cathedral and Salamanca Market.

Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

ibis Styles Hobart

Hobart - South East

Situated in Hobart, this hotel is close to St. David's Cathedral, Australian Army Museum Tasmania, and Parliament House.

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

Mantra One Sandy Bay Road

Hobart - South East

Located in the heart of Hobart, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of St. Joseph's Catholic Church and Salamanca Market.

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

1 night stay

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Find a rate

Rooms available

Reserve a room

It only takes 2 minutes

Book Yourself Email Search Concierge Top