On 4 February 1836, a young explorer of 23 years of age, by the name of Charles arrived ashore at Hobart town on the ship by the name of the HMS Beagle. This wasn't just your ordinary explorer, young Charles was on a mission. One that would later serve as a basis for what would be later published in The Origin of Species.
The Charles Darwin Trail is mapped out along the Eastern Shore in five sections, to follow in Darwin's footsteps and see what he saw, albeit with a much more developed view. While the shoreline no longer resembles that rugged, windy coast that Darwin observed, many of the geological aspects still remain today – like the changes in rock type and formation along the Hobart coastline.
The 11.5 kilometre trail lines the coast, coming inland to form a loop and back to Kangaroo Bay, taking approximately 4.5 hours: Section 1 (very easy) - Kangaroo Bay to Bellerive Bluff (1.1km) Section 2 (easy)- Bellerive Bluff to Second Bluff (1.9km) Section 3 (easy) - Second Bluff to Waverly Flora Park (3.4km) Section 4 (moderate) - Waverly Flora Park & Mornington Hill (3.1km) Section 5 (very easy) - Waverly Flora Park to Kangaroo Bay (2.2km)
If you're feeling particularly energetic, there is a bicycle path that follows the trail along the coast. If you don't have your own, you can hire one for free from the Hobart City Council's Initiative Artbikes.
On a clear day, there is also one of the city's best views of Mount Wellington from Kangaroo Bay to Bellerive Bluff. There are some moderately steep sections however, and Hobart is renowned for its windy coastline – each section almost with its own microclimate – so all-weather preparation is needed.