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  • How has an arts festival transformed tourism in Tasmania?
  • How has an arts festival transformed tourism in Tasmania?
    Matt Warrell (2014) ©

Dark Mofo: dark arts reinvent festival tourism in Australia

Cold. Dark. Weird. Three words you probably don’t associate with Australian tourism. But since 2012, cult arts festival Dark Mofo has changed the way Tasmania is viewed – making it the coolest destination for winter. How has this unlikely festival put the state back on the mainstream map?

Location Australia

It’s daybreak in Tasmania on the winter solstice and 752 naked people are plunging into the icy cold water of the River Derwent as part of a ‘pagan solstice ritual’ – just a few of the 174,000+ attendees of Hobart’s annual Dark Mofo cultural festival.

The ‘dark and weird’ 10-day event has proved a hit with Australian audiences. Since its launch in 2013, visitor numbers to Tasmania have increased by 14%, and their spending by 11% – and it’s done it by selling an improbably successful mix of the obscure, the conceptual and the bizarre to the masses. [



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