Welcome to Tasmania

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Tasmania is like walking into a postcard. Breathe in the beauty and fresh air at Lake St Clair. Photo: Andreas Smetana, Tourism Australia
 

Tasmania is affectionately known as 'Tassie' and is home to some of the most spectacular, national parks, beaches, wildlife and scenery in the world. There are so many things to do in Tasmania, making it a dream come true for adventure-lovers.

And while I’ve talked about the adventures that await you, the Tasmania food and wine scene and its eclectic culture make it an amazing holiday destination. I promise you that this is a mouth-watering place to visit, and there are so many things to do and places to visit in Tasmania. 
 

Visit Hobart & surrounds

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Explore the glorious Port Arthur historic site. Photo: Hype TV
 

Getting there:  Fly to Hobart from any main Australian city, or take a ferry from Melbourne to Devonport and drive 3 hours to Hobart. 

Hobart has the best of everything. Whether you love food, outdoor adventures, hiking, cruising, bird watching, spotting wildlife, history, galleries and museums - look no further. Hobart itself has so much to see and explore, it's also close to many of the nearby hotspots such as:

  • the world-renowned Port Arthur historical site (which has an incredible convict history). Port Arthur is 90 minutes from Hobart

  • Bruny Island which has beaches, wildlife, walking tracks, and incredible local produce including cheese factories, berry farms, freshly shucked Tasmanian oysters, whiskey distilleries and wine cellar doors.

  • Mount Field National Park and Russell Falls which have great walks, stunning views, rainforests and fern forests, wildlife, and some of the world's tallest trees.

It's now time to uncover what your Hobart holiday itinerary will look like.

Visit Maria Island

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Marvel at the Maria Island painted cliffs. Photo: Stu Gibson
 

Getting there:  Maria Island is 30 minutes by ferry from Triabunna. Hobart to Triabunna is a 1.5 hour drive or 2.5 hours from Launceston. 

Maria Island is like a cat with nine lives. It was home to the Tyreddeme Aboriginal people long before its time as a convict penal settlement and probation station in the first half of the 19th century. During its convict days, prisoners worked in timber-cutting, tanning, making shoes and cloth. Today it's a carefully balanced mix of wildlife, marine life, historical sites and outdoor adventures.

  • Explore the world heritage listed Darlington Probation Station buildings and ruins. 

  • Don't miss the Painted Cliffs which are beautifully patterned sandstone rocks in orange, yellow & red. These towering cliffs are naturally occurring by iron oxide staining from the rich iron-rich groundwater.

  • Go walking or cycling around the island, across clifftops for views of the Tasman Sea and the Freycinet Peninsula. Nature lovers will find lots of great spots to bird-watch along the way.

  • There's also the Marine Nature Reserve where you can dive or snorkel with the local seals and whales.

Visit Coles Bay & Wineglass Bay

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Eat oysters straight from the farm at Coles Bay. Photo: Tourism Tasmania
 

Getting there: Coles Bay is 2.5 hours from Hobart or Launceston (depending on which direction you're coming from). 

Coles Bay, Wineglass Bay, and Bay of Fires are all on the stunning East Coast of Tasmania. This gorgeous stretch of Tassie is considered one of the top 10 regions to visit in the world. It has the trifecta of rainforests and hiking tracks, long and pristine sandy beaches for a swim or a surf, and charming coastal towns. 

Coles Bay is the gateway to Freycinet National Park. You can't help but be mesmerized by the pink granite mountains rising out of the ocean to create a sheltered cove known as Wineglass Bay.

It's a muset-see-to-believe experience. I probably don't need to spell this out, but sunsets around this area are a whole other story!

Go hiking in the beautiful Freycinet National Park which is a haven for wildlife including White-bellied Sea Eagles and black swans. Choose from walks that take a few hours or a few days. 

Do the 2-hour walk to Wineglass Bay lookout. If you're super keen, do the downhill walk to the beach (which is another 2-hours).

While you're at Wineglass Bay lookout, grab a peak at Great Oyster Bay where you'll see more pink granite mountains, white beaches, and blue water.

These sheltered bays are perfect for swimming, boating, kayaking, sailing, and fishing. There's also cruises around the Peninsula, taking you in and out of the coves. 

This is also heaven for foodies. There's wine and whisky tasting, farms where you can buy fruit and berries, beef and lamb. Seafood lovers can meet the local oyster and mussel growers at Freycinet Marine Farm and get their fill of seafood or even take a tour of the farm. 
 

Visit Bay of Fires (Binalong Bay)

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Experience the rich orange boulders at the Bay of Fires. Photo: Tourism Australia
 

Getting there: Bay of Fires is 4 hours drive north from Hobart or 3 hours from Launceston.

The Bay of Fires is renowned for its clear blue water, white beaches and striking orange cloaked boulders. This 50 km of coastline is one of the most pristine natural wonders of the world. The area stretches from Binalong Bay, St Helens to Eddystone Point. Explore the Bay of Fires by guided tours, hiking, four-wheel driving or cruises. 

  • Do the Great Eastern Drive to St Helens, where you'll be treated to a very dramatic coastline. 

  • Walk along the white sandy beaches and if the weather's nice, swim in the crystal clear water.

  • Go hiking from Policeman’s Point to The Gardens along the beach and over rocky coves, or walk from Skeleton Bay to Dora’s Point and George’s Bay. Do the 4-day Bay of Fires Walk with an experienced guide. 

  • Book a cruise and see the local whales, dolphins and seals.

  • Don't miss a Bay of Fires sunrise. I'm not an early riser but I promise this is worth getting out of bed for.

  • Hike St Columbia Falls which is just 30-minute drive from St Helens. This 15-minute walk takes you through the gorgeous rainforest, where you see one of biggest tree ferns, followed by a 90-metre high waterfall (and happens to be one of Tasmania highest.) 

  • On the way out to the falls check out Pyengana Dairy Farm Gate when you get share a cheese and gourmet platter with a glass of vino whilst overlooking the charming Pyengana Valley.

Visit Launceston

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EGo wine tasting in Launceston (or any other part of Tasmania for that matter).
Photo: Tourism Tasmania and Sean Fennessy

 

Getting there: Launceston is a 2.5 hour drive North from Hobart. 

Launceston is north of Hobart and is renowned for its food and wine. The cool climate and rich land means it produces stunning wines, apples, strawberries and all kinds of other delicious farm-fresh delights. A few suggestions of things to do in Launceston include:

  • A visit Harvest Markets that are held every Saturday. The city streets are transformed into a bustling farmers' markets with plenty of gorgeous fresh produce and yummy fair to treat your taste buds and nourish the soul.  

  • walking through the gorgeously manicured City Park and it's gardens. The monkey enclosure is crowd favourite. 

  • Cataract Gorge Reserve, which is a short 15 minute walk from the city centre, and is a recreational hub with swimming areas, walking trails, gardens and a chairlift that provides a birds-eye view of the Tamar River and surrounds.

  • Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery has a vast collection of arts, history and natural science, making it a fun and interesting day out. 

  • National Automobile Museum of Tasmania is the place to go for the rev heads at heart with super muscle cars to get the wheels a turnin’.  

  • James Boag Brewery was established in 1881 and is a delicious Tassie drop of beer. This historical brewery runs tours and gives you the opportunity to get close and personal with its fine flowing amber. Book a tour and to sip on this fine Boag’s ale.

  • Because of Tassie's cold climate and abundant apple orchards, you'll find some great locally brewed ciders. Visit Redbrick Road Ciderhouse if you're keen for a tasty Launceston cider. There's other refreshments available too.  

  • MONA FOMA Festival is the summer illumination festival of arts and music that lights up the city in January.

 

Visit Cradle Mountain & Lake St Clair

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Meet a Tasmanian devil when you visit Cradle Mountain. Photo: Laura Helle
 

Getting there: Cradle Mountain and Lake St Clair National Park is 2 hours from Launceston or 4 hours from Hobart.

The iconic Cradle Mountain is in Tasmania's North West and is where you’ll find great walking adventures, stunning views, rugged mountains, rainforests, lakes and waterfalls.

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is for serious hikers-only. This world heritage site has a huge variety of walks to suit all levels of fitness. Particular hiking highlights are Donaghy's Lookout, the Franklin River Nature Trail and the Nelson Falls Nature Trail.

Now let's talk about a challenge for those serious walkers. This is the 6-day Cradle Mountain overland track (which is a whopping 65km).  


Soak up the magic of Cradle Mountain. Photo: Tourism Australia

If you want to experience Cradle Mountain without the effort, take a luxury cruise where you get to stop off at different points along the way. Otherwise, self-drive or book a bus tour where you can stop off and doing short walks through rainforests and mountains.

Cradle Mountain is also renowned for its food trails that put you in touch with fresh vegetables, dairy delights, wines and whiskey.

to do nearby Launceston

Get lost in the Bridestowe lavender fields. Photo: Luke Tscharke
 

Head east of Launceston for even more wonderful adventures. These include: 

  • Hollybank Treetop Adventure is 20 minutes from Launceston and is a ziplining adventure like no other. Zipline through the treetops on the 30 metre high and 400 metre long course. There's also a high ropes course, segway tours or mountain bikes for hire.

  • Bridestowe Lavender Estate is 50 kilometre from Launceston. This lavender farm was established in 1920 when a London perfumer chose this spot to grow the finest lavender. Get lost in the sweet-smelling lavender fields followed by a visit to the cafe for some tasty lavender-scented treats. 

  • Derby is an hour from Launceston and has some of the best mountain biking tracks in the country. There's lessons for beginners, tracks for the experienced riders and multiday itineraries for the ultimate biking adventurer.

Visit the Tamar Valley

Ride among the Josef Chromy vineyards. Photo: Osborne Images
 

Getting there: The Tamar Valley is 30 minutes North of Launceston or 3 hours from Hobart. 

  • The Tamar Valley Wine Route starts in Launceston and makes a loop of the northern surrounding region. Keep a keen eye out for the blue and yellow sign to direct to you one of the many cellar doors in the region. This is arguably considered in one of the top 10 wine trails in the world. 

  • East of the Tamar River is the Low Head coastal reserve where you can take a guided tour and meet the local penguins. See these cute little birds swimming, preening and waddling up the beach. Tours start at sunset and run for an hour.

  • Grinddelwald Swizz Village is a Swiss-themed resort. Enjoy the Swiss shops, chocolate café, mini-golf, canoes and paddleboats, and the world’s longest bouncing pillow. 

 

Visit Stanley

Take the chairlift to the top of The Nut. Photo: Lusy Productions
 

  • Head west from Launceston to the historic town of Stanley and potter around the charming English-style streets that reflect old English villages. This is your chance to soak up the history or check out the wares created by local designers.

  • Check out the Nut which is also in Stanley. The Nut is a 143 metre high rock formation that juts out into the sea and is believed to be a volcanic core. Take the 1-hour walk (4.6km) for panoramic views of the area. If you're not keen on walking, take the chairlift ride to the top and back.

  • Hike the Walls of Jerusalem National Park, which is a 2-3 day trek (and is 34.3km long). This walk takes you through the northern end of the Wilderness World Heritage area and over the cliffs known as the Walls of Jerusalem. This is a challenging hike that is best suited to experienced bushwalkers.  Proving that this spot is perfect all year-round, in the winter and when the snow is falling, this becomes a playground for cross-country skiers. The Walls of Jerusalem National Park is a 1.5 hour drive from Launceston.

  • Visit the nearby national parks of Narawntapu or Mt William and spot the local wildlife. 

  • Drop by the Beaconsfield Mine and Heritage Centre to learn about the local history, and the heroic 2006 mine rescue where miners were trapped a kilometre underground. 

Visit Strahan

Throw your line and see if the fish are biting. Photo: Tourism Australia


Getting there: Strahan is 3.5 hours from Launceston or 4.5 hour from Hobart.

Visit the harbour-side village of Strahan, which is also the gateway to the World Heritage-listed Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. On the flip side, this stunning town has a dark convict past so it's worth booking a tour and hearing the stories about the lives of local pioneers, the notorious convict prison and brutal conditions.

  • Visit Ocean beach which stretches for 40km and is the perfect spot for fishing and four-wheel driving.

  • Take a boat cruise on the Gordon River and into the World Heritage forest. 

  • Jump aboard the West Coast Wilderness Railway.

  • Walk to Hogarth Falls for some platypus spotting (the walk is 30 minutes each way)

  • Cycle your way around Strahan

  • If you're a keen angler, go trout fish in the western lakes.

  • If keen to get the heart pumping, abseil Gordan Dam which is 140 metres high and is the world's highest abseil.

Choose Your Destination

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