TASMANIATell a Friend
Tasmania is often the forgotten state, derided by those on the Australian mainland for being far too grim, which is frankly one of the biggest lies Australians have ever told themselves. ‘Tassie’ is a brilliant and beautiful place, compact enough to do in just a couple of weeks but yet still laid back and layered enough to keep you addicted to the Tassie way of life. The small island state has amazing beaches, great food and wine, an arts scene that’s taking off, mountain ranges, an enormous amount of wildlife, and untouched wilderness mostly wrapped up into a World Heritage area. It’s also a land of contradictions, a land where its cruel past gave way to a beautiful present, where backwoods and logging trucks combine. It’s a land of abseiling, bushwalking, cycling, and any other sport you can think of. This Island of Inspiration is calling out for you to visit; don’t make the same mistake others have made, and get to Tasmania!
Culture comes alive in this picturesque city, which lies at the foothills of Mt Wellington. Hobart’s colonial heritage competes with its bohemian atmosphere to make one fine place to visit. To learn more about the capital of Tasmania, visit our Hobart page.
Small towns, sandy beaches and a good mix of pastureland and native bush all exist just outside of Hobart city limits. From the historical buildings that make up Richmond to the fantastic breaks that are just off Seven Mile Beach near the airport, you’ll be able to find something just for you. The main attraction here, however, is Mt Field National Park, known for its mountain scenery, lakes and waterfalls, and a gaggle of amazing wildlife that dominates the southeast of Tasmania. The highlights include a trip up to see 45m-high Russell Falls through a path that’s easily traverse, skiing on Mt Mawson whenever Mother Nature sees fit to dump snow on it, and a wildlife sanctuary that rehabilitates orphaned and injured wildlife, including the world-famous Tasmanian devils.
- Where to stay: The entire southeast is accessible easily from Hobart, with Mt Field only 80km away from city centre. There are plenty of accommodations available in the city whereas accommodations outside of the city can be rather limited.
Top 5 things to do:
• Visit the town of Richmond and all of its historical buildings, especially the Richmond Goal, a well-preserved and sobering reminder of Tasmania's criminal past.
• Also in Richmond, visit one of two wildlife parks, either the ZooDoo Wildlife Fun Park or the Bonorong Wildlife Centre.
• Head to Mt Field National Park, home to the magnificent Russell Falls as well as Lady Barron Falls and Horseshoe Falls. Stay for the amazing wildlife at Something Wild, the national park's wildlife sanctuary.
• In Taroona, 10km south of Hobart, visit the Shot Tower, with fantastic views after you climb up 318 steps.
• Surf off the coast of Seven Mile Beach, then head out for a safe swim among beach houses, corner shops, and pine tree-spotted dunes.
The Tasman Peninsula is coated in infamous history in addition to all the amazing beaches, bushwalks, and forests that seem to creep up no matter where you are. The Port Arthur Historic Site, Tasmania's most popular attraction, is a chilling reminder of Tasmania's convict past, and as you walk through the penitentiary you'll be able to learn the history of the 12,500 convicts that called this place home. By no means is that the only thing to do on the island, however; you can bushwalk on the many paths that weave through Tasman National Park, and check out the many beautiful vistas from the shore. You can even learn how to surf or go for a dive at Eaglehawk Neck next to the coastal formations.
This little swatch of Tasmania land is full of untouched beauty, with many national parks living the drive north from Hobart. Places like Maria Island National Park impress people with their varieties of flora and fauna surrounding bushwalk and cycle paths, and snorkellers and divers can definitely find something to do in these majestic parks. The real treat, however, is the Bay of Fires, full of white sands and cerulean water, and is a great spot for surfing, while nearby lagoons are good for swimming as well. Hang your hat in towns like Bicheno, where you can also take tours of nearby penguin rookeries, go on glass-bottom boats, or go on nature walks or dives. You can even head to some of the lavender farms dotting the northeast, including the one at Bridgestowe Estate, for an in-depth look at all things fragrantly-scen
- Where to stay: There are a number of budget accommodations sprinkled up and down the east coast. You can also choose to stay in Hobart or Launceston if you prefer, but if you're one that likes to stay in national parks, here you can have your wish.
Top 5 things to do:
• Visit Maria Island National Park, full of great bushwalking trails to explore and plenty of dive spots to enjoy.
• Take a sea-kayaking tour off of Freycinet National Park, and enjoy the the secret coves and the majestic beaches off the Tasmanian east coast.
• Walk through the town of St Helens and enjoy the sailing and whaling culture, and perhaps head out on a fishing expedition and catch a bite. Detour to the nearby Bay of Fires.
• Go on a wine-tasting tour right outside the town of Bicheno, then come back to enjoy the many outdoor activities that make this picturesque town so famous.
• Take the famous walk from Bicheno all the way to Wineglass Bay, one of the finest beaches not only in Tasmania but in the entire country as well.
Launceston & Tamar Valley
'Lonnie' as the locals affectionately call the place, is Tasmania's second largest city, surrounded by the beautiful Tamar Valley. The laid-back town of Launceston seeks to entertain you with its assortment of different activities. First, head for a walk around Cataract Gorge just west of the city, where you can see all sorts of wildlife in the nature preserve around the South Esk River as it flows into the Tamar. Afterwards, check out the Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery, with two locations at Royal Park and the Inveresk Railyards each containing everything from Aboriginal art to intereactive spaces and old airplanes. Go on a beer tasting at the Boag's Centre for Beer Lovers, and even check out the Natonal Automobile Museum of Tasmania if you're especially into shows like Top Gear. Heading out of the city, you'll be able to simply put your feet up and relax in the Valley, home to many wineries and restaurants. Take a tour of the area from a cyclist's point of view and let the wind run through your hair. Good-old 'Lonnie' will keep you entertained for days!
- Where to stay: As you can expect from any large town or city, Launceston has a number of budget accommodations just waiting for you to come and stay in. They're scattered throughout the city, so try and pick one that's closest to what you want to see.
Top 5 things to do:
• Hike the walking tracks of the Cataract Gorge overlooking the South Esk River; walk from the Kings Bridge up the river to the two basins, where you'll be able to find a swimming hole and plenty of abseillers.
• Visit the Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery, with locations in Royal Park (a recently-refurb
• Grab a beer from the Boag's Centre for Beer Lovers and go on a 'Discovery Tour,' which of course concludes with some tastings. Match it up with a cheese tasting with the 'Beer Lovers Tour' for a really great time.
• Head out of Launceston to the Tamar Island Wetlands about ten minutes away, where you can take a tour of a significant wetlands reserve on a boardwalk, spotting an echidna here and there as you go.
• Take a wine-tasting tour around the Tamar Valley, or head to Bon Lomond National Park during the winter for some great skiing.
North & West Coasts
The north coast is covered in small little seaside towns and pastures, forests, and dolerite peaks. Ferries come in from the mainland at Devonport, where you can also visit a regional gallery and a maritime museum. A big destination here is the Walls of Jerusalem National Park, home to challenging bushwalking paths and camping grounds amongst dolomite mountains. Heading west, you can visit such towns as Sheffield, home to the annual painting festival Muralfest, and the town of Wynyard with its incredible vistas at Table Cape and Fossil Bluff. This is an area to just sit back, relax, and let the world pass by you. Heading down to the west, Tasmania really opens up, with much of the area being protected as a World Heritage site. The biggest sight to see is definitely Cradle Mountain National Park, and you can click the link to find out more information about that great piece of nature.