With the Tasmanian borders now open to most of mainland Australia, we’ve rounded up the best Tasmania travel ideas to help you plan your next trip.
After reopening its borders to New South Wales travellers on 6 November, Tasmania is now open to all states, bar Victoria. Restrictions for Victorian travellers remain in place until 27 November. However, the government is hopeful about bringing this deadline forward. In other words, start circling the free dates in your calendar for a Tasmanian holiday.
There’s no doubt about it when we say Tasmania is worth your attention. Beyond beautiful scenery, great produce and impressive history, this little state is full of character and a hive of creativity.
Keep in mind, all visitors need to register their Tasmania travel plans and contact details before entry. Then, once you arrive, see how many of these ten attractions you can tick off.
1. Beautiful Bay of Fires
Located on Tasmania’s east coast, The Bay of Fires is a place of natural beauty where striking red rock landscapes meet white sandy beaches and clear blue waters. Travellers should plan to stop at Binalong Bay, the main beach in the area, and allow some time for fishing, hiking, surfing, snorkelling or birdwatching – whatever takes your fancy.
2. Hobart markets
Discover local creatives at Hobart’s famous Salamanca Market, held every Saturday along the waterfront. With about 300 stallholders, expect to find everything from hand-made fashion to woodwork, glassware and ceramics. Then, discover the food. Taste endless options of freshly baked bread, homemade sweets and local flavours. You might want to allocate a few hours to explore it all.
This December, Hobart will also be hosting the annual design market running over three days from 4 – 6 December. Located in the historic Town Hall, the markets will feature some of Tasmania’s best emerging and established designers. There’ll be furniture, jewellery, ceramics, glass, textiles, prints and more, with nearly 40 designers and makers present.
3. Visit Cradle Mountain Lake St Clair National Park
With ancient rainforests, alpine mountain ranges and picturesque lakes, Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park does not fall short on spectacular scenery. Located two hours and 15 minutes from Launceston this heritage area is ideal for nature lovers. Hikers can explore the numerous short walks or take on the famous 80-kilometre Overland Track. If you’re not big on adventure but still want to be in nature, St Clair National Park is also a great spot for a picnic.
4. Hike Wineglass Bay
When you start planning your Tasmania travels, a picture of the gorgeous Wineglass Bay will likely be the first thing you see. Dubbed as one of the best beaches in the world, this humble bay located in Freycinet National Park is where you’ll find a remote blue-water paradise sheltered by mountains of green. Wineglass Bay is only accessible by hike or kayak but the views are worth it. You can walk to the lookout on your own, take a guided tour or sign up for The Freycinet Experience walk. This four-day journey will take you through pink granite mountains, coastal forests and beaches, including Wineglass Bay.
5. Lavender fields
During the summer, Tasmania’s lavender fields are in full bloom, meaning it’s the perfect time to visit – not just for the gorgeous scenes of purple, but also the aroma. Port Arthur Lavender is just a five-minute drive from the famous Port Arthur Historic site on the Tasman Peninsula. Here you can stroll around the seven hectares of lavender fields or explore the surrounding rainforest and lakes with ocean views. If you’re in the north, Bridestowe Lavender Estate is located a little over 50 kilometres northeast of Launceston. Here, you’ll find an incredible 105 hectares of lavender fields and gardens. Top off your visit with lavender-flavoured ice cream and brownies.
6. Discover the history of Port Arthur
Port Arthur Historic Site, located about 90 minutes away from Hobart, is one of the best places to learn about Tasmania’s history. In 1833, the town was used to house and punish over a thousand of Tasmania’s most notorious convicts. It’s now one of Tasmania’s most fascinating travel experiences where you can tour the prison and discover old artefacts and stories. If you’re brave enough there is also a lantern-lit walking tour a ghost tour.
7. MONA: a museum like no other
The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) is the home for everything weird, wacky and wonderful. Located in Hobart, it is the largest privately-owned museum in Australia and unlike any, you’ve seen before. The displays range from interactive and entertaining to confronting and sometimes controversial. With a large range of exhibitions, restaurants and festivals, your senses will be enlightened one way or another. (Please note, MONA is closed until late 2020 but have a feast activation at Faro Bar and Restaurant running).
8. Seek out local wildlife
Why not centre your holiday around Tasmania’s local wildlife? Tasmanian Devil Unzoo offers a unique experience where travellers can witness wildlife in their natural habitat without cages. Alternatively, you could set off on a wildlife and wilderness tour where guides take you to all the best places to witness wildlife in the wild. Maria Island National Park is a natural wildlife sanctuary where you can often spot wombats, kangaroos, wallabies, birds, ringtail possums and many other animal residents.
9. Foodie adventures
If you love discovering local food, then be sure to add Huon Valley or Tamar Valley to your list. It was thanks to Huon Valley, that Tassie earned the nickname ‘Apple Isle’. Located half an hour from Hobart, Huon Valley is where 80 per cent of the state’s apples are grown. As such, you’ll find plenty of organic cider and craft breweries in the area. For a taste of local produce, Fat Pig Farm serve dishes straight from their gardens and paddock and even offer farm tours. Port Cygnet Cannery has also made a name for itself as a food, beverage and events hub in Huon Valley.
Tamar Valley is one for the wine lovers. Travel to north Tasmania and meander the winding roads that make up the Tamar Valley Wine Route. The region is known for high-yielding vineyards and famous for its chardonnays, sparklings and pinot noir. For lunch, stop off at Moore’s Hill Vineyard for a tasting plate of local cheeses, meats and seafood.
10. Bruny Island
On the southeast coast of Tasmania, Bruny Island makes for a great day trip or short stay. The island, accessed by a 20-minute vehicular ferry from Kettering, offers a secluded getaway among plenty of wildlife including albatrosses, dolphins, seals and occasionally migrating whales. So keep your eyes peeled as you explore this rugged coastline and take in the surrounding water views. The Free Spirit Pods have rated among the best accommodation on the island and are situated on eight acres of bushland with waterfront views and direct access to Quarantine Bay.
Keep reading: Luxury all inclusive getaway on Bruny Island, Tasmania
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