Regions of Tasmania
Tasmania is home to accessible World Heritage wilderness, dense ancient forests, beautiful beaches and green rolling pastures. There are also reminders of the island's penal colony beginnings, fine Georgian and Victorian architecture, excellent restaurants, wineries and theatre and warm, welcoming locals.
The capital of Tasmania, Hobart is a hub of culture and cuisine studded with al fresco cafes, music, theatre and the arts as well as dockside fishmongers. Punctuated by mellow sandstone, Hobart is a city of water which can be enjoyed on a river cruise or on a trip to the summit of Mount Wellington. The historic town of Richmond is just 25 km away and is popular for its impressive Georgian architecture, galleries and boutiques and family friendly attractions such as the garden maze, large detailed model of old Hobart Town and amusement park especially for young children.
Just south of the historic town of Sorell, along the Tasman Peninsula, you’ll discover stunning scenery, unique wildlife, rich heritage and adventure. This melting pot of all things fine showcases gorgeous heritage buildings, cellars of wine from charming vineyards overlooking the sea and local specialties to savour the delicate flavours produced by this region. The wildlife here ranges from playful dolphins to a chance encounter with the rare Tasmanian devil. Further to the south lies Port Arthur, set on the calm waters of the tranquil bay for more than a century and a half.
South of Hobart marks the start of the Huon Trail which winds its way through the stunning Huon Valley, D’Entrecasteaux Channel and Bruny Island. This picturesque area boasts majestic rivers fringed by tall pines, dense vegetation of dappled forests and gentle sparkling seas. It’s an easy drive and well worth it for the fantastic scenery along the way; however you can also fly from Cambridge Airport to land at Melaleuca.
The Derwent Valley lays North West of Hobart and is renowned for its endless stretches of hop fields, orchards, charming villages and lovely old coastal houses. Affectionately known as ‘The Rivers Run’ the Lyell Highway winds along the course of the Derwent River through poplar trees and drooping willows to Tasmania’s mountainous wilderness. This rugged region is a testament to the explorers, bushmen and farmers who settled to make a living off this land. Most attractions are conveniently located 30-40 minutes’ drive from Hobart.
Launceston really is a tale of two cities where you can immerse yourself in the classically stunning Victorian-era architecture or get back to nature at the picturesque Cataract Gorge Reserve just minutes away. Expect the unexpected in this region and enjoy the colourful rhododendrons and peacocks as well as rock climbing, hang gliding and even white water rafting. Savour the sights, smells and tastes of the fine food served in the city’s bistros and restaurants before strolling the boardwalks of Tamar Island. Observe birds at play in their natural habitat and explore Notley Gorge’s lush rainforest and cascading waterfalls. Low Head is also a popular tourist attraction to witness the fairy penguins returning each evening to their burrows in the coastal scrub.
You can get to Hobart from Launceston via the Midlands in just a couple of hours however it’s worth taking your time to enjoy all of the charming colonial towns and stunning architecture along the way. Affectionately known as the Heritage Highway, you’ll find antique shops and gorgeous stained glass in Evandale. Home to the annual Village Fair this delightful town also hosts the National Penny Farthing Championships. For all you collectors, Greg and Gill’s Place has an amazing assortment of vintage cars, cameras, model cars, planes and trains. Campbell Town, just 37 km south of Launceston, boasts fine Georgian architecture, the Heritage Highway Museum, Bieniek Fine Arts Gallery, Harshals Gallery, Plume Antiques as well as the convict-built Red Bridge.
Tasmania’s East Coast is a scenic and sunny coastline full of marine life, wine, wildlife, beaches, history and adventure. Nature buffs will love the national parks like Douglas-Aspley with its peaceful rivers, iconic eucalyptus and Oyster Bay Pines. Freycinet is a bushwalker’s paradise and Maria Island is brimming with fascinating history, picturesque walks and a range of native birds and animals to discover. Foodies will enjoy following the East Coast Gourmet Trail to sample the region’s fresh produce and savour the best local delicacies.
Tasmania’s North East is a land of stunning scenery and colourful wildflowers. Summertime brings the poppy fields to life and the rows of lavender blaze with an electric purple hue. Glittering beaches dot the coast and the turquoise sea surges against the contrasting backdrop of rugged cliffs, rich history and unique wildlife. The place names go some way to explaining the coast’s fascinating history with Freycinet (French), Schouten and Maria (Dutch), Swansea (Welsh), Ben Lomond (Scottish) and Triabunna and Weilangta (Aboriginal).
As Tasmania’s most recognised landmark, Cradle Mountain’s craggy profile is the gateway to the Overland Track that links to Lake St Clair at the north. The visitor centre sits on the boundary of the park and features an interpretive display, ranger station, park information, walker registration and up-to-date weather reports. There are a number of scenic walks that allow you to take in the stunning natural surrounds that depart from the centre and the Dove Lake car park, just 14 km further on.
Here you’ll find the southern hemisphere’s largest craft festival in Deloraine. Whether you’re only visiting for the day or plan to spend some time exploring the Overland Track you’ll be delighted by remarkable mountains, meandering streams, lush forests, colourful wildflowers and unique wildlife. ‘Spirit of Tasmania’ is Devonport’s Bass Strait passenger and vehicle ship and the coast winds westward from Burnie, between the Bass Strait and through the lush fertile farmlands. The imposing bluffs of Table Cape, Rocky Cape and Circular Head that jut out over the sea are a sight to behold and the stone cottages of Stanley and elegant façade of Highfield homestead are charming reminders of the towns farming and fishing past.
The ancient rocks that surround the West Coast’s mountains and wilderness capture the rich history of this World Heritage area dating back millions of years. Follow the dark waters of the Gordon River into the dense canopy of the rainforest to discover how modern piners conserve the Huon pine, many of which are up to 2,000 years old. Sample the fresh delights of the Macquarie Harbour including crayfish and salmon straight from the sea to your plate. The quaint old streets of Strahan are also the perfect place to experience the West Coast’s rich mining heritage.
King Island is renowned for its cheeses, cream, crayfish, beef and seafood as well as its long stretches of pristine beaches and crisp, clean air. The laid back lifestyle here is unlike any experienced before and the abundance of wildlife, reefs and shipwrecks are perfect to explore. Flights operate out of Victoria, Burnie and Devonport and it’s just a short flight north east from Launceston to the unspoilt Flinders Island. The dramatic and varied landscapes here feature everything from peaks to beaches making them the perfect spot for bushwalking, swimming, snorkelling and diving to explore the fantastic flora and fauna.