Alright then hiking enthusiasts, no doubt you’ve heard of Cradle Mountain. This stands to be the most iconic mountain on the island because of its jagged peaks and stunning location – Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park.
It’s certainly worth a visit, even if you don’t intend on climbing to the top! The views around it are breathtaking.
And that’s not all; there are SO many walking opportunities in Tassie. Our guess is it’s the main reason people visit.
From gentle day walks to epic multi-day hikes, here is a list of the must-do walks on the island:
Overland Track – 4-7 day hike which includes Cradle Mountain
2. South Coast Track – a wilderness track that covers 85km
3. Freycinet National Park – swim at Wineglass Bay and marvel at The Hazards
4. Frenchman’s Cap – prominent peak in the Wild West Coast region
5. Walls of Jerusalem – a multi-day hiking area with opportunities to set up a ‘base camp’
6. Three Capes Track – coastline track with very fancy huts along the way
We highly recommend checking out TasTrails for a comprehensive list all walks across the island. Including easy, medium and hard walks from 20-minutes to several days.
2. Step into the Bizarre World of MONA
If you’re a lover of contemporary art, or anything a little bit weird, you’re going to love MONA museum in Hobart.
Trust us when we say this isn’t your usual boring museum that kills your soul. We’re not museum people and we absolutely loved it here!
The exhibitions are always changing. Many of them provoke deeper thinking and some just have you questioning “what’s this all about?”
There is even one guy that has sold his tattooed skin to the museum. Until he dies, he sits for hours at a time meditating whilst showing off his body art. Mmm hmm.
Salamanca Market is not known as one of Australia’s largest and most vibrant outdoor markets for nothing, you know.
It has been going since 1972, offering up everything you can imagine, from locally grown produce and fresh food, to unique crafts and buskers worth listening to.
Every Saturday between 08:30am and 3pm you’ll find more than 300 stalls ready for business.
To top it off, it’s located close to Hobart’s picturesque waterfront, Salamanca Place.
4. Visit a hidden gem: Alchemy Cafe
Granted; there are plenty of cafes in Tasmania. So why are we only listing one of them?
Because when you come across a hidden gem on your travels, it would be rude not to share it with fellow travellers that love to get away from the tourist scene!
Alchemy Cafe is located in a charming little place called Forth, on the tourist route to Cradle Mountain.
Get ready for…
“…a paleo friendly, vegan friendly and allergy friendly, licensed cafe with delicious foods that promote wellness!”
“With a children’s playroom, an upbeat vibe, cozy woodfire, sunny and fresh courtyard, live music events, dessert nights and showcasing local artists and creators, Alchemy Cafe is one to put on your map!”
5. Stand on orange rocks at Bay of Fires
Head to the east coast of Tasmania and stumble across whites sand beaches, crystal blue water and orange-hued granite rocks. It’s quite a sight.
The Bay of Fires stretches for over 50 kilometres from Binalong Bay to Eddystone Point.
Top tip: spend a night or two at the free camping areas just north of Binalong bay. In nearby St Helens there are public showers and laundry. You’re welcome.
6. Cruise along Cataract Gorge in Launceston
Literally alongside the second largest city in Tasmania is the fantastic Cataract Gorge.
It’s such a beautiful area that can be explored on foot or by boat. It’s even possible to drive right up to the main area where there is a cafe, outdoor swimming pool and kids play area.
There’s a cute chairlift taking you over the gorge, plus short walks up and down the valley. The water is chilly but certainly worth a dip!
We’d say this is the #1 choice when it comes to things to do in Launceston.
7. Self-therapize yourself in a natural Thermal Spring
Just 90-minutes south of Hobart there is Hastings Thermal Springs + Caves.
There are some pretty impressive cave systems in Tasmania, and this stands to be one of the best and most popular. Most likely because after your visit to the caves, you can enjoy the naturally occurring warmth of the hot springs.
It’s a tepid 28 degrees with a cooling outdoor temperature. See you there!
8. Peer across the waters to Antarctica
Well, you won’t be able to actually see Antartica if you visit Cockle Creek, but you will in fact be standing at the southernmost point of Australia. And nothing stands in the way of you and Antartica from here!
Just a 2-hour drive from Hobart, Cockle Creek really does feel like the end of the world. Yet there is surprisingly a lot to discover here.
The camping area is free and peaceful. The beaches are empty of people, and there is a cool area dedicated to the bay’s whaling history. And of course; there are some great walking opportunities!
9. Walk amongst giants in the Tarkine Forest
Over in the north-west there is a huge temperate rainforest, sand dunes and coastal heathland with strong links to the Tasmanian Aboriginal people.
Seriously, this area should be on everyone’s list of places to explore.
You’ll feel as though you’ve been taken back in time to when dinosaurs ruled the world.
The area is home to the world’s only known Blackwood sinkhole. There’s an adventure company that boasts a 110-m slide, and there’s opportunity for kayaking, camping and walking among evidence of Aboriginal communities.
Here’s a secret: near Arthur River there is a beach that is home to fantastic Aboriginal rock carvings. Speak with the staff at the nearby Visitor Information Centre to find out more.
10. Go in search of Platypus
Tasmania stands to be one of the best places to catch a sighting of the bizarre, yet cute platypus.
But you have to be willing to put in the time and patience!
We got super lucky and spotted a Platypus in the most unexpected places; in a small canal in a place called Penguin.
Top tip: head out around dawn or dusk and choose a spot to sit and watch quietly from the waters edge.
Here is a list of areas on the island that are known to be home to platypus:
Liffey Falls area
2. Latrobe (Bells Parade & Warrewee Forest)
3. Geevestone Circuit Platypus walk
4. Dove Lake (Cradle Mountain National Park)
5. Strahan @ botanical creek platypus stream
11. Hop across to Bruny Island
The marvels of Bruny can be enjoyed in a day trip from Hobart, or you might prefer to stay on the island for 2-3 days to fully immerse in the landscape.
Either way, you can’t miss out on what’s called ‘The Neck’ – the isthmus of land that connects the north and south parts of the island.
One of the coolest ways to explore Bruny Island is by taking a wilderness cruise.
First of all, what’s the best way to reach this island off the south coast of Australia?
There are two main ways:
Fly into Launceston or Hobart – flying from Melbourne often proves the cheapest
Sail with Spirit of Tasmania from Melbourne to Devonport – the crossing takes between 9-11 hours
We enjoy Skyscanner and Omio.com to find cheap flights all over the world, including Australia
There are some great bus services running all over Tasmania. It’s an easy way to get around the island, and we found the prices to be quite fair.
Tassielink is the direct service which links Hobart, Launceston and Devonport. It’s a great one to use if you take the ferry and want to reach one (or both) of the main cities.
Otherwise, you can use the Redline service. They also connect the major cities, and they stop off at smaller places inbetween. This is useful for getting off the beaten track!
For the self drivers out there, you cannot explore Tasmania without downloading WikiCamps on your phone.
This awesome app lists ALL of the camping opportunities across Australia. From free camps, to self-contained and paid campsites, this app has it all.
It can be used offline and is all yours for a small one-time fee.
We wouldn’t have been without it during our time here. It opened doors to some fantastic locations we’d never have found without the help of WikiCamps.
This option is actually super cool.
With Transfercar you can get lucky and find a car relocation from Hobart/Launceston to Melbourne. Usually you are offered 2-3 FREE days, with the option of adding extra days at a reduced price.
If you’re even luckier, some companies throw in a full tank of fuel and ferry expenses paid for the driver.
Good to know: Transerfar offer relocations across Australia!
Be aware that most companies expect the driver to be at least 21+ years, and often you need to pay a bond of around $500. Make sure you check if debit cards are accepted – sometimes they prefer credit cards only.
Important: once you have ‘requested’ a booking on the website, you have already agreed to the terms and are liable to pay a fee if you change your mind. So make sure you’re sure before you hit that request button!
Seasonal Work in Tasmania
Working towards your 2nd year working holiday visa in Tasmania is a really good choice – there is so much seasonal work on offer!
Between the months of October and June you can get involved in:
Berry picking (raspberries, blueberries etc)
Tasmania’s North West coast is considered one of the best places in the world for quality fruit and veg.
We suggest staying with Tasman Backpackers Lodge – a working hostel that offers reasonbly priced accommodation and help with finding seasonal work.
Top tip: having your own car will bump you up as a more suitable candidate for work.
Where to stay in Tasmania
You’re in luck, dear reader, for there is a wonderful 5 star hostel in Tasmania!
And not only that, but it just so happens to be situated in the capital city of Hobart – a must see destination when travelling to this state.
There are a few hostels worth a mention in Tasmania. Though we must admit the choice of hostels around the island isn’t huge.
Montacute Boutique Bunkhouse (Hobart)
This family-lifestyle hostel at the other end of the world overflows with that homely vibe, with a hint of poshtel mixed in.
Though you consciously know you chose a hostel, you may forget and think you’ve checked into a hotel.
And by that we mean you can expect…
Crisp, clean & fresh design
Modern and vintage touches
A very warm welcome from the Montacute family (including dog!)