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Road trippin’ in Tasmania – 10 top tips

by | 2 Sep 2019

If you ever get the chance, the beautiful island of Tassie is a must do. It has so many natural wonders that you could spend weeks here and still not see everything. If you only have a few days to visit, here are our ten top tips. 

Salamanca Markets

Open every Saturday from 8.30am until 3pm, Salamanca Market is the most visited tourist attraction in Tasmania. What started in Hobart’s historic Salamanca Place in 1971 with a handful of stalls has become a vibrant weekly event featuring hundreds of stallholders onsite. As markets go, it’s impressive. Shop there for local produce, arts and crafts as well as lots of delicious food and some homemade gems. 

Parking is limited, so it’s a good idea to take advantage of the free Salamanca Shuttle. It runs around the city of Hobart in a continuous loop every ten minutes from 9am.

For more information hit up Salamanca Markets.

Wineglass Bay, Freycinet National Park

No trip along Tassie’s east coast could be complete without a stopover in Freycinet National Park and, in particular, iconic Wineglass Bay. There is so much natural beauty here, breathtaking blue waters, white beaches, rugged terrain and beautiful birdlife. 

It takes about 40 minutes to walk up to the lookout; theres also the option to walk the 1000 steps down to the beach. It’s not an easy walk by any means, but if youre up for it, you’ll be rewarded with a pristine beach experience. Take a picnic, relax and enjoy the stunning beach and beautiful water. Of course, you’ll then need to decide whether to walk back up the 1000 steps or return to the carpark via Hazards Beach. It’s only 8 kilometres, but the terrain is rocky, narrow in parts and occasionally tough to negotiate. Wineglass Bay Information

Blue Derby Bike Trails

This place is the bikeriding Mecca! If bike riding is your thing or you have kids who love to ride bush trails, then you must visit Derby, one of the world’s great mountain biking destinations. BYO bike is not required: you can hire everything you need on-site, and Derby has bike trails suitable for all skill levels! You could spend days here trying out the different trails but if you only have an afternoon, the team will help you choose the best option for you 

On my visit, the staff at Blue Derby went out of their way to be helpful and our family of five had an incredible day. 

St Columba Falls and the Pyengana Cheese Factory

Tasmania is the bees knees for cheese. If you’re a cheese lover or fascinated to watch the fourth-generation of this business in action, handcrafting prizewinningcloth-bound cheddar, then make a point of stopping at the Pyengana Dairy on the way to St Columba Falls (more on that shortly). You can tour the facility, do some tasting, enjoy morning tea or purchase some delectable local produce to take with you on the road. 

A short drive from the village of Pyengana lie the St Columba Falls. The 1.2 kilometre return walk couldn’t be easier or more soothing. A wooded trail meanders to the spot where you can take in the mesmerising sight of water cascading down a 90metre drop. Even in summer, when the water volume is lower, the sound it generates is peaceful and meditative. Take some lunch, have a picnic on the forest floor and drink in the smells and sounds of this natural beauty. Im convinced that the fairies live here somewhere, it’s magical! 

Barnbougle

Non-golfers may not realise that Barnbougle, on Tasmania’s sand-dune studded northeast coast, has not one but two world-class golf courses, The Dunes and Lost Farm Yes, Tassie is now synonymous with golf, and Barnbougle regularly hosts top golfers from around the globe. Yet these two iconic courses can be easily enjoyed by both the social golfer and the golfing enthusiast alike. We played at the Dunes, but if this is your sport then you’ll want to play at both courses; theyre surprisingly different from each other.

More information on Barbougle is here.

Douglas Apsley National Park

Visit Evercreech Forest Reserve in Douglas Apsley National Park, home of the oldest standing white gums in Tassie. These 300year oldtrees stand over 100 metres high, and are a short, easy walk from the carpark. A longer trail that winds through the magnificent forest it is suitable for the fitter, more agile visitor, despite  signage suggesting it’s an easy walk. The track is overgrown, which makes the trail hard to spot at times, especially in the section leading to the waterfall. It’s also very slippery in parts. Yep, I fell in the creek! 

Cataract Gorge Launceston

A leisurely 15minute walk from Launceston city centre youll find the stunning Cataract Gorge Reserve. It offers a scenic chairlift, hiking trails through bushland, extensive Victorian gardens, cafes, restaurants and more besides. For family fun activities, there’s the popular Penny Royal complex at the mouth of the gorge. Themed around the exploits of a well-known local bushranger, its options include gold-panning, gem fossicking, zip-lining and a river cruise.

To help plan your trip, search Cataract Gorge.  We also visited Penny Royal, the kids will love it. Penny Royal Information

Nine Mile Beach Swansea

A stroll along shell-strewn Nine Mile Beach, just outside Swansea, is a delight. The whitenoise soundtrack of the waves rushing in on those shells is sublime. And as with most of Tassie, the area abounds in native Aussie animals in the wild. Expect to see echidnas, wallabies and possums galore. Drive carefully though, as these little fellas are likely to appear on the road with no notice, which is definitely a hazard throughout Tassie. 

MONA

The Museum of Old and New Art aka MONA is located in Berriedale, 11 kilometres north of Hobart. It’s around 20 minutes by car or 25 minutes on the MR-1 Fast Ferry. Id highly recommend the short trip up the Derwent. 

MONA houses an eclectic and edgy mix of art; it certainly isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. However, there’s plenty to see, do and smell at MONA, both inside and outside the extraordinary structure, which is built into a cliff If thought-provoking art is your thing and you have the time, it’s a memorable place to visit. 

The museum is open Wednesday to Monday from 10am to 5pm. If youre a local or under 18, admission is free, although youll still need to pick up a ticket at the museum. At the time of publishing, tickets are $28 for adults and $25 concession.

You can also book tickets in advance online before you travel with MONA.

Other tips for Tassie travel

  • Theres little to no phone reception outside of the major Tassie towns so be sure to have something other than your smart phone to help you navigate. 
  • The native fauna tends to live and eat very close to the roads in Tassie, oblivious to the traffic. As many of the roads in country areas are narrow and windy, please keep a sharp eye out for straying animals to help reduce “road kill”. 
  • We found that everything is expensive in Tassie, so adjust your budget accordingly. 
  • Want your holiday to be stress free? Here are our top 5 tips.
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Hi, I’m Justine – I’m so happy to find you here. The Flossi Creative blog is a resource for the dreamers, doers and career crusaders. Enjoy!

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