Even if you have visited the Apple Isle before, this island state has reinvented itself and added lots of new and interesting attractions. There are now direct flights from Adelaide, lots of domestic connections through Melbourne to airports in the north of Tasmania, and still the option to take your own car and travel on the ferry from Melbourne/Devonport. Exploring Tasmania has never been easier.
If you are looking at a fly/drive option, make sure you contact our office for special package car hire rates which are much cheaper than hiring from the car companies direct. It is far more cost effective for us to book car hire (or campervan) in advance rather than making this decision once you have arrived. Driving still gives you the flexibility to get out and see the places on your wish list, but if windy, unfamiliar roads are not your thing, then let us recommend a coach tour, specialised walking tour or special interest touring.
Sometimes even with a car it is nice to do a day trip and let someone else worry about traffic and directions whilst you enjoy the passing scenery. A day trip from Hobart to Bruny Island is a perfect example. Bruny Island is a place of bountiful produce, rare wildlife, rainforests and windswept beaches, and there are a number of options to include this unique part of Tassie in your itinerary. Choose a coach/ferry gourmet day trip which visits all the island's great food producers (cheese, crayfish, whiskey, salmon, chocolate, wood oven baked break, oysters, honey, fudge, olives, berries and wine) or enjoy the extraordinary beauty of the island on a boat trip from Hobart taking in the wildlife and dramatic coastline. We also have day trips to visit the Bruny Island lighthouse. Ask our office for all the options and full details.
Hobart has an abundance of attractions including the weird and wonderful MONA (Museum of Old and New Art) which houses a mind-blowing showcase of international treasures and contemporary art. Advance tickets sales are required together with advance ferry bookings if you want to arrive by water. MONA is located 11km north of Hobart, approximately 25 minutes by ferry or 20 minutes by road. MONA is also home to two wineries and a brewery, several bars and restaurants, luxury accommodation pavilions, a library, cemetery and tennis court - so depending on your tastes, a visit takes around half a day to see all the attractions. There's also live music and a theatre scene with everything from a world-class symphony orchestra to underground acts and performance art. This can be done as a day tour or independently. MONA is currently only open select days of each week.
If you prefer more contemporary style museum attractions then make sure you visit the Mawson's Hut Replica constructed by heritage architects and builders. Located opposite Constitution Dock in Hobart, the replica is a small, true to life museum which duplicates the historic huts used by the team of 18 courageous men who went on the Australian Antarctic Expedition of 1911-14 and lived in Cape Denison, Commonwealth Bay. The friendly staff and volunteers are on hand to answer questions and bring this unique part of history to life.
Another Hobart attraction is Salamanca Market. This outdoor market has been operating every Saturday for over 40 years, with Tasmania's fresh produce, quality food and wine available for purchase from many vendors who also offer free tastings. It's a great place for souvenir Huon pine wooden items, as well as crafts, gifts, clothing, buskers, street performers and silver smiths. Visit between 8.30am and 3.00pm – and dress accordingly!
Tasmania is also home to some of Australia's leading cool climate wines with pinot noir and sparkling wines being the most popular. You'll find boutique breweries and distilleries showcasing their wares at cellar doors where you can sample the produce and talk to the makers in many regions of Tasmania. Some wineries are an easy day trip from Hobart, like Frogmore Creek which also has a fabulous restaurant. Others have amazing views, try Devils Corner Winery. If you don't fancy wine, Tasmania's clean green environment is also ideal for producing cider, whisky and gin.
Another great excursion from Hobart is to the Tahune Airwalk located an easy drive via the beautiful Huon Valley. The treetops walk above the forest canopy allows you to view these forest giants up close and look down over where the wild waters of the Huon and Picton rivers mingle. The 600-metre walkway ends at a spectacular cantilevered platform, 50 metres above the riverbank where the views extend to the mountains of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. The picturesque and thrilling trails include the Swinging Bridges, Rainforest walk and Huon Pine walks. It is possible to try ziplining, an Eagle Hang Gliding experience, or we can book you on a Twin River Rafting adventure for a gentle rafting experience. There is also a great café on site complete with fire during the cooler months. This half day trip can be a peaceful forest ramble (without heights if you prefer) or if you are up for a more challenging experience, try one of the Tahune Adventures activities for all age groups.
Tasmania has many famous national parks and wonderful wilderness areas. This time we chose to experience Freycinet National Park, Tasmania's first national park which opened in 1916. With the pink granite mountains of the Hazards and stunning white sand beaches, including Wineglass Bay, the Freycinet Peninsula offers world-class scenery and bushwalking. The Freycinet National Park Visitor Centre is one of the best I have visited. Knowledgeable staff, well stocked with every item you may need and interpretive displays highlighting the natural and cultural heritage of the area – well worth calling in before you start exploring. You can also purchase your National Park Passes at the centre (mandatory to enter the park). To stay right inside the park with easy access to the walking paths, Freycinet Lodge is recommended. One night will not give you long enough to see all the sights as this destination is not just about bushwalking – cruises, aqua taxis, sea kayaking, 4WD tours, E-bikes and oyster tour/tastings are also possible. We certainly enjoyed the climb to the Wineglass Bay lookout and seeing the picture-perfect beach from above, but also found the scenery in Honeymoon Bay at dusk gorgeous, loved the coastal views at Cape Tourville Lighthouse and the aquamarine sea contrasting with the orange rocks at Sleepy Bay where we had a picnic on the beach. Don't forget when you are there to visit the town of Coles Bay and have pizza or coffee at Géographe Restaurant and Expresso Bar. This eatery specialises in local produce (especially seafood), wood fired pizzas, great coffee and spectacular views. David and his team will take great care of you.
Hobart has an amazing choice of restaurants. We loved the Mexican food in a converted bank building in North Hobart complete with Tequila bar - every dish on the menu is designed with this communal approach in mind. We had some of the best Greek food at the family favourite Urban Greek, and loved the hip Japanese fusion food and funky bar at Bar Wa Izakaya. Hobart also has world-class cafes, great coffee and caters for vegetarians and dietary requests. Lots of places had outdoor seating options and an advance reservation is recommended. Many were not possible to just walk in and get a reservation on the day being fully booked.
For everything on Tasmania and more on interstate trips in Australia, contact Kymberly or call 8274 1222 or come and see us.