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65 Best Things to Do in Tasmania For First-Timers (+Map)

65 Best Things to Do in Tasmania For First-Timers (+Map)

Olly Gaspar

By Olly Gaspar, full-time traveler for 6 years. I visit every place I write about & share real tips, photos, & advice from my trips.

Discover the best things to do in Tasmania in this ultimate travel guide for first-time visitors! Explore iconic attractions like Cradle Mountain & hidden gems around Hobart, Launceston, Devonport & beyond!

Tasmania (Lutruwita) is Australia’s island state and is home to incredible UNESCO World Heritage wilderness areas and plenty of unique wildlife, including the famous Tasmanian devil. If it’s your first time in Tasmania, you’ll be blown away by the untouched beaches, dramatic coastlines, and the many historical landmarks like the renowned Port Arthur.

We spent several months exploring almost every inch of this incredible island in our campervan. Drawing from our experience, I’ve written this comprehensive travel guide revealing the best things to do in Tasmania for your first visit! Furthermore, at the bottom, you’ll also find a useful attractions map & info on where to stay, booking tips and what to pack!

Best Things to Do in Tasmania

Suppose you're planning your first trip to Tasmania. In that case, I recommend visiting Strahan and the West Coast, exploring the historic sites and scenic hikes around Hobart, and a trip to Bruny or Maria Island. Read on for a full list.

Below you'll find my top three favorite bookable experiences in Tasmania but don't miss this guide to the best places to stay too!

Gordon river cruise on tasmania's west coast

1. Strahan: World Heritage Cruise

Discover the World Heritage Wilderness of Tasmania's west coast with this local & family-owned cruise down the Gordon River.

The neck lookout on bruny island

2. Bruny Island Day Trip Top-Pick

An epic day trip to Bruny Island from Hobart. Travel by ferry, see seals and penguins and admire amazing views from The Neck and Truganini Lookout.

Horseshoe falls mount field national park tasmania

3. Hobart: Mount Field Day Drip

Discover the temperate rainforests and amazing waterfalls of Mount Field (must visit) on a convenient. daytrip from Hobart.

1. Visit Cradle Mountain National Park

Cradle Mountain is one of the most iconic National Parks in Tasmania and perhaps in all of Australia! This unique alpine region is incredibly scenic and offers a plethora of awesome day walks and multi-day hikes.

Some of the best hikes include the famous Dove Lake Circuit, Cradle Mountain Summit and the multi-day Overland Track. Cradle Mountain also offers great opportunities for wildlife spotting, with plenty of wombats, wallabies and even Tasmanian Devils calling this region home.

Getting to Cradle Mountain is a little bit tricky if you don't have your own car, but very doable by booking organised transport.

Cradle mountain dove lake circuit tasmania

2. World Heritage Cruise on the Gordon River

Before I visited Tasmania for the first time, I was constantly told that one of the absolute best things to do was a Gordon River Cruise.

These trips depart from Strahan, on the northern tip of Macquarie Harbour and serves as a terminus for the Gordon River. There are several different cruise options but by far, the best-rated and most cost-effective one is run by World Heritage Cruises. These are the iconic red boats sailing into the Gordon River, one of the wildest places in Tasmania!

Things to do in tasmania - gordon river cruises

3. Climb Mount Amos For Sunrise

Are you looking for the most incredible sunset viewpoint in Tasmania? Mount Amos is the answer!

Mount Amos is a granite peak on the Hazards Mountain Range and one of the best walks in Freycinet Peninsula overlooking the iconic Wineglass Bay. The climb up is a little steep. However, let me tell you that the views are absolutely worth it!

Actually, I'd say that a sunrise hike up to Mount Amos was my favourite thing to do in Tasmania!

Mount amos, freycinet national park hike, tasmania

4. Bay of Fires

The Bay of Fires in Tasmania hit the global travel stage in 2015 when it was mentioned in Lonely Planet’s Top 10 Places to Visit in the World. However, Tasmanians have long recognised the Bay of Fires as being one of the most beautiful spots to visit in the country.

Honestly, a trip to Tasmania is incomplete without visiting the Bay of Fires and Binalong Bay! In this region, you'll find rich, deep-orange boulders scattering the coastline on the banks of fluorescent, turquoise waters. These truly are some of the most beautiful beaches in Australia and we experienced some of the best sunsets of our lives here.

Sweeping white-sand beaches carve the coast as far as the eye can see and weathered, wind-swept bushland hangs onto the edge of its shores– it's a photographer's playground!

Bay of fires sunset tasmania
Bay of fires tasmania

5. See Some of Australia's Best Waterfalls

I think the theme is getting pretty clear now that any of the attractions and highlights in Tasmania are found in nature! For waterfall lovers, there is more than plenty to discover. In fact, I visited over 26 different waterfalls in Tasmania and there are still more that I haven't seen yet.

If you're up for a waterfall-chasing adventure, here are some of my favourites that I consider must-visits.

Philosopher falls tasmania

6. Explore Hobart

Okay, I think it's time to get out of nature and into the city (only for a moment). Hobart is the capital city of Tasmania and consequently the largest in the state. In saying that, it's much smaller than a typical Australian city.

Hobart is often the first destination that people visit in Tasmania and as you might expect, there are plenty of things to do! Some of the main attractions include:

  • Mount Wellington & Wellington Falls
  • MONA
  • Salamanca Market
  • Live Music at one of the old bars in the harbour
  • The Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens
  • Cascade Brewery
  • East Street

The city rests on the banks of the River Derwent and on the slopes of Kunanyi (Mount Wellington). There's plenty of rich culture and history to discover, as well a few attractions worthy of your Tasmania trip.

Where to stay in hobart, hobart harbour and accommodation

7. Climb Kunanyi (Mount Wellington)

Kunanyi, or Mount Wellington is the resident mountain above Hobart. Its power and influence over the region have been recognised long before colonial settlement. It controls the weather, soaking up clouds and trickling fresh drinking water down to the city.

As you might expect, there are plenty of opportunities for adventure here! There are loads of waterfalls and walks to check out but none as popular as Mount Wellington summit! You can either walk here from The Springs, or catch a ride on the Wellington Explorer.

Mount wellington summit bus
Mount wellington explorer bus

8. Bruny Island

Bruny Island is often recommended as a must-visit destination for first-time travellers in Tasmania. The truth is, this 362-square-kilometre island encapsulates a lot of what Tasmania is all about. Here, you’ll find abundant wildlife, sweeping vistas, awesome trails and of course, world-renowned produce and food!

Some stand-out activities and attractions on this iconic Tasmanian island include the Fluted Cape walk, the Mars Bluff archway, the Neck Lookout, the world-renowned Bruny Island cruise and the rare chance to spot an albino wallaby!

Bruny island lookout, best things to do in hobart on a day trip

9. Climb "The Nut" in Stanley

Stanley is a historic town situated at the base of “The Nut”, the remains of an ancient volcanic plug. Climbing this strange geological phenomenon is one of the most unique things to do in Tasmania and a great reason to make a trip out to Stanley!

For those not too keen on taking the steep steps, jump on The Nut Chairlift, which only operates in the warmer months.

The nut at stanley, tasmania

10. Explore the Tarkine Drive

The Tarkine, or Takanya, is Australia's largest temperate rainforest. It's a global treasure with abundant wildlife and rich biodiversity. If you've got the time on your next trip to Tasmania, then I highly recommend taking the scenic Tarkine Drive.

I've written a guide to the Tarkine drive, which covers all of the best things to see and do on the road with some hidden gems not to miss! This region is wild, resulting in fewer tourists and very little tourism infrastructure. Tread lightly, respect the rainforest and enjoy this magical place!

Tip: I recommend renting a car in Hobart, Launceston, or Devonport. I use DiscoverCars in Tasmania to compare rates across dealerships and this has worked out well for me in the past.

Rainforest trees in tasmania
Exploring the Tarkine Rainforest in Tasmania

11. Visit Launceston

Launceston is Tasmania’s second-largest city and is commonly rated as one of the most liveable cities in Australia. Lonnie, as Taswegians call it, is a hub of history, culture, food and nature.

As with most of the quaint little cities of Tasmania, there are a lot of things to do, see and explore. This city also serves as a great hub for travellers looking to explore the region. Plenty of guided tours operate out of Lonnie and there are also many great, heritage-listed accommodation options.

Bridge in launceston, things to do in tasmania, australia

12. Go Hiking

As you would have undoubtedly noticed by now, one of the must do things in Tasmania is to hit the trails! Truthfully, there are just so many epic hikes that it would be almost impossible to name them all! Furthermore, the variety you'll get from trail to trail is just astounding.

One moment, you might be wandering through dense rainforests and the next trekking up alpine peaks!

I've dedicated a huge blog post (linked below) to my favourite hikes in Tasmania. But, here are a few I'd say should belong in any decent Tasmania travel guide!

13. MONA

Easily one of the strangest things to do in Tasmania is a visit to MONA. This is Hobart's Museum of Old and New, but is far unlike any museum I've ever seen before.

This quirky mix of ancient, modern and contemporary art is the largest privately-funded museum in the southern hemisphere. If you're up for a one-of-a-kind experience in Tasmania that you're bound to remember, consider checking out MONA on the banks of the Derwent River.

While you'll find MONA listed in most Tasmania travel guides, I wouldn't say that it's a must-do. However, if you're up for one of the weirdest attractions on the island, go check it out!

Mona hobart
Mona - one of the weirdest things to do from hobart

14. Maria Island

Maria Island has been referred to as “Noah’s Ark in Australia”. It truly is one of the best places in the country to see abundant native wildlife.

As soon as you hop off the ferry, you’ll undoubtedly be greeted by a wallaby or wombat, often both. Other common sights include kangaroos, geese, ringtail possums, pademelons, potoroos as well as a wide range of snakes, lizard and frogs.

The island is also rich in history and offers visitors an opportunity to learn about its dark convict past.

Fluffy wombat in tasmania

15. Spot Tasmanian Devils

Australia, being a remote island in the Pacific, is home to some of the most unique animals in the world. You'd expect then that a remote island off an island would be home to even stranger creatures. And, you're right!

The Tasmanian Devil is the world's largest carnivorous marsupial and is found only in Tasmania. These little guys really live up to their name and are one of the feistiest creatures I've ever seen. Unfortunately, the Tasmanian Devil is endangered, with populations plummeting nearly 80% in the past 20 years due to the very serious Devil Facial Tumour Disease.

Unfortunately, I didn't spot one in the wild after months of hiking in and exploring Tasmania. With that said, you could get lucky. Apparently, some of the best places to spot them are on Maria Island and the Tarkine Rainforest.

Otherwise, check out Devils@Cradle (below), to see a Devil on your visit to Cradle Mountain. This is a sanctuary protecting Devils where you can learn about the conservation efforts helping to protect them.

Tasmanian devil

16. Derby's Floating Sauna

Derby's Floating Sauna is a luxury experience borrowing a page from our Scandinavian friends.

Situated on the calm waters of Lake Derby, this sauna in the heart of a former mining town is the perfect experience during a quick stopover on the way to the East Coast.

The floating sauna has taken off on Instagram as one of the best things to do in Tasmania during the colder months. Warm up in the sauna then take a cold plunge in the fresh waters, if you're game!

There are also loads of mountain bike trails in this region, another reason why Derby is worth a visit!

Derby sauna in tasmania

17. Explore the Tasman Peninsula

The Tasman Peninsula is just a short 70-minute drive from Hobart and is well known for its dramatic coastal landscapes and rich convict history.

I've recommended the Tasman Peninsula in this Tasmanian travel guide as there are just so many activities and things to do in this part of the state.

Whether it be one of Tasmania's best multi-day hikes, a visit to Port Arthur's Historic Site or a Tasman Island Boat Cruise, you simply won't regret visiting this incredible region.

Cape pillar on the three capes track in tasmania, tasman peninsula

18. Port Arthur Historic Site

The Port Arthur Historic Site is one of Tasmania's five UNESCO World Heritage-listed sites. Located on the Tasman Peninsula, this convict site is one of the earliest and most intact in the country.

This huge, 100-acre site has over 30 historic buildings and ruins to explore and to learn about the lives of many of Australia's ancestors.

This is a paid activity in Tasmania which means you'll need to book an entry ticket. However, I'd say that it's definitely worth it as with entry, you'll also get a guided walking tour, a harbour cruise and access to the Port Arthur Gallery, house museums and gardens. The money also goes to the upkeep of the site.

Skip the line: Port Arthur Ticket

Port arthur house

19. Jump Aboard The Tasmanian Wilderness Railway

Back over to the West Coast, the West Coast Wilderness railway is a Tasmanian attraction that is well-regarded as one of Tassie's icons.

This historic rail line journeys through deep Tasmanian wilderness and allows visitors to experience the rugged, yet undeniably beautiful terrain on board a historic steam train.

There are several options to take, undeniably one of the best is the “Rack and Gorge” line departing from Queenstown and running through to the incredible King River Gorge and the isolated station in Dubbil Barril.

This is one of the most scenic trips and takes roughly 4 hours.

Strahan wilderness railway

20. Cruise at Wineglass Bay

Undeniably, one of the most iconic activities and experiences in Freycinet National Park is the incredible Wineglass Bay cruise by Pennicott Wilderness Journeys. This trip is one of the classiest ways to experience the tranquil waters of Wineglass Bay and runs for approximately 4 hours.

Trips depart from Coles Bay and you’ll even get a ploughman’s-style lunch included. A bay cruise offers one of the best opportunities to spot abundant wildlife including sea birds, dolphins, seals and even penguins and whales.

Wineglass bay, freycinet national park
Wineglass Bay from above

21. Little Blue Lake

Little Blue Lake is quickly becoming a popular pit stop among those on a Tassie road trip. That’s because Little Blue Lake is easily accessed on the road towards the East Coast of Tasmania Mount William National Park.

Little Blue Lake is a scenic pit stop for photos and to admire the aquatic remnants of Tasmania’s alluvial tin mining past. The water colour here is quite mind-blowingly blue, which makes for some pretty great photos.

Tasmania little blue lake

22. Hike the Three Capes Track

Besides the Overland Track, The Three Capes Track is perhaps Tasmania’s most popular multi-day hike. If you're looking for a Tasmania activity in the great outdoors, then the Three Capes is a great option, especially for those who aren't too used to multi-day hiking. That's because it's a great entry-level hike without too much elevation.

The track features gentle coves, scenic heathlands, lush forests and of course, spanning views of the most remarkable coastal vistas in the country.

Usually, walkers need to register and pay for this hike as the normal route requires a boat transfer and hut accommodation. However, if you're like me and prefer to do things independently, then check out my guide above on how to do it with just a regular National Parks Pass.

Cape pillar on the three capes walk in tasmania

23. Witness the Aurora Australis

Did you know that Tasmania is one of the best places in Australia to witness the Southern Lights or Aurora Australis?

This phenomenon occurs in Tasmania due to its low latitude, offering a chance to see charged solar wind particles bombard the atmosphere. Admittedly, the Aurora Australis isn't as magnificent as the famed "Northern Lights" like you might see in Norway or Iceland.

However, I'd say that if you're making a trip to Tasmania in the Autumn or Winter months, then I'd definitely recommend adding it to your list of things to do.

The Southern Lights are a little unpredictable. With that said, this Facebook Group is awesome and will definitely help your mission.

Aurora australis tasmania
Great Photo by Andrew Shea

24. Browse the Famous Salamanca Markets

Back to Hobart now and the next featured activity in this Tasmanian travel guide is the world-famous Salamanca Markets.

These markets are held every Saturday morning at Salamanca Place near Hobart Harbour. It brings together artists, craftsmen, food stalls, farmers and many Tasmanian small business owners to sell their unique wares and famous street foods.

If you happen to find yourself in Hobart on a weekend, make sure you save some time for the Salamanca Markets, one of the best things to do in Tasmania for visitors looking to pick up a meaningful souvenir.

Hobart attractions, salamanca market at salamanca place

25. Tahune Adventures Airwalk

The Tahune Airwalk is one of Tasmania’s most popular adventure and tourist attractions. Located in the Tahune Forest alongside the Huon River in the South, this adventure park offers a few worthwhile attractions including the famous Tahune Forest Airwalk and cantilever, walking trails with long swinging suspension bridges, hang gliding and rafting.

Unfortunately, the destructive fires of 2018-2019 devastated the Tahune Forest. However, it's great to see that it is slowly recovering with the help of the team at The Tahune Airwalk team!

Book: Hastings Caves & Tahune Airwalk - $5 OFF with code OLLY5

Tahune airwalk tasmania

26. Explore The Hartz Mountains

Standing at 1253 metres, Hartz Peak is the tallest point on the Hartz Mountain range in southern Tasmania. However, this range is one of the most accessible 1,000 metre+ ranges in Tasmania due to the well-maintained road from Geeveston.

A visit to the Hartz Mountains National Park is a must-do for those checking out the South, especially if you want a glimpse of alpine Tasmania without much effort.

Hartz peak and hartz lake
Sunrise views from Hartz Peak

27. Walk Through the Cataract Gorge

The standout highlight in Launceston is its famed Cataract Gorge. If you're planning a visit to Tasmania's second-largest city, then make sure you add this one to your list of things to do and see.

This beautiful river and gorge is the number one attraction in Launceston and features hiking trails, the world’s longest single-span chairlift and a riverside swimming pool.

There are also daily cruises operating down the gorge which is great if you're short on time!

Cataract gorge - best things to do in launceston

28. Spot a Rare Tassie Quoll

Here's one you might not have seen in a Tasmania travel guide before. Due to its isolated nature, Tasmania is a hotspot for rare creatures found nowhere else in the world.

One of the many elusive marsupials is the Eastern Spotted Quoll. Unfortunately, these little guys have become very rare in mainland Australia and Tasmania is now one of their final places of refuge.

Spotting a quoll is a fairly difficult task as they are nocturnal. We were lucky enough to spot the sleepy bugger below on the way out to Dip Falls but they are said to roam in most forests and National Parks in Tasmania.

Spotted quoll tasmania travel guide

29. Three Falls Circuit

Just an hour and a half from Hobart, travellers will find the incredible Mount Field National Park. This park is one of the most scenic in the state and the highlight is the Three Falls Circuit and Tall Trees walk.

This easy, 2-hour loop includes stops at some of Tasmania's best waterfalls; Russell Falls, Horseshoe Falls and Lady Barron Falls. Additionally, a short segment of the track offers opportunities to see some of Tasmania's tallest trees.

Three falls circuit walk and tall trees walk in mount field national park tasmania

30. Discover Some of the World's Tallest Trees

For a little island, Tasmania does things BIG. Tassie is home to Australia's tallest trees and if you're planning to hit some of the many hiking trails, you're bound to stumble upon a few sleeping giants.

The best places to see large trees in Tasmania are:

  • The Styx Tall Trees Reserve
  • Dip Falls Reserve
  • Evercreech State Reserve
  • The Tarkine
White knights of evercreech

31. Venture to the Styx Tall Trees Reserve

If seeing Australia's tallest trees is on your list of fun things to do in Tasmania, then one of the best places to do so is the Styx Tall Trees Reserve. You'll find this small protected pocket isolated in a large logging region.

The road is a little tricky but manageable by most cars in good weather. Due to the Styx's close proximity to Mount Field National Park, it's a great idea to head here on a quick return detour.

Tasmanian giant trees in the styx valley things to do and attractions in tasmania

32. Drive the 99 Bends Road to Queenstown

It’s no secret that Tasmania has some of Australia’s most scenic roads, from epic mountain passes to unmatched coastal routes.

However, there is one particular spot on the West Coast that might just take the cake as Tassie’s most mind-blowingly beautiful road. It's known as the 99 Bends, a curvy, winding road of perfect tarmac that snakes its way over the mountains above Queenstown.

If you're heading out to the Far West, check out my guide to finding the 99 Bends, or watch my video below for some inspiration.

YouTube video
99 bends tasmania

33. Explore Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park

Staying on the West Coast, for now, make sure you venture through the Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park! You can get here via the scenic road between Lake St Clair National Park and Queenstown.

Highlights in this wild National Park include:

Nelson river nature trail tasmania, gordon wild rivers national park

34. Visit the Tasmanian Central Plateau

Looking for travel inspiration and ideas to get off the beaten path in Tasmania? Consider adding a road trip through the Central Plateau to your list of things to see and do in Tasmania.

The Central Plateau is a remote conservation area that is the largest space of alpine land in Tasmania. There's a lot to do and see here, but don't expect any decent phone reception or even to see many people– perfect if you're looking to go off-grid for a while.

One of my favourite camping spots in the Central Plateau is Brady's Lake, a quaint little spot only really known for fishing.

Also, here's a link to a good map with some highlights for this often-overlooked region of Tasmania if you're planning a road trip.

Camping at bradys lake tasmania

35. Hike Around Maria Island

Maria Island has already been featured in this travel guide to the best things to see and do in Tasmania. However, I think the Maria Island Circuit deserves a mention of its own.

This 2-3 day circuit loop encompasses the best highlights of the island and is in my opinion, the absolute best way to take in this world-class destination. Alternatively, you can also rent a bike and ride around the island.

If you're not too keen on walking the whole island, there are plenty of short walks around the main town of Darlington too!

Maria island self guided hike, coastal hiking track things to do

36. Freycinet Peninsula Circuit & Freycinet National Park

If I had to pick one multi-day coastal hike in Tasmania it'd have to be the incredible Freycinet Peninsula Circuit.

Hiking the Freycinet Peninsula Circuit is by far the best way to experience the mind-bending beauty of Tasmania’s Freycinet National Park.

From stints across white, sandy beaches to steep climbs up rocky mountain summits, consider dedicating a bit of time to exploring this unique Tasmanian icon properly!

View from mount freycinet tasmania

37. Visit Tasmania's Wild Southwest National Park

If it's wilderness you seek, you won't find a wilder National Park in Australia than the notorious Southwest National Park. Exploring Southwest National Park was one of my favourite things to do in Tasmania since it allowed me to really experience the raw nature I was chasing in Australia's island state.

This region has been spared by much of the early logging onslaught for just that reason– it was simply too wet and difficult to work in this park. Therefore, much of the park remains untouched wilderness.

Federation peak tasmania hike

Easy day walks are far and few between here. Instead, hikers only venture out here for challenging missions like Federation Peak, Mt Anne and the fabled Eastern Arthurs and Western Arthurs Traverses.

If you're not prepared for any serious hiking, Adamsons Falls offers a great taste of the raw nature of the Southwest while still being manageable in a few hours. That being said, even this one is fairly remote and overgrown!

Federation peak hike tasmania

38. The Western Wilds

After spending so much time travelling over the past few years, I've realised that sometimes, one of the best things to do, especially in Tasmania, is just to rent a car and drive– get off the beaten path.

One of the best regions to do this is in the Western Wilds. Head to the mining town of Tullah, explore the Tarkine and find yourself a secluded spot by Lake Rosebury. If you find some great spots for yourself, let others know in the comments below or share links to your social photos!

Aerial photograph of tullah, tasmania

39. Boat Harbour

If you're after beautiful, white-sand beaches and beautiful, calm turquoise waters but would rather skip on the crowds, then check out Boat Harbour in the northern part of Tasmania.

Boat Harbour is one of my favourite beaches in Tassie and I consider this beautiful coastal spot one of the best hidden gems in the state!

Tasmania boat harbour

40. The Edge of the World Lookout

The Edge of the World is a lookout spot with a Herculean name, found on the far-reaching end of Tasmania's west coast.

The Edge of the World is a fitting name for the rugged region of Tasmania’s desolate northwest. Here, visitors will find nothing but a small plaque separating them from the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean.

This spot is worth adding to your own list of things to do in Tasmania, especially if you're already planning a road trip to the Tarkine or the West Coast.

The edge of the world tasmania

41. Explore the Tamar Valley Wine Region

The Tamar Valley is one of the richest wine regions of Tasmania, a state already known for incredible local produce and gastronomic delights.

The best way to experience the Tamar Valley Wine Region is to jump on a wine-tasting tour from Launceston. These trips are private, small-group activities stopping by four wineries for tasting and lunch (included).

Girl drinking wine at markus divinus winery

Alternative: Winery Tour from Hobart

Thankfully, there's an awesome full-day Tasmanian wine tour available to book directly from Hobart (meet at Brooke Street Pier).

This 7.5-hour tour visits 4 of the best wineries in Tasmania's south and includes 4 to 6 tastings at each.

42. Hastings Caves & Thermal Springs

On a visit to Tasmania's deep south, make sure to add the Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs to your list of places to visit. This is probably the primary attraction in the region and also one of Tassie's largest cave systems.

You'll need to book a tour to enter the cave but I'd highly recommend it! The tour also gives visitors access to the natural thermal springs which was a big deal breaker for us during the cold Tassie Winter visit!

Hastings caves and thermal springs tasmania

43. Iron Blow Lookout

The Iron Blow lookout is a cantilevered lookout that stretches roughly 10 metres over a large open mining cut known as the Iron Blow, near Gormanston in Tasmania's west.

Below, you’ll find a deep, metal-rich pool of water in a surrounding, otherworldly landscape. You can get here by driving the epic 99 bends road out of Queenstown in the Western Wilds.

This is another lookout attraction that doesn't often make the rounds but a spot that I thought was really underrated and worth visiting if you're driving around Tasmania.

Iron blow mine lookout tasmania things to do

44. Leven Canyon

Are you looking for one of the most bang-for-time lookout hikes in Tasmania? The Leven Canyon lookout is a short circuit loop in the northern end of the state.

The metal viewpoint overlooks the Leven Canyon, a jurassic landscape with a horseshoe bend that is great for photos.

Leven canyon tasmania travel guide

45. Camp at Lake Mcintosh

After spending close to four months driving around Tasmania in our self-converted van, I'd say we have a pretty good idea about the epic camping spots on offer!

One of the standout highlights is a free camping spot beside Lake McIntosh, near the Tarkine township of Tullah. There are multiple spots to pull up, enjoy a campfire and admire the views of the surrounding granite peaks. Best of all, there's almost always never anyone else around!

Lake mcintosh, tasmania things to do

46. Check out Evercreech State Reserve

Located in the far North East is the remote forest reserve known as Evercreech State Reserve.

This is another great free camping spot adjacent to a beautiful temperate rainforest creek, complete with a waterfall and a short circuit loop beneath the world's tallest White Gums. We camped here for a night in our van and had the place all to ourselves!

Tip: Be careful on the drive in. The road is bumpy and can get boggy after heavy rain! Our large van made it so you don't need a 4WD.

Evercreech falls tasmania

47. Remarkable Cave

Stretching all the way back over to the Tasman Peninsula is the newly reconstructed viewpoint for the Remarkable Cave.

This pristine sea cave is one of the best sandstone sea caves in Tasmania. The cliff has been hollowed over millions of years of heavy sea pounding and on a day with a big surge, expect to get wet!

You'll find this one conveniently close by to other attractions including the Port Arthur Historic Site, the Cape Raoul Track and the Mount Brown Track.

Remarkable cave tasmania travel guide

48. Stay a Night on Picnic Island

Picnic Island is a small private isle just off Coles Bay near Freycinet National Park. If you've been following my travels for a while, you'll know that I'm not usually the type to go for luxury accommodation. However, when the owner invited us for a night's stay on this incredible off-grid island paradise, I couldn't refuse!

Staying on Picnic Island was one of the most magical experiences we've had in Tasmania and although it is a little bit pricey, the memories are well worth it!

Picnic island tasmania

49. Visit Apsley Gorge National Park

An often overlooked National Park, Apsley Gorge is a beautiful spot, conveniently located next to Bicheno.

While you won't find that many hiking trails in this park, the Apsley Gorge and River circuit is definitely one to add to the list. There are scenic gorge lookouts and a big swimming hole to cool down in.

This is considered an off-the-beaten-path location that isn't found on many travel guides, which is why it's often missed by first-timers looking to travel in Tasmania.

Apsley gorge, douglas-apsley national park, tasmania

50. Give a Helping Hand to Bob Brown

Tasmania's history is unequivocally unique in that it is rifled with a dark and definitive divide between activists and industry. Tassie's unique location and resources have meant that its economy has relied on logging and mining for centuries.

Unfortunately, this has led to undeniably tragic environmental loss and contamination over the years. The Bob Brown Foundation is a leading organisation attempting to restore the natural balance and protect world treasures like the Tarkine Rainforest from further permanent loss.

If you're visiting Tasmania and looking for something to do that contributes to the cause, reach out to the foundation. Many efforts have long passed the stage of petitions and lobbying and require boots-on-the-ground action.

Tarkine rainforest, tasmania travel guide

51. Experience One of the World's Most Scenic Coastal Flights

Tasmania's East Coast easily takes the cake in my opinion, as the most dramatic coastline in Australia, or perhaps even in the world! Could you think of a better way to witness the marvel of the Freycinet Peninsula, Maria Island and the Tasman Peninsula than from the seat of a scenic flight plane?

If it's on your bucket list and you find yourself in Hobart, definitely don't look past this once-in-a-lifetime Tasmania bucket list activity.

Wineglass bay, freycinet national park tasmania, scenic flight

52. Tessellated Pavement

While you will find some iconic 19th-century cobblestone streets in Hobart, the Tessellated Pavement actually refers to a natural, geological phenomenon found on the Tasman Peninsula near Eaglehawk Neck.

This geometric pattern pictured below is found in only a few places on Earth. It's caused by rare conditions that caused the rocks to fracture and then erode by sea waves to form a tile-like pattern. This Tasmania attraction is worth a visit as it's only a quick stop-over and a short walk from the car park.

Tip: visit at low tide for the best experience. During high tide, many of the pools are below the surface.

Tessellated pavement, attractions in tasmania

53. Explore the Huon Valley

The Huon Valley is Tasmania's prized produce region beginning just 30 minutes from Hobart and extending to the southernmost tip in Australia.

The region is rich in history and culinary delights. Taste local honey and famous Tasmanian Pinot Noir at the many markets and farm-to-table restaurants.

Swans in the huon valley, tasmania

54. Visit Shipstern Bluff

The Shipstern Bluff is a world-famous big-wave surf break found on the southern coast of the Tasman Peninsula. While my photo below certainly doesn't do it justice, this break is actually considered one of the heaviest waves in the world.

Every year, when conditions are just right, dozens of the world's best big-wave surfers fly to Tasmania to compete in the Red Bull Cape Fear competition.

If you're travelling in Tasmania between March and July, keep an ear out, as the competition is often called within a week's notice!

Shipstern bluff walk in tasmania australia

55. Learn About Raptors at the Raptor Refuge

Another great Tasmania attraction for wildlife lovers is the Raptor Refuge near the small town of Kettering, just south of Hobart, near Snug Falls.

This inspiring refuge is dedicated to caring and protecting Tasmania’s large birds of prey. There's an education centre here with informative tours to learn about Tassie's raptors and what the refuge is doing to protect them.

Raptor refuge, tasmania tourist attraction

56. Go Glamping

Have you ever tried glamping? New accommodations are always being explored and this one is a fresh new accommodation movement that appeals to a hybrid of outdoor/luxury travel.

One of the best glamping setups in the country can be found at Huon Valley Glamping. If you're looking for a unique and fun thing to do in Tasmania, definitely check them out!

Huon valley glamping, where to stay in tasmania

57. Stay at Old Macs Farm

Another unique attraction and place to stay in Tasmania is Old Macs, located just a few minutes' drive out of Launceston. This one is more suited to those travelling to Tasmania in a caravan or camper, as they offer excellent sites on their huge farm!

Old Macs have a variety of activities that are great for families, including animal petting, restaurants and a scenic lake to walk around.

Old macs farm in launceston tasmania australia

58. Go on a Cascade Brewery Tour

Did you know that Hobart is home to Australia's oldest brewery? The Cascade Brewery has been producing beer since 1832. It was first established by Peter Degraves when Hobart had 55 licensed pubs for a population of just 10,000!

It's pretty clear that they were successful and still continue to attract thousands of visitors to their working brewery every year.

Hobart attractions and things to do, cascade brewery

59. Visit Gordon Dam

Visitors will find Gordon Dam, also known as the Gordon River Dam, found deep in South West Tasmania. The road out here is one of the most scenic in the country, and an excellent region to explore for hiking and generally just getting off-grid.

The Gordon Dam is an undeniably impressive curved arch dam with a controlled spillway across the Gordon River. It's quite impressive, and makes for great photos if you're willing to take the scenic drive out!

60. Go Whitewater Rafting on the King River

As you'd expect from one of Australia's adventure capitals, there's an abundance of epic whitewater rafting activities for adventure travellers in Tasmania.

One of the best-rated trips runs on the Grade-4 King River on Tassie's West Coast from Queenstown.

White water rafting king river tasmania things to do

61. Spot a Wild Platypus

The final wildlife-related attraction in this Tasmania travel guide is the unique platypus, native to the island.

I grew up in Australia, spending a lot of time in the outdoors and I've never seen as many platypuses as I did travelling in Tasmania. The ones you'll find here are also much larger and fluffier than those in the rest of Australia due to the cold conditions.

Some of the best places to spot these furry, duck-billed, egg-laying marsupials is at Duckhole Lake, Lake Chrisholm and the local park in Geeveston.

Wild tasmanian platypus

62. Go on a Ghost Tour

Even when visiting during daylight hours, there's an undeniably eerie feeling within the walls of the Port Arthur Historic Site. Learning about its dark past and the intimate stories of personal convict experiences is remarkably interesting yet unsettling.

For believers of the paranormal, one of the spookiest things to do in Tasmania is to join in on an evening ghost tour of the premises. This is a guided tour of the premises at night, offering visitors a unique experience to say the least!

Port arthur prison

63. Derwent River Cruise From Hobart

In this guide to Hobart activities, while some tours and paid experiences are mentioned, the standout option for value is undoubtedly the evening sunset dinner cruise from Hobart Harbour.

This 3-hour journey along the River Derwent not only offers a three-course dinner and a complimentary alcoholic drink but also features commentary from a knowledgeable skipper highlighting historical sites and buildings. Priced at under $60, it's an exceptional deal in the city!

Hobart harbour, thigns to do and tourist attractions in tasmania

64. Hollybank Zip Line

Located near Launceston, the Hollybank Zipline offers an exhilarating canopy adventure, soaring 50 metres above the ground.

This unique experience allows participants to glide from treetop to treetop, enjoying stunning views of the valley, Piper's River, and the dense gum forest below. The tour features six distinct zip line courses, with guides providing both safety training and interesting facts about the local forest ecology.

From this aerial perspective, adventurers have a unique opportunity to see the forest, sky, and greenery merge into a breathtaking panorama, making it a must-do activity near Launceston.

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65. Narawntapu National Park

Often hailed as Tasmania's wildlife haven, Narawntapu National Park stretches across the northern coast between Port Sorell and the Tamar River spanning tranquil beaches, grasslands, and wetlands areas.

Many have called this the Serengeti of Tasmania since its a paradise for wildlife lovers, providing some of the best opportunities to observe Tasmanian devils, forester kangaroos, wombats, and a plethora of bird species in their natural habitat.

Eastern quoll tasmania

Tasmania Attractions Map

Below is a useful map that you can use to plan your adventures in Tasmania. It includes all the attractions and things to do in this travel guide.

Tip: click the map to load all the activities and highlights on your Google Maps app. You can also bookmark this page to use it as your Tasmania Travel guide when travelling around this incredible island.

Tasmania travel map
Hiking the freycinet peninsula circuit, wineglass bay campsite, things to do in freycinet national park, tasmania

How to Get to Tasmania

Before you get out and explore all the Tasmania attractions and highlights, you might be interested to know how to actually get here! There are two options for getting to Tasmania, book a flight, or take the Spirit of Tasmania Ferry from Melbourne Harbour.

1. The Spirit of Tasmania

This is Tasmania's very own car-ferry transport crossing the Bass Strait between Melbourne and Devonport, twice daily. The trip takes roughly 9-11 hours and there are options for booking morning (day sails) and evening (overnight) trips.

One thing that I noticed is that seats and car spots fill up very quickly and it's a good idea to book at least a few weeks in advance.

Unfortunately, this option often ends up being more expensive than just flying in. However, the ability to take your own car across is appealing since car rentals in Tasmania is notoriously expensive.

Spirit of tasmania, how to get to tasmania (travel guide)

2. Fly to Hobart or Launceston

There are several airports to fly into domestically from within Australia. Launceston and Hobart are the two largest airports.

Consequently, if you're planning to tour around Tasmania, definitely check prices for both airports as Launceston is often cheaper. If flying internationally, your only option will be Hobart Airport but the international routes to Hobart are quite limited.

How to get to cradle mountain tasmania

Getting Around in Tasmania

By far, the best way to get around in Tasmania to fully explore all the epic things to do on the Apple Isle is to do so in a car or campervan. That's because there are limited public transport options operating between major cities and remote attractions.

Usually, visitors without a vehicle will base themselves in either Hobart, Launceston, Burnie or the Huon Valley and book organised trips to see the different Tasmania highlights and attractions.

Rent a Car

Unfortunately, car rental prices in Tasmania are some of the most expensive I've seen in Australia. However, that doesn't mean you can't find a good deal. I recommend searching DiscoverCars which is agreat way to compare rates and availability across companies.

If it's a campervan you're after, consider these options:

  • Spaceships Vans: Budget, backpacker-style campers. There's a depot in Hobart - the cheapest option.
  • Jucy Vans - Another budget/backpacker option with a bit more variety to pick up and drop off in Melbourne.
Driving a van in tasmania, travel guide

Visiting the Tasmanian National Parks

Undeniably, Tasmania is most famous for its beautiful nature and wildlife and therefore you'd expect that the best things to do and see are found in the protected National Parks.

An important thing to note is that National Parks in Tasmania require a permit to enter. Therefore, you’ll need to purchase a parks pass online or at the many visitor centres. These passes are valid for entry to all of Tasmania’s parks and the receipt must be displayed in your vehicle when parking.

If you are spending a fair bit of time in Tassie, the annual pass or the Holiday Passes offer the best value.

National Parks Pass Cost:

  • 24-hours: $44.75 per vehicle & $22.35 per person
  • Holiday Passes – up to 2 months: $89.50 per vehicle up to 8 people
  • Annual Pass all parks: $95.30 per vehicle (up to 8 people)
Starting the farmhouse creek track to federation peak

How Much Does it Cost to Travel Tasmania?

One of the most important thing when planning a trip is your budget. Therefore I've included this short Tasmania travel guide to my recommended/estimated costs for varying budgets.

Like most places in Australia, travel in Tasmania is relatively expensive but can also be done cheaply. Below are a few figures to help you understand what you're in for.

  • Average Mid-Range Hotel: $100-$120
  • Average Backpacker dorm: $35-$50
  • Cost of a Meal in a Mid-range Restaurant: $16-$40
  • Cost of Rental Car: $90-$250 per day

In saying this, if you've read my blog before, then you probably know that we like to travel fairly cheaply. Living in a van in Tasmania and sticking mostly to free, outdoor activities with the occasional splurge on adrenaline tours and experience was actually quite cheap.

We budgeted around $120 a week for groceries, $60 on fuel, $80 on camp-site fees (there are actually a lot of free sites) and about $140 a week on miscellaneous activities.

This $400 was for two of us living frugally but enjoyably and shows that budget travel in Tasmania can be done! In fact, some weeks we spent less than $200 when hiking and freedom camping!

Camping in tasmania

When is the Best Time to Travel to Tasmania?

Defining the best time to visit Tasmania will highly depend on what kind of things you want to do.

However, the general consensus in most official and unofficial Tasmania travel guides is that the summer months between December and February are the best time to visit. This season brings less rain and overall much more enjoyable weather. Expect 25-30 degree summer days as a norm for much of the state.

Conversely, for hiking, I'd say that late Spring or early Autumn is actually a better time as the mountains will often be powdered with snow, producing more dramatic landscapes and tolerable conditions.

Winter in Tasmania is quite brutal (by Aussie standards) but undeniably beautiful. Temperatures drop far below zero in many parts of the state and rain and heavy wind is prevalent. Keep in mind that Tassie Winter tends to kick in later than the rest of Australia. Taswegians have told me that the coldest months usually fall in August and September, which is technically early spring!

Federation peak tasmania
Bay of fires rock pools

Tasmania Travel Packing List

Wrapping up this Tasmania travel guide, here are a few recommendations for things to bring.

Julius river track

More Top Tasmania Travel Guides

This comprehensive list comes from many months of exploring Tasmania and documenting my own adventures. I've also written comprehensively on many of the attractions featured on this list, which you'll find links to throughout.

Free tasmania travel guides

The Ultimate Tasmania Travel Resource

Looking for more Tasmania travel guides & adventure inspiration? Below are my most comprehensive blog posts that will serve as a great free resource for your trip.

62things to do tasmania
Thanks for Reading

I'm Olly Gaspar, adventure traveler from Australia. I’ve spent the last six years traveling the world full-time, sharing my first-hand experiences & photography in over 700 travel guides on We Seek Travel. I visit every destination I write about to bring you unique travel itineraries, epic hiking routes, fun tour ideas, travel & photography gear ideas, & interesting places to stay.

I only make genuine, worthwhile recommendations based on my experience, expertise, & research. If you buy through my links, I may get a commission, supporting this website at no extra cost to you. Read my Publishing Ethics Statement.

bryar sami

Thursday 2nd of June 2022

Good information thanks