As your travel around the Tasmania, you can utilise the helpful service and information provided by the local Visitor Information Centre. Visit www.discovertasmania.com for a comprehensive guide to Tasmanian Information Centres.
Population 490 000 (Tasmania is an island roughly the size of West Virginia, located 240 km off the south-east corner of mainland Australia. Next stop south is Antarctica, 2000 km away.)
Hobart has the nation's second-lowest rainfall (626 mm or 24 inches) of all Australian capital cities.
The average summer temperature is a comfortable 21°C (70°F). Winter's average is 12°C (52° F).
Tasmania has more than 2000 km of walking tracks and 18 national parks.
Home of Cadbury Chocolate
The Tasmanian Devil
Tasmania's acclaimed World Heritage area
Sydney to Hobart Yacht race.
In just about every freshwater stream, river and lake in Tasmania, there are fighting trout, waiting to rise to your well-presented fly or lure.
Tasmania has one of the world's 10 best beaches (Wineglass Bay, US-based Outside magazine), the world's best little town (Strahan, Chicago Tribune) and was rated equal third, in the world, for wise land stewardship by National Geographic Traveler magazine's Sustainable Tourism Initiative.
Miss Mary Donaldson, wife of Crown Princess Frederick of Denmark, proudly hails from Tasmania.
Tasmanian wood design can be seen in all the major museums and galleries in Tasmania, including the Design Centre in Launceston, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery in Hobart, the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery at Inveresk (Launceston), Burnie Regional Gallery and Devonport Art Gallery.
Tasmania boasts one of the best small orchestras in the world and composerPeter Sculthorpe
Writers & Directors
Writer Richard Flanagan, winner of the 2002 Commonwealth Writer's Prize.
Writers Peter Conrad and Christopher Koch
Theatre Director Nigel Triffitt
Director John Honey
Sports Personalities born in Tasmania
Test Cricketers David Boon and Ricky Ponting
World Champion Golfer Lindy Goggin 1949
Tennis Champion Helen Gourlay 1946
Olympic Gold Medal Cyclist, Michael Grenda
Food & Wine
A mild, sunny climate and clean air, soil and water - all we need for the best food and wine.
Tasmania is a gourmet paradise, where people live close to the land and sea and there is an easy flow from harvest to plate. The island has four distinct seasons that make it perfect for producing prime cheeses, mouth-watering berries, wide-ranging vegetables, stone fruits, herbs, premium beef, specialty honey, mushrooms, cool-climate wines and some of Australia's leading beers.
Enjoy regional fare, friendly encounters with growers, makers and chefs, and celebrate the delights that come with the changing of the seasons.
On Saturdays, visit Salamanca Market in Hobart, and you'll find a range of local produce. You can sample special herb vinegars, mustards, bush honeys, organic goods and meet the producers. Or visit one of the specialist delicatessens across Tasmania to taste locally produced condiments, smoked and fresh produce and luscious cheeses.
Cheeses are consistent award winners; made by international and boutique producers and include specialties like wasabi, sheep's milk pecorino and goat's milk varieties. Seafood and fish is highly sought after interstate and overseas, including Atlantic salmon, ocean trout, blacklip and greenlip abalone, scallops, pickled octopus, rock lobster (crayfish) and Pacific oysters.
In Tasmania, the locals can still dive along coastal reefs for abalone, harvest oysters from the rocks, or catch a wild trout in a highland stream. And visitors quickly learn that the man in the vineyard with his sleeves rolled up is just as likely to be the property owner.
Organic farming is also growing and includes production of vegetables, herbs, milk, cheese, yoghurt and honey. Speciality mushroom varieties such as Tasmanian white, honey brown, shitake and oyster mushrooms are plentiful. Other quality produce includes wasabi, gourmet sauces, the velvety smoothness of handmade chocolates and fudge, and ice cream featuring organic berries.
Tasmania has more than 200 vineyards producing superb sparkling wines that attract national and international attention, as well as delicately flavoured pinot noirs, sauvignon blancs, chardonnays and rieslings.
The island also grows top quality hops for its own beer producers and those interstate. Its two major beer producers, J Boag & Sons and Cascade Brewery make two of the best-selling premium beers in Australia with Boag's Premium one of Australia's most awarded beers. Meanwhile, the Lark Distillery in Hobart produces single malt whiskies and a range of liqueurs.
On an island with so much bounty, food and wine is good cause for celebration. Leading the food and wine festivals is the waterfront favourite, the Taste of Tasmania, in Hobart (late December-early January), where the buzz of the finish of the ocean racing classic, the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, sets the pace.
Tasmania’s quality wines are made from grapes grown in climates similar to those of the famous European wines – with mild summers and long autumn days that ripen the grapes slowly and surely.
You can tour the Tasmanian Wine Routes easily by car or on guided tours. The island's Wine Routes include the Tamar Valley, north of Launceston along both sides of the Tamar River and east to Pipers River; the Derwent, Coal River and Huon Valleys (together comprising the Southern Wine Route), an easy drive from Hobart; and the growing wine regions of the North West and the East Coast.
Pipers Brook Vineyard, Pipers Brook - is a leading winery and vineyard located in northern Tasmania. It is home to some of Tasmania’s premium cool climate wines. Visitors to Pipers Brook Vineyard have the opportunity to taste wines from the Kreglinger, Pipers Brook and Ninth Island labels.
Stoney Rise Vineyard, Gravelly Beach - is located just outside of Launceston, northern Tasmania. The vineyard is set in picturesque surrounds overlooking the Tamar River.The vineyard is comprised of three hectares (7.4) of Pinot Noir and one hectare (2.4 acres) of Chardonnay.
Jinglers Creek Vineyard, Relbia - is on the Tamar Valley Wine Route near Launceston Airport, northern Tasmania. Since 1998, Jinglers Creek Vineyard has been producing wines that are entirely estate grown on a small family-owned property at Relbia. Two hectares of Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc are carefully tended throughout their many weeks of growth and development.
Darlington Vineyard, Orford - is a producer of fine cool-climate wines on Tasmania’s east coast. The vineyard is located at Orford, an hour’s drive north of Hobart (81 kilometres / 50 miles). Set on 1.5 hectares of vines overlooking the historic Darlington settlement on Maria Island. Darlington’s range of light, delicate wines includes pinot noir, sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and riesling.
Morningside Vineyard, Tea Tree - is located at Tea Tree in southeast Tasmania’s Coal River Valley wine region. Tea Tree is a 30-minute drive from Hobart (35 kilometres), a few kilometres from the historic village of Richmond. Morningside’s three hectares (seven acres) of vines were planted in 1980 and the vineyard was the first to be established in the Tea Tree area. The vineyard has consistently produced elegant, age-worthy wines including riesling, chardonnay, pinot noir and cabernets - a blend of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc and petit verdot.
Walks & Treks
Tasmania’s tracks and trails are world-renowned. If you're a bushwalker, there's no better place to be. What’s special about walking in Tasmania? Over one third of Tasmania is protected in National Parks and World Heritage Areas. Also, it offers a diverse and ancient landscape offering accessible wilderness. Thirdly, the compact island is home to unique plant and wildlife.
Tasmania offers walking experiences for all levels of fitness and challenge. There are more than 60 short walks that take you into rainforests, along ancient sea cliffs, beside turquoise seas and over jagged mountain peaks. Whether you want a gentle stroll or a physical challenge; a seaside ramble or a mountain vista; a long day's outing or a short wander, Great Short Walks has plenty for you. The walks are located throughout Tasmania and can generally be accessed from major roads and include a range of environments.
Waterfall Bay, From Eaglehawk Neck, on the Tasman Peninsula - vantage points that show cliffs plummeting into the sea and swirling ocean waters make this an exciting coastal walk within the Tasman National Park. The stunning coastline of this region includes some of the highest sea cliffs in Australia. Waterfall Bay offers a spectacular view across the cliff-lined bay to a waterfall which, after rain, plummets straight into the sea. Allow around 1 and a half hours.
Lake St Clair – there are three short walks you can experience. The shortest is 2.4 km return and this can be extended by combining it with either one or two additional walks. At their longest, these walks combine to form a 4.7km figure-of-eight loop.
- Watersmeet - this is a short, easy walk, which will take you about 45 minutes return. The track follows an old road that was constructed to allow for limited logging after bushfires in the area in the 1960s. It is 1.7 km eachway, and culminates at Watersmeet, where the Hugel and Cuvier Rivers meet.
- Larmairremener tabelti - this Aboriginal cultural heritage walk uses creative interpretation panels to introduce the Larmairremener, the indigenous people of this region. A band of the Big River Nation of people, the Larmairremener made seasonal trips to the east coast and traded along well-travelled routes with other bands.
- Platypus Bay - the track to Platypus Bay is a 30 minute return walk from Watersmeet Bridge. This track follows the Cuvier River to its mouth at the lake. The track then curves around the edge of the lake. Platypus are sometimes seen in this area. The best time is early morning or late afternoon.
Pine Lake walk - offers a rare opportunity to get close to one of Tasmania’s rarest trees without having to go on an extended bushwalk. The pencil pine is an ancient species that evolved before flowering plants and which is only found in the Tasmanian highlands.Many of the Tasmanian conifers are unique to Tasmania. The pencil pine (Athrotaxis cupressoides), is generally restricted to sub-alpine areas above 800 m. Like its relative, the King Billy pine, it can reach ages greater than 1200 years. Pencil pines are often seen around the shores of highland lakes and tarns, creating the unique ambience of these beautiful areas of Tasmania.
Wineglass Bay Lookout - The crystal clear waters and white sandy beach of Wineglass Bay are a tremendous sight. This is a steep uphill walk on a rocky, well-constructed track within the Freycinet National Park.The rock type along this walk is granite which was formed during the Devonian. Although not common in Tasmania, granite forms some spectacular features in the Freycinet National Park.
A helpful guide to the full range of short walks in Tasmania can be viewed at www.parks.tas.gov.au
More than 80 courses - crowd free, and some with real cliff-hangers. On an un-crowded island with a temperate climate, rolling valleys and sweeping empty beaches, you will find emerald fairways and velvet greens of championship 18-hole courses. Not to mention spectacular cliff-top holes with wide ocean views.
In the north-east, Barnbougle Dunes is rated Australia’s best public course and has been created in pure Scottish style with undulating links overlooking Bass Strait. This unspoilt, wild coastline is ideal for a links course and the inviting clubhouse and modern accommodation may just lure you in for an entire weekend.
In Tasmania’s south, the amazing par 3 eighth hole at the Tasman Club near Port Arthur offers pure spectacle. Here, your tee shot has to reach a pocket-handkerchief green on the far side of a deep chasm, where vertical sea cliffs plummet to surging ocean swells and tossing bull kelp, far below. There is no point in looking for lost balls here!
Tasmania has a sprinkling of public courses, but most are run by clubs. Wherever you play, you’ll find a warm Tasmanian welcome for members of interstate golf clubs at the club courses in cities, towns and country areas.
Some of the top courses include Royal Hobart, Tasmania Golf Club, Kingston Beach and Claremont in the south, and Launceston Country Club, Devonport and Ulverstone in the north. It’s a good idea to call ahead, book your round and enquire about facilities and services.