Sometimes, the best part about living in a big city, is leaving it. After all, even the most devoted urbanite enjoys the occasional break from city life. When you’re looking for that perfect pastoral getaway, point your compass south, to a place so peaceful and pristine, that each day brings a brilliant new landscape or exciting new adventure to tackle.
We’re talking of course, about Tasmania; Australia’s famed Apple Isle, where time is measured by the changing of the seasons. For city dwellers, the thrill of Tasmania is found in the crisp mountain air, and along the trickling streams and picturesque vineyards. There’s even a touch of historic charm in Tasmania’s capital city, Hobart.
Here’s what to see and do for that perfect taste of Tasmania.
Don’t let Hobart’s tiny size deceive you. The smallest of Australia’s capital cities, Hobart is packed full of things to see and do.
Visit the picturesque harbour and Castray Esplanade for a glimpse of 19th century Hobart. Handsome stone warehouses dating back to the 1830s are today brimming with life, with shops, cafes and restaurants now filling this unique public space.
Come on a Saturday when Salamanca Market is open. One of Australia’s best market venues, shoppers can sample local food, wine and produce, or purchase an original piece of jewelry or work of art.
Speaking of art, don’t miss one of Australia’s most interesting galleries, the Museum of Old and New Art, affectionately known by locals, as MONA.
A short drive outside of Hobart, Port Arthur Historic Site showcases Australia’s early 19th century convict past, with ruins and more than 30 buildings and period homes to explore. The 40-hectare site situated on the southern coast offers an insightful glimpse into Australian colonial life.
Tasmania enjoys a diverse range of environments and ecosystems, and they’re all just a short drive away.
From coastal cliffs and natural lakes, to alpine ranges and verdant rainforests, exploring Tasmania on foot, or on a scenic drive, is just how Tasmania should be enjoyed.
Cradle Mountain – Lake St. Clair National Park is home to the famous Overland Track, an iconic hiking trail that extends for 65 kilometers across some of Australia’s most beautiful lands. Australian wildlife of all sorts can be seen on the track, including Tasmanian devils, platypus and wombats. Along with some fantastic mountain terrain, the national park is also home to Lake St. Clair, Australia’s deepest lake.
The east coast too offers some spectacular coastal scenery at Freycinet National Park. Admire secluded bays and quiet beaches from a peak top lookout or soak up nature in all its glory on a camping trip or eco-retreat visit.
In Tasmania, food and nature go hand in hand. This is where some of the world’s best cheese, wine, and yes, apples are produced.
Of course, food and wine lovers will want to stop at one of the many cellar doors to sample some of the best cool climate wines in the world. Wine trails extend from the north coast of Tasmania, and all down the east coast, as well as the nearby inland regions.
The Tamar Valley Wine Route, the Southern Wine Trail, the East Coast Wine Trail, and the North West Wine Trail are all central to the enjoyment of Tasmania’s wonderful cheese and fresh produce too. Each of these scenic drives offers a great number of inviting cottages, cafes and restaurants in which to enjoy the quality Tasmanian foods.
In addition to the vineyards and wineries, Tasmania is also home to a beer trail, a whiskey trail, and even a cider trail, and it’s all thanks to the tiny island’s fresh waters, and succulent fruits.