No matter what type of getaway you need, you'll find it in Tasmania – from wild adventures to peaceful and private places to unwind.
For adventure: North-east Tasmania
After experiencing Tasmania’s wild landscape on two wheels, recharge in a comfortable, architect-designed pod… that’s the promise of Blue Derby Pods Ride, a guided mountain-biking adventure that kicks off in Launceston and bumps along more than 100 kilometres of world-class bike trails in north-east Tasmania. Between riding and sleeping you’ll fuel up with fare prepared by your “experience leaders” and visit the sleepy town of Derby. The three-day route climbs to the Blue Tier – the highest point in the trail – for views that will take away whatever breath you have left. Or if you’re feeling gung-ho, test your limits with the four-day package that covers the renowned Bay of Fires trail. There are also opportunities to unwind if you like to take it slow. On day one, after cycling through the serene Cascade Valley and enjoying a picnic lunch, you can either get back on your bike for more or head off to your pod, nestled among tall blackwood trees. The best bit? There are only four pods, each accommodating one or two people, so you won’t see a crowd for days.
For nature: Cape Grim
Inhale what’s said to be the purest air in the world at Cape Grim in Tasmania’s north-west. When you’ve had your fill of the dramatic windswept mountains and craggy beaches, shelter an hour away in the peaceful coastal town of Stanley, where a heritage-listed building – dating back to 1849 – has been converted into the Ship Inn, a gorgeous guesthouse with seven suites. Ask for the one named Cape Grim, with its linen drapes, exposed beams, French doors and pitched pine ceiling.
For an island escape: Picnic Island
Is there any greater luxury than a private island? This speck of an isle in Coles Bay, about two hours from Hobart, has unspoiled views of Freycinet National Park and the soaring Hazards mountain range. The rustic cottages are right on the water so you can wave to your neighbours – passing dolphins and fairy penguins.
For couples: King Island
Lying between the mainland and Tasmania’s north-western tip, King Island is scenic lighthouses, picturesque shipwrecks, rolling golf courses (Cape Wickham and Ocean Duners are world class) and wildlife-spotting. But perhaps the highlight is Kittawa Lodge, a 39-hectare property with two self-contained one-bedroom cottages. Watch the wild coast beyond the windows from the freestanding bath in your ensuite, with a soundtrack of waves crashing to shore.
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For spirit-lovers: Hobart
Tasmania has built a rousing reputation for its boutique whisky and gin makers. Base yourself in Hobart to sample the wares of the best distilleries. Check in at the waterside MACq 01 Hotel (pictured at top; currently open for Friday and Saturday night stays) and sign up for a tasting tour with Drink Tasmania – just tell them how much time you have and what your poison is (gin, whisky or both) and they’ll create an itinerary for you.
For wildlife: Cradle Mountain
On the edge of the pristine Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, Devils @ Cradle lets you observe one of Australia’s most mysterious creatures, the Tasmanian devil. Wander through the conservation facility at your own pace or take a guided tour. While you’re there, book a room at the nearby Cradle Mountain Lodge..
For a charming village: Strahan
It takes effort to get to Strahan, at the edge of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. From Hobart, it’s four-and-a-half hours by car, winding through some of the state’s national parks. But that’s precisely why this hamlet – with a harbour about six times larger than Sydney’s and a growing food and art scene – has stayed one of the Apple Isle’s best-kept secrets. Check in to Captains Rest, a quaint one-bedroom cabin at the water’s edge, and be charmed by the village once dubbed “the best little town in the world” by America’s Chicago Tribune.
For vineyard glamping: Tamar Valley
You could base yourself in Launceston and take a day tour of the scenic Tamar Valley or soak up the splendour in one of the three glamping domes at Domescapes at Swinging Gate Vineyard. Each of the geodesic domes is heated, has a king-sized bed and ensuite, plus clear panels that reveal vineyard views and the sky after dark. Don’t forget to drop in at the cellar door.