Whether it’s overland or along cragged coastlines, through dense rainforest or across stark alpine plateaus, one thing Tasmania always delivers is spectacular scenery. And the best way to experience the innate natural splendour of Australia’s southernmost state is on foot.
With (literally) hundreds of trekking trails on offer – ranging from simple, short overnight hikes to epic multi-day adventures, choosing the right trek for you can be tricky. So we’ve compiled a list of our top five Tassie treks to help make the decision a little easier… Although, even with only five to choose from, we still can’t pick our favourite!
1. Bay of Fires
The Bay of Fires is easily one of Tasmania’s most striking and popular treks. With pristine coastlines, wildlife-filled wilderness and historic landmarks, this trek explores all northeast Tasmania has to offer – and it doesn’t disappoint. Trekking through protected heathland, wetland and woodland, you’ll follow scenic coastlines to windswept headlands and discover white sand beaches, lagoons and estuaries teeming with birdlife. As you get closer to the state’s easternmost tip, the silhouette of Eddystone Point’s historic pink granite lighthouse will rise before you, dominating the otherwise uninterrupted seascape. It’s then a relatively short trek to The Gardens, where you can follow a network of boardwalks to experience the vibrant juxtaposition of orange lichen-covered rocks against turquoise waters. You might even like to have a quick dip.
2. Cradle Mountain and the Overland Track
You can’t visit Tasmania without exploring Cradle Mountain. From rocky mountain peaks, buttongrass moorlands and dense rainforests to glacial lakes that feed epic waterfalls, the Cradle Mountain trek is as inspiring as it is diverse. A four-day adventure, you’ll trek a variety of trails surrounding Cradle Mountain village. From easy exploration walks to day-long treks to Lake Lilla, Dove Lake, Montezuma Falls and Hansons Peak, you’ll experience Tasmania’s wild places and awe-inspiring landscapes up close, with native wildlife your constant companion. Best of all, this trek covers the Crater Lake Circuit, which takes you through unique alpine vegetation and past lakes carved by ancient glacial waters. Epic! And, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can continue onto the Overland Track.
The Tarkine, or takayna, is one of Australia’s richest Aboriginal landscapes. This breathtaking expanse of wild forest in Tasmania’s north west is home to Australia’s largest temperate rainforest and some of the most unique landscapes in the world. The terrain here is as diverse as its natural history and inhabitants, with mountains, rivers, caves, buttongrass moorlands and rugged coastlines home to echidnas, wombats, birds, platypus, bandicoots and the famous Tasmania devil. Through dense rainforest, you’ll explore Philosopher’s Falls, Mount Farrell, the Savage River and Pieman Heads. You’ll be challenged, but it’ll be worth it for the spectacular views over Cradle Mountain and an inimitable sense of freedom.
4. Bruny Island
On this exhilarating trek, you’ll hike through vast stretches of native forest, across seemingly endless white sand beaches and along towering sea cliffs. With unrivalled birdlife, including many rare and endangered species, the Bruny Island trek explores both the most popular and lesser-known highlights of Tasmania’s south east tip. From the edge of the Fluter Cave to the summit of Mount Mangana, the highest point on the island, you’ll experience a region often overlooked, but equally as inspiring. With a great diversity of ecosystems, this trek showcases Bruny Island’s inimitable natural splendour… which pairs perfectly with its locally brewed beer and freshly made cheese.
5. Three Capes
From its wild, rugged start at Cape Hauy, along the highest sea cliffs in Australia to the base of Shipstern Bluff, the Three Capes trek perfectly combines the history and nature of Tasmania’s southeast. Through flowering coastal heathland and into awe-inspiring rainforests, over boardwalks, along stone paths and up mountain trails, each landscape on this epic adventure is more spectacular than the last. With extensive panoramic views of the great expanse of the Southern Ocean, you’ll explore the Tasman National Park, plus Cape Raoul, Mount Brown, Port Arthur and Crescent Bay. This trek is a great starting point for further exploration of the region, including the World Heritage-listed Port Arthur Historic Site, Australia’s best-preserved convict site, and Maingon Blowhole.
With so many amazing options on offer, it’ll be hard to choose just one Tasmanian adventure. But remember, whichever trek you choose, incredible vistas, native wildlife, friendly locals and exceptional food are never too far away.
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