Three Sisters, Blue Mountains, NSW

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Three Sisters, Blue Mountains, NSW

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Woodbridge, Peppermint Bay garden

Woodbridge

Tasmania

Woodbridge looks out across Peppermint Bay and the D’Entrecasteaux Channel to the northern end of Bruny Island about 35 minutes’ drive (35 kilometres/22 miles) south of Hobart on the B68 Highway. The town is surrounded by small farms and craft makers who have chosen to live in this semi rural area of rolling hills and winding roads. The focal point for visitors is Peppermint Bay restaurant and providore shop along with Woodbridge Hill Handweaving Studio and Gardens, Grandvewe Sheep Cheesery, Regnans art gallery, Fleurty’s herb garden and restaurant, and a gathering of bed and breakfast and guest house accommodation. Woodbridge is one of the prettiest small towns on the Channel and is a lovely place to stay while exploring the Huon Valley and Bruny Island. Kettering, the ferry depot for Bruny Island, is just a few kilometres north. The area was first explored by Bruni D'Entrecasteaux in 1792 and was settled in the early 1800s by timber cutters, whalers and sealers. To the north is Oyster Cove where the few remaining Aborigines who survived the Wybalenna settlement on Flinders Island were moved in 1847. Today the area produces apples and stone fruit and the Channel is well known for its Atlantic salmon farms, which you can visit on a Hobart Cruises journey from the city to Peppermint Bay. Woodbridge’s climate is similar to Hobart. But remember, no matter what time of year you visit, bring a warm jacket and all weather gear.

Huon Trail - Tahune Airwalk

Huon Trail

Tasmania

The Huon Trail is the perfect touring route to take you around the area to the south of Hobart. In just a 20-minute drive, you will find a world of extensive and serene waterways, wild coastlines, quiet farmlands, boutique vineyards, and rugged but accessible World Heritage wilderness. The Huon Trail leads you to ideal places for a relaxing holiday or short break, offering an inspiring mix of outdoor adventures, accommodation to suit all budgets, delicious food – especially cheeses, cherries, stone fruits, berries, meats and the freshest of seafood – top class cool-climate wines, a rich maritime, forest and rural heritage, and friendly, creative people. There are four areas along The Huon Trail – the Huon Valley, the D'Entrecasteaux Channel, Bruny Island and the remote and wild Far South. Each of these areas offers unique experiences and attractions ranging from towering sea cliffs, dramatic mountain peaks, ancient forests, wondrous underground caves, pristine waterways, native flora and fauna and truly sensational landscapes. Why not relax and spend a few days with us in Southern Tasmania's Huon Trail region.

Hamilton

Hamilton

Tasmania

Hamilton is a pretty town on the Clyde River about 74 kilometres (45 miles) northwest of Hobart. Prospect Villa and Garden, not far from Hamilton, is an amazing example of what a talented and dedicated gardener can do working in an extremely dry landscape. The home is early Georgian sandstone and the garden a series of romantic garden “rooms” abundantly planted and set in a classic design with long vistas through the garden to focal points and panoramic views. Look out for the charming, Old School House. Convict built in 1858. The area was settled by Scottish farmers and you can still crofter cottages along with grand old farm houses, including one that is a craft gallery alongside cosy bed and breakfast homes. Hamilton developed as a transport hub and by the 1830s was operating a number of breweries and a roaring illegal spirits trade. The early settlers had big visions and the street foundations reveal the town they dreamt of establishing. The stories of the town’s lively past are told in the Hamilton Heritage Centre. It’s a quieter place now, but not too quiet - you can fish (Meadowbank Lake is close by), swim, play tennis, go water skiing, and you’re surrounded by beautiful countryside to explore.

Dover - Olive May Cruises

Dover

Tasmania

Dover is not quite the southernmost town in Australia but it is close. The pretty, quiet fishing village sits at the head of Esperance Bay overlooking the islands of Faith, Hope and Charity, about 80 minutes’ drive south along the A6 Highway (83 kilometres/51 miles) from Hobart. Dover is the ideal spot for exploring the southwest World Heritage wilderness areas and the Hartz Mountain National Park. The town has a population of about 500 and the major industries are forestry and fishing – particularly Atlantic salmon, abalone and cray fishing, and nearby are apple orchards. One of the most popular attractions is the Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs further south and west on the Southport road. There a number of good bed and breakfasts, a caravan park, hotel/motel and backpacker accommodation. The town was originally named Port Esperance by the French explorer, Admiral Bruni D’Entrecasteaux, who charted the area in 1792. When the British arrived in 1804 they planned to use it as a penal probation station; today, the Commandant’s cottage (privately owned) near the caravan park on Beach Road is all that remains of this early plan. After the convict settlement the town developed as an important port shipping Huon pine to the world. Tasmania’s southwest often faces Antarctic winds but Dover’s position on the D’Entrecasteaux Channel protects it. No matter what time of year you visit, bring a warm jacket and all weather gear.

Scottsdale - Forest Eco Centre

Scottsdale

Tasmania

Scottsdale is administrative centre for the north-east and is about 70 kilometres (44 miles) from Launceston. It is a friendly and busy town with a population of around 2,000, surrounded by farmlands, where you’ll see crops growing, contented dairy cows grazing and forest-based industries. Visit the Forest EcoCentre, a unique architectural experiment in energy-saving design, showcasing Tasmania’s finest timbers, forest ecology and history of the area. North East Park is a good place for a picnic, and then challenge yourself to a half-day return walk to the summit of Mount Stronach for panoramic views of the forests and farms.

North West Coast

North West Coast (Zone)

Tasmania

From the Spirit of Tasmania’s berth at Devonport to the rugged north-west corner of our island is a region of pretty villages, historic buildings, rocky shores, caves and fertile farmland. Life here is simple and sustaining – hosts are welcoming, meals are generous and the cares of the 21st century seem a lifetime away. Close to Devonport itself are the picturesque beaches of Port Sorell and the historic town of Latrobe, famous for its chocolates and platypuses. The backdrop to the main part of your journey, however, is the Great Western Tiers, known to the Aboriginal people as Kooparoona Niara. Behind this enormous escarpment sits the protected World Heritage Area of mountains and valleys, lakes and forests. Beneath the surface are extensive limestone caves in the Mole Creek Karst National Park. Mount Roland looms magnificently over fertile pastures around Sheffield, known as the town of murals, You can discover the history of the Kentish district from the murals themselves, or in local museums, but there are also many galleries and studies to browse in. Along the coast, Penguin and Ulverstone have a seductive beachside charm, and even the industrial port of Burnie has transformed itself into a creative centre. Look for Creative Paper, Lactos Cheese factory and tasting centre, and then top it off with a visit to Hellyers Road Distillery to try its superb single-malt whiskey. Follow the coast westward, beside Bass Strait: massive bluffs nudge out into the sea - Table Cape, just beyond Wynyard, flat-topped and fertile, with flowering tulips carpeting its fields in spring and Circular Head, where the historic village of Stanley sits leeside of the steep-sided Nut. Overlooking Stanley is Highfield Historic Site, built in 1832 for the Van Diemen's Land Company's chief agent. Continue west to Smithton, centre for the region’s productive agricultural and thriving forestry operations. From Smithton, the highway begins its last leap westward to Arthur River and the legendary surfing

Kempton, Wilmot Arm Inn

Kempton

Tasmania

Kempton was settled in the 1820s and originally called Green Ponds. The streetscape, with its inn, church and shops, is very much as it was in the 19th century, and Dysart House, now privately owned, at the southern end of town, is an exceedingly handsome mansion. The highway now bypasses the town but it is worth stopping by to explore. The first land grant went to Anthony Fenn Kemp, after whom the town was eventually named. You can see the entrance to his property – Mount Vernon – just south of Kempton. (You can find out more about the rather notorious Anthony Fenn Kemp in the wonderful novel, In Tasmania, by the British novelist, Nicholas Shakespeare, who spends part of each year here.) Kempton is 49 kilometres (31 miles) north of Hobart.

Bothwell - Australasian Golf Museum

Bothwell

Tasmania

Bothwell is the gateway to the central highland and was settled by Scottish pioneer farmers in the early 1820s. It has wide open streets, and lovely 19th century buildings. As you would expect it sits on the Clyde River, where Australia’s first herd of Aberdeen Angus cattle grazed, and, of course, the first golf course was laid, in the mid-1830s. Today you can play Ratho’s nine holes and visit the Australasian Golf Museum. Walking round the town is to walk back in time - more than 50 colonial cottages, houses and official buildings (the town’s first library opened in 1837) cluster around the trees and grass of Queens Park. Bothwell is a good base for fishing or exploring. Bothwell is on the A5, 73 kilometres (45 miles) northwest of Hobart.

New Norfolk

New Norfolk

Tasmania

Settlers from Norfolk Island established this town on the banks of the River Derwent in 1807 when the Island’s prison was closed. Early townspeople planted hundreds of poplar trees, which in autumn turn bright gold. The town with its population of more than 5,000 has one of Australia’s last village squares. It is the centre of the hop-growing area and there are several old oast houses (kilns) along the roadside. They aren’t used today but their elegant shapes give valley a deep sense of its history and some have been lovingly converted. New Norfolk has many old buildings, including one of Australia’s oldest inns, the Bush Inn, and Australia’s oldest Anglican church - St Matthews (1823). New Norfolk is 20 kilometres (12 miles) north-west of Hobart.

Corinna

Corinna

Tasmania

Corinna is a tiny historic mining town set in rainforest on the banks of the majestic Pieman River in Tasmania’s west. You reach the town from a number of directions. The C249 Highway north from Zeehan is unsealed and when you reach the Pieman River you take the Fatman barge, which ferries vehicles across the River. It is the only cable driven vehicular barge in Tasmania. The barge operates in daylight hours all year round. You can reach Corinna from Waratah on the B23 linking to the unsealed C247 or from Marrawah on the unsealed C249 Highway. Corinna sits at the southern end of the Tarkine protected area, the largest temperate rainforest in Australia, and is the northern most point where the famous Huon pine grows. The surrounding ancient unbroken tract of rainforest reveals a world beyond human memory and is a living link with the ancient super continent Gondwana. The town is 60 kilometres (37 miles) north of Strahan, 70 kilometres (43 miles) west of Cradle Mountain and 15 kilometres (nine miles) from the wild west coast. Today, you can stay at Corinna – a wilderness experience, in one of the restored miners’ cottage and take a guided tour on the Pieman River out to the Southern Ocean. Corinna, was once called Royenrine, and is the Aboriginal name for a young Tasmanian tiger. In the rip roaring days of the 1880s goldrush, Corinna had two hotels. In 1883, the largest nugget of gold ever discovered in Tasmania (7.5 kilos) was found at Rocky River, a small tributary of the Whyte River (a tributary of the Pieman) near Corinna. It aroused considerable excitement and attracted many men from other Tasmanian goldfields. The town rapidly declined from 1900 when the Emu Bay railway to Zeehan opened, and today it is a peaceful place to stay to explore the Tarkine forests and the history of the west coast. Remember you are on the west coast of Tasmania, which receives the winds of the Roaring Forties, so no matter when you visit be prepared with warm clothes and raingear.

Information provided by the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse

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