Guide to Freycinet Peninsula

Home to one of Australia's most instantly recognisable beaches, Tasmania's oldest national park, and the state's most luxurious lodge, Freycinet Peninsula is a magical combination of beaches, bush and mountains. Guide to Freycinet Peninsula
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Guide to Freycinet Peninsula

Home to one of Australia's most instantly recognisable beaches, Tasmania's oldest national park, and the state's most luxurious lodge, Freycinet Peninsula is a magical combination of beaches, bush and mountains.


By Andrew Bain

Dangling like a thread off the east coast of Tasmania, Freycinet Peninsula is best known for its immaculately sculpted beach at Wineglass Bay (shaped like a wineglass). But that's just one part of its charm. This is where you'll find one of the world's best boutique hotels, Saffire Freycinet, along with coastal walking trails radiating across Freycinet National Park and the small fishing town of Coles Bay, which has long been a favourite weekend escape for Tasmanians.

HOW TO GET THERE

You can fly direct to Tasmania's two major cities, Hobart and Launceston, from Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. From Launceston it's a two hour drive to Freycinet Peninsula. From Hobart it's about 2 1/2 hours.

 

DON'T MISS

  • Walk barefoot on the white sand of Wineglass Bay
  • Check into oceanside luxury at Saffire Freycinet
  • Indulge in the freshest of seafood at Freycinet Marine Farm

TOP THINGS TO DO ON FREYCINET PENINSULA

Walk to Wineglass Bay
With its perfectly curved beach, Wineglass Bay is the most famous slice of coast in Tasmania. A fairly gentle walking trail of about three kilometres (two miles) return climbs to a lookout above the beach, but the full experience comes when you continue down onto the beach itself – a six kilometre (3.7 mile) return walk in total. Take off your shoes, dip your feet in the sea, and look for the wallabies (smaller cousins of kangaroos) that often venture out onto the gleaming white sands.  

Cruise to Wineglass Bay
An equally good way to see Wineglass Bay, with the bonus of a floating lunch of fresh Tasmanian produce, is a day trip with Wineglass Bay Cruises. This four hour cruise rounds the southern end of the peninsula, beneath high cliffs, before anchoring in the shallows of Wineglass Bay for lunch. Expect to see seals, dolphins and maybe even a whale or two.

Stay at Saffire Freycinet
Named the world's best boutique hotel in 2014, the sumptuous Saffire Freycinet has luxury suites that gaze across the water at the changing colours of Freycinet's Hazards mountains. The lodge offers some unique and exclusive guest experiences – how about lunch on a secret beach prepared by a top chef, or wading out to an oyster farm for a private tasting of freshly shucked oysters?

Lunch at Freycinet Marine Farm
For potentially the freshest seafood lunch of your life, pull into Freycinet Marine Farm, about eight kilometres (five miles) before you reach Coles Bay. On a shaded deck, the working oyster and mussel farm serves up oysters pulled fresh from the baskets, as well as a host of other locally caught seafood, which you can eat on the spot.

Kayak on Coles Bay
Take a half day kayaking trip with Freycinet Adventures, paddling across the waters of Coles Bay and along the foot of the spectacular granite mountains known as the Hazards. The water view gives you the closest look at Freycinet's coast. You'll also glide ashore at a remote beach for coffee and snacks. Expect white-bellied sea eagles overhead, and the possibility of dolphins and other marine life in the water.

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