Russell Falls Creek, Mount Field, Tasmania
Tasmania is especially dreamy in winter, shrouded by mist and light rains. Take a look at the guide below to make the most of the delightful off-peak season.
By Olym Li
Winter in Tasmania is darkly exquisite with frequent rain falling on the mountains, forests and rugged landscapes. The waterfalls are at their most lively and powerful in the wetter months thanks to the abundance of rainfall. As someone who loves the crisp air and dark landscapes of Tasmania during the cold season, I decided to spend a week on the island to immerse myself in its beauty. I’ve put together a list of places I would recommend for you to experience.
RUSSELL FALLS CREEK
Winter is definitely a good season for chasing waterfalls thanks to the significant amount of rainfall. Russell Falls Creek is located in Mt Field, which is only one hour drive away from Hobart via New Norfolk. To explore the base of the falls, you can go on a pleasant twenty-minute walk, passing through stunning layers of vegetation. It’s very likely to rain there so make sure that you’re fully equipped with weatherproofed gear, including a raincoat and hiking boots.
DONAGHYS HILL NATURE TRAIL
Donaghys Hill Nature Trail, South West Wilderness, Tasmania
This is another beautiful trail that you should not miss. At only two kilometres return trip, it’s a short hike that offers some of the best views of the island. You will travel across a forest before reaching the peak of Frenchmans Cap. Once you’re at the top, you’ll be able to watch the iconic Franklin River flow through the forest and down the valley.
MONTEZUMA FALLS TRACK
Montezuma Falls Track, West Coast, Tasmania
Located on the west coast of the island, Montezuma Falls is the highest waterfall in Tasmania. The track to the base spans nine kilometres and takes three hours round trip. All you need to do is follow the abandoned North East Dundas Tramway to this destination. Once you’re almost at the waterfall, you will come across a swing bridge that allows you to experience the magnitude of the 110-metre fall up-close.
Henty Dunes, Strahan, Tasmania
Henty Dunes is located eleven kilometres north of the harbourside village of Strahan. It’s a series of sand dunes, stretching fifteen kilometres along the coast and several kilometres inland. The white sand there is especially beautiful. You can enjoy a relaxing barefoot stroll along the sand or you can slide down the slopes on a toboggan. The toboggans are available for hire in select shops around the area. Remember to check the forecast beforehand, as tobogganing in the wet sand would be unpleasant.
Cradle Mountain, Central Highlands, Tasmania
Cradle Mountain is definitely a must visit once you’re in Tasmania. There are various walks you can take to explore the multiple falls and forests in Cradle Mountain National Park. Alternatively, you can tackle a long hike to reach the summit of Cradle Mountain. When you reach the top, you can marvel at the breathtaking views of the beautiful Dove Lake below and the jagged edges of Mount Ossa nearby.
ST COLUMBA FALLS RESERVE
St Columba Falls Reserve, Pyengana, Tasmania
St Columba Falls is one of the highest waterfalls in Tasmania, reaching over 90 metres in height. The 600-metre track to St Columba Falls is a pleasant walk and can be completed in just ten minutes. Once you’ve reached the base, you can stand on one of the flat rocks nearby for a better look at the cascading water.
BAY OF FIRES CONSERVATION AREA
Bay of Fires Conservation Area, The Gardens, Tasmania
Upon arriving at the northeastern coast of Tasmania in 1773, Captain Tobias Furneaux saw the fires lit by the Aboriginal people and named it “Bay of Fires”. Nowadays, the bay is famous for its pure white sand and beautiful orange-hued rock formations. It’s a place where you can spend a few days to explore and enjoy different leisure activities like camping, swimming or surfing.
Wineglass Bay, Freycinet National Park, Tasmania
Wineglass Bay is often considered one of the most beautiful bays in the world for its distinctive shape. The iconic crescent shape is created by the white sand curving around an opalescent body of water. For a good vantage of the bay, go on a short walk between Mt Amos and Mt Mayson. It’s an uphill walk and is often crowded with tourists, even in the colder months. However, the reward of seeing Wineglass Bay from up high is worth all the trouble.
EAST COAST NATUREWORLD
East Coast Natureworld, Bicheno, Tasmania
Drop by East Coast Natureworld to discover the diverse and unique animal species living in Tasmania. The zoo consists of natural parkland and lagoons, extending over 150 acres. Here, the animals are treated with love and care in a relaxed environment. You will get to see the elusive Tasmanian devils and other native species. Remember to make a contribution to help protect the endangered species in the region.
Bruny Island, Tasmania
Bruny Island has amazingly diverse wildlife, it’s home to a variety of species such as white wallabies, fur seals and fairy penguins. To experience the wilderness, you can go on walking tours or boat cruises around the island. I really wanted to see a white wallaby but wasn’t lucky enough this time.
Port Arthur, Tasman Peninsula, Tasmania
Port Arthur has a sombre history as one of Australia’s most prolific convict settlements, as well as the armed massacre that forever changed Australia’s gun laws. To learn more about it, you can go on a day tour to visit the historic sites and museums. The Penitentiary is definitely a highlight, it’s an imposing prison building that used to house over 480 convicts. Nowadays, it’s one of Port Arthur’s most popular sites and is open for visitors from 9am until sunset daily. If you’re brave enough, you may want to consider a ghost tour at night to explore the notoriously haunted buildings and ruins in the area.
This article originally appeared on Townske.