Here's a challenge - try not to be inspired by Tasmania's unspoiled coastlines, lush rainforests, crisp lakes, and ruggedly handsome mountains. It's Australia's smallest state by area and population, but there's nothing small about Tasmania when it comes to impressive landmarks. It's so big-hearted and boldly wild, you'll keep coming back for more.
One vacation here is never enough. Unless you choose to make it your home, and turn vacation into a lifestyle.
If choosing the best Tasmania landmarks to see on your trip gives you a headache, remember this - the Tasmanian devil is in the details. To help you figure it all out, together with Inspirock we've compiled a list of the best sites around our beautiful island. Use them to get your imagination going, then create your own Tasmania plan.
Bathurst Harbour, Southwest National Park by Dan Broun (CC)
We just can't go past it - Bathurst Harbour and Port Davey, part of the Port Davey Marine Reserve, are situated in the Southwest National Park in the heart of the Tasmanian wilderness and contain some of the finest and most remote wilderness found anywhere in the world. Access to the park is by boat or light plane to Melaleuca, where an 84 km walking track departs for Cockle Creek. This is one of the world's great wilderness areas, with stunning views, challenging inclines and all kinds of weather. Kayaking through these changing landscapes will take your breath away.
Hobart from Mt Wellington by JJ Harrison (CC)
An iconic Tasmania landmark, Mount Wellington defines the Hobart-area landscape in dramatic fashion. Rising some 1,200 m (4,100 ft) above sea level, the sometimes snow-capped peak looms over the capital and its scenic bay.
If you're up for a long walk, hike the 20 km (14 mi) to the top. Sweeping views of Hobart, its river, and the bay will be your big reward. Other options to the summit include driving, biking, or riding a horse, so you can give your hiking boots a rest.
Penitentiary at Port Arthur by Martybugs (CC)
Port Arthur Historic Site is a great place to learn about Tasmania's penal-colony history and heritage. Once a prison for some of Britain's worst criminals, the complex is now a World Heritage Site. The compound rests against a picturesque bay surrounded by thickly forested hillsides. It's ideal for long walks and leisurely harbor cruises, so bring your camera. The place is also allegedly haunted. Guided paranormal investigations reveal the hidden side of the prison. Ghost-hunting equipment is included, so leave your proton pack at home.
Freycinet National Park by Atsushi Kase (CC)
Part of Freycinet National Park, Wineglass Bay Lookout offers priceless views of Tasmania's rugged landscape. A gentle walk through lush vegetation leads to this scenic spot, a dream come true for any shutterbug. The surrounding bushes hide wombats and wallabies, shy but perfectly willing to peak out if you keep still long enough.
Battery Point by Robyn Jay (CC)
Hobart's oldest district, Battery Point dates back to the first European settlement of the city. The name refers to a battery of guns, a 19th-century defense against Russian and French invaders. Guided tours provide a chance to really get to know the district on a personal level. And imagine yourself living here as one of those early settlers.
Cradle Mountain behind Dove Lake by Bjørn Christian Tørrissen (CC)
Completely wild and completely stunning, Cradle Mountain represents the rugged jewel of a sprawling national park. Why go there? Because it's home to icy streams, ancient forests, glacial lakes, and a wealth of local wildlife. Want to see Tasmanian devils? Then run, don't walk to Cradle Mountain, part of a UNESCO World Heritage Area.
Cataract Gorge, Launceston TAS - Bridge by Luke Webber (CC)
You may feel a world away from Launceston when you're there, but Cataract Gorge is actually just a few minute's drive from the city center. Stunning scenery draws tourists the first time, but it's the range of activities that keeps them coming back for more.
In addition to the longest single-span chairlift in the world, the area boasts a free swimming pool, nature trails, and regular outdoor concerts. A sassy onsite restaurant serves up Tasmania's favorite dishes and some of its best wines.
The Neck, Bruny Island - Tasmania by Adam Selwood (CC)
The 360-degree views from The Neck will have you staring in awe at Tasmania's amazing "scapes", both sea and land. A major habitat for native wildlife, this isthmus remains the place for spotting little (fairy) penguins and short-tailed shearwaters. The best time to visit this unique Tasmania landmark? Dusk, when the penguins return to their sand burrows in tight formations reminiscent of school children on a field trip.
Nelson Lights by Tim Cooper (CC)
Offering lovely views without the snow of the region's higher points, Mount Nelson Lookout is more than just an observation deck. What's there? In addition to a convenient cafe, the spot boasts picnic tables, barbecues, and lush eucalyptus vegetation. It's a great place to get some exercise and enjoy a picnic with a view. It's also ideal for avid photographers and a great place to view the Aurora Australia (or Southern Lights), so make sure you bring a fully charged camera.
Candlestick and Totem Pole, Fortescue Bay, Tasmania by Roaring 40°s Kayaking
Indisputably one of the best day paddling locations in Tasmania, Fortescue Bay offers pristine scenery with an added punch. Two soaring dolerate spires called Candlestick and Totem Pole draw adrenaline-seeking climbers from every corner of the world. Climbing these rock columns presents quite a challenge, even for experienced mountaineers. If you'd rather stay at ground level, walk the coastal trails for great views and plenty of easy exercise, or better still, spend a day kayaking this amazing bay with us!
Devils Kitchen by Stonestreet's Coaches - The Extra Mile (CC)
As a rugged cliff against which the waves of the Great Southern Ocean continuously crash, Devil's Kitchen is very aptly named. Even on calmer days, the foaming fury of water makes a truly spectacular sight. The really great thing about Devil's Kitchen is its proximity to Tasman's Arch, another standout among top Tasmania attractions. A kind of natural bridge made of solid rock, the Arch took millions of years to form.
Tinderbox Marine Reserve South by Anthony Tong Lee (CC)
Tinderbox Marine Reserve remains one of the best snorkeling and scuba diving spots in Tasmania. Why? Because there you can explore an underwater trail running parallel to a sandstone reef. You don't have to be an expert marine biologist to appreciate the area's rich ecosystem. Submerged info plates explain exactly what to look for. Keep your eyes peeled for Tasmanian numbfish and sea cucumbers! It is also a stunning area to kayak with tranquil bays, lichen-covered cliffs, sea caves, sandy beaches and stunning views of Bruny Island.
Cascades Female Factory by Azoma (CC)
Probably not the most cheerful of places, Cascades Female Factory provides yet another look at Australia's notorious history as a penal colony. Functional between 1828 and 1856, the former workhouse is now a World Heritage Site and one of the most important historical Tasmania landmarks. Dramatized guided tours with costumed actors bring the story of female convicts to life. Cheer yourself up by following this visit with a tour of the nearby Cascade Brewery.
Russell Falls, Mount Field National Park by jeffowenphotos (CC)
Pretty as a picture. Easily accessible by a short paved hike. Part of the large Mount Field National Park. That's three reasons why you should definitely visit Russell Falls, our favourite weekend escape from Hobart, next time you're in Tasmania. Here's more incentives - the surrounding park shelters soaring swamp gums, the world's tallest flowering plants and a short drive through the rainforest will have you at the beautiful alpine Lake Dobson.
Richmond Bridge Tasmania by Jeanie Mackinder (CC)
The oldest bridge still in use in Tasmania, the sandstone Richmond Bridge owes its existence to forced labor. The project to construct this arched structure consumed several years and the efforts of hundreds of convicts. It's an important reminder of Australia's forced migration heritage. It's also an ideal spot for a picnic--look for designated sites on the grassy riverbank.