A week in Tasmania, meeting its iconic animals

The only island state of Australia is often compared to Corsica for us French as its landscape contrasts with the rest of the Australian continent. Tasmania is famous for its wilderness classed as UNESCO World Heritage Site and its unique flora and fauna.

In one week we had to make choices on where to go and places to visit and we have decided to explore the east coast from Launceston to Hobart.

We take you to the biggest island of Australia, the land of devils, snakes and penguins, put on your sneakers, we'll walk !

coucher de soleil a Scamander

D1 | Launceston

To maximize our time we decided to land in Launceston and take off from Hobart. It takes approximately 1 hour 45 minutes of flight from Sydney.

We chose Virgin Airline for our trip, it was the best value for money if you have checked-in luggage.

Launceston is the second largest city in Tasmania but it won't take long to visit it. Do not hesitate to walk along the Cataract Gorges, in the park surrounding the gorge, you can probably see small wallabies and peacocks.

wallaby
groupe de paons
wallaby
coucher de soleil sur le port de Launceston
cataract gorge reserve

Continue your walk on the sea front to the city port, to watch the sunset. We were lucky, the clouds gave us a great show.

coucher de soleil à Launceston

Be careful, the restaurants close relatively early do not delay for dinner. On the recommendation of Lonely Planet, we stopped at the Pickled Evenings an Indian restaurant. It was a very good choice, the waiters are very nice, the food is very plentiful (no chance to take a dessert) and it's very good ! The only place we ate very well for a very fair price in Tasmania.

D2 | Binalong Bay

rocher de binalong bay

The next day we take the car to Binalong Bay (about 2 hours from Launceston).

Unfortunately the weather was not with us. More generally, be aware that the weather can change very quickly in Tasmania, plan a rain suit.

Once you arrived at the Bay of Fires, you can admire the famous fire-colored stones. Surprisingly, know that the color of the stones has nothing to do with the origin of the name of the bay ! Indeed it is the captain Tobias Furneaux who in 1773, arriving at the bay saw the fires ignited by the natives, who decided to name it this way.

In good weather, the contrast between the fire-colored rocks and the turquoise blue of the sea is striking.

rochers a Binalong Bay
rochers sur la plage a Binalong Bay
rochers a Binalong Bay

If you don't know where to spend the night, stop at Scamander at the Santuary Holiday Park for a night in a luxury tent !

D3 | Bicheno & Freycinet National Park

For our third day, we head to Freycinet National Park.

Definitely one of our favorite day. The park is really beautiful and the various hikes will allow you to enjoy it to the fullest. Count 1h-1h30 for the shortest walk, up to 8h for the longest.

The park entrance is $24 if you come by car and $ 12 / person if you are by foot.

We chose the 4h30 to 5h hike, which makes a loop from Wineglass Bay to Hazard Beach, through the lookout that allows you to observe the famous beach crescent.

wineglass bay lookout

It took us 3h of walk, overall indicated time are wide.

On the first part to Wineglass Bay Beach, you will meet a few people, the second part to Hazard Beach is much less crowded.

plage de Freycinet
coquillage
kangourou dans les hautes herbes
plage de Freycinet

If you are attentive, you will surely see some wallabies, but they know how to hide in the forest so keep your eyes open.

But these are not the only inhabitants of the park, snakes, including the famous tiger snakes are also present in the park ! Be careful where you put your feet!

tiger snake sur la plage
kangourou dans les hautes herbes
kangourou dans les hautes herbes
kangourou sur la plage

After visiting the park, we head back to Bicheno to spend the evening. As for restaurants, choice is quite limited, have a picnic and go eat in front of the ocean. The best view for a dinner, right ?

couché de soleil sur la mer a Bicheno

We end this incredible day with a penguins watching tour where you can observe them in their natural habitat, an experience that is clearly worth doing.

To know more about this expedition, it's here 🙂 !

D4 | The Tasmanian peninsula

The road to the Tasmanian peninsula, located on the south-east of the island, offers many views of the cliffs: Tasman Arc, Devils Kitchen, Blow Hole... In the end they all look a little bit the same.

falaise au bord de mer
falaise au bord de mer
arbres en bord de falaise
falaises au bord de mer

Take advantage of  your presence in the peninsula to visit the Tasmanian Devil Unzoo in Tanarra, where you can meet John, his team and the famous Tasmanian devil !

The Unzoo is so called because it is not a zoo but rather a reserve where animals are free, there is no enclosure except for the Tasmanian devils.

This tour was very enriching, you will be able to see many birds, including eagles, feed the kangaroos and especially learn more about the history of Tasmanian devils and see some in real life! Be aware that it is almost impossible to observe them in the wild.

The Unzoo is worth a visit, away from the crowd, with a pleasant and passionate team, you will learn a lot about Tasmanian wildlife ($ 35 per person). One of our favorite of the trip.

diable de tasmanie
groupe de kangourous
aigle en vol
diable de tasmanie
groupe de kangourous
mouette en plein atterrissage

D5 | Hobart

We finish our stay in Tasmania by the largest city of the island: Hobart.

Take your time to explore the city, walk around the harbour and stop for an ice cream at Van Diemens Land Creamery.

bateaux dans le port d'Hobart

If (and only if) the weather is clear, climb up to the top of Mount Wellington, the view of the city and its surroundings is breathtaking and spectacular. At sunrise you will have beautiful colors.

Don't forget to bring your sweater (at least), you will lose about 10 degrees when reaching the top!

We didn't have the chance to do it, but be aware that it is possible to go down the mountain by mountain bike.

vue depuis le mont Wellington

From Hobart, it is possible to take the ferry to Bruny Island to observe, among other things, the colonies of seals that live on the island. However, remember to check the weather and book your excursion in advance.

Tasmania is a really wild island, you'll probably be less out of touch than by certain regions of continental Australia, it remains nonetheless unique and rich in its fauna, it's worth the detour:).

Watch your driving: 100,000 animals are run over every year on Tasmanian roads...

It won't take you long to figure it out. Let's try to protect wildlife as much as possible, drive during the day, avoid sunrise and sunset and at night. Drive carefully and pay attention to the signs.

kangourou

Do it for them 😉

  • Freycinet National Park
  • Penguin watching tour
  • The visit of the Tasmanian Devil Unzoo

To find out more about our adventure in Tasmania:
* Penguin watching in Bicheno Tasmania

If you want to getaway from Sydney, find out more about our weekend aux Blue Mountains :
A hiking weekend in the Blue Mountains

Feel free to ask us questions in the comments, we'll be delighted to answer

Find all our experience in Australia here 🙂

A hiking weekend in the Blue Mountains

The Blue Mountains National Park is one of Australia's most famous parks.

It has nearly 140km of trail on 1436 km2 and 1000 m deep, if you are in love with hiking and nature this park is made for you!

It takes 2 hours from Sydney by train from Central Station to Katoomba, 2 hours to take a real breath of fresh air and get away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

From Katoomba you have many hiking departures for all levels. Thanks to the different points of view, you can easily admire the bluish emanations of the eucalyptus trees that gave the park its name.

Not to be missed: the Echo point of Katoomba, from where you will have a breathtaking view of the 3 Sisters (40 min walk from the station). You can then discover the aboriginal legends explaining how the 3 sisters Meehni, Wimlah and Gunnedoo were transformed into stone.

Beware, the point of view being accessible by car and bus, it is often very busy, which takes away a little of the serenity of the place...

But no matter, after your hike stay and admire the sunset, it is magical !

Among the various hikes, we recommend the one that starts behind the Echo Point visitor center. You can follow the path leading to the 3 sisters through the Giant Stairway. You will engage in a long descent of about thirty stairs and a little more than 900 steps.

You will then enter the bush, where you can hear the many birds present in the forest. Very soothing and pleasant. At the end of the loop, you can walk back or take the Scenic World funicular.

It takes about 2 hours to walk back to Echo Point.

To spend the night, we opted for the YHA hostel, rather friendly and clean.

The next day, we decide to do one of the most legendary hikes of the park, the Grand Canyon.

We take the bus from Katoomba to Blackheath. Remember to check the schedules, there are very few bus during the day. Before starting, go eat a waffle at True to the bean, they are very good.

This hike is really our favorite of the Blue Mountains. You will descend into the canyon for about 3 hours of walking (ascent included), really grandiose. Try to arrive early enough to avoid tourists, to make the route even more magical. Be careful, as you go down the canyon, think of saving forces for the ascent 🙂

If you came by car, count a good half an hour by road to reach the starting car park at the end of the hike. If like us, you are on foot, continue by the short hike which will lead you to Govetts Leap lookout.

Then count a good half hour to reach the station of Blackheath.

We then took the train back to Sydney, but if you have time, stop at Glenbrook, a little further into the Blue Mountains to try to see kangaroos.

Clearly a must during your stay in Sydney.

  • The sunset on the 3 sisters
  • The Grand Canyon Hiking
  • Parrots at dawn

To find out more about our adventure in Australia :
* Road trip - 5 days in Tasmania, meeting its iconics animals

Feel free to ask us questions in the comments, we'll be delighted to answer 🙂

Find all our experiences in Australia here 🙂

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wilderborders@gmail.com
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