Recently, we posted a blog on why travellers should add Tasmania to their travel list this year in ‘5 Reasons to Visit Tasmania’. With so much to offer, travellers could easily spend months exploring the island.
Unfortunately, not everyone has the luxury of travelling for months on end. That’s why the travel gods invented long weekends away and day trips from city-based accommodation.
The beautiful city of Hobart is a fantastic base when visiting Tasmania. Here are 5 fantastic day trips you can do from the city.
With its uber impressive waterfront location, Peppermint Bay, an award winning restaurant in the south of Tasmania, is a remarkable place to stop for a bite of lunch. The restaurant boasts striking views across the D’Entrecasteaux Channel through the floor to ceiling windows in the main restaurant, or you can get up close and personal with the waterfront view and enjoy it from the lovely outdoor patio area.
If the setting alone doesn’t sell you then the food just might. Peppermint Bay’s seasonal menu includes fresh local produce from the Huon Valley, organic meat, fish and meats from the smokehouse, and specialty cheeses.
The best part? You can arrive in style aboard a luxury catamaran from Hobart. The cruise includes a fully guided tour along 40km of the coastline, just to start things off for the day.
Mt Field National Park
Mt Field National Park is nature at its best. In fact, it was Tasmania’s first national park and when you visit you will see why the state was so keen to preserve this gorgeous slice of nature.
The park is home to an ample number of spectacular waterfalls, with Horseshoe Falls and Russell Falls among the most popular, and a diverse range of wildlife, including the endangered eastern quoll.
This is the perfect place to spend a day amidst nature taking in the beautiful views, spectacular waterfalls, and impressive range of flora and fauna. There are a number of walking tracks to meander around and enjoy the tranquil setting, many of which end at or pass by one of the park’s waterfalls.
Mt Field National Park is a leisurely drive from Hobart that can be covered in approximately 1 hour (each way).
Port Arthur Historical Site
Set on 40 hectares of manicured grounds in picturesque Mason Cove on the Tasman Peninsula, the Port Arthur Historical Site is a fantastic day trip not only for its historical significance but also to explore the beautiful setting itself.
The World Heritage listed site has over 30 buildings to explore, including the infamous Penitentiary, the old Dockyard, and Coal Mines. The Penitentiary was constructed in 1843, first as a flour mill until 1857 when it was converted into a penitentiary, and is one of the better preserved buildings from that period in history within Australia. During its heyday the building housed over 480 convicts. Interestingly, the Coal Mines were Tasmania’s first operational mine, and were where the ‘worst class’ convicts were sent for punishment.
Port Arthur Historical Site can be reached in just over an hour from Hobart. Make sure you allow plenty of time to explore all the buildings as well as the beautifully landscaped gardens.
On the beyond-beautiful East Coast of Tasmania you will find Coles Bay. Coles Bay is at the top of most visitors’ lists. Here you will find Freycinet National Park and the iconic Wineglass Bay.
The image of Wineglass Bay is etched into every travellers mind as the ultimate place to visit while in Tasmania. With its sparkling turquoise water and sweeping white-sand beach, Wineglass Bay is the epitome of paradise.
The area of Coles Bay is renowned for its spectacular coastal scenery, boating, fishing, walking, and kayaking among other things. There is plenty to see and do in the area, from walking along the secluded beach of Wineglass Bay to hiking through the forest tracks on the peninsula. Spending an afternoon floating on the water in they bay, aboard a boat or kayak, is another great way to while away the day.
Coles Bay can be reached in less than 3 hours from Hobart depending on your route.
Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
Okay, so this last one isn’t really a day trip, but it can be. With so much to see in and around MONA you could easily fill a whole day if not two.
Home to a whole range of antiques, old and modern art, this contemporary-style museum is like no other you’ll ever visit. The MONA prides itself on its distinctive approach, with the owner once describing the museum as a ‘subversive adult Disneyland.’
It is the largest privately owned museum in Australia housing over 400 artworks on 3 levels; in fact the 3.5 hectare site is more than just a museum, there’s also the Moorilla winery and vineyard, a library, cinema, restaurant, wine bar, microbrewery, gallery, and accommodation villas.
So why not take your time exploring this interesting piece of Tasmania? After a morning perusing the museum you could stop for lunch at the restaurant, followed by an afternoon wandering around the art gallery, then enjoy a glass of Moorilla wine in the wine bar at sunset before heading over to the cinema for the evening. After a day well spent, you can then retire to one of the on-site villas.
The MONA can be reached by a short 30 minute ferry ride from Hobart along the picturesque Derwent River.