The British first settled Tasmania in 1803 as a preventive measure against the French, with the capital founded in 1804. As such, Hobart is the second oldest city in Australia. These early days focused around convict settlements including the infamous Port Arthur, which is now a major tourist destination. Throughout the nineteenth century, the island became a significant centre on the world stage for shipbuilding. Today, however Tasmania is known for its idyllic scenic beauty, the extinct Tasmanian Tiger and the fiendish antics of the Tasmanian Devil. The destination is so popular that enthusiasts race each other to get there every December.
The best time to visit Tasmania is definitely in summer, when day time temperatures hover around 24 degrees in Launceston but can be lower in other places. In winter temperatures reach only 12 degrees along the coast and three degrees in the central plateau.
The island hosts many cultural festivals including the 10 Days on the Island Arts Festival, a major biennial event celebrating artistic expression, the Falls Festival at Marion Bay and the Southern Roots Festival. For the more adventurous traveller, there are a number of walking and cycling tours of Tasmania that will allow you to absorb the breathtaking scenery at a slower pace.
Hobart and Launceston both have domestic airports. The following airlines fly from major Australian capitals to Tasmania.
Flying from Sydney to Hobart takes just under two hours, Melbourne to Hobart takes just over an hour and Brisbane to Hobart takes just over two and a half hours.
Hobart boasts several luxury boutique options including The Islington originally built in 1847 and today is an incredible example of Regency architecture and the Henry Hones Art Hotel located on Hobart’s waterfront as a dedicated art hotel. Around the national parks, there are luxury options also such as the Freycinet Lodge with beautiful private cabins and the Cradle Mountain Chateau set just outside national park.
Experiencing the natural beauty of Tasmania together is magically option for a honeymoon. Many romantic resorts set in bushland cater to honeymooners and will make you feel right at home. View Honeymoon options
To find out more about the range of holiday accommodation available with Travel Associates call 1800 017 849 or enquire online.
Sights to See
Hobart is a great city to wander, exploring all the heritage buildings. There are many gorgeous examples of restored Georgian and Victorian architecture. Check out Salamanca Place and the nearby Battery Point, which boasts many buildings built with local golden sandstone. The Botanical Gardens are a great place to appreciate the beauty of the native flora and the views from Mount Wellington behind the city are tremendous.
Despite the city-based attractions, the true beauty of Tasmania is the natural wilderness. The Freycinet National Park presents stunning casual walking opportunities. Take a stroll up the hill for a spectacular view over Wineglass Bay before walking down to the beach, across the isthmus and back to the car park. Alternatively, travel inland and have the camera ready for a shot of the iconic Cradle Mountain or drive round the other side of the National Park to admire Lake St Clair. Strahan on the west coast is a popular destination with a beautiful ocean outlook.
To explore our convict past, the incredibly well-preserved Port Arthur, on the southeast coast about 90-minutes drive outside Hobart, gives a fascinating insight into life in a penal colony. For about twenty years, 1833 to 1853 the most notorious criminals who had reoffended after arriving in Australia were sent to Port Arthur. Today there’s an eerie silence amongst the structures set within a picturesque valley.
Don’t Leave Without…
The temperature can drop at night, so make sure you bring a warm jumper even in summer. For serious hikers, wear solid walking boots for added protection. For extended hikes, always notify the authorities of your intentions and take a good map. The weather can turn at a moment’s notice.
Things to be careful of…
All of Tasmania’s snakes are venomous. If you see a tiger snake, lowland copperhead or white-lipped snake - do not approach them. If bitten, seek medical assistance immediately.
At dusk or dawn, native wildlife are the most active. So avoid driving at these times to protect are unique fauna.