From alpaca throws to woodwork, gin to garden-fresh vegetables, Salamanca Market is like creative Tasmania in a bustling snapshot. Grab a coffee and a bulging bacon-and-egg breakfast roll before navigating more than 300 stalls, wedged alongside the Salamanca precinct's historic sandstone warehouses.
Your afternoon excursions delve deep into many of the things that make Hobart great: the leafy Botanic Gardens spotlighting endemic plants, historic Battery Point and the Cascade Brewery - raspberry cider, anyone? End the day on a literal high at the Mt Nelson Lookout, offering dizzying views over the city and the River Derwent, all the way to Bruny Island in the south. (B)
From waterfalls to lakes to ancient moonscapes, today is a journey of contrasts. Not to mention blissful moments of soul revival. Exhale amid the tangle of forest that drapes Mt Field National Park, where tiered Russell Falls casts a veil of mist over the flora. Forget your worries at mirror-like Lake St. Clair, the deepest of its kind in Australia.
Sigh as you skirt the World Heritage-protected Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. Then revel in the serenity of Strahan on the wild West Coast of the island. Did you know you're overlooking Macquarie Harbour, which is a whopping seven times the size of Sydney Harbour? (B/D) Stay: Strahan Village
No day that involves a cruise is a bad day. Even better if it's the deep, dark waters of the far-flung Tassie's Gordon River. Soak up the silence of this untouched wilderness area on your Gordon River cruise en route to Sarah Island, the state's oldest convict settlement. Today, the island's haunting ruins have been reclaimed by nature, enveloped by forest and twisting vines.
Your commute toward immense Cradle Mountain-Lake St. Clair National Park visits Rosebery - the tagline here is “welcome to the rainforest, don't complain about the rain” - and tiny Tullah, population 165. Rest up - Cradle Mountain tours await. (B/L/D) Stay: Cradle Mountain Hotel (2 Nights)
At the heart of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, Cradle Mountain is all moss-covered ancient rainforest and deep river gorges, snow-tipped peaks, wild alpine moorlands and glacial lakes - case in point Dove Lake, where you'll likely spot Bennett's wallabies, echidnas and pademelons grazing.
Pause at Waldheim Chalet, once the home of Gustav and Kate Weindorfer, a passionate husband-and-wife team who played a pivotal role in the park's formation and protection. Being here, you can understand their vision: this pocket of paradise is like a salve for the soul, at once humbling and inspiring. (B/D)
Tasmania has its fair share of award-winning gin and whisky distilleries. Among them - and one of Australia's pioneers when it comes to delicious drops - is Hellyers Road Distillery in Burnie. The cellar door here pours some of the tastiest tipples you'll come across. Whisky is a breakfast drink, right? Continue expanding your palate at Mount Gnomon Farm, in the hills overlooking the petite town of Penguin. If there's a place with a cuter name, we're yet to locate it on a map.
Here, farmer Guy Robertson is as passionate about his orchards of heritage apples as he is about the cider he makes. Sip your way through a Be My Guest lunch. Call in at quirky Sheffield, the ‘Town of Murals' and continue through the Meander Valley to Launceston. (B/L) Stay: Hotel Grand Chancellor Launceston (2 Nights)
You'll smell Bridestowe Estate well before you arrive - this lavender farm welcomes with soothing aromas (did you know that lavender is a soporific?) and addictive flavours in the form of lavender ice-cream or perhaps a spoon of honey from the half-a-million bees that graze the floral fields.
Moving moments await at Legerwood Carved Memorial Trees, a series of trees carved with sculptures as an homage to fallen WWI soldiers. It's a poignant reminder just how lucky we are today, to have Tasmania's scene-stealing landscapes to gaze over. Be sure to head out tonight to catch a glimpse of the little penguins that call this part of the world home. (B/D) Stay: Diamond Island Beach Resort
Freestone Point was once home to the world's largest wood chip mill, built on the unceded lands of the Paredarerme people. It's had a philosophy change, and now has forward-thinking management intent on charting a sustainable path. As if your ‘welcome to country' at Oyster Bay wasn't humbling enough, you'll then have the chance to visit beehives and worm, assisting horticulturists propagating seeds to regenerate the area.
The GPS is now set for the historic township of Richmond; explore the convict-built goal and bridge or browsing the quaint boutique shops in town. This evening is at your leisure in Hobart. (B) Stay: Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart (3 Nights)
While the World Heritage-listed Port Arthur Historic Site has a grim convict history, you wouldn't know it today - the countryside is all rolling green fields and ocean views, best glimpsed on a Port Arthur guided tour with an in-the-know historian. The secrets they can tell… It's only the place names that give Port Arthur's harsh heritage away: cruise around the Isle of the Dead, glimpse rugged sea cliffs from Pirate's Bay Lookout, and veer past Tasman's Arch, Devil's Kitchen and the Blowhole.
Tonight is at your leisure in Hobart - we can recommend any number of stellar restaurants and wine bars. There's no shortage in Tasmania's cool little capital. (B)
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