Active Expeditions

National Geographic Best of Tasmania

  • Duration 13 Days
  • Group Size Max 12
  • From $5,990 AUD
Call 1300 966 237

Trip Overview

To the south of the Australian continent lies a wilderness island called Tasmania. At the edge of the world, Tasmania showcases unique endemic wildlife and flora and holds one of the largest wilderness world heritage areas in the developed world. On this specially crafted itinerary, exclusive to National Geographic, we explore the diverse natural wonders that are on offer. From Australia's highest coastal cliffs and the largest cool temperate rainforest in the southern hemisphere to the summit of Cradle Mountain and the charm of some of Australia's oldest towns and settlements, this outing offers a truly in depth look at Van Diemans Land

Trip Highlights

  • Exploring Australia's largest cool temperate rainforest - the Tarkine Rainforest
  • Exploring the delights of Bruny and Maria Islands
  • Abundance of endemic wildlife and ancient flora
  • Spectacular Wilderness Railway in Strahan
  • Summiting Bishop and Clarke (620m) on stunning Maria Island
  • Quality accommodation in unique settings including Corinna Wilderness Village on the crest of the Tarkine

Itinerary - 13 Days

Day 1 Hobart, Mount Wellington and Mona

Fly into Hobart for a morning arrival. Your group will be collected from the airport by our guides and transferred to your accommodation where a trip briefing will take place. We will then drive up to the summit of Mt Wellington before starting the Silver Falls track. This short walk on the mountains lower slopes is a great introduction to Tasmania’s rainforests. Your guides will then prepare a delicious lunch for your group before suggesting a few options for the afternoon, such as visiting the acclaimed MONA (museum of old and new art), wandering around Salamanca Place exploring the many artisans workshops and galleries or just enjoying the vibe of this colourful and cultured city. We will enjoy a welcome dinner this evening at one of Hobart';s many restaurants. Walking time: 2.5 hours +

Day 2 Explore Bruny Island

Today you will be collected from your accommodation in Hobart at approximately 7:30am. Leaving Hobart we travel in a southerly direction following the Derwent River until we reach the town of Kettering where we board the Mirambeena, the ferry service connecting Bruny Island to the mainland. Crossing the D’entrecasteaux Channel provides us with sensational views back to the Mt Wellington range until we disembark a short time later to begin exploring the island. First up we'll undertake a lovely coastal walk at Cape Queen Elizabeth before stopping at some of Bruny Islands wonderfully delicious food producers. After sampling the fine foods we continue on towards the famous ‘neck’; a natural causeway which separates the island two distinct sections. A short walk to a viewing platform provides breathtaking views across the island and southern Tasmania. In the late afternoon, we'll head towards Adventure Bay where more gourmet treats await. With a day of adventure and discovery behind us we can relax at our modest accommodation situated in sleepy Adventure Bay. Walking time: up to 3 hours

Day 3 Fluted Cape and Tasman Peninsula

An early start will see us catching an east coast sunrise and enjoying a hearty breakfast before heading out to explore this stunning island hideaway. The mornings walk, Fluted Cape, is one of Tasmania’s great short walks and not to be missed. The trail leads us up from the peacefulness of the coastline through open eucalyptus woodland before opening up to reveal the truly stunning vista of the sea cliffs of Fluted Cape towering high above the southern ocean below. From here magnificent views of the Tasman Peninsula and beyond can be obtained as well as the opportunity to spot an abundance of both marine and terrestrial wildlife. After another delightful lunch we will then head back to the ferry to transfer back to the main island. From here we travel along Storm Bay and along the river Derwent before heading down to the Tasman Peninsula. Along the way we can choose to do a selection of the islands great short walks such as the Tasman Blowhole, Devils kitchen and take in the stunning views from Eaglehawk Neck. We will then arrive at our historic accommodation for the evening where your guides will cook up a BBQ feast. Walking time: 2.5 – 4 hours (staggered throughout the day)

Day 4 Port Arthur and Cape Hauy

For our mornings explorations we will visit the infamous and historically rich convict site of Port Arthur. Here we will join a guided tour of the site and enjoy a short cruise out past the old prison and the Isle of the Dead cemetery. Afterwards we can either choose short walk out to the beautiful Waterfall Bay or opt for the more challenging Cape Raoul; the southernmost cape for which this region is prized. We will then return to our accommodation to freshen up before heading out to enjoy a delightful dinner at one of the areas restaurants. Walking time: Up to 6 hours (Port Arthur and Waterfall Bay 2.5- 3 hours)

Day 5 Maria Island Walks

Today you will be encouraged to get up nice and early and aim for a quick departure so as to catch the morning ferry to Maria Island. Upon arrival on the wonderful island we will transfer our gear via rickshaw up to the historic Penitentiary accommodation where the group will share dorm style rooms. Over the next two days we spend our time exploring Maria Island, taking in its vast history and the natural wonders scattered all over the island on foot. We will see the famous Painted Cliffs, unusual sandstone formations with magnificent patterns exposed by the relentless ocean and caused by iron oxides leaching into the sedimentary rock. We will visit the Fossil Cliffs rich with the imprints of life forms from millions of years ago. The fascinating history of the island is as diverse and substantial as its wildlife. This industrial history includes everything from vineyards to cement works but the most interesting is the convict history. There are many ruins from penal days including cell blocks, commandant’s cottages and windmill sites. Walking time: Up to 5 hours (optional)

Day 6 Bishop and Clerk Summit

Today we have the opportunity to undertake one of the islands most famous walks to the summit of Bishop and Clerk (620m). The view from this peak is incomparable as you gaze across the expanse of the island and out over the Tasman Sea. In the afternoon we can choose to do the reservoir circuit walk through open woodlands and tall eucalypt forests and watch for the islands plentiful bird and wildlife. We then return to our accommodation at the Penitentiary to freshen up and relax whilst your guides will cook up a hearty camp meal. Walking time: 3-5 hours

Day 7 Mt Field National Park and Russell Falls

This morning will see us aboard the first ferry back to Triabunna where we will collect our vehicle before heading south to Tasmanias first national park, Mt Field. Here we will enjoy the superb scenery and lush vegetation of the Russell Falls and Tall Trees circuit walks. We will get to witness the largest flowering tree in the world, the Swamp Gum, stretching to its majestic heights of above 90 metres. We will then check into our well sited self contained accommodation set on the banks of the Tyenna River. Walking time: 3 – 4 hours Meals: B, L, D

Day 8 Mount Field and Lake St Clair

This morning we'll walk to the top of the tarn shelf for outstanding views of Mt Field National Pass before returning to the vehicle and continuing our journey west along the Lyell Highway. Just before reaching Derwent Bridge we will stop at a stunning artistic endeavour – The Wallin the Wilderness. This ambitious undertaking aims to portray the history of the central highlands on a 100 metre bass relief carved on Huon Pine and Tas Oak. Our next destination is Lake St Clair, the southern hemispheres deepest natural lake. Here we either choose to relax by the lake side or do some of the areas shorter walks such as Watersmeet or the Platypus Bay and Larmairremener tabelti - Aboriginal cultural walk. We then check in to our lakeside accommodation before heading to the Derwent Bridge Hotel for a fabulous evening meal. Walking time: Up to 4 hours

Day 9 World Heritage Area and Strahan

Leaving Lake St Clair we continue to follow the Lyell Highway as it passes through the Franklin- Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. Along the way we can choose to do a number of great short walks such as Donaghys Hill lookout, which provides memorable views to Frenchmans Cap and the superb Nelson Falls. On our journey we will cross the mighty Franklin River, enjoy a short nature walk along its banks before finding an idyllic spot to enjoy lunch. We then leave the wilderness behind as we reach the quaint town of Strahan. Here we can choose to join a short walk up to the impressive Hogarth Falls before spending an hour or two exploring the town’s tourist attractions. Our accommodation for the evening is at the well appointed Strahan Village. Dinner will be at one of the towns great restaurants. Walking time: Up to 3 hours

Day 10 Wilderness Railway - Queenstown Explorer

Today will see your group stepping back in time as they embark on the famous West Coast Wilderness Railway. The 19th century rack and pinion steam train will take you on a journey deep into the iconic wilderness valleys and forgotten towns that etched their existence out of a harsh and unforgiving environment. This full day journey will take you to the famous mining settlement of Queenstown where you will have an hour to explore its historic buildings and get a feel for its remoteness. Then back aboard the train and enjoy the journey through the temperate forests and deep gorges before returning to Strahan where the train tour concludes.Your guides will then transfer you back to your accommodation for a final night in Strahan. If time and weather permits we may enjoy a BBQ dinner at Ocean Beach as the sun sinks into the west. Walking time: up to 2 hours

Day 11 Tarkine and Corinna

Saying farewell to Strahan we continue our journey heading towards the largest continuous temperate rainforest in the world- The Tarkine. We journey through Zeehan and have a brief stop at Granville Harbour before taking the barge across the Pieman River. Here we reach our accommodation for the next two nights, the reclaimed mining village of Corinna set in the very heart of the wilderness. The afternoon sees us setting out on the Whyte River walk. This walk passes massive Myrtle Beech trees festooned with moss and epiphytes. As we journey alongside the course of the river we will get glimpses of its dark tannin stained waters and if we are lucky may even spot a platypus. Returning to Corinna we then settle into our lovely accommodation for the evening as your guides prepare another sumptuous feast. Walking time: Up to 2 hours

Day 12 Pieman River and Cradle Valley

An early morning start will see us aboard the Arcadia boat cruise drifting along the majestic Pieman River and through the dawn mists as the day starts to reveal the magnificent rain forests of the Tarkine region. Upon arrival at the Pieman Heads we will spend a few hours exploring the spectacular wild West Coast scenery. Returning to Corinna in the early afternoon we will then pack up and continue on to the Cradle Mountain area for the last night of our adventure. We will check into our accommodation at the Highlanders Cottages before choosing to either relax and enjoy the serenity or going with your guides to explore one of the short walks around Cradle valley. A favourite short walk is the King Billy Track which takes us to view an ancient endemic Tasmanian pine tree. The evening will see you dining at the famous Cradle Mountain Lodge before returning the short distance to your accommodation. Walking time: Up to 3.5 - 4 hours

Day 13 Dove Lake and Launceston

For the final morning of your tour we have the option of walking the magnificent Dove Lake Circuit, taking in the iconic views of Cradle Mountain and wandering through the ancient rainforest grotto of the Ballroom Forest. For the more adventurous, a trek through the Dove Canyon will add another less visited dimension to your visit to this amazing World Heritage Area. We then will enjoy a final lunch and head on wards to Launceston for the 2.5 hour journey through the north of the state. You will be dropped at your accommodation in Launceston at approximately 5pm where the tour will conclude and your guides will farewell you at the Penny Royal Hotel. Walking time: Up to 3 hours

National Geographic Best of Tasmania

From AUD $5,990 Call 1300 966 237Book Online


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