Things to do in Tasmania: Your Bucket List Guide to an Epic Weekend Getaway
The list of things to do in Tasmania is mind-blowing, but we've got you covered when you're short on time and want to pack a whole lot in.
Tasmania has once again been thrust into the spotlight, and this time, it's all for the right reasons. A holiday destination that has captured the imagination of Aussie's and those who hail from further afield. From foodie hotspots to cultural experiences to a natural wonderland that feels other-worldly. It's all too easy to fall in love with this small island.
Here, history runs deep. From the palawa (Tasmanian Aboriginal) culture to its penal colony days, you can feel the island's heritage through its every fibre, from the food locals create to handcrafted goodies. Whether you go it alone or jump onto a bespoke tour, your adventures will take you to remote regions, unhurried towns, and wilderness that will literally leave you breathless.
Tasmania is a place where you want to stop and stay awhile, but when you're short on time, our edit of things to do in Tasmania is a taste for what's on offer.
In this old mental asylum, the large windows and high ceilings with original pressed metal set the scene of a truly authentic Tasmanian dining experience. Drawing on local produce, the owners let the produce speak for itself - all cooked in a handcrafted wood-fired oven, grill and hot smoker. Love their paddock-to-plate dishes? Then join the Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School & Farm where you can learn farm-based cooking in a 19th-century schoolhouse. By far, a must on any list of things to do in Tasmania.
The Agrarian Kitchen Eatery - 11A The Avenue, New Norfolk The Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School & Farm – 650 Lachlan Road, Lachlan
Tucked away in the streets of Hobart an assuming shopfront belies what lays within, a foodie haven that shines a spotlight on Tasmanian produce with a killer wine list. It's a degustation-style restaurant, where you will be eating each dish with your hands, and this is all just part of the fun when you're working your way through each dish which has been perfectly executed.
On the banks of the Tamar River, the historic mill at the Cataract Gorge has been turned into a foodie destination - a must of things to do in Tasmania. Only expect the very best of Tasmanian produce here, changing with the season, there is a two-course minimum, but honestly, one look at the menu and you'll be ordering the full shebang. Upstairs, a seven-room boutique hotel, SEVEN, overlooks the Tamar River, and it offers the full restaurant menu as room service.
Blurring the lines between fine dining and a traditional bistro, this small seater restaurant in Hobart has two tasting menus and a small bar menu. 'Let Us Cook For You' six-course menu has long been a local favourite, but with the introduction of their eight-course menu, which focuses on local game, sea urchin and hand-dived abalone, that's all about to change. .
Only a 15-minute drive from Hobart is Frogmore Creek Cambridge Winery. Dine amongst rolling vineyards and sip on local wines from Frogmore Creek and other wineries in the area. The menu is made up of 3 sections including, from the sea, from the land, and from the garden. Our tip: arrive early and enjoy a complimentary wine tasting before you settle in for lunch.
Tasmania knows fresh seafood, and the Lobster shack is no exception. Located on the Bicheno coast, The Lobster Shack specialises in, you guessed it, lobster. Choose between their classic lobster roll, lobster mornay, or go all out and order the seafood platter. All of which can be enjoyed outside on their deck overlooking the breathtaking Tasmanian coastline.
This trendy Hobart bakery is a must-visit for pastry lovers. Dine in and watch their bakers whip up sweet treats through the glass windows at the back of the café. Their coffee is also not to be missed, with some of the best in the city, it's easy to see why both locals and tourist love this hidden gem.
32 Argyle St, Hobart
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The intimately lit bar is located in the city's historical Salamanca Place and sets the mood as soon as you step into its luxurious sandstone and timber space. The menu here is short, sharp and tasty, suited for sharing, but it's their selection of classy cocktails where The Den truly shines. Our advice? Try the 'Apple Isle' option; it won't disappoint.
Beautiful timber furnishing and light-filled, this apertivo bar and restaurant is the place for pre-dinner drinks. But if it's a full dining experience you're after, they have you well covered. The wine list is extensive, featuring Tasmanian drops and those further abroad, but it is their G&T menu and cocktail selection that will have you settling in for the evening. And if you're feeling a little hungry, they have a great selection of European-inspired share plates.
A little slice of Melbourne's café scene in Hobart's north, Born in Brunswick is where coffee's made right – blend and single origin espresso as well as batch brew and pour over filter coffee. And if you're after a drink with a bit more spice, take a look at their cocktail selection. From the mural artwork on the building's façade to timber furnishings and pops of greenery, everything about this café is bright, airy and colourfully delicious.
A luxury lounge bar within the MACq01 Hotel, here you will be sipping on some of the finest spirits in the company of 37 different fossils displayed in glass cabinets. Although that alone would put Evolve Bar on any list of things to do in Tasmania, but that's just the tip of what they do so well. Evolve's waterfront location is befitting of their award-wining local and rare leather-bound spirits list. You'll find it all; whiskey, vodka, gin, sherry, vermouth, and of course, wine by the bottle.
A new addition to Tasmania's food and drink scene is Sisterhood Hobart. Designed by Biasol Design, this all-day eatery is inspired by Tulum. The tropical prints, playful colours and rattan furniture make this an Insta-worthy brunch or dinner spot. With an extensive menu, there's something for everyone at this Sandy Bay café.
An absolute must when it comes to things to do in Tasmania, Wukalina Walk is a one-of-a-kind experience in North East Tasmania. Discover the palawa (Tasmanian Aboriginal) culture first-hand in this three-night, four-day guided walk through larapuna (Bay of Fires) and wukalina (Mt William), the cultural homeland of the palawa. The palawa guides will take you on a journey in the footsteps of their traditional people, hear creation stories, participate in cultural practices, and sleep in palawa inspired domed huts.
For a glimpse into Tasmania's life as a penal colony and those that endured it, head to the notorious yet ever so intriguing historic site of Port Arthur. Explore on your own terms, but the best way to experience this haunted heritage site is via their Escape from Port Arthur Tour – a walking true-crime adventure, and then come back at night for the Port Arthur Ghost Tour. The on-site restaurant is a must for local seasonal dishes.
Immerse yourself in the world of art at MONA – an eclectic museum that plays on all the senses. Just north of Hobart, MONA's ever-evolving collection and exhibition is a haven for art buffs. Yet, that's not all MONA does well. It's also a foodie hotspot – The Source Restaurant is a must, and the Void Bar is an experience in itself. And if you want to make a night of it, book a stay in at the Mona Pavilions located on the River Derwent. There is little doubt that MONA is one of the best things to do in Tasmania. 655 Main Road, Berriedale
At Derwent Bridge in Tasmania's Central Highlands, artist Greg Duncan carved the history of the highlands into a three-metre-high and 100-metre long Huon Pine sculpture. Taking over a decade to complete, the realism of the people depicts the hardship and perseverance of settlement. Take a self-guided tour, and book ahead to avoid missing out.
Sitting pretty on 2.3 hectares of vineyards, 3 Willows Vineyard cultivates a seriously good drop. At the cellar door, you can sip your way through their pinot noir, pinot gris, baco noir and chardonnay at your own leisure over a decadent cheeseboard. If you're after an immersive wine tour, book in for the opt for their cellar door experience complete with a guided tasting and 30-minute vineyard education session. Keen to get into the wine business yourself? Or ensure you have a fruitful supply at your disposal? 3 Willows Vineyard is currently on the market to sell, so you could turn your wine weekend into a permanent lifestyle.
Strap on your hiking boots because there is so much to explore in this natural wonder. Located in the northern end of Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, Cradle Mountain is the poster child of Tasmania's hiking trails. Glacial lakes, ancient rainforests and alpine vegetation are just some of what you will discover. Stroll the short 20-minute trails or hike the world-famous six-day Overland Track - you will be in awe of the beauty of this national park.
Every Saturday, in the historic Salamanca Place next to Hobart's waterfront, 300 stalls pop-up for the day to showcase Tasmania's finest (and freshest) farm-gate produce and handcrafted cheese, bread, wines and spirits. And while sampling all the delicious goodness, you will fall in love with Tasmanian craftsmanship – timber, ceramics, leather, glass, and bespoke jewellery. Due to Covid, Tasmania's Own Market, a reduced version of the Salamanca Markets, is on.
Freycinet National Park
Imagine this. Great Oyster Bay with Freycinet National Park and three pink-granite peaks of the Hazard mountain as the backdrop. Freycinet National Park is one good-looking spot to explore Tasmania's wilderness. Located on Tasmania's East Coast, walk to secluded bays, pristine beaches and the Insta-famous Wineglass Bay. Our advice? Come at sunrise or sunset for a truly magical view of the Hazards – a must when it comes to things to do in Tasmania.
This colourful tulip farm on the North West coast of Tasmania is a photographer's dream. One of the largest tulip farms in the Southern Hemisphere, that you can actually walk in, you'll be absolutely overcome with tulip fever. Flowering from late September to November, Table Cape Tulip Farm is a must-visit destination if you're in the area.
At the southern end of Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park is a pristine lake that's the deepest in Australia. There's a 250-metre pier that juts out over the water and Pumphouse sits proudly at the end. The 18-room adults-only hotel is the definition of industrial-chic: it's imposing on the outside, yet cosy and luxurious inside, with floor-to-ceiling windows to soak up the incredible lake views.
From $590 per night 1 Lake St Clair Road, Lake St Clair
On the north-west coast of Tasmania, Ship Inn Stanley is a sophisticated stay with a storytelling style. Sitting at the base of The Nut Reserve and overlooking a dramatic coastline, Ship Inn is one of Stanley's most iconic buildings that has been given a lavish makeover. Each suite tells the story of a local character or place, using historical artefacts, original artwork, bespoke furnishings resulting in a vintage meets modern vibe.
Just footsteps away from the water, Captains Rest's secluded cabin awaits. A four-hour drive from Hobart on the West Coast of Tasmania, Captain's Rest is set within the sleepy fishing village of Strahan (the scenic route is a journey of its own) and is treasured for its fanciful surrounds. This adults-only retreat with ocean view Georgian windows and stylish, eclectic décor, tells a thousand stories.
From $400 per night Lettes Bay Historical Village, Strahan
Perched on Hobart's Hunter Street wharf, MACq01 attracts culture vultures and design lovers alike. Each of the 114 rooms tells the tale of a character in Tasmania's history, from convicts and explorers to political figures. There is a range of rooms, suites and penthouses on offer, all of which are equipped with walk-in wardrobes and minibars filled with Tasmanian goodies. Downstairs, the Old Wharf Restaurant and Story Bar overlook the water.
From $270 per night 18 Hunter Street, Hobart
This list is only a glimpse of all the things to do in Tasmania, but when you're short on time, these are your must-dos. And for those spending a bit of time Tasmania's capital, be sure to check out our edit of things to do in Hobart.