Off the radar, the hidden beauty of Tasmania is a national treasure that many have heard about, but may not have had the delight to explore themselves.
If you are looking for one of Australia’s iconic places to travel, sightsee, and wonder at the beauty of nature, the Island of Tasmania is the best decision you will make for your future travel plans.
The question remains, what are the best places to explore in Tasmania? Why not try the iconic destinations along Tasmania’s East Coast?
From one end to the other, Launceston to Hobart via the East Coast is one trip you can’t miss out on, from the major cities to the beaches and national parks, and historical sites of Richmond, you will see a lot on this road trip along the coast of Tasmania.
One-way campervan hire from Hobart or Launceston is available from depots close to the airports in either location and makes for a perfect option to tour the island state.
Exploring Tasmania- 10 Places to Visit
Mountains and Waterfalls-Launceston to St Helen’s 132Km
Beginning the trip in Launceston is a fantastic way to kick off your trip.
You have the option of an early breakfast picnic or a walk along at the famous Cataract Gorge, just 1.5 km from the town’s center, where you will be able to spot exquisite peacocks and other gorgeous wildlife that are waddling about the scenic grounds.
The Winding Roads to St Helen’s
As you begin your trek to the beautiful hills of Mount St Helens, the winding mountain roads with their lush and rainforest-like splendor will reward you with an even deeper and rich and forest scenery, tucked away in the pockets of the Tasmanian coast.
There is plenty of walking and bike trails to follow and explore when you arrive. There is also a range of options available for all levels of walking ability.
Vying for shorter walks, waterfalls are not too far around the bends and offer a spectacular view and experience for all. You could take this opportunity to stop by the waterfall’s mouth and enjoy a wine and some homemade Tasmanian cheese and fruit.
Bay of Fires – St Helens to Bicheno 115km
Regarded as one of Australia’s most iconic tourist attractions and not far from the dew-dripping rainforest walks of St Helens, just a mere 25.3km drive, is the infamous Bay of Fires.
Enjoy a meal or a walk along the bays that are lined with orange-hued granite rocks that set the bay ablaze. The perfect stop for pictures and views of the splendid East Coast.
Experience a region of bright blue crystal-clear waters and white beaches, which offer activities such as snorkeling, birdwatching, camping, boating, surfing, and walking.
Exploring the Seaside of Bicheno
The stunning landscapes have not stopped, with your camera at the ready, as you continue your drive, you pass by some stunning landscapes that often remind tourists of various destinations they have seen around the world.
The cruisy coastal drive will have you relaxed by the time you have reached the underrated and idyllic destination of Bicheno.
It is here in this hidden seaside town, that you can taste their infamous seafood and if you are lucky spot some very sweet penguins on the shore.
Take a walk along the coastline and experience the wonder of the famous Bicheno blow hole, whilst you enjoy your hot chips from the local takeaway.
Wine Glass Bay – to Swansea 112km
Put your walking shoes on, just 112Km’s from the sightseeing penguin tours and unique blowholes of Bicheno, situated on the Eastern coastline and offering unforgettable views, lies the iconic Wine Glass Bay.
The lookout is a hike that is worth the climb offering a picturesque view of the entire bay, that glitters in the Tasmanian sun.
For those desiring a less intense hike, you also have the option of the popular three-hour cruise that explores the uncharted coastlines itself with sightings of sea eagles, seals, and even whales if it is the right season for it.
This will provide you with a guided tour, exquisite views sitting in the heart of the bay itself, along with a delicious meal to accompany the view.
The Bay Side of Swansea
Located just an hour and a half from your beginning destination of Hobart, you will discover the dazzling Hazzard mountains that line the bay of Swansea.
Along the drive to this next destination, you can make some nice stops, such as at the Devil’s Corner, for some of Tasmania’s best local wine and climb to the lookout.
For a meal, the woodfired pizza and the local oysters accompanied by a glass of sparkling whilst you overlook the coastline views will make quite the experience for your Tasmanian journey.
Colonial Heritage & Fruit Picking – Swansea to Hobart 154km
As the A3 scenery transforms into a more rural part of Tasmania, before you arrive in the beautiful city of Hobart, it is worth exploring the small farms where fresh fruit picking is underway.
Just a short drive from Swansea, is Kate’s Berry Farm, the perfect place for fresh berries, artisan chocolates, ice cream, and even an exotic berry wine. Take your time foraging and filling the picnic basket for the journey ahead.
The Historical Site of Richmond
One of Tasmania’s most historical sites, just 112 km from Swansea and with many picturesque views along the way, is home to two of Tasmania’s convict-built bridges.
This sandstone town, beautifully restored to its Georgian buildings, offers a step back in time.
The postcard pictured town has some incredible antique stores, and delicious food at the local homemade bakery, with gorgeous walks and ponds for duck feeding and picnics for those well-stored berries from the nearby local farms.
The Richmond Gaol is one of Richmond’s most famous historical sites and the oldest Gaol in Australia. Taking a self-guided tour will allow you to step into the history of the inmates and their stories.
Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary
Only 18 km from Richmond, the Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over many hectares and offers a unique experience with the local Australian wildlife.
This caring sanctuary has an on-site hospital to care for injured animals, and they are home to many who cannot be released back into the wild, due to medical and other reasons.
Tours are available for a more up close and personal experience, or you may do a standard entry and see the many species that find refuge here.
These include wallabies, kangaroos, wombats, echidnas, Tasmanian devils, spotted quolls, birds and so much more.
Hobart, the Final Destination
Reaching the beautiful city of Hobart after having experienced the splendid East Coast and its many hidden wonders, there is still so much more to be explored.
From the scenic look-out at the top of Mount Wellington, only half an hour from the town’s center to the markets along the city’s wharf, to the popular Mona art museum or a special stay at the city’s Casino overlooking the Sandy Bay and gorgeous walkways, Hobart offers much to be explored, adored and appreciated.
Take some extra time for your Hobart stay and for other scenic options close to the city. Some of the beautiful places open for exploration include the natural beauty of the Huon Valley and the untamed wilderness of Bruny Island.
If you have an extra day or two up your sleeve, head to the Tasman Peninsula and explore the historical site of Port Arthur.
To conclude, we hope you found this article helpful for all your travels to Tasmania, from Launceston to Hobart! Looking for other ways to experience Australia? Check out some of our other guides!