Tasmania has emerged as a leading tourist destination for those in search of responsible and meaningful holiday experiences, owing to its stunning natural landscapes and strong focus on sustainable tourism. Located on the edge of the world, Tasmania’s geographical seclusion is its primary draw and the origin of its exceptional island culture and diverse biodiversity.

Over 40% of Tasmania is designated as national parks, reserves, and World Heritage sites, providing visitors with high-quality travel opportunities anchored by the core values of Wildlife, Wilderness, and Wellness, showcasing the very best of what Tasmania has to offer.

Tasmania’s accommodations, guided tours, and activities are designed to promote eco-friendliness and minimize environmental impact, while also giving visitors the chance to discover Tasmania’s history, culture, and natural wonders. The island is home to a variety of unique species, ranging from the well-known Tasmanian Devils and echidnas to rare endangered animals like the eastern quoll, making it a haven for a diverse array of flora and fauna not found anywhere else on the planet.

Tasmania caters to a diverse range of interests, making it an ideal destination for those seeking adventure, relaxation, or a bit of both. Visitors can take part in a variety of accessible activities, such as hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, cultural immersion experiences, and indulging in world-class farm-to-table dining.

Here are our three reasons to make a trip there:

1. Our Top Recommended Wildlife Experiences

Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary: a Sanctuary for wildlife run by a passionate team of like-minded people. Just 30 minutes north of Hobart’s CBD, it’s home to many animals, including wombats, koalas, Tasmanian devils, birds, quolls and more. 

Many of Bonorongs animals are survivors of injury or rescued as orphans. Hear the incredible stories of rescue and rehabilitation and learn how Bonorong works to get animals back into the wild. A visit to Bonorong is not complete without joining one of their daily guided tours where visitors will learn about little-known facts and stories of the wildlife in the Sanctuary’s care. These tours are free with entry and provide the opportunity to meet some of their most popular locals.

The Bonorong Night Tour is an interactive experience where visitors enter into the animals’ world to hand-feed Bonorong residents, including the famed Tasmanian Devil, Eastern quolls, tawny frogmouths, sugar gliders and a friendly mob of Forester Kangaroos. 

A visit to Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary is a journey of incredible, and often very moving, fun with some of Tasmania’s most treasured creatures. https://www.bonorong.com.au/

Maria Island National Park: Tasmania’s only island park is an easy 30-minute ferry trip from Triabunna – about one hour and fifteen minutes drive from Hobart. Blending extraordinary landscapes with teeming wildlife, this island park also happens to have one of Tasmania’s most fascinating histories. Home to the World Heritage-listed convict probation site of Darlington and is today home to some of the most visible and plentiful wildlife in Australia.

Wombats wander among wallabies, Forester kangaroos, Cape Barren geese and one of the healthiest populations of Tasmanian devils. Walking and cycling are the only ways to get about on car-free Maria Island (pronounced “ma-rye-ah”), where mountains burst straight out of the sea and the cliffs are “painted”, naturally. https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/maria-island-national-park

Devils@Cradle: the Tasmanian devil sanctuary is a breeding and conservation facility for three of Tasmania’s unique threatened carnivorous marsupials; the Tasmanian devil, the Spotted-tail quoll, and Eastern quoll. The facility is located on the edge of the Cradle Mountain National Park World Heritage area and conducts in-situ conservation programs for the Tasmanian devil including an on-site breeding program for insurance of the species.

A visit to the sanctuary day or night will allow visitors to observe these extraordinary animals up close whilst one of our keepers will give an understanding of their life cycle and the threats that confront them. Devils@Cradle is committed to the conservation and protection of this now vulnerable species. The centre operates a successful captive breeding program, ensuring the ongoing survival of Tasmanian devils in healthy numbers in the wild. https://devilsatcradle.com/

Raptor Refuge: a private tour of the Raptor Refuge is unforgettable! It’s a unique opportunity to see the raptor rehabilitation facility first-hand, where they’ve helped injured birds of prey return to the wild for over 20 years. Explore the grounds with their friendly and knowledgeable guides. Find out how fast peregrine falcons can fly, see a rare grey goshawk, be amazed by the silent flight of masked owls, then get up close to Australia’s largest raptor, the majestic Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle!

The refuge, just 30 minutes from Hobart in tranquil bushland, includes some of the largest aviaries in Tasmania and a wonderful Education Centre. Their display birds have injuries that mean they wouldn’t survive if released. So, these unique characters have become part of the raptor refuge family to help teach about the importance of wildlife conservation. The 90 minute tours include time for photos and questions and are a fantastic experience for adults and children. All funds raised go towards their rehabilitation and ongoing care. https://www.raptorrefuge.com.au/

2. Top Recommended Wellness Experiences

Floating Sauna: Australia’s only floating wood-fired sauna, is located in Tasmania’s mountain biking town of Derby. The sauna allows visitors to reconnect with nature through the enjoyment of a traditional Finnish wood-fired sauna and plunge directly off the pontoon into the freshwater of Bresies Hole (otherwise known as Lake Derby). 

Heat up in a floating wood fired sauna, then step outside and plunge into a misty lake. Or take part in an icy river plunge as part of a wild wellness adventure.

The sauna has been architecturally designed and sits on one of the most naturally beautiful lakes in the area. The sauna seats up to ten people and is open to the public and bookings for private sessions. https://www.floatingsauna.com.au/

Kittawa Lodge: redefining the King Island experience, this is the only luxury accommodation with on-site staff. Set within an exclusive 96-acre coastal property, enjoy panoramic views of the untouched coastal landscape from every room. Each lodge comprises a generous king bedroom, a bathroom with a wall of glass looking out to the Southern Ocean, and open-plan living, dining and kitchen areas. Luxuriate in a handmade concrete bath or next to a French-designed fireplace.

Entirely off-grid and surrounded by Tasmania’s pristine wilderness, Kittawa Lodge offers the best of boutique eco-tourism, while being only a 30 minute flight away from Melbourne. With a number of sumptuous catering options, including your own in-house cook, and unique King Island experiences on offer, do as little or as much as you want. https://kittawalodge.com/

Forest bathing At Douglas-Apsley National Park: a few kilometres north of Bicheno, close to the Freycinet Peninsula and the quaint towns along Tasmania’s east coast. This beautiful park features dry sclerophyll forest and riverside walking tracks, swimming holes, birdlife and Oyster Bay pines. Walks include the 20-minute return stroll to the Apsley Waterhole, the three-hour Apsley Gorge circuit and the three-day north-south bushwalk through the park. 

Set back from the east coast’s dazzling beaches, cooling pools dot Apsley Gorge including the large and easily reached Apsley Waterhole by its mouth, and smaller plunge pools deeper into the gorge. Spanning the Douglas and Apsley rivers, this is the rarest of Tasmania national parks – focused on neither coast nor mountains, but instead in the forest and waterways. The clear waters of the Apsley River beckon for a cooling swim on a warm day.

Once mined for coal, the area was declared a national park in 1989. It protects Tasmania’s last remaining stretches of uncleared dry forest. While in the area you can also swim, snorkel or try your hand at deep-sea fishing. Douglas-Apsley National Park is just over a two-hour drive (174 kilometres) southeast of Launceston. https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/douglas-apsley-national-park

Waldheim Alpine Spa At Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge: a luxury spa and treatment centre located at Cradle Mountain Lodge, one of Lonely Planet’s Top 10 extraordinary places to stay in the world. It is a must-visit on a trip to Cradle Mountain. Waldheim Alpine Spa is encircled by rainforest at the edge of the exquisite World Heritage-listed Tasmanian Wilderness. Soak up views of an ancient landscape from the spa suite as visitors indulge in the many luxurious treatments offered.

Waldheim Alpine Spa uses completely natural Australian and Tasmanian-made skin care, body care and spa products. There are four therapy rooms – including double treatment rooms for couples. Waldheim Alpine Spa also has a dedicated therapeutic retreat known as The Sanctuary. Here, visitors can ease away the aches of a day’s bushwalking, or travelling, in the steam room, sauna, hot tub and cool plunge pool, and then soak in the view as they complete their experience in the relaxation lounge.

The Spa is available to guests of Cradle Mountain Lodge and casual visitors. The lodge is located in the Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, two-and-a-half-hour drive west of Launceston (144 kilometres) and a 90-minute drive from Devonport (83 kilometres). 


3. Top Recommended Tasmania Winter Festivals

Tasmania in winter is anything but chill. Winter is a time to gather around blazing log fires, to play in snow and plunge into festivals. 

Dark Mofo (8-22 June 2023): Dark Mofo 2023 marks the tenth year of Mona’s midwinter festival in Tasmania, which delves into centuries-old winter solstice rituals. Based around the southern hemisphere’s winter solstice, every year, Tasmania celebrates the dark through large-scale public art, music, fire, food, light and noise. Signature events include the delectable Winter Feast on Hobart’s waterfront and the colourful community celebration of the Ogoh-Ogoh parade and burning. 

Make it an annual pilgrimage, for the Nude Solstice Swim, with more than 1000 people dropping their clothes and inhibitions to welcome back the light after the longest, coldest night in the nation. https://darkmofo.net.au/ 

Huon Valley Mid-Winter Festival (14-16 July 2023): The Huon Valley Mid-Winter Festival is all about celebrating the region’s apple-picking history and at its core is the wassail: the ages-old tradition of scaring evil spirits from the orchard to bring on a bumper crop.

Visitors will enjoy the festival’s much loved traditions including Big Willie Burning Man, listening to Tassie’s best folk-funk bands and can take part in singing, dressing in pagan finery amongst other activities. www.williesmiths.com.au/mid-winter 

Tasmanian Whisky Week (7-13 August): Known as the whisky destination of Australia, Tasmania celebrates the best of the island’s distilleries, their spirits and whisky during Tasmanian Whisky Week. The annual event provides visitors an opportunity to taste, share stories with distillers and passion with people from all over the world. Celebrating the achievements and craft of Tasmanian distillers, there are over 40 distilleries attending over 15 events, culminating in the flagship event, The Tasmanian Spirit Showcase. https://www.taswhiskyweek.com/

Tasmania invites travelers to unwind and reconnect with the things that matter, offering a range of experiences from April to September that set it apart from other regions of the country. The island’s autumn and winter seasons provide unparalleled value, with a variety of exhibitions and seasonal events that showcase the unique charm of island life, including off-beat offerings like Dark Mofo, Huon Valley Mid-Winter Festival, and Tasmania Whisky Week.