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Best Things To Do in Tasmania

Tasmania boasts several historic attractions, such as the Port Arthur Historic Site, but its unique flora and fauna make it a great destination for enjoying nature. Though you'll have 19 national parks to choose from, you won't want to miss Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair's trails (where you may spot animals like platypuses and wallabies) and Freycinet's stunning scenery. Wellington Park, the Launceston Cataract Gorge & First Basin and the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens, meanwhile, are great options if you're sticking to a tight budget.

How we rank Things to Do.

#1

#1 in Tasmania

Occupying a peninsula just south of Coles Bay, Freycinet National Park is a prime spot for bird-watching, camping and scenic drives. The park also features white-sand beaches surrounded by pink granite peaks that are just as popular with photographers as they are with swimmers, kayakers and snorkelers. If you'd rather hike while exploring this protected area, you'll find multiple trails for short, half-day and overnight hikes on-site.
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Hiking Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Freycinet National Park (Coles Bay)
Occupying a peninsula just south of Coles Bay, Freycinet National Park is a prime spot for bird-watching, camping and scenic drives. The park also features white-sand beaches surrounded by pink granite peaks that are just as popular with photographers as they are with swimmers, kayakers and snorkelers. If you'd rather hike while exploring this protected area, you'll find multiple trails for short, half-day and overnight hikes on-site.
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#2

#2 in Tasmania

Part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage area, this national park comprises two regions: Cradle Mountain and Lake St Clair. In the northern Cradle Mountain section, you'll find the bulk of the attraction's facilities, including a visitor center, a gift shop and multiple cabins. Cradle Mountain is also the starting point for the Overland Track, a 40-mile path that takes at least six days to complete. The southern Lake St Clair area, meanwhile, features Australia's deepest lake, plus hiking trails and picnic areas. Lake St Clair is also the ending point for the Overland Track.
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Hiking Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair National Park
Part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage area, this national park comprises two regions: Cradle Mountain and Lake St Clair. In the northern Cradle Mountain section, you'll find the bulk of the attraction's facilities, including a visitor center, a gift shop and multiple cabins. Cradle Mountain is also the starting point for the Overland Track, a 40-mile path that takes at least six days to complete. The southern Lake St Clair area, meanwhile, features Australia's deepest lake, plus hiking trails and picnic areas. Lake St Clair is also the ending point for the Overland Track.
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#3

#3 in Tasmania

Free
Located approximately 13 miles west of Hobart, Wellington Park should be a top choice for outdoor enthusiasts staying in Hobart. This nature reserve is filled with picnic areas and forested gullies, which can be explored via a variety of trails. Hiking (or bushwalking) is the most common way to wander around this park, but for a greater thrill, visitors can get around by bike, horse or four-wheel drive vehicle. (Note: Bikes, horses and four-wheel drive vehicles can only be rented from operators outside the park.) Experienced climbers can also hike the Organ Pipes, a series of vertical rock buttresses situated on Mount Wellington.
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Hiking Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Wellington Park
Located approximately 13 miles west of Hobart, Wellington Park should be a top choice for outdoor enthusiasts staying in Hobart. This nature reserve is filled with picnic areas and forested gullies, which can be explored via a variety of trails. Hiking (or bushwalking) is the most common way to wander around this park, but for a greater thrill, visitors can get around by bike, horse or four-wheel drive vehicle. (Note: Bikes, horses and four-wheel drive vehicles can only be rented from operators outside the park.) Experienced climbers can also hike the Organ Pipes, a series of vertical rock buttresses situated on Mount Wellington.
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#4

#4 in Tasmania

Free
Staying in Launceston in northeastern Tasmania? Then you'll want to add the Launceston Cataract Gorge & First Basin to your itinerary. Situated less than 3 miles from downtown Launceston, this natural wonder is brimming with fun pursuits, from hiking trails to a swimming pool to the world's longest single-span chairlift. You'll also find a suspension bridge that links the South Esk River's banks.
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Hiking Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Launceston Cataract Gorge & First Basin (Launceston)
Staying in Launceston in northeastern Tasmania? Then you'll want to add the Launceston Cataract Gorge & First Basin to your itinerary. Situated less than 3 miles from downtown Launceston, this natural wonder is brimming with fun pursuits, from hiking trails to a swimming pool to the world's longest single-span chairlift. You'll also find a suspension bridge that links the South Esk River's banks.
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#5

#5 in Tasmania

For a dose of Australian history, make your way to the Port Arthur Historic Site. Built in 1830 as a timber station and penal settlement for Britain's criminals, the property expanded over the years to accommodate more than 3,500 convicts across nearly 250 acres. Today, it's one of 11 locales that make up the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Australian Convict Sites and welcomes visitors daily.
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Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Port Arthur Historic Site (Port Arthur)
For a dose of Australian history, make your way to the Port Arthur Historic Site. Built in 1830 as a timber station and penal settlement for Britain's criminals, the property expanded over the years to accommodate more than 3,500 convicts across nearly 250 acres. Today, it's one of 11 locales that make up the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Australian Convict Sites and welcomes visitors daily.
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#6

#6 in Tasmania

Active travelers who want to break a sweat while taking in breathtaking bay, sea and cliff panoramas cannot miss Tasman National Park's Three Capes Track. This 28 ½-mile trail, which features a flat timber boardwalk and paved steps, making it a great option for hikers of all skill levels, starts by the Port Arthur Historic Site and takes you on a four-day, three-night hike around Port Arthur, Cape Pillar and Cape Hauy. You may even see marine mammals like seals, dolphins and whales along the way.
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Hiking Type
More than Full Day Time to Spend
Three Capes Track (Port Arthur)
Active travelers who want to break a sweat while taking in breathtaking bay, sea and cliff panoramas cannot miss Tasman National Park's Three Capes Track. This 28 ½-mile trail, which features a flat timber boardwalk and paved steps, making it a great option for hikers of all skill levels, starts by the Port Arthur Historic Site and takes you on a four-day, three-night hike around Port Arthur, Cape Pillar and Cape Hauy. You may even see marine mammals like seals, dolphins and whales along the way.
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#7

#7 in Tasmania

Free
When you're in need of a low-key activity after spending multiple days trekking through Tasmania's national parks or along the Three Capes Track, spend an hour or two at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens. Nestled within Hobart's Queens Domain neighborhood by the Derwent River, this outdoor oasis features multiple gardens – including ones that house indigenous species, herbs and cactuses – spread throughout more than 34 acres. A conservatory, a lily pond and the world's only subantarctic plant house (which mimics the cold, wet conditions plants native to the subantarctic islands thrive in) are also located on-site.
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Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens (Hobart)
When you're in need of a low-key activity after spending multiple days trekking through Tasmania's national parks or along the Three Capes Track, spend an hour or two at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens. Nestled within Hobart's Queens Domain neighborhood by the Derwent River, this outdoor oasis features multiple gardens – including ones that house indigenous species, herbs and cactuses – spread throughout more than 34 acres. A conservatory, a lily pond and the world's only subantarctic plant house (which mimics the cold, wet conditions plants native to the subantarctic islands thrive in) are also located on-site.
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#8

#8 in Tasmania

Tasmania is home to some of the world's most unique wildlife, and one of the island's best places to catch a glimpse of these critters is Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary. Situated in Brighton, less than 2 miles outside the city center, Bonorong is a 24-hour facility that treats injured and orphaned animals before returning them to the wild. Some of the animals temporarily housed at the sanctuary include wombats, Tasmanian devils, quolls, koalas and emus.
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Zoos and Aquariums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary (Brighton)
Tasmania is home to some of the world's most unique wildlife, and one of the island's best places to catch a glimpse of these critters is Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary. Situated in Brighton, less than 2 miles outside the city center, Bonorong is a 24-hour facility that treats injured and orphaned animals before returning them to the wild. Some of the animals temporarily housed at the sanctuary include wombats, Tasmanian devils, quolls, koalas and emus.
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