For those who didn’t pay attention in high school geography class, Tasmania is an island state located to the south of the Australian mainland. It is a part of the Commonwealth of Australia, separated from the main island by Bass Strait.
Now that we know where it is located, what is there to do in Tasmania? We all know there’s Tasmanian Devils there to look at, but what else? We’ve put together a list of five of the most spectacular activities just waiting for you on this amazing island. Still have more time after your visit? You can visit Darwin in Australia when you’re through.
- Museum of Old and New Art (MONA): After it opened to much fanfare in January 2011, the MONA has proudly claimed the title of most visited single attraction in Tasmania. Located in Hobart, the museum sees thousands of visitors each month. You can immerse yourself in the local culture through the Tasmanian restaurants and other businesses.
- Port Arthur Historic Site: This facility keeps alive the stories of the hardships endured by the first European penal convicts to the island. The tales are told by guides who escort visiting groups through the ruins and around the wide-ranging lawns. Port Arthur is a historical shrine of remembrance for Australians. The Great Shame, as it is called, of Australian ancestors who were transported to the islands by the Motherland has morphed into a national pride in the perseverance of those ancestors. Australians have survived, and done it well. The Port Arthur Historic Site is a testament to that accomplishment.
- Cradle Mountain National Park: All it takes is two hours to walk around Dove Lake, and in the doing, you’ll come to appreciate the rugged natural beauty of Cradle Mountain and its National Park. Tasmania is ringed by beaches on the east coast and tumbling rivers on the west coast, but it is the wilderness heartland of Tasmania that has been designated as a World Heritage Area. The wilderness interior is pristine, hardly touched and soothing to the soul.
- Tahune Forest Airwalk: Imagine a nearly 600-meter walkway through the treetops on the edge of a vast wilderness. This is what you find at the Tahune Forest Airwalk. The high point of the walk is a cantilever, situated 48 meters above the ground, which gives a panoramic view of forested mountains beyond the convergence of the Huon and Picton Rivers. Fully half of Tasmania is covered with forests of eucalypts and hardwood trees. Your opportunity to explore this wilderness, from floor to canopy, is waiting at Tahune Forest Airwalk.
- Sullivans Cove and the Salamanca Markets: This is a magnet for tourists and locals. Ships come and go from here to Antarctica, and the working docks see fishing boats, yachts and wooden vessels with massive masts coming and going. The historical sandstone-fronted warehouses have been repurposed into art and craft centers, restaurants and eateries, coffee shops and specialty shops. Street vendors set up their tents along the walkways, providing you with a selection of the works of local artisans and sellers of the finer things Tasmania has to offer.