Small, unassuming Tasmania is Australia’s only island State and is, by far, one of the most enticing corners of the entire country. It is here where you’ll find more diversity within a shorter distance than anywhere else. Tasmania is only about the size of Ireland, yet boasts a kaleidoscope of topographies; from agricultural midlands to mountainous regions, dense forests, fertile valleys and, of course, endless miles of pristine beaches.
To see the very best this tiny gem has to offer, we suggest you fly into Hobart Airport and pick up a rented campervan for the duration of your holiday. Having the convenience and independence of a home on wheel swill allow you then priceless chance to get lost in Tassie’s wilderness for days on end.
Want to know where to start? We’re here to help!
Just grab a map of Tasmania and marker…and make sure to include the following unmissable attractions in your self-drive Tasmania camper holiday.
Considering you’ll probably be flying into the Hobart Airport it may be wise to see a few things before you set off. Spend half a day exploring the stunning Harbour Foreshore, get lost in the Saturday Salamanca Markets, before driving the scenic route to the top of Mount Wellington for superlative vistas. Spend a whole day following stunning Huon Trail through the Huon Valley. To take this route, simply exit Hobart at its southernmost route, and follow the A6 towards Kingston and then Huonville. Make sure to pay a visit to the local eateries and arts & craft stores of the charming villages you’ll pass along, as well as enjoying the incredible scenery of this most undeveloped wilderness.
About 300kms east of Hobart is where you’ll find Long Bay, one of the most isolated regions in all of Australia. From here, you can arrange scenic helicopter and plane rides which will give you the chance to admire some of the most inaccessible wilderness areas of Tassie. Discover the 40km long Ocean Beach, one of the most splendid, sand-dune filled and desolate stretches of coast on the island or opt for a sunset cruise along magical Macquarie Harbour or Gordon River.
Cradle Mountain & Lake St Clair National Park
This mountainous lake haven is an absolutely breathtaking place in which to spend a few days. If this is the first national park you visit in Tassie, then we suggest you purchase a holiday pass, which will be valid for every subsequent park visit all over the island. The park is home to over a dozen high peaks (including Mt Ossa, the highest in Tasmania) as well as dozens of awe-inspiring glacial lakes, dense ancient pine forests, a plethora of wildlife and endless miles of utterly pristine hiking trails. The trekking options here range from day long strolls to multi-day trips. Parking and camping areas are designated, yet there are also plenty of guesthouses within the park if you wish for some more luxury.
Tasmania’s second-most populous city is a great place to replenish your camper supplies, or, if you happen to be driving your camper over from the mainland, this will be the first city you’ll hit when you get off the ferry. Nearby attractions include Cataract Gorge, where you can spend half a day hiking around the gorge’s edge (or half hike, half chairlift ride) and you can also go swimming in the gorge as well, but we suggest you stick to the designated swimming spots only, as currents here can be quite significant. If you feel like getting away for a whole day, then book a long cruise down the Tamar River, or take your camper down to the Tamar valley wine region for a delectable tasting tour of the State’s best drops.
Tasman National Park
This natural paradise is definitely worth a visit and can easily be included at the beginning or the end of any Hobart round trip. Only 50km out of the city, it is one of the most rewarding parks to visit due to its incredible biodiversity. Hiking trails will take you through, around and above the park, leading you up to the most spectacular Tasman Sea lookout spots. You can either visit for several days in a row from Hobart or, alternatively, base yourself in pretty as a picture and historic Port Arthur.
Tips and Hints on Tasmania Campervan Travel
– Distances may appear shorter than they actually are or, to be more precise, will take longer than anticipated. Most of Tassie’s roads are winding through forests, going up and down mountains and following dramatic coastlines. Do not assume that just because the road limits may say 90 or 110km/hr that you will be able to actually drive at that speed. Give yourself plenty of extra time to reach your destination. This is the single, most important advice given by those who have travelled by camper all through Tasmania.
– Coupled with this, is the fact that your most enjoyable moments will likely come from spontaneous decisions to do/see/eat or visit something which you’d never even heard of nor planned into your trip. From nigh-time penguin watching in Bicheno, to close encounters with curious wallabies in Wineglass Bay, the possibility for unforgettable moments are near-endless. It’s important to not plan too-tight of an itinerary or, at the very least, be not too fussed if you end up doing only half of what you had initially expected. Tasmania is not a place one visits merely to tick boxes.
– Most national parks will restrict your use of fresh water so do fill up your camper’s tanks before you enter if you plan to spend several days within its boundaries.