Tasmania, the largest island in Australia, is pleasantly unspoiled, and travelers frequently remark that getting there is like going back in time. ‘Tassie’, as it’s popularly known, is a state roughly the same size as the Republic of Island, and its residents place a high value on the great outdoors.
There’s a basis why Australia’s island state of Tasmania is on everyone’s list: it’s home to innovative culture, an exciting eating scene, and magnificent outdoor adventures.
There is superb wine and food in Hobart, the Derwent Valley, the Coal River Valley, the Huon Valley, Bruny Island, the Tamar Valley, and countless other places: premium wineries, picturesque country restaurants, and busy farmers’ markets.
There are also natural attractions, such as Tasmania’s wild, largely undeveloped west coast, the interior’s majestic mountains, the rolling hills around Hobart, Kunanyi/Mt Wellington, the lakes, rivers, and hiking and mountain biking paths.
The creative culture has increased in Tasmania over the years, drawing thousands of travelers to the captivating towns for art, food, and scenic experiences.
Here are 10 reasons Tasmania is the new hotspot in Australia!
The eccentric and lively culture of Tasmania gives the island a distinctive flavor. One instance of Tasmania’s quirkiness is the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). MONA is home to many provocative and outlandish works of art. The innovative gallery houses one of the most contentious private collections of modern art and artifacts on earth, which opened its doors in 2011.
This architecturally daring location is the creation of eccentric multi-millionaire businessman and gambler David Walsh and includes a vineyard, brewery, bars, restaurants, and a collection of eight chic pavilions that you can rent out for the night.
It is easily accessible from Hobart’s downtown waterfront sector by vehicle or boat (highly recommended) and is one of the main reasons visitors are pouring into Tasmania’s formerly quiet capital city.
Then there is the Dark Mofo event, which honors the gloomy and enigmatic aspect of art and culture and is celebrated yearly in Hobart during the winter solstice. With one event that uses dance, body fluid, and motocross to recount Dante’s Inferno, this festival pushes the envelope. Every year, with attendees traveling from across Australia and the world, the event sells out because it truly is a Tasmanian experience.
2. The MONA Effect
MONA, the Hobart Museum of Old and New Art, is very likely to have been visited by everyone who has traveled to Tasmania in the previous ten years.
While many people are aware of the background of David Walsh, the private collector who founded MONA, most are probably unaware of the factors that have contributed to the institution’s success.
Hobart’s Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) is credited with saving Hobart from the worst of the tourism collapse brought on by the global financial crisis. MONA is the top tourist destination in the state and garnered over 400,000 people in its first year. It is a contender for the national tourism awards in March after winning the award for best new tourism development in Tasmania in 2011.
It costs money to change Hobart’s reputation from a sleepy city to a cultural hotspot. The $15 million annual operating expense of the $80 million museum forced Wash to start charging out-of-state visitors; Tasmanians continue to enter free of charge.
3. The Bay Of Fires
The natural wonder of the Bay of Fires (palawa kani: larapuna) is enough to draw tourists to Tasmania due to its magnificence. It takes about 4 hours to drive from Hobart to the bay, which is on Tasmania’s northeast coast.
The 50 km stretch of the bay’s coastline is ideal for swimming, stand-up paddleboarding, and resting. The Indigenous people’s beach fires, which Captain Tobias Furneaux could see in 1773 while sailing by, gave rise to the name “Bay of Fires.”
Camping, beach activities, boating, and other recreational pursuits are all possible in the Bay of Fires region.
Bay of Fires fun facts include:
- The bay stretches from Binalong Bay to Eddystone Point.
- The 1840s saw the start of bay whaling operations in the region.
- The southern end of the bay is a conservation area, while the northern portion is a part of Mount William National Park.
- White beaches, turquoise ocean, and orange-hued granite may be found in the Bay of Fires region, which is colored by a lichen, which is a composite creature that develops from living filaments of various fungal species.
- Lichens play a significant role in the cycle of nutrients and serve as producers for a variety of higher trophic feeders, including reindeer, gastropods, nematodes, mites, and springtails.
- Lichens can grow in a variety of ways, such as having small, leafless branches, flat, leaf-like structures, and crust-like growth that adheres firmly to a surface, like a thick layer of paint.
4. Incredible Road Trips
Tasmania is a great place for road trip enthusiasts. The best way to experience everything Tasmania has to offer without constantly making your way back to stay in Launceston or Hobart is to rent a car for 5-7 days while you’re there.
Those arriving by plane from Australia’s main island will touch down in Hobart or Launceston, while those arriving by boat will embark in East Devonport. Tasmanian road vacations come in a variety of forms, from scenic coastline drives to foggy highland motorways, foodie-themed itineraries, vineyard circuits, and desolate country backroads.
While getting from point A to point B might not take the entire day, there will undoubtedly be some stunning landscapes and adventures along the way.
5. The Cleanest Air In The World
According to the Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station, Tasmania has the cleanest air in the world. Tasmania’s location in the Southern Ocean, distant from other landmasses, is to thank for the lack of pollution.
The purest air in the world can be found at Tasmania’s northwesterly most point.
The Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station has been located on the coast since 1976. As pollution levels increase, the station assesses air quality to provide a “baseline” for the planet.
6. Food and Wine
Young, aspiring chefs have recently been drawn to the island and a new generation of restaurants has opened up. As a result, a crop of new pubs and eateries has emerged.
They may be influenced by European dining rooms, but their flavor and style are unmistakably Tasmanian.
Tasmania produces a wide variety of goods, ranging from wine to whisky, saffron to truffles, abalone to wasabi, thanks to its four unique seasons, plentiful sunshine and rainfall, rich soil, seas, and innovative culture.
Tasmania’s wine and cuisine industries are continually prospering. It has developed into an energetic aspect of local Tassie life thanks to the plethora of growers, manufacturers, and creators. Tasmania produces some of Australia’s best food, including lavender fields and orchards of pears, apples, and cherries.
Did you know that several of the country’s first vineyards are located there as well? The Apple Isle produces a number of distinctive and flavourful grape varieties thanks to the chilly climate. While Riesling, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc are the most well-known white wines produced there, red wine production has expanded recently as well, with notable successes in Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Shiraz.
7. Art And Culture
With an attractive array of galleries and museums, Tasmania’s southern coast has distinguished itself in recent years by supporting art and culture.
Aside from the aforementioned MONA Museum, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, which works to preserve Tasmania’s natural and cultural heritage, is more conventional but no less captivating. Here, you can encounter a variety of First Peoples’ arts and cultures from throughout the world in addition to colonial Tasmanian culture.
8. Diversity And Inclusion
Around 500,000 people live in Tasmania, with the southeast and north coasts housing the majority of the population. Hobart serves as the state capital, and Burnie, Devonport, and Launceston are significant cities.
Wherever you choose to stay, eat, or visit, Tasmania is known for its warmth and is a favorite travel destination for LGBTQ tourists.
In the Australian state of Tasmania, residents who identify as LGBTQ enjoy the same legal rights as those who do not. In terms of LGBTQ rights, Tasmania has a revolutionary past.
Due to Tasmania’s intense social and political opposition to LGBTQ rights up until the late 1990s, it was initially given the moniker “Bigots Island” by the international media.
Since then, however, the state has gained recognition for its LGBTQ legal reforms, which activists have called among the most extensive and significant in the world.
9. Interesting Wildlife
There are numerous unusual mammals in Tasmania that are unique to the planet. Some of them are well-known, such as the Tasmanian devil and the Tasmanian tiger. Others, less well-known but no less fascinating, include the eastern quoll, pademelon, and bettong.
The Tasmanian mammal fauna includes many marsupials, or pouched mammals, like many of the mammals in Australia. Marsupials are unique in that they reproduce by producing extremely small young that develop entirely inside a pouch.
Here are some of the popular species you will see in Tasmania:
Most people would immediately picture the Tasmanian Devil, the island’s emblem when they think of Tasmania. These creatures, known as the Tassie Devil, resemble very small dogs due to their sluggish movement and thick-set body.
They are the largest carnivorous marsupials in the world and have thick black fur and white underbelly patches. They got their name from the early European settlers who kept hearing strange, unearthly cries and growls coming from the jungle and mistook them for demonic entities sent by the devil.
They were reacting more out of fear and uncertainty than out of aggressiveness, as evidenced by their terrifying cry.
As they can only be found in certain places, seeing these guys in person is undoubtedly an unforgettable experience.
The medium-sized carnivorous marsupial known as the Eastern Quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus), also called the Eastern Native Cat, is indigenous to Australia. On the mainland, they are now thought to be extinct, although they are still plentiful and widespread in Tasmania. One of the six species of quoll still in existence.
Generally speaking, the Eastern Quoll is the size of a small domestic cat. The Eastern Quoll is a lone hunter that hunts at night for insects and small mammals as prey. Additionally, they have been observed stealing food from the much larger Tasmanian Devil.
Small, compact, short-tailed wallabies known as Pademelons normally live in rainforests from Tasmania to New Guinea. The only pademelon species present in Tasmania is the Tasmanian pademelon (Thylogale billardierii), commonly known as the rufous-bellied pademelon.
Compared to its northern relatives, who live in north Australia and Papua New Guinea, this pademelon has acquired heavier and bushier fur. In Tasmania, the species is numerous and widely distributed.
Pademelons are nocturnal, solitary animals that spend the daytime in dense foliage. Although wet gullies in dry open eucalyptus forests are also utilized, rainforests are preferred.
10. Stunning Scenery
The island state of Tasmania, which is about 240 kilometers south of the Australian mainland and has some of the most picturesque landscapes in the world and is becoming a more and more well-liked travel destination. Due to its distant location, it has many national parks with distinctive flora and fauna, and its rugged coastline is perfect for kayaking, boat tours, and dolphin viewing.
Nearly 20% of the state’s wilderness is designated as a World Heritage site, and Tasmania boasts several renowned landscapes. There is stunning beauty in every direction, bathed in the most incredible light, thanks to the underlying geology of the mountains and undeveloped beaches, the limited population, and the rural lifestyle.
There you have it—my list of the top 10 reasons Tasmania is the new hotspot in Australia!
Tasmania is known for more than just its delectable cheese and four distinct seasons; there are also a lot of amazing things to see, eat, and do there.
Explore Tasmania’s breathtaking scenery, leisurely cruises, compelling history, and regional arts and crafts for yourself! You won’t want to leave Tasmania once you arrive, I can assure you of that.
Imagine beautiful and rugged beaches, historic trees, and enough opportunities to get back in touch with nature to make your heart sing.
Kate Rae is the founder of Not A Tourist, providing alternative and unique travel tips for Australia. Not A Tourist is a go-to place for Australian travel secrets (like the best food in Melbourne!), written by a local.