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In March 2023 we did our first ever ‘overseas’ tour to Tasmania and experienced some of the best that the fabulous west coast has to offer. It made us realise that Tassie has SO MUCH MORE to offer, and we thought that we should of course explore the treasures of the east coast as well! We needed to experience more of Hobart and Launceston, as well as soak in the quiet, laid back, natural beauty of the east coast towns and national parks. In true Gang Gang style, we have put together an itinerary full of variety in destinations, activities and cuisine. We hope you like it, and want to join us for another wonderful Tasmanian holiday…  Why not ‘come down for some air’?!

Day 1 – Canberra to Hobart – D

Today we fly from Canberra to the spectacular city of Hobart with some free time downtown before dinner at Customs House opposite Constitution Dock on the waterfront.

The Hotel Grand Chancellor

Stay at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, 1 Davey St Hobart, (03) 6235 4535

 

Day 2 – Hobart – B

If you’re up early enough, you can squeeze in a couple of hours at the famous Salamanca Markets before we board the quirky MONA ferry that will take us up the Derwent to the Museum of Old and New Art. On the ferry, we will “treat ourselves to the Posh Pit: a private lounge and deck with free drinks, tiny food and inflated egos.”

The MONA ferry

“Mona is the playground…. of David Walsh, who grew up in Tassie (just down the road from Mona), dropped out of uni, played cards, won, did some other stuff, and opened a small museum of antiquities to which no one came. He declared it a triumph and decided to expand. The result is Mona, a temple to secularism, rationalism, and talking crap about stuff you really don’t know very much about.” Sounds crazy doesn’t it?! And it kind of is… MONA is something that is hard to explain, and just has to be experienced.. to be believed!

Lunch is at your leisure at one of the many eateries at MONA, and after our return to the city, dinner will be in downtown Hobart.

Stay at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, 1 Davey St Hobart, (03) 6235 4535

 

Day 3 – Hobart to Orford – B,L,D

Today we will experience the Peppermint Bay cruise on-board their classy catamaran which is a great way to experience the city’s harbour, beachside towns and wildlife on route to the Peppermint Bay Hotel. Arriving at Peppermint Bay, a short stroll will take you to their restaurant to enjoy their chef’s set menu based on seasonal produce from their garden and of-course their local producers, whilst you soak up the views over the d’Entrecasteaux Channel and Bruny Island.

Peppermint Bay Hotel

Upon our return to the city in the afternoon, we then take the short one hour drive east to the pretty town of Orford on Prosser Bay on the east coast, with views to Maria Island. We will enjoy dinner at our accommodation.

Stay at Orford Blue Waters Hotel, 28 Tasman Hwy, Orford, (03) 6257 1102

 

Day 4 – Orford (Maria Island) – B,L,D

Today is all about Maria Island (pronounced “ma-rye-ah”) – the island national park which blends extraordinary landscapes with teeming wildlife and a fascinating history. Home to the World Heritage-listed convict probation site of Darlington, the island has seen convicts, an ill-fated industrial enterprise, 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.

Our expert host for the day will be Michael from East Coast Cruises. His Circumnavigation cruise around Maria Island is like theatre on the water, a totally immersive and educational experience!  The east coast of Maria Island showcases world class geology, mountain fed waterfalls, secluded bays, sea caves and beaches of pure white sand.  Enjoy expert commentary from their professional scientific crew as we cruise to the renowned Riedle Bay and Shoal Bay at Maria Island’s isthmus for a lunch stop on anchor.  En route around Maria Island we stop to showcase many famous landmarks including the Fossil Cliffs and Painted Cliffs.

Maria Island local

After this magnificent day on and around Maria Island, we return to our accommodation for dinner.

Stay at Orford Blue Waters Hotel, 28 Tasman Hwy, Orford, (03) 6257 1102

 

Day 5 – Orford to Saint Helens – B,L

This morning we head north to the iconic and magical Freycinet National Park, which along with Mt Field, is Tasmania’s oldest national park. Our first stop is Cape Tourville – the lighthouse-topped cape ringed by a boardwalk which gives easy glimpses into Wineglass Bay and a chance to spot marine life, including whales (in season). As we explore the park, the pink peaks of the Hazards – a spectacular granite mountain range that rises dramatically from the sheltered turquoise bays – provides a breathtaking backdrop that is never far from view, including from the township of Coles Bay where we will have lunch.

Cape Tourville, Freycinet National Park.

After lunch we will continue north to Bicheno for a stop at East Coast Natureworld which sits amongst 150 acres of natural coastal bushland and lagoons. We will experience a private guided tour with expert zookeepers and have close encounters with Tassie Devils, wombats, tiger snakes, sugar gliders and lots of other Aussie natives.

The newest additions to the East Coast Nature World

It’s then on past Scamander to Saint Helens which is our final destination for today. Dinner is at our accommodation.

Stay at Panorama Hotel, 1 Quail St, Saint Helens, (03) 6376 1999

 

Day 6 – Saint Helens to Launceston – B,L

Well, we hope you got a good night’s sleep last night, because today is BIG! We have lots of amazing places to visit and things to do on our way west to Launceston today…. As you know, we are still fine tuning the itinerary, so we will will see how many of the following activities we can actually fit into one day!?

Binalong Bay – Bay of Fires
To walk barefoot along the pure white sand, through the burnt orange lichen covered granite boulders, next to the crystal clear azure waters of the Bay of Fires, is a must-do experience on Tassie’s east coast. Some will argue that the Bay of Fires is indeed one of the most beautiful parts of Tasmania…

Binalong Bay on the Bay of Fires

St Columba Falls
At over 90m, these falls are some of Tasmania’s highest, where the South George River tumbles down in a delightful series of steep cascades.

St Columba Falls

The Pub in the Paddock
Our quirky lunch stop is nestled in the the quiet rural village of Pyengana and has been licensed since 1880, but most importantly is home to Priscilla – the beer drinking pig!

The Legerwood Carved Memorial Trees
….are trees sculpted into World War One soldiers in Dorset, Tasmania. The 25 statues depict the fallen men they were planted for in 1918.

One of the Legerwood carved trees

Bridestowe Lavender Estate
The lavender flowers will be in full bloom when we visit, and they are harvested throughout the summer. Bridestowe’s bees pollinate the flowers and begin producing their signature lavender honey, and the endless curved rows of lavender blooms will take your breath away. (And there are lavender scones and lavender ice cream in their cafe!)

Bridestowe Lavender Estate

Oh and of course at some point, we will arrive at our lovely heritage accommodation in Launceston and have dinner in town (if we can fit it in!?).

Stay at Auldington Hotel, 110 Frederick St, Launceston, (03) 6331 2050


Day 7 – Launceston – B,L

This morning we will experience Cataract Gorge from a very different perspective – from the water. Tamar River Cruises will take us on their Morning Discovery Cruise – a 40km round trip (with live commentary and morning tea) down the river to see Tamar Island, various wildlife sanctuaries, historical properties, notable vineyards, St. Matthias Church and of course the spectacular Cataract Gorge. Relax and enjoy the Tamar Valley from the water!

Cataract Gorge on a Tamar River Cruise

After lunch in town, we will be joined by Geoff from Wallaby Walkabout Tours for our private custom-made afternoon walking tour of Launceston incorporating heritage buildings, craft beer tasting, art gallery, afternoon tea, indigenous history, ghost stories, incredible characters and intriguing back alleys and laneways…. Stories that only a long term local knows. HERE is a link to Geoff’s blog post about the Auldington Hotel where we will be staying.

Stay at Auldington Hotel, 110 Frederick St, Launceston, (03) 6331 2050

 

Day 8 – Launceston to Hobart – B,L

This morning you have the choice of some free time in Launceston or a short trip north of the city to the Beaconsfield Mine and Heritage Centre. Our private tour will explore and bring to life the extraordinary worlds of past and present gold mining, ambitious engineering feats, industrial and social heritage and the momentous events of the 2006 Anzac Day Rock-fall and Mine Rescue.

We then say goodbye to Launceston and head south to the historic town of Ross – one of the prettiest towns in Tasmania. Study the 186 carvings adorning the 1836 convict-built Ross Bridge, investigate the four corners of the main crossroads in town – recreation, salvation, temptation and damnation – or just explore the antique and craft shops before a lunch of  scallop pie and vanilla slice at Bakery 31 (there are other options available of course!).

Ross Bridge

Dinner is in Hobart Town after our return to the Grand Chancellor Hotel.

Stay at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, 1 Davey St Hobart, (03) 6235 4535

 

Day 9 – Hobart to Canberra – B

Depending on our flight time, we may have the chance to drive to the top of Kunanyi (Mt Wellington) for some of the best views in the country, head south towards the apple orchards of the Huon Valley, or just enjoy the city’s attractions one last time – Salamanca Markets, Mawson’s Huts Replica Museum, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, and the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens – are just some of the delights on offer in this wonderful capital city of a most wonderful island state. Aren’t we lucky to have all this on our doorstep?

 

Tour departs Canberra Friday 28 February 2025

Inclusions:
Pick up from your door in the Canberra region
All transport including flights
All accommodation
All activities as above
Meals as indicated above
Two fabulous tour guides and lots of fun and laughs!

Not included:
Coffee and/or cake at morning tea stops
Alcohol

Cost: 
Approximately $6000 per person double or twin share
Single supplement approximately $800

 

PLEASE NOTE:
This tour requires a minimum of 8 guests to run.
This tour involves walking (sometimes over uneven surfaces) and stairs at some locations. All accommodation is on ground level and has walk-in showers.
Booking with us is confirmation that you have read our Terms and Conditions HERE.

For a downloadable printable pdf version of the itinerary, please click HERE. (available soon)

 

Thank you for your interest in our tour, and please do not hesitate in contacting us should you have any questions at all, including how to book your seat/s.

We look forward to having you on board soon!

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