— Wednesday 13th
You will be collected from your Devonport accommodation or the ferry terminal at 7.30am this morning for your 11 day adventure through Wild Tasmania.
We head south to Leven Canyon, a spectacular 250m-deep ravine worn over tens of thousands of years by rains and the Leven River which flows at its base. It is estimated that between 45,000 and 70,000 kilolitres of water roars through the canyon every day, which can be viewed from a cliff-face viewing platform, accessible by a short rainforest walk. Or take on the challenge of 697 forest stairs !
Then onto nearby Gunns Plains Caves, where we take a 1 hour tour through the cave, formed by an underground river that still flows and contains freshwater crayfish, fish and eel. Platypus sleep and nest in the sandy banks along the river. It is renowned for its magnificent formations, including calcite shawls and flowstones, and has a glow-worm display.
We now drive along the northern coast towards our accommodation tonight in Stanley. En- route, we visit Dip Falls and Big Tree. The beautiful Dip Falls can be viewed from a viewing platform and a path leads down some steps to the base of the falls and its unique rock formations.
From the car park you can also walk 5 min to the Big Tree in the Big Tree Reserve, which dwarfs the surrounding trees with it’s circumference of nearly 17m !
Our destination this afternoon is further west, to Stanley, famous for The Nut, an ancient extinct volcano 152 metres high which offers spectacular views over the Bass Strait and 360 degree views of the township.
Overnight accommodation- Stanley Seaview Inn- motel room
Day 2 — Thursday 14th Nov (B,L,D)
We explore Stanley this morning including The Nut and Highfield House.
You can choose to walk to The Nut plateau (10−20 mins each way) or take the chairlift (extra cost- currently $16 pp return).Once at the top, soak up the incredible views and there’s a 1 hour circuit track around the Nut plateau.
Highfield Historic Site offers a historically accurate vision of a gentleman’s home and farm of the 1830s. It sits on a hillside with views across to Stanley, The Nut and Bass Strait beyond. The house is being restored over time and its elegant Regency design, convict barracks, barns, stables, and a chapel are surrounded by a large ornamental garden. We’ll take a guided tour of the homestead and have some free time to explore the site at our leisure.
This afternoon we travel to the west coast and Gardiner Point, known as the “Edge of the World” The sea west of Tasmania is the longest uninterrupted expanse of ocean on the globe. From Argentina the currents sweep unimpeded more than halfway around the planet until they hit this point. The wild roaring forties (strong westerly winds) batter this coast from across the Great Southern Ocean, making you truly feel you are at the edge of the world.
Overnight accommodation- Tall Timbers Hotel, Smithton
Day 3 — Friday 15th Nov (B,L,D)
This morning we explore the Tarkine Wilderness. Our first stop is Trowutta Arch, which was formed by two collapsing cave systems, the arch to one side is filled with water and the other with gigantic Man Ferns. Here we take an easy 10 minute walk to the arch for fantastic photo opportunities.
After stopping at a couple of lookouts, we continue south along the Western Explorer drive to Corinna. The Western Explorer joins the north and the southern ends of the Tarkine, transecting the world’s largest remaining stretch of temperate rainforest. From coastal tea tree to button grass plains, from towering eucalypts to the soft myrtle beech and man ferns, from coastal and mountain landscapes, the Western Explorer takes us around and over the Norfolk Ranges and is an experience in itself.
We arrive in Corinna, a remote settlement on the banks of the Pieman river where we’ll spend the next 2 nights. As this is truly the wilderness, there is no mobile phone reception or internet service. Your guide has a satellite phone in the event of an emergency and of course there is a pub/restaurant as well.
Overnight accommodation- Corinna Cottages, with en-suites (2 night stay)
Day 4 — Saturday 16th Nov (B,L,D)
This morning you’ll take the Pieman River Cruise to Pieman Head on the Arcadia II, a magnificent 17m craft built of huon pine in 1939. The skipper provides commentary on the unique history, flora and fauna, and takes the Arcadia close enough to the banks for guests to actually touch the ancient rainforest, including many specimens of huon pine.
This afternoon is at your leisure to relax and enjoy your surrounds. There are a variety of walks available to you from 5 mins to several hours and the forest is also rich in bird life and wildlife, including the Tasmanian Devil.
Overnight accommodation- Corinna Cottages, with en-suites
Day 5 — Sunday 17th Nov (B,L,D)
After breakfast we drive to the small town of Waratah, located on the edge of Lake Waratah. The town has a rich mining past and a magnificent waterfall in the town centre ! Once home to the richest tin mine in the southern hemisphere, we can now visit the restored Stamper Mill.
Our destination today is the Cradle Mountain, Lake St Clair NP and there should be some free time this afternoon, before we depart for the Tasmanian Devil Sanctuary for an evening guided tour. Devils are primarily a nocturnal species therefore far more active at night, so environmentally sensitive lighting is used with a focus on the social interactions and feeding habits of these unique carnivores. The sanctuaries Tasmanian Devil population forms part of the nation-wide Captive Breeding Program, they have a Field Monitoring Program and Orphan Rehabilitation Program.
Overnight accommodation- Cradle Mountain Hotel, standard rooms with en-suites (2 night stay)
**upgrades may be available for an extra charge**
Day 6 — Monday 18th Nov (B,L,D)
You have the whole day to explore Cradle Mountain at your leisure. There are a range of walks available from short walks under an hour to longer walks of 4- 5 hours, including the famous Dove Lake Walk ( approx.2 hours) . We would also recommend a visit to ‘Waldheim’, the rustic chalet that was once home for Gustav Weindorfer, the founding father of the Cradle Mountain — Lake St Clair National Park. Stop by, and let the displays inside the building tell you the story of its past. The area in which the chalet is set is simply beautiful.
So you can explore at your leisure, today you’ll be provided with shuttle bus tickets for the loop bus which operates every 30 minutes through the day making it easy to explore the park. The park is also fantastic for bird watching and photography.
Overnight accommodation- Cradle Mountain Hotel, standard rooms with en-suites
Day 7 — Tuesday 19th Nov (B,L,D)
Heading further south today we travel through the mining town of Roseberry to Zeehan, where we visit the interesting West Coast Heritage Centre, a museum dedicated to the history and pioneers of the West Coast of Tasmania.The museum attractions include photo galleries, locomotives, mining machinery, blacksmith shop, marine display, Masonic Display, crocite cavern, pioneer womens gallery, the historic Gaiety Theatre (Edwardian films playing daily) and a world class mineral collection.
We now make our way to our accommodation for the next 2 nights in Strahan, a pretty harbour-side village with a dark and fascinating convict past, set on the edge of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Nestled on the shores of massive Macquarie Harbour, Strahan is the gateway to the World Heritage listed Franklin – Gordon Wild Rivers National Park.
We have some free time in the town this afternoon, for you to browse the shops along the waterfront, enjoy the beach, walk to the Water Tower Hil