About ten minutes drive from Launceston, accessible via the West Tamar Highway, lies a fascinating place: Tamar Island. A long boardwalk leads out to the island, taking you between phragmites australis reeds and out over mudflats and the river itself. The boardwalk is open from dawn until dusk; we took the opportunity to have a picnic dinner on the island as the sun was beginning to set. It was beautiful!
On the walk out to Tamar Island, which takes 20 – 30 minutes (depending on how many things you stop to look at on the way!), you’ll see a variety of birds, such as pelicans, black swans and great egrets, and perhaps even a copperhead snake (which should be left alone as it is venomous! Be careful where you tread!). If you look carefully, you can see the wrecks that were sunk in the channel in order to improve the flow of water.
On Tamar Island, there are picnic tables, public BBQs (you’ll need to take your rubbish with you though), a toilet block, a jetty (giving access to the island via boat) and a European stand of trees. These were donated by the Hobart Botanical Gardens. Even stranger still is the tree that has grown around an abandoned piece of farming equipment!
The small yet informative Tamar Island Wetlands Interpretation Centre, with its distinctive circular roof, is open from 10am to 4pm everyday except Christmas Day (9am to 5pm in summer). There is a bird hide 0.5km from the interpretation centre.
Although it is possible to walk to Tamar Island for free, your donation really does help Parks and Wildlife as they work to conserve the native flora and fauna of the island and wetlands.
For more posts about Tasmania’s north, click here.
Tasmania, a state of Australia, is an island located at latitude 42° south. It has excellent food and wine, beautiful beaches, spectacular UNESCO listed wilderness, stunning mountains, a rich history – including five UNESCO listed convict sites – and friendly, innovative people. Getting to Tasmania necessitates the adventure of travelling by boat or plane from Melbourne, or by plane from Sydney or Brisbane.
The Spirit of Tasmania ferries passengers and cars between Melbourne (Victoria) and Devonport (Tasmania). They have day sailings in peak seasons and night sailings year round on almost every day.
Hobart, Tasmania’s capital city, can be reached directly from Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane via the following airlines: Virgin Australia, Jetstar, Qantas (Melbourne and Sydney only) and Tigerair (Melbourne only).
Launceston is Tasmania’s second largest city and can be reached directly from Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane via the following airlines: Virgin Australia (Melbourne and Sydney only), Jetstar and Qantas. Sharp Airlines also flies from Launceston to Burnie, King Island and Flinders Island.
Burnie, a northwestern coastal town, has a small airport and can be reached directly from Melbourne via Rex and Free Spirit Airlines. Sharp Airlines also files from Burnie to Launceston, King Island and Flinders Island.
There are several other small airports and airlines operating in Tasmania.
I am very excited about my Traversing Tasmania blog! I’ve been writing about Tasmania for years, albeit via letters, postcards and emails, and I even submitted a piece to Lonely Planet a few years ago (which, sadly, wasn’t published). Look out for a piece I wrote about my aunt, who is a Tasmanian artist, in the January 2017 edition of the lovely and local Lume Magazine.
My admiration for Tasmania has been fostered by a childhood growing up on a bush property with views of kunanyi (Mt. Wellington) and living in the beautiful cities of Hobart and Launceston. One of my favourite parts about travelling to other states and countries is actually returning home! My island is magnificent.
Each time I visit a location in Tasmania, I’ll tell you about my travels so that you can live the journey with me and even plan your own trip! I look forward to sharing my island with you.