Of all Australia’s states, it would probably be safe to say that Tasmania is a destination with the most distinct seasons. From balmy summers by the beach to cold winters in the highlands and the freshness of spring, the seasons in Tasmania makes it a place that is easy to want to experience a favourite place in another season. In Tasmania, autumn is the time of year when beaches glow in golden light and orchards are filled with fresh harvests. Visit a garden or a national park and let your eyes soak up nature’s awesome palette. If you haven’t experienced autumn, here are 10 things to do in autumn in Tasmania.
1-Turning of the Fagus – Autumn in Tasmania
Watching the Fagus trees leaves change colour in autumn is uniquely Tasmanian tradition. Autumn is indeed a spectacular time of year to visit Tasmania.
The landscape of dusty reds, burnt oranges and bright golds is awe-inspiring. It’s a dream time for bush walkers and photographers who flock to Mount Field National Park and Cradle Mountain National Park.
Autumn in Tasmania offers plenty of activities in the mountainous regions. Walks at Cradle Mountain suit all levels, from beginners to experienced hikers, and horse riding is also popular.
Another great spot to see autumn colours is Mount Field National Park, which is about a one-hour drive from Hobart and home to Russell Falls and Lake Dobson.
2- Visit The Derwent Valley
The towns of the Derwent Valley, near Hobart, are especially pretty in autumn. Settlers brought many trees from the northern hemisphere to this region.
The third oldest settlement in Tasmania, New Norfolk, was established by evacuees from the abandoned prison on Norfolk Island in 1807.
New Norfolk’s historic buildings look particularly picturesque in autumn. The town’s traditional village square is one of the few left in the country. Located on the Derwent River and surrounded by pretty rural scenery, New Norfolk’s produces most of the hops for Australian breweries.
The Derwent Valley Autumn Festival is a celebration with bands, dancers, singers and choirs. There are stalls with local food, beer and wine. The best thing about it is it’s in autumn when the oaks, elms, willows and poplars are ablaze with colour.
3- Royal Tasmanian Botanical Garden
If you’re visiting Hobart in autumn, it’s worth spending time in the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Garden. Located on the Queens Domain next to Government House, the 14ha garden was established in 1818. It’s two kilometres from Hobart’s CBD.
The Japanese garden is particularly lovely in autumn. Designed by a Japanese garden landscape architect from Yaizu, Japan, Hobart’s sister city, the garden is a popular spot for weddings. It’s also a tranquil place for a quiet moment.
4- Visit a Tasmanian winery
Autumn in Tasmania is an inspiring time to visit a winery or two or three.
Tasmania produces award-winning Pinot Noir and sparkling wines. And a range of cool-climate wines – Riesling, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Gris, and Gewurztraminer.
There are wine regions close to Launceston and Hobart; the Tamar Valley in the north and Pipers River in the east. The Derwent, Coal River and Huon Valleys are all an easy drive from Hobart.
Historic, food, wine and autumn leaves combine to offer a charming holiday in this heritage town. Richmond in the Coal River Valley has oodles of charm, with beautiful Georgian historic buildings and convict history. In the 1820’s, Richmond linked Hobart with Port Arthur.
These days, the old stone buildings are home to galleries, cafes and boutiques. It’s a touch of Europe in the Southern Hemisphere.
6- International Mural Fest
A mural fest in Tasmania? You’d be surprised to discover the street artists in Sheffield, in Tasmania’s North West, have been painting the town since 1986.
There are 60 murals in Sheffield and the International Mural Fest attracts some of the world’s top mural specialists.
Nine artists will compete in a mural painting competition between Easter Sunday and the following Saturday.
It’s a spectacular show, with each artist painting a 2.1m x 4.8m mural. Each year, there’s theme, such as ‘Windows of Our Dreams’ and “Our Wonderful World”. But if you can’t make it to the live even, those murals will be there all year.
7- Targa Tasmania
Autumn in Tasmania is an exciting time with Targa Tasmania, when spectators line the roads and cheer for the rally drivers.
The five-leg race from George Town to Hobart attracts some of the world’s best tarmac rally drivers. Tasmania’s circuit has some of the most challenging tarmac road routes in the country.
The organisers picked one of the most visually appealing times of the year for the racers to hit the road.
8- Port Arthur
Port Arthur’s trees and flowers are a link to the convicts who prepared the soil and planted the seeds 150 years ago.
The plants lit up the lives of the convicts who had a tough time in this isolated colonial prison. Easter is a great time to visit Port Arthur, as there are plays and events that re-enact the past.
Another historic town, Ross, is a short drive from Launceston. The Ross Bridge was completed in 1836 and is a work of art. The third oldest sandstone bridge in Australia has Celtic-inspired carvings with symbols, flora, fauna and faces.
Besides being a garrison town, Ross was also a coach horse change, livestock market and agricultural centre.
10- The Spiegeltent
The curiously named Spiegeltent is a travelling tent built from wood, canvas, glass and mirrors. The concept started in Belgium in the late 1800’s. Performances in the tent are a mesmerising mix of acrobatics, cabaret and dance.
It’s part of the Tasmanian International Arts Festival and is one of a few Spiegeltents touring the world.
Autumn in Tasmania goes from 1 March to 31 May.
How about visiting Tasmania in winter? Here are some ideas.
Launceston is a central point within driving distance of Tasmania’s north. For more things to do around Launceston read this.