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Summer or winter, the craggy Ben Lomond National Park plateau, northern Tasmania, attracts adventure seekers. The park includes Tasmania's second-highest peak, Legges Tor, which is 1572 metres (5147 feet) above sea level. It is Tasmania's primary downhill ski field. Rock climbing, alpine walking, cross country and downhill skiing are the highlights of this national park. To reach the park, take C roads from Evandale then follow the 17 km (10.5 miles) gravel road to the ski village. Jacobs Ladder, a steep and narrow section of the road, demands great care, especially in winter conditions when chains should be carried. The ranger station at the foot of the mountain can give advice on road conditions during winter. Weather in alpine areas does change rapidly. Be prepared for cold, wet conditions, even in summer. Current park passes must be purchased for entry to Tasmania's national parks. For full details please visit the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife website. Ben Lomond National Park is located about one hours' drive (50 kilometres/31 miles) east of Launceston.
The Arboretum is a 66 hectare nature reserve near Devonport in Tasmania's North-West. Only a few kilometres from Devonport but a million miles from care, the 66 hectares of landscape Arboretum, which was founded in 1984, offers you the opportunity to walk among collections of woody plants from around the temperate world, especially including many of Tasmania's plants. Set in a peaceful and beautiful valley, you may see some of Tasmania's wildlife, such as swift parrots and platypus. Cultural and natural heritage combine in the Limestone Heritage Walk, which is free if you self-guide on the walk, and links the geology with a century of human activity contributing to colonial and national development. One hour guided walks are available for a reasonable cost, and can be booked online. Bookings are essential. The Arboretum offers three picnic shelters, 2 general shelters, a platypus observatory and a bird hide on the shore of Flounders Lake. The Tree Park Kiosk offers light refreshments and audio tours, and is operated by volunteers and opens between October and May. Kiosk is open 11am-4pm. Eugenana is 15 minutes' drive (11 kilometres/7 miles) South of Devonport.
Part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, this national park protects Tasmanias great western rivers the Franklin, Gordon, Jane and Denison and the remote mountain ranges where they rise. The Lyell Highway (A10) cuts through the national park on its way to Queenstown, entering the World Heritage Area just west of Derwent Bridge. Take time to stop and explore the rainforest bordering the road there are excellent short walks at the Franklin River, Donaghys Lookout and Nelson Falls. Picnic facilities are also available at some roadside stops through the national park. Current park passes must be purchased for entry to Tasmania's national parks. For full details please visit the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife website.
The George Town to Low Head Walking and Cycling Trail follows the River Tamar. Suitable for walkers, runners and cyclists, this free and easily accessible trail was opened in 2011 and was designed to be used by people of all abilities. It is 6 kilometres in length and begins at York Cove in George Town. Cycling is one of the most enjoyable ways to experience the trail, and bicycle hire is available from the George Town Visitor Information Centre for use on the trail and around the George Town area. The trail links together key historical sites and areas of natural beauty and wildlife interest, such as Lagoon Bay, York Cove, Windmill Point and the Low Head Pilot Station. You will learn lots along the way about Tasmanian wildlife, colonial and convict history and how Tasmania communicates with the rest of the world. Did you know that where the River Tamar meets the sea is one of the deepest points of the entire Bass Strait? This makes it popular for shipping and also highly rich in biodiversity, providing you with plenty to see whether it be marine vessels or wildlife.
The Tasman National Park hugs the coast of the Tasman Peninsula in south eastern Tasmania. You can reach the Park from the Arthur Highway at Eaglehawk Neck, an hour south east of Hobart (80 kilometres/50 miles); and also from Fortescue Bay and Port Arthur, 90 minutes south east of Hobart (102 kilometres/63 miles). The stars of the 8,312-hectare (20,780-acre) Tasman National Park are its monumental rock formations. Here you can see rock stacks, arches, sea caves and 300-metre (986-foot) high cliffs created by 6,000 years of wave action on the peninsula's sandstone, dolerite and granite. You can visit Tasman Arch, the Blowhole, Devils Kitchen, Tessellated Pavement, Remarkable Cave and Waterfall Bay by car, but the best views are from the Park's many bushwalks. Short walks include Waterfall Bay (60-90 minutes), Bivouac Bay (three hours), Cape Hauy (four hours) and Cape Raoul (five hours). You can go rock climbing, scuba diving and surfing here, and the Park is rich in wildlife. Whales, dolphins, penguins and seals can often be seen from the shore or a wildlife cruise. Watch for foraging possums and wallabies in the bush at dawn and dusk - you may even encounter an elusive Tasmanian devil. Current park passes must be purchased for entry to Tasmania's national parks. For full details please visit the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife website.
Bridport's walking track is a breathtaking showcase of natural foreshore, beaches, wildflowers, forest and river landscape. Walk, run, ride and ramble along the 11 kilometre circuit which takes you through ancient forests, wildflower reserves, native grasslands, tidal estuarine and river environments. You will also travel along a natural foreshore with granite rocks and many secluded beaches. The fauna and flora is rich and varied; many species of high conservation value. Along the way enjoy special places of tranquility and the significant periods of human occupation in the area. The Bridport Walking Track is a special unforgettable place of natural beauty for all to experience. Bridport is known for its numerous unspoilt beaches, breathtaking beauty and the magnificent vistas of Andersons Bay and striking mountain backdrops. The village is fully serviced and only one hour from Launceston. You can choose your accommodation from camping to luxurious. From Bridport you can easily discover the scenic beauty, colourful history and heritage of North East Tasmania such as the stunning patchwork of farmlands, tall rainforests and spectacular waterfalls. Nearby attractions include a wine and gourmet food trail, mountain bike trail, world class golf courses at Barnbougle Dunes and Barnbougle Lost Farm as well as Bridestowe Estate Lavender Farm.
Mount Field National Park is one of Tasmania's oldest national parks. Located an hour north-west of Hobart (75 kilometres/47 miles) the Park stretches across 16,265-hectares (40,191 acres) of diverse landscape. You can enjoy a number of walks in Mount Field National Park, through tall forests, alpine meadows and verdant rainforest. Three-tiered Russell Falls - the Park's most visited spot - is an easy 20 minute circuit from the Visitor's Centre. On the nearby Tall Trees Walk (30 minutes), you can see the world's tallest flowering plant, the giant swamp gum, which can reach a height of 30 metres/99 feet. Extended walks into the Park's alpine areas can also be taken from Lake Dobson - 16 kilometres/10 miles from the Visitor Centre. You can go downhill skiing near Lake Dobson in winter, and in autumn see the stunning red and gold foliage of Australia's only deciduous tree, the endemic fagus (Nothofagus gunnii). You're also likely to encounter Tasmania's endemic wildlife here, including platypus and wombats. The Visitor Centre has walking information, interpretation displays, a shop, eco-playground and bistro and there are camping and picnic facilities nearby. There is also a rustic shelter at Lake Dobson, complete with a wood heater and firewood. Current park passes must be purchased for entry to Tasmania's national parks. For full details please visit the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife website.