Things To Do in Launceston
Explore the city’s heritage streetscapes and vibrant food scene. Then launch into Tamar Valley wine country.
Heard of river sledding? It’s time to grab your friends and head to the Meander River. Pull on a wetsuit, slide onto a raft, and use your arms to paddle the river with Meander Wilderness Experiences. Think dodgem cars on the water, negotiating boulders and your fellow rafters through gentle rapids. On the calmer stretches, lie back and watch the wilderness glide by.
Photo: Wayne Enright
Scenic helicopter flight
Take to the skies on a scenic helicopter flight with Unique Charters Experiences. Choose from a 15-minute Cataract Gorge fly-over, or a longer scenic flight to Cradle Mountain, taking up the option to touch down in Cradle Valley to explore Dove Lake and the Enchanted Walk. Where you fly is up to you. Land on secluded Swan Island for a picnic with Bass Strait views, or enjoy an exclusive private wine tour of the Tamar Valley.
Seasonal regional dining in Launceston
Seasonal regional dining in Launceston has flourished in recent years. Long-time favourite eateries such as Stillwater, Black Cow Bistro and Mud Bar have been joined by the likes of Geronimo Aperitivo Bar and Restaurant, with a European vibe and a rustic farm-to-table approach.
Stylish cafés and wine bars
Launceston’s historic streetscapes are dotted with stylish cafés and wine bars such as newcomer Havilah, Earthy Eats, Sweetbrew, Bread + Butter, and Bryher. With an obsessive focus on local produce, Bryher owners Alison Bergner and Tristan Morrison make everything on site, from the pickles to the pastries.
Bread & Butter
A local brew
After a casual spot for a local brew? Saint John Craft Beer was one of the city’s earliest craft-beer venues to open, back in 2014, and has remained true to its original ethos. The crew here continues to pour from 14 taps and serve some 170 bottled beers, with burgers and bar snacks in the evening.
Saint John Craft Beer Bar
Tamar wine country
North of Launceston, the Tamar Valley Wine Trail stretches through farmland, orchards, forests and, of course, vineyards supporting more than 30 cellar doors.
The trail is surprisingly compact and makes great touring; wineries such as Holm Oak Vineyards, Moores Hill and Stony Rise Wine Company are within a stone’s throw of each other. With sweeping views of the river, Tamar Ridge is a beautiful spot and Hubert and Dan pop-up restaurant serves a new menu at the vineyard every Thursday night. And follow a quiet backroad to Swinging Gate Vineyard for relaxed tastings, a session at the day spa and glamping among the vines in Domescapes’ luxe eco-domes.
Photo: Rob Burnett
Holm Oak Vineyards
The picturesque natural formation of Cataract Gorge offers a taste of nature just minutes from the city centre. If it’s too chilly for a swim in the outdoor pool, follow Duck Reach Trail to the old Duck Reach Power Station. Admire the elegant steelwork of Sentinel Lookout, and take in tranquil views over the South Esk River.
Cataract Gorge Reserve
Liffey Falls State Reserve
Travel a little further afield to find a few of Tasmania’s 60 Great Short Walks. At Liffey Falls State Reserve, one of the state’s prettiest waterfalls spills in perfect tiers in a tract of cool temperate rainforest. See rare pencil pines on the easy Pine Lake walk. And for more experienced walkers, Meander Falls is a 10-kilometre full-day walk into the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.
Photo: Tourism Tasmania & Scott Sporleder, Matador
Liffey Falls State Reserve
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