Tasmania itineraries - 7 road trips to explore on your own!

Tasmania itineraries - the good reasons to go

Cute simplicity and rough wilderness

How to explain? To travel Tasmania is a world apart from backpacking Australia’s mainland. Tasmania is a pretty, green and small island. East and West offer two very different travel experiences on a Tasmania road trip.
Wineglass Bay lookout - A must to see on Tasmania east coast
Tasmania’s east coast is the place to be to do sunbathing (in summer!) on the shore of clear waters. Maria Island and  Freycinet national park are two gems with cute beaches and postcard landscapes. The center of the island and the west coast are shaped by rough, impressive mountain landscapes and gorges. It reminded me of New Zealand’s north island – very preserved Nature, without fanciness.  And for beach addicts, Tasmania has also got one of the clearest sands and waters in the Southern part – Bruny island.

Tasmania road trip: made to disconnect

Tasmania’s lifestyle is also way slower than on the mainland. It makes it a perfect getaway to get to know the quiet side of Australia. To take a break from the hectic traveling life on the mainland!

How to get to and move around in Tasmania: easy peasy

You can easily start your Tasmania itineraries by flying from Sydney or Melbourne. Taking a plane is a cheap and quick way to reach the island. Low cost companies like Jetstar or Virgin australia offer affordable flights, all year long.

When it can become quickly a headache to plan a road trip, Tasmania has the advantage to be easily accessible and well adapted to travels. Why? Tasman Island is of small size, has (quite) good roads and good connections with the mainland. Renting a car in Hobart is the best way to explore the island. More info on renting  car for your Tasmania itineraries below!

Related article to Tasmania itineraries

South: 2 itineraries in Hobart & Tasman Peninsula

what to see in tasmania - tasman arch - unepoudredescampette

The perfect getaway for a weekend - 1 to 3 days

Hobart and Tasman peninsula make a perfect travel destination for a long weekend. They are close to each other, quickly accessible from Australia’s mainland and easy to travel.

For who? These Tasmania itineraries are made for solo travellers, families, and photographers. They are chill self-drive itineraries, to do hiking or relaxing.

Hobart

Tasmania road trip 3 days on the Peninsula

Tasmania road trip on the East coast: the all-rounder in 7 to 10 days

If you’re an undecided traveler like me, Tasmania’s East coast is exactly what you need ! Hikes or chill on the sand ? City weekend or outdoors trip? You’ll find all in one on the East Coast. It’s a perfect all-rounder to see very different landscapes of the devil island.

Tasmania road trip - Bruny island - unepoudredescampette

The quickie: Tasmania east coast in 7 days

A road trip on the East Coast is by far the most common self drive itinerary in Tassie. Since the East is the touristic part of Tasmania. It’s well accessible by car, accommodation is quite easy to find and there are things to do for everyone. Tasmania itineraries on the east coast are also easy to manage in quite short time frames. But to travel Tasmania’s east coast without being in a rush, count at least 7 days.

Tasmania itinerary 7 days

  • Day 1 to 3 – Coles Bay, Freycinet (overnight at Coles Bay or Swansea)
  • Day 4 to 5 – Bicheno, Chain of lagoons, Binalong Bay, Bay of Fires (overnight Bay of fires, Binalong, camping)
  • Day 6 to 7 – Mt William (overnight at Mussel Roe or Launceston), Launceston

The extended one: Tasmania road trip 10 days

  • Day 1 to 2 – Maria island
  • Day 3 to 5 – Coles Bay, Freycinet (overnight at Coles Bay)
  • Day 6 to 7 – Bicheno, Douglas Apsley national park (overnight at caravan park / hotel)
  • Day 8 – Chain of lagoons, St Mary, Bay of Fires
  • Day 9 to 10 – Mt William, Flinder island (overnight at Musselroe), Launceston

Must-dos and sees on Tasmania’s East Coast

  • Eat & drink: Launceston, backpackers’ town
  • Walks, relax and chill on the beach: Freycinet
  • Have fun at unique spots: penguins and blow hole at Bicheno
  • Hikes: Mt Amos, Hazards Beach, Wineglass Bay, Mt William
  • Photography: practice nature photography

Download the complete PDF – with my own itinerary + tips I used myself

Get more about Tasmania itineraries on the East coast

East + Center: Tasmania itineraries in 15 days

Cradle mountain - View on two mountain's lakes unepoudredescampette

Explore more in a 15 days self drive itinerary

This Tasmania itinerary is a good mix of chilling time and adventure! After the beaches and touristic spots of Tasmania East Coast, it’s time to give some time to Tasmania’s wilderness. Wild landscapes, colder climate also: Cradle mountain’s region is an authentic picture of Tasmania nature. 

A road trip for who? Hikers and photographers will enjoy these Tasmania itineraries. They combine East Center of Tasmania.

15 days Tasmania road trip

  • Day 1 – Hobart
  • Day 2 to 3 – Tasman Peninsula (Remarkable cave, Fortescue Bay (overnight), Devils kitchen and the Arch, Eaglehawk neck)
  • Day 4 to 5 – Coles Bay and Freycinet (overnight at Swansea)
  • Day 6 to 7 – Bicheno, Binalong, Bay of Fires, Launceston
  • Day 8 to 9 – Cradle mountain (Overnight: camping at the exit of Cradle mountain park)
  • Day 10 – Mole Creek Cave, lake St Clair and Burbury Lake
  • Day 11 – Russel falls, Tarreleah Falls, Cygnet (overnight)
  • Day 12 to 15 – Bruny island, back to Hobart

West: Off-the-path's Tasmania self drive

Tasmania west coast has little to do with the East. And that’s exactly why you should start a self drive itinerary on Tasmania West coast. If you like empty places, untouched nature and the real road trip experience, these two Tasmania itineraries are for you. Landscapes are wilder, somehow lonelier than on the eastern side and the towns seem to have been frozen in time – like Queenstown and Strahan, where you can take a break on your Tasmania road trip.
Places to see - landscape photography - Bruny island
You can start at Launceston, following the North shore through Arthur river, going down to Strahan, then ending up in Bruny island and Hobart. I’ll attach here the center of the island, as it belongs to Tasmania’s western half. Cradle Mountain and Walls of Jerusalem are impressive chains of mountains. Cradle offers easy hikes, while Walls of Jerusalem is another story – advanced hiking trails. The road between Lake St Clair and Bruny island is also a spectacle in itself: a mini New Zealand, made of mountains, glaciers and lakes!
For who? For travellers, hikers and photographers. A Tasmania self drive in the West isn’t as straightforward as on the East coast. There is less accommodation and the weather can be very unpredictable. When hiking, be careful and always follow advices.

7 days: Western Tasmania self drive

7 days Tasmania self drive West coast

  • Day 1 – Launceston (Cataract Gorge, lavender fields)
  • Day 2 – Artur river (overnight at Marrawah, campground)
  • Day 3 – Western Wilderness road, Zeehan falls, Strahan
  • Day 4 – Macquarie Heads, Queenstown (overnight)
  • Day 5 – Lake St Clair, Tarraleah lagoon (overnight)
  • Day 6 – StrathGordon / Red Knool, Russel falls, New Norfolk
  • Day 7 – Cygnet, back to Hobart

Full Tasmania itinerary 21 days

  • Day 1 to 3 – Start at Hobart, visit Tasman Peninsula
  • Day 4 to 5 – Coles Bay and Freycinet (overnight at Swansea)
  • Day 6 to 7 – Bicheno, Binalong, Bay of Fires
  • Day 8 to 10 – Mt William, Flinder island, Launceston (overnight)
  • Day 11 to 12 – Cradle mountain (Overnight: camping at the exit of Cradle mountain park)
  • Day 13 – Zeehan, Strahan
  • Day 14 – Macquarie heads
  • Day 15 to 16 – Queenstown, lake St Clair, Tarraleah lagoon (overnight)
  • Day 17 – Red Knool, Russel falls, New Norfolk
  • Day 18 to 21 – Bruny island, back to Hobart

Deep further into West Tasmania itineraries

How to make the best of your Tasmania itineraries - Tips

Transportation in Tasmania

I prefer to make it clear for you: without a car, it’s a headache to travel Tasmania. The island is pretty small but busses and train connections are… of pretty much no help. There are no passenger transport railways, simply. Except for a few tourist steam locomotives between Queenstwon and Strahan, called the West Coast Wilderness Railway. 

The bus is a good option if you travel at a slow pace, and stay longer at each place.

  • Tips to renting a car in Tasmania:
    •  Use online comparators (vroomvroomvroom, budget.com.au)
    • Call the rental company to check all conditions online are accurate. Take info about insurance costs and deposit
    • Book online (cheaper) and in advance at high season (a few weeks before)
    • Pick up the car at the airport (cheaper)
    • Take photos of the car before hitting the road
  • Buying a car is a good idea if you plan to stay longer and to look for backpacker jobs. You can bring the car back to Australia’s mainland by ferry. A lot of travelers also buy and sell cars on backpackers’ networks every day.

When to travel Tasmania

A Tasmania road trip means a lot of nights in a tent or in the van – my favorite way of sleeping. And to avoid freezing, it’s useful to check first when the weather goes nuts – which isn’t that uncommon in Tasmania! Even if the weather can be unpredictable, in particular in mountains, Tasmania follows the 4 seasons we have in Europe. Just in another order.

The best bet is to travel Tasmania during summer. Temperatures are bearable – on average, up to 25 degrees. It’s quite sunny and ‘crowds’ of tourists are still at Tasmania’s scale – manageable. Plan your Tasmania itineraries between December and March, if you aim to enjoy the outdoors without becoming a penguin.

Travel Tasmania - When to go Climate table
Winters on the other hand use to be pretty cold and rainy. It makes it difficult, even dangerous, to hike and drive on roads across the island. Temperatures between May and August range from 3 to 11 degrees and snowfalls are also common.

Budget info to prepare your Tasmania itineraries

To travel Tasmania is very similar to Australia’s mainland, regarding budget. The good news: you’ll probably spend less in drinking and doing party since Tasmania isn’t the place for this. 

  • Accommodation:
    • From 60$ for a night in a private room
    • From 20$ in a dorm hostel
    • From 5$ at the camping
  • Food: from 150$ per week for groceries
  • Park pass: 40 to 80$
  • Car rental in Tasmania: from 700$, large car for 8 days