Explore the Aussie Town of the Year with our hand-picked list featuring the best things to do in Launceston!
Located in central northern Tasmania, Launceston is a cool climate riverside city that sits at the cove of the River Tamar. Best described as a travellers delight, in Launceston you’ll find plenty of things to do regardless if you enjoy lazing and pampering, exploring and, of course, eating and drinking.
Providing the best of both worlds, this famed city encapsulates the overall feel of a bustling Australian town thats surrounded by an abundance of oasis-like nature parks, panoramic views and much more.
How to get from Hobart to Launceston?
Regardless of the mode of transport you choose, in Tasmania it will always be the scenic route. However, if you’re looking on how to get from Hobart to Launceston, we recommend the near two-and-a-half hour drive that passes through Ross and the outskirts of Ben Lomond National Park.
This year, Launceston has been awarded as the winner of the annual Aussie Town of the Year Award announced by Australia’s leading travel site, Wotif.com. To help you celebrate, we’ve put together a list of the five best things to do in Launceston, Tasmania in 2022:
Explore Cataract Gorge Reserve
A 10-minute drive from Launceston city centre will land you at the famed Cataract Gorge River. It is one of Launceston’s most visited attractions for both locals and tourists alike. An explorers oasis, here you’ll find walking and hiking trails, the world’s longest single span chairlift, eateries, wildlife and the Alexandra Suspension Bridge that hangs over First Basin and South Esk River. If you’re looking to still unwind, you can find a range of Cataract Gorge cruises that sails by some of Launceston’s historical buildings. Boat or by foot, this is one of the best things to do in Launceston.
Drink Wine in Tamar Valley
Did you know that there are seven leading wine regions in Tasmania? Despite all being exquisite in their own sense, Launceston’s Tamar Valley is the oldest wine region in Tasmania. Found 20 kilometres from Launceston, Tamar Valley is also by far the most popular considering that they produce 31 per cent Tasmanian wine thanks to their flowing rivers, charismatic hillside and blossoming orchids. With 32 vineyards to choose from – most of which that are award-winning and internationally recognised – we recommend following the Tamar Valley Wine Route or joining in on a guided wine tour.
Day Trip to Cradle Mountain
Although this riverside city can’t claim Tasmania’s famed Lake St Clair National Park as their own, if you’re looking for a day trip from Launceston, we’d highly recommend venturing out west to Cradle Mountain. Cradle Mountain is just over a two hour drive south from Launceston making it the perfect destination to spend the day at. Apart from the breathtaking lookouts, the abundance of wildlife, the rigid terrain and a true escape to nature feel; Cradle Mountain is so much more. To help you save some energy for your day trip, we recommend joining a tour that will take you to all of the best spots inside Cradle Mountain.
Photographed by Ness Vanderburgh. Image via Tourism Tasmania.
Eat the Best Food in Launceston
If you’re looking for the best places to eat in Launceston, you’ve come to the right place. Spoilt for choice, Launceston is home to some of Tasmania’s best restaurants and eateries. For water views head to Stillwater Restaurant on the Tamar River – once a flour mill now an award-winning restaurant featuring an ever-changing menu; Harvest Market is he perfect destination for dining on the go with hot pastries, locally sourced fruit and vegetables and an array of market stalls sitting centre stage; or for a paddock to plate feel, head to Grain Of The Silos Restaurant inside Peppers Silo Launceston where some of Tasmania’s freshest produce comes to life.
Drink Launceston Beer
It comes to no surprise that Tasmania is home to some of the world’s best beer. But, with more than 20 breweries, it can be hard to choose where to go to grab a pint or two. Thankfully, in the heart of Launceston you’ll find the James Boag Brewery – one of the two power beer houses in the Australian beer industry. Established in 1881 and sitting on the Esk River, James Boag Brewery welcomes visitors and locals to their historic site. With three bars, a beer garden, two levels of history and memorabilia, brewery tours and even comedy and trivia nights; you’ll find everything you need and more at James Boag.
Looking to explore more of what Tasmania has to offer? Check out our list of 10 Unique Getaway Gems to Discover around Tasmania. Or, if you’re a foodie, here are the Top 10 Things You Must Eat and Drink in Tasmania.
We acknowledge the traditional owners of the land mentioned in our article, the people of the Tyerrernotepanner Nation, and we recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their elders past, present and emerging.