Your gateway to the remote natural splendour of Tasmania is its capital Hobart, where you'll meet your Travel Director and fellow travellers (flights to arrive prior to 12.30pm) this afternoon. Visit the Botanic Gardens, historic Battery Point and Constitution Dock, then ascend Mt. Nelson for panoramic views over the city and Derwent River. This evening, join your fellow travel companions for a Welcome Reception and dinner.
Ease into the relaxed atmosphere of this harbour town, enjoying a full day at leisure. Wander through the historic Salamanca Place sandstone warehouses that were once the hub of Hobart's whaling industry and today house a myriad of colourful market stalls laden with Tasmanian arts, crafts and local produce. Kick back at one of Salamanca's cafés with an ale or rub shoulders with the friendly locals who delight in sharing their stories. For dinner, consider heading to the city docks in search of the best local seafood.
Leave the city behind for the lush rainforest and tiered falls of Russell Falls. Then, take the winding road to Lake St. Clair, where you'll 'Dive Into Culture' and see The Wall in the Wilderness, a monumental sculpture hand-carved in rare Huon pine. Continue through the rainforest, passing the eerie moonscape of Queenstown, once the world's richest mining town. Your destination today is coastal Strahan, the gateway to the UNESCO-listed Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. Here you will enjoy views of Macquarie Harbour from your hotel perched on a hillside.
Venture up the dark waters of the Gordon River, stained amber by buttongrass tannins and flanked by riverside rainforest. Continue to Sarah Island, where you'll 'Dive Into Culture' and gain chilling insights into the cruelties of convict life, starkly juxtaposed against the overwhelming beauty of the island's surrounds. See Hells Gates, the notoriously treacherous entrance to the harbour, and Heritage Landing, the site of a 2,000-year-old Huon Pine. Later, travel through the mining towns of Rosebery and Tullah as you make your way to one of Trafalgar's 'Stays With Stories' - Cradle Mountain Hotel, which offers incredible views of Tasmania's alpine wilderness.
Join a 'Local Specialist' this morning and discover the inspiring beauty of Cradle Mountain National Park in ways you could never imagine. Keep a keen eye out for wombats, quolls and currawongs as you embark on a guided walk with your Travel Director. Take your time to connect with the tranquil and ancient natural surrounds, tracing the purpose-built boardwalk around Dove Lake, through the wild ancient forests and alpine heathlands. Feeling adventurous? Consider a challenging hike to Marion's Lookout instead, returning via Wombat Pool.
Switch dairy for a wee dram, as you join a Local Specialist for an insightful visit to Hellyers Road Distillery, founded by a group of dairy farmers. Travel to Sheffield, the 'Town of Murals' and stop at the Ashgrove Tasmanian to sample the local cheeses before continuing through the Meander Valley to Tasmania's 'northern capital' of Launceston.
Your first stop today is to the nearby wilderness of Launceston's Cataract Gorge. Continue your scenic drive to Josef Chromy Wines for lunch and indulge in delicious Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vintages, paired with exquisite vineyard views that stretch across the Tamar Valley. Your holiday comes to an end late this afternoon. Transfer to Launceston for your onward flight after saying farewell to your travel companions (flights to depart after 4pm).