Just a couple of hours after landing into Launceston you can find yourself wrapped in wilderness but Tassie’s not the place to rush. Take your time travelling to the alpine reaches – there’s plenty of places to indulge before you get to the mountain, starting with the Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail.
At Deloraine Deli, just 40 minutes into your journey, they’ll pack a hamper of indulgent local provisions – mountain picnic sorted. Next, drop into Christmas Hills Raspberry Farm for chocolate-dipped raspberries and maybe a cheeky scone. Round a few more bends, Ashgrove Cheese tempts with the likes of wild wasabi-infused cheddar.
Ready for your first brew for the day? Roll past the topiary of Railton’s main strip and into the hops garden of Seven Sheds Brewery for a Kentish Ale. Stretch your legs at Sheffield, a town where murals rule and an outdoor piano begs a tinker.
Tonight, home base is Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge on the fringe of World Heritage wilderness. Their King Billy Suite is the ultimate indulgence. Mark your arrival with bubbles, a Devils Corner NV Cuvee at the tavern followed by dinner at Highland Restaurant. Some grilled Tasmanian quail to begin? Late into the evening, sink into your outdoor spa with a glass of bubbles and admire the stars.
Wake to wilderness just beyond the doorstep. Pack a jacket (no matter what time of year) for a Dove Lake saunter. This glacial lake circuit draws close to the base of Cradle, a world of moss awaiting in Ballroom Forest. Other shorter walks include the Enchanted Nature Walk, and the Pencil Pine and Knynet Falls Walk, a brisk 20-minute return. Both are ideal to take that picnic.
Time in the alpine air is best followed with pampering hours at Waldheim Alpine Spa. Move between the steam room, sauna and hot tub in The Sanctuary. There’s a plunge pool too, for those inclined. Floor-to-ceiling windows mean you can enjoy the experience surrounded by King Billy pines and feel at one with nature while having a hot stone massage or signature facial.
What’s best to pull you away from an alpine spa? The promise of a cool climate pinot shared slowly over a long highland dinner. And maybe another late night dip beneath the stars. Tonight stay at Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge.
Cradle to Launceston
Leave the mountain feeling recharged. Take a pretty drive to the airport via Mole Creek and stop for a cave and glow worm tour at Mole Creek Caves.
Travelling through rolling hills of Relbia why not round out your trip with a visit to Josef Chromy Wines? Taste elegant riesling while head chef Nick Rait tempts with oysters and grass-fed beef carpaccio. Pair that with the lake views and proximity to the airport and it makes for an indulgent departure lounge.