Adam Gibson
Adam Gibson
Travel Tip

9 Indulgent Winter Stays

Rachel Eldred
​If what you see in the mirror each day is someone in need of a short break, it’s time for an indulgent winter escape. It’s warm open fires, ancient wilderness and wild fresh air that makes Tasmania the perfect getaway to revive the soul. Choose to rug up in a cosy coastal home, head into the mountains to an alpine lodge, or seek refuge in a valley hideaway. Just remember to pack your beanie.

1. Rocky Hills Retreat

Solitude and sanctuary is only a couple of hours drive away from Hobart or Launceston on the east coast, a natural wonderland home to such beautiful architecture you wish you could stay a lifetime.

Rocky Hills Retreat will have you waking up in the Tasmanian bush to the calls of the birds as they start the day. Start yours with a gourmet breakfast in the luxury king-sized bed, provisions provided, as you look out at the view to Great Oyster Bay and Maria Island. Take an outdoor bath in the Huon pine tub, a vibrant elixir to awaken the spirits, then close yourself off from the world in the fully equipped art studio where you can create the day away.

Luxury coastal retreat with views
Brett Boardman
Rocky Hills Retreat

2. Thalia Heaven

If you long for walks along secluded coastline, our second indulgent stay, Thalia Haven, is the place to be. Light a fire in the huge stone fireplace and snuggle up with your beloved as you watch the moon rise over Oyster Bay, or fill up the outdoor bath and truly awaken the senses. Feel the magic of Thalia as it wraps you up in its peaceful beauty. Named after an attendant of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, Thalia Haven has enough space to accommodate up to eight people, so feel free to share the love with family and friends.

Woman wearing a beanie and drinking wine in an outdoor bath tub
Adam Gibson
Thalia Haven’s outdoor tub

3. Piermont Retreat

Get set for adventure at number three, Piermont Retreat. A luxury retreat where you stay in sustainable cottages made of stone and rammed earth secluded in pristine bush land close to Oyster Bay. Log fires and spa baths greet you after a day immersed in nature’s splendour. The Piermont pantry sells a variety of fine Tasmanian fare. Pack yourself a picnic lunch and enjoy it heartily on a day trip to Maria Island. Walk through the ruins of the penal settlement and up to the cliff tops that tower over the water views. Visit the bays and don’t miss the Painted Cliffs, one of the island’s many extraordinary geological features. Follow up with a day trip to historic Swansea, a tranquil seaside town with views of Freycinet National Park and the granite peaks of The Hazards across the bay.

Luxury stone cottage coastal retreat by the ocean
Piermont Retreat

4. Freycinet Coastal Pavillions

From the Freycinet Coastal Pavilions you can explore the Freycinet National Park more closely. Take a day to explore Freycinet National Park on foot, then put your feet up in front of a warm fire, sink into the outdoor tub on the deck, or taste test a selection of local wine, whisky or gin back at the Lodge.

Luxury coastal accommodation with an outdoor bath
Alastair Bett
Freycinet Coastal Pavilions

5. Cradle Mountain

For snow-capped mountains and glacial lakes, head to the high country in the north western part of the state, a couple of hours from Launceston or just over an hour from Devonport. Well, it’s Tasmania, so we can’t guarantee snow, but Cradle is your best chance for a winter wonderland. Explore the Cradle Mountain – Lake St Clair National Park, a natural treasure once part of Gondwana land abundant with unique fauna and flora.

Number five will see you exploring alpine bush tracks. Spend your nights at Cradle Mountain Hotel, indulge in dinner served on sizzling volcanic rocks, enjoy a glass of pinot by the fire, and views of ancient bush that once kissed up to Antarctica. Pamper yourself at the Retreat and relax in the outdoor Jacuzzi nestled in alpine surroundings, and spoil your tastebuds afterwards with a selection of fine wines and cheeses.

Cradle Mountain Hotel
Cradle Mountain Hotel in the snow

6. Thousand Lakes Lodge

If you’d prefer your days spent on the Central Highlands, number six will have you slipping into the Thousand Lakes Lodge where you can hire an electric bike and discover the western lakes, a fly fisherman’s paradise. The season kicks off in earnest on the first weekend in August with guided tours available for the novice and the more experienced fisherman. You can ask about tours from May to July, but in the colder months you may prefer to watch the snow softly drape its white blanket over the earth. It’s then time to snuggle up under a throw in front of the fire with a good book and a hearty meal.

Woman with a red wine sitting by the fireplace in winter
Alice Hansen
Thousand Lakes Lodge

7. Frenchman’s River

Only 45 minutes from Hobart is Cygnet in the Huon Valley, home to number seven on our indulgent list – Frenchman’s River. Lap up rustic country charm in The Writer’s House with views over Cygnet Bay. Your winter retreat is the perfect location to view the majestic Aurora Australis. A visit to Cygnet Market is a must on the first or third Sunday of every month, and get cosy by the fire at Red Velvet Lounge for a bite to eat and live music on Friday nights.

Snowy winter view at the Writer's House, Frenchman's Rivers
Frenchman's River
The Writer's House, Frenchman's River

8. Wines for Joanie

Closer to Launceston is Tamar Valley and the delightful number eight, Wines for Joanie. Stay in the renovated 1940s cottage on the vineyard and wake up to the sights and sounds of farm life. Sip a cuppa as you watch the sun rise over the valley and tuck into the breakfast hamper: yoghurt and fruit, locally made muesli and bread, and homemade jam. Spend your days in the peace and quiet of country life, and purchase a bottle of wine from the cellar door to enjoy at night in front of the fire. The mood is set for the perfect romantic interlude.

9. Woodridge Farm

If Georgian architecture is your thing, our last but not least favourite indulgent stay comes in at number nine, Woodridge Farm. This beauty is built from 100-year-old bricks to replicate a farmhouse from the Georgian era, with furniture from The Vintage Rose in Launceston. Visit Evandale market, open every Sunday, and if you have a taste for colonial furniture, drop in to Evandale’s antique stores. Back at the farm, sink into the claw footbath with a drop of wine from Josef Chromy Winery, only a short stroll away. Fresh farm eggs are available, and help yourself to anything from the herb garden.

You’re now ready to face the rest of your year with renewed vigour.

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