Paul Fleming
Paul Flemming
Travel Tip

Digital Detox – 8 Wild Winter Remedies

Kathryn Leahy
​It’s scary to think some of us will never know what life was like before smart phones. Have you reached notification overload? A digital detox is the answer to staying productive and balanced in this wired world. Kick off your digital detox and go into winter hibernation, or head someplace you can’t plug in – somewhere remote and wild with unspeakable beauty. Here are eight ‘wild remedies’ for a natural digital detox in Tasmania.

1. Island off an island detox

For an off-the-grid island romp that takes in wine tastings, remote coastal walks, produce direct from the locals, and luxury camping, you can’t go past a Bruny Island Winter Weekend. Bruny is a microcosm of Tasmania’s wilderness, fresh produce and island culture. In winter they move from summer camp to winter lodge, where the welcome is warm, the menu takes on a comforting spin and the fire is lit under a sky full of stars. Cruise to the island and be enticed by unwired interactions with a local oyster farmer who’ll shuck you an oyster and another who’ll hand you cheese after cheese in an indulgent tasting. If the weather is kind, climb through ancient Gondwana rainforest to the summit of Bruny Island’s highest point for panoramic views. Retreat to your five-star, architect-designed lodge with breathtaking ocean views. The rustic timber cottages are nestled deep in old-growth forest. It’s totally off the grid, with unexpected luxuries such as crisp sheets and hot showers.

People walking on a beach on an island
Courtesy of Bruny Island Long Weekend
Bruny Island Winter Weekend

2. Overnight river escape

An encounter with nature on your screen is beneficial, but you can’t beat being there to see nature play out before your eyes. The natural movement of clouds and the changing colours of sunset can never be matched by a tidy five-second time-lapse. Cruise down the Gordon River on the Stormbreaker, a charter yacht that lets you stay overnight. The breathtaking scenery will rival any smart phone wallpaper.

A boat sailing down a remote river surrounded by mountains and rain forest
Trevor Norton
West Coast Yacht Charters

3. Switch off at Saffire

Want to go to a place where everyone knows your name, your favourite wine, your favourite book and how you like your coffee? Saffire isn’t off-the-grid so to speak, but it is in a world of its own. If you can switch your phone to silent you can achieve a sense of being disconnected. Saffire is all about improving your well-being, and will cater to your physical and spiritual needs. Yoga classes can be arranged anywhere, and they’re more than happy to point you in the right direction for a run along the beach or through picturesque bushland. Relaxation is also vital for your digital detox. There’s meditation, a revitalising tea menu and a relaxing and rejuvenating spa regimen. Sumptuous hammocks are available for use in your suite courtyard. Instead of ordering in with UberEATS, ask for a private chef to cook and serve your meal in your room.

Luxury coastal retreat overlooking the hazards mountain range of Freycinet National Park
George Apostolidis
Saffire Freycinet

4. Wind down in the wilderness

Stay overnight in Corinna, the only surviving historical mining settlement in Australia. This part of Tasmania provides a wild edge experience that’s difficult to find anywhere else in the world – river cruises, kayaking, and forest walks far from civilisation. Corinna is nestled deep in one of the most remote and beautiful parts of the world where guests are at home in the wilderness.

Sunset on the Pieman River at Corinna including a boat moored to a jetty
Rob Burnett
Sunset on the Pieman River at Corinna

5. Get back to you

Harmony Harvest Health Retreat in Tassie’s south has a range of natural therapies delivered by highly skilled therapists committed to improving your health and well-being. Their 5-Day Retreat lets you get back to you with meditation, sleeping, a sauna, reading, views from your secluded eco-house, some personal reflection time, a bush walk, more sauna and a private spa. Not detoxed yet? Try some relaxation therapies, a Chakra healing experience, some more alone time, a detox body treatment with Tasmanian seaweed mud in a steam capsule, reflexology and a spa. Finish off with an organic facial treatment, Chi energy healing, meditation and of course – more spa.

A woman doing yoga
Alastair Bett
Harmony Harvest Health Retreat

6. Embrace ‘JOMO’ in your snowshoes

If you’re looking for a tech-free winter wonderland where you can embrace the concept of JOMO (the Joy Of Missing Out on what everybody else is doing) while you enjoy living in the moment, then snowshoeing the Overland Track is for you. Exchange your smartphone for a guidebook. You might find you’ve sorely missed the crisp sound of turning a page. In winter you can see Tasmania’s much-loved Overland with a blanket of snow. Actually, we can’t promise snow because it’s Tasmania, but we can confirm that the scenery is spectacular. Rug up and breathe in some of the world’s freshest air on this six to seven-day trail adventure.

Walking in the snow at Cradle Mountain National Park
Paul Fleming
Walking in Cradle Valley

7. Slow it down in the Highlands

If you haven’t had your fill of snow already, half way between Hobart and Strahan you’ll find the Derwent Bridge Wilderness Hotel. It’s an opportunity for an extended internet-free getaway on the edge of the wilderness in a place that is often blanketed with snow. It’s also at the end of the Overland Track, so after you’ve slipped off your snowshoes, sit by what is rumoured to be the largest fireplace in Tasmania and have yourself a hearty meal. It’s also an opportunity to pull out that Tasmanian whisky, distilled on a local farm, or pour that pinot, ripened in a Coal River Valley vineyard. They go hand in hand with the crackle of peppermint gum logs blazing in a cosy wood fire.

Man and woman drinking whisky by the fireplac
Adam Gibson
Drinking Tasmanian whisky by the fireplace

8. Go coastal

Winter glamping at the Bay of Fires Bush Retreat is all about having a conversation without anyone looking up the answer on a smartphone. Roast marshmallows, drink wine from the honesty-system bar, tell travel stories around the communal campfire and crawl into a tent at night as snug as a bug in your best thermals. It’s a place where time is governed by the rising and setting of the sun. Get back to island time.

Woman sitting on the rocks by the ocean at the bay of fires
Lisa Kuilenburg
The Bay of Fires

You never know where a digital detox might take you. It’s about being present in the moment that counts.

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