Luke Tscharke
Luke Tscharke
Travel Tip

Exploring Freycinet in Winter

Luke Tscharke
Crackling wood fires, flights of Tasmanian whisky and enough Tassie pinot to get you through winter - Australian landscape photographer Luke Tscharke ticks off a bucket list winter road trip around Tasmania’s Freycinet Peninsula.

Tasmania might not be the first place you would think of for a coastal trip, but after our recent adventures there I would say you might want to bump it up your list.

We planned a road trip around a few of Tasmania’s highlights, of which the Freycinet Peninsula is definitely one. The Freycinet Peninsula is mostly national park, barricaded off from the rest of Tasmania by The Hazards – a row of striking, tall pink granite domes that seem to change colour depending on the time of day.

sun setting on colourful rocks at Coles Bay east Coast Tasmania
Luke Tscharke
Orange and red rocks at sunset

Our first evening in the area was spent at Freycinet Lodge. The lodge sits tucked into a secluded bay on the approach into the Freycinet National Park. It’s a bright airy building with lofty ceilings and a fireplace near the bar and dining area downstairs. The restaurant overlooks the bay where a jetty juts out into the crisp, cool water with The Hazards sitting just to the left. We were even treated to sunset and a fairy penguin gliding around in the bay below as we sipped our wine before enjoying a fantastic dinner.

Early one morning we went up in the air for a scenic flight with Freycinet Air. The view quite literally took my breath away. We circled the peninsula and over the perfect crescent of Wineglass Bay, guarded by The Hazards mountain range.

That afternoon we investigated nearby Friendly Beaches. We found long stretches of white sand, sparkling turquoise water and what feels like untouched bushland. We stopped off at the Freycinet Marine Farm on the way back to town. Much to my delight we found oysters Kilpatrick or natural, chili mussels or scallops and an enjoyable glass of Tasmanian pinot.

Water flowing over rocks coles bay east coast Tasmania
Luke Tscharke
The Hazards, Freycinet National Park

A highlight of the trip was a walk into Sleepy Bay to photograph the sunrise, where we found secret coves and climbed over boulders to explore what the view was like just around that next corner. After Sleepy Bay we tackled the walk to Wineglass Bay, and walked that perfect white sandy curve we saw earlier from the air. We walked the length of the beach to make sure we explored every bit of it. It was quite a way to round off an unforgettable Freycinet trip.

Aside from walking and scenic flights you can warm yourself by the fireplace at Freycinet Lodge over a whisky tasting where you’ll be guided through some top notch Tassie drops. There’s rich Tassie pinots hiding behind the bar if vino is more your style.

If you look out to the Southern Ocean you might spot a migrating Southern Right, Humpback or Pilot whale (and if you’re very lucky maybe a Minky) or if you want a closer view hop on a cruise to seek them out. The wildlife is always more adventurous in winter when there are fewer people around.

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