Stu Gibson
Stu Gibson
Travel Tip

8 ways to step out of your comfort zone in Tasmania

Kathryn Leahy
Adventure in Tasmania comes in all shapes and sizes, from a quiet little walk to a hair-raising abseil down a 140m dam wall. Here are eight unique island experiences not to miss.

1. One stroke at a time

You haven’t experienced the wilderness until you’ve lived and breathed it from the open water. Roaring 40s Kayaking’s ‘Wilderness on Water Experience’ offers open water journeys on Bathurst Harbour ranging from 3 to 7 days that won’t just change your perspective, they’ll change your life. Uncover a side of Tasmania that very few ever get to experience.

A kayaker paddling on still waters in Bathurst Harbour in South Tasmania
Tourism Australia & Graham Freeman
Roaring 40s

2. Shoot the giant tube

Shipstern Bluff is Tasmania’s biggest slab and not for the faint of heart. Called Devil’s Bluff for very good reason, its siren song calls the best big wave riders from all over the world to ride its 6m monsters. Not ready for Shippies just yet? Coastrider Surf Academy holds surfing lessons for surfers of all levels at Clifton Beach, and is a great place to start building your confidence for those big waves.

A surfer riding a wave
Stu Gibson
Shippies

3. Drop over the edge

Ready for the Gordon Dam challenge? Journey through the Tasmanian south-west wilderness and straight over the edge of Gordon Dam – with ropes, of course. The 140m descent is the longest commercial abseil in the Southern Hemisphere. The dam is concave, so you don’t touch the wall for most of the way down. Don’t close your eyes or you’ll miss the best bit – the view.

A large concrete dam holding back a lake in the wilderness of South West Tasmania
Tourism Tasmania & Rob Burnett
Gordon Dam

4. Take a wild whitewater ride

Combine moments of utter tranquillity with white-knuckle whitewater on one of the world’s last truly wild rivers, the Franklin. Experienced guides are highly recommended, and both Franklin River Rafting and Water by Nature run unforgettable, action-packed tours on this pristine treasure deep within the Tasmania’s Wilderness World Heritage­ Area.

a group of people in a raft paddling down the Franklin River
Water By Nature Tasmania
Water By Nature Tasmania

5. Become an easy rider

Bush walks are a great way to see the island, but if you really want to go behind the scenery, a quad bike will take you there in style. See another side of Freycinet National Park with an All 4 Adventure quad bike tour. Ranging from 2 hours to a half day they cater for all skill levels and operate year-round out of Coles Bay.

A man standing next to a quad bike on the coastline in Freycinet National Park
Rob Burnett
All4adventure Quad Bike Tours

6. Shoot down a natural waterspout

If adventure, wilderness and action is what you’re after, head to Cradle Mountain and slip on a wetsuit. With Cradle Mountain Canyons you’ll jump, swim and abseil through ancient canyons and shoot down a natural waterspout. Suitable for the young and the young at heart.

A man jumping off a waterfall in the wildernss with Cradle Mountain Canyons
Tourism Tasmania & Rob Burnett
Cradle Mountain Canyons

7. Go deep inside wild Tasmania

Explore Tasmania’s deep, dark heart in the natural caves of the Mole Creek Karst National Park within Tasmania’s Wilderness World Heritage Area. This isn’t a roped-off walkway caving experience, this is real subterranean caving, the way nature intended. And it all comes fully catered with experienced local guides to navigate you through its tranquil pools, stunning glow-worm chambers and massive arching caverns, courtesy of Wild Cave Tours.

an underground waterfall in a cave system at Mole Creek
Tourism Australia & Graham Freeman
Mole Creek Caves tour

8. Take a serious stroll in the south

Stretching 80km between Melaleuca and Cockle Creek, the South Coast Track is considered one of the world’s last great wilderness walks. Beginning at Melaleuca – where there are no roads in or out – you’ll need to be prepared to fly or walk in. In fact being prepared is what this walk is all about. With no cabins along the way, you’ll also need to be fully self-sufficient, well-equipped and very experienced at trekking the wild. Visiting the Parks and Wildlife Service website before you set off is a must.

Three bushwalkers on a track in the Tasmanian wilderness
Don Fuchs
South Coast Track

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