HUON VALLEY VISITOR CENTRE

National Parks / State Reserves

There is a diverse range of National parks in the Huon Valley, Far South and Bruny Island regions.  You can get a taste of it all walking into the dramatic Southwest, admiring the superb views from the subalpine Hartz Mountains, or even exploring in the coastal South Bruny National Park.  There are a range of activites available for everyone from short walks and picnic spots to longer day walks and overnight stays.

Park Passes are required for entry into all National Parks

All National Parks Passes are available at the Huon Valley Visitor Centre


Hartz Mountains National Park

GETTING THERE:

Hartz Mountains is 84km south-west of Hobart and a leisurely 90 minute drive.  Follow the A6 highway to Huonville and continue down to Geeveston, a great little town to stop and explore.  From Geeveston turn right onto the Arve Road (C632) and drive 13km through the Southern forests to the turn off for the Hartz mountains, the road into the national park is gravel and the last section can sometimes be closed due to snowfall.

Short Walks

Waratah Lookout - 5 minutes return.  Easy walk on a gravel track leads to viewing platform overlooking the forests and Huon Valley.

Arve Falls - 20 minutes return.  A leisurely walk on a gravel pathway meanders you through the alphine plants to a viewing platform looking back at the falls and where the falls tumble into the valley below.  There are a number of stairs leading down to the platform. 

Lake Osborne - 45 minutes return.  A gentle walk through a variety of forest and moorland leading you to the lake. 

 

Longer Day Walks

Lake Esperance - 90 minutes return.  Follow the track up to the high country, you will pass a memorial along the way and make your way to the lake.

Hartz Pass - 2 hours return.  A steep uphill climb leading you to magnificent views of the area.

Hartz Peak - 3 to 4 hours return.  This is a walk for fit, experienced walkers only, as it is a steep uphill climb and the route is very exposed to weather and strong winds.  In fine weather the summit offers some of the best views of the south-west.

Southwest National Park

GETTING THERE: VIA COCKLE CREEK

The Southwest National Park at Cockle Creek is located at the end of the most southerly road in Australia, about 2 hours drive from Huonville following the A6 highway.  Follow the Huon Highway (A6) from Huonville, a great scenic drive south, onto the C635,  then once you reach Lune River (C636) follow the now gravel road to Cockle Creek.  The last few kilometres of this road can be fairly rough but are accessible by two wheel drive cars.

Short Walks

Bronze Whale Sculpture - easy 5 minutes.  Starts at the very end of road about 800m past the Cockle Creek bridge.

Longer Day Walks

Fishers Point Navigation Light and Pilot Station Ruins - 2 hours return.  This moderate walk starts at the bronze whale sculpture and continues along the foreshore.  Excellent views and a popular walk.  Visit the remains of the pilot station and see the evidence of the past whaling practices in this area.

South Cape Bay - 4 hours return.  This moderate walk starts at the Cockle Creek bridge.  The walking track is well marked and a large part of the track is actually board walk to the coast.  Steps lead down onto the beach - good spot for lunch.

Overnight Walks

South Coast Track - 6 to 8 days - 85 kilometre walk.  The majority of walkers walk from Melaluca to Cockle Creek.  The walk has a range of conditions including steep climbs, muddy sections, board walk sections and much more.  The South Coast is a spectacular, remote wilderness walk.

South Bruny National Park

GETTING THERE: 

Bruny Island can be reached by vehicular ferry departing Kettering at regular intervals throughout the day.  The ferry arrives at Roberts Point on the north end of Bruny Island, from there travel by road to the southern end of the island.  For more information on the ferry service contact the Huon Valley Visitor Centre or go to www.brunyislandferry.com.au

The South Bruny National Park offers plenty of opportunities for walking and plenty of spectacular scenery.

Short walks

Grass Point - 90 minutes return

This walk commences at the Adventure Bay entrance to the National Park. There is parking available at the very end of Adventure Bay road. Start the walk by going along the short beach next to the carpark and turn left. The track is well formed, suitable for families, keeps close to the coast and is mainly flat with a few gentle ups and downs. Grass Point is an open grassland where there are visible remains of structures associated with the bay whaling industry.  Southern Right Whales have returned to Adventure Bay and can be seen during migration times, heading north from June to September and south from September to late October, along this section of the coast.

Fluted Cape - 2.5 hours return

Follow the Grass Point track until you reach the open grassland at Penguin Island. The circular route can be taken by following the Fluted Cape circuit sign. The track climbs steeply, staying close to the coastal cliffs providing spectacular views of Fluted Cape and the more distant Tasman Peninsula.  After about 50 minutes you will reach a sign that says 'Fluted Cape return via circuit' where you begin a gradual descent returning to Adventure Bay. (This walk should not be attempted by young unescorted children).

Day walks

East Cloudy Head (shorter trip) - 4 hours return

Park at the end of Cloudy Bay Road and walk about 45 minutes until you reach the southern end of the beach. Turn inland along Imlays Creek which you cross a number of times over 100 metres in distance until you reach a 4WD track. The walk follows the old 4WD track with a number of quite steep ascents and descents. Once you reach the headland return the way you came.

Labillardiere Peninsula Circuit - 5 to 6 hours return

The track starts at the Jetty Beach campground and does a circuit around the peninsula. The track can be walked in either direction but for unobscured views of the magnificent coastline it is recommended commencing the walk on the western side.

Once you have climbed Mt Bleak you will gain a view of Partridge Island, which protects one of the largest populations of the endangered forty-spotted pardalote.  From Mt Bleak the track descends to Hopwood and Butlers Beaches and from here it is about 2 1/2 - 3 hours walk through light forest to finish at Jetty Beach. At Jetty Beach you can see the remains of the first jetty on the island, constructed in 1860 to supply the Cape Bruny Lighthouse.

Remember to be prepared - bring warm clothing and sturdy walking boots.  At anytime of the year the weather can change suddenly and quite dramatically - be prepared for cold conditions, even in summer

 

 

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