Our Rich History Defines Us

Our stories from 20,000 years through to yesterday will inspire, shock and amaze you. Sometimes, at the same time. Be amazed by our open air museums, our rich history, and ever-changing island culture.

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Our Story Starts Over
20,000 Years Ago

Tasmania’s history begins at the end of the most recent ice age when the island was physically connected to mainland Australia. Little was known about the island until Dutch navigator, Abel Tasman bumped into the island in 1642.

The last known thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger) to be killed in the wild was shot in 1930, in the northwest of the state.
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In continuous use since 1822, Ratho Farm Golf Links in Bothwell is Australia’s oldest golf course. There are even hickory clubs available for those brave enough to experience 19th century style golf!

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Some of the most daring escape attempts by convicts occurred on Sarah Island. The harbour entrance was known as “Hell’s Gate”, indicative of the misery that awaited new arrivals. One group of convicts seized a ship and made it as far as South America!

Show me more history LINC Tasmania

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St. Peters Anglican Church in Hamilton is one of the oldest churches in Australia and approximately half the congregation was composed of convicts. To prevent their escape during service, just a single door was constructed at the entrance!

Show me more history LINC Tasmania

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The last full-blooded, Aboriginal Tasmanian was a woman named Truganini who passed away in 1876. Her memory is commemorated in several places on the island, including the Truganini lookout on Bruny Island.

Best of Hobart

Down Every Street, Around Every Corner, There's a Rich Story...

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5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

Darlington Probation Station

This World Heritage Site was a convict penal settlement then convict probation station - spooky! Maria Island

5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

Richmond Bridge

Oldest stone span bridge in Australia near historic Richmond Gaol. Richmond

5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

Ross Bridge

Bridge completed in 1836. The nearby Ross Female Factory housed the chain gang convicts that build the bridge! Ross, Central Tasmania

5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

Sarah Island Convict Ruins

Penal settlement filled with stories of harsh punishments and tales of survival. Macquarie Harbour

5 Convict Bricks You Should Touch

Spiky Bridge

Built by convicts in 1843. Its odd design has sparked curiosity. South of Swansea on east coast.

Here's a little fact...

In 1642, Dutch merchant Abel Tasman became the first European to sight the Tasmanian mainland and named it Van Diemen’s Land, after the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies. Although he claimed formal possession of the land, it would be over a century until the next European would make the journey.

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Launceston was settled by Europeans in March 1806 and holds the distinction of being one of Australia’s oldest cities, filled with historic buildings and sites. In just a 15 min walk from the city centre visitors can explore the wondrous Cataract Gorge and take a ride on the world’s longest single span chairlift.

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Visit one of Tasmania’s 6 (UNESCO) world heritage listed sites

Each site has played a particular role in convict heritage and has a different and compelling story to tell and have been identified as the best surviving examples of convict heritage and give a fascinating look into this dark piece of history.
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Swing a club at the oldest golf course in Australia

Swing a club at Australia’s oldest golf course, ‘Ratho Farm’ and visit the golf museum at Bothwell in Tasmania’s Central Highlands, where golfing legends of Scottish immigrants date all the way back to 1822.
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Visit the haunted sites of Historic Battery point at night

Be guided through the back streets of this lovely, historic Battery point, taking in the tales and sights of Hobart's most stunning part of town and visit various haunted sites with ghosts from our legendary past through to the current day.
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Go on a Old Hobart Pub Crawl

Enjoy a drink or two and hear stories of Hobart’s underbelly through stories of pubs, brothels, smugglers, convicts and some rip-roaring Tasmanian characters who played an unforgettable part in the murky yet fascinating history of Hobart.
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Stay in a hotel built by convicts

Originally built by convict labour in 1834, Hadley’s Orient Hotel is one of the oldest boutique hotels in Australia.
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Wander across Australia’s oldest surviving large stone arch bridge

Built by convicts in the 1820s, it is made of sandstone and was completed in 1825 when Richmond was the third-largest town in what was then called Van Diemen's Land.
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Like what you see? We can create you a custom history tour

Our team of locals can help you plan and book and manage your holiday. Our on-the-ground concierge team can package everything you want to do. Having the insider knowledge will make your holiday even better than you ever imagined.
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Six Things To Learn About Our Past

Click the arrows and discover the must dos.

  • World Heritage Sites
  • Golf Museum
  • Ghost Tour
  • Old Hobart Pub Tour
  • Convict Hotel
  • Oldest Bridge
  • Book a custom tour

Our Recent History is Rich and Diverse

From heritage listed country estates to magnificent museums, there’s a story around every corner to discover. Open air museums, old ruins and historical places still in operation are all over our island state.

The Nut located in Northwest Tasmania, near the historic village of Stanley is the remains of an ancient volcanic plug with a large, mostly flat surface that can be circumnavigated on foot.
Planning Your Tassie Trip is Easy Three ways to book
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In 2006, the small town of Beaconsfield in the West Tamar Valley was the site for one of the most daring rescue efforts in Australian History. The Beaconsfield Gold mine collapse made international headlines and the story was even made into a television mini-series.

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Hailing from Launceston, Australian cricketing legend Daniel Boon (“Boony”) became a cult figure in the game with his career spanning 107 tests, over 7000 test runs, and 36 balls bowled at test level! If you come and watch the Hobart Hurricanes play T20 cricket at Blundstone Arena you will be in for a sporting treat.

Best of Hobart

Let Our Past Take You Everywhere

You don’t need a map. You don’t need an app. All you need is a sense of adventure. What’s the worst that can happen? You get lost?

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10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Bicheno

Idyllic beach town perfect for a relaxation holiday, popular for sun and terrific fishing East Coast

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Binalong Bay

Relaxation paradise with stunning colours

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Sheffield

The Town of Murals is a must for anyone close to Cradle Mountain Foothills of Mount Roland

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Ross

Beautiful, charming town with plenty of history to discover Midlands

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Rosebery

Explore the western wilderness including Tassie’s tallest waterfall and oldest tree West Coast

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Stanley

Historic fishing village with rugged beauty (Don’t miss visiting the Nut!) Northwest Coast

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Corinna

Former mining town in remote wilderness. Explore the Tarkine, the largest temperate rainforest in Australia!

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Strahan

Port town with access to memorable cruise down World Heritage Gordon River West Coast

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Wynyard

Pretty town not far from Boat Harbour Beach and surrounded by stunning scenery and coastline Northwest Coast

10 Forgotten Towns You Must Visit

Cygnet

Crafty town that draws in food enthusiasts for its top-shelf produce Huon Valley

Here's a little fact...

The last known Tasmanian tiger (Thylacine) died at Hobart's Beaumaris Zoo in 1936. RIP Some believe there are still tigers out in the Western wilderness….anything is possible!

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Tasmania is Australia's fastest-growing tourist destination! In the last few years overseas tourist spending has surged 90% as visitors flock in from around the globe. Go Tassie, go!

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Learn stories about our mining past

Visit the Beaconsfield and drop into the Beaconsfield Mine & Heritage Centre to learn about our incredible mining past.
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Step back in time on a historic rail tour

Experience a train journey on a WWII Diesel locomotive alongside the water’s edge in Tasmania’s stunning south coast, through bush planes and enjoy a history talk from your tour guide at the historic cemetery.
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Tour through Lost mines and ancient pines

See the old gold mining precinct of Lynchford and the Tasmanian Special Timbers sawmill. Be guided through the ancient forests to discover old mining relics amongst the world famous Huon and King Billy Pine trees.
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Learn about the history of the Tasmania Hydropower scheme

With no coal to generate electricity and the forest being rapidly depleted to fuel the furnaces of the mine it was imperative that another power source be found. It was decided to harness the power of running water which was the most plentiful resource with an average of 3.6m of rain per year.
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Experience life on a Australian Antarctic Expedition in the early 1900’s

Mawson’s Hut Replica is a small, true to life museum which duplicates the historic huts used by the team of 18 courageous men who went on the Australian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) of 1911-14 and lived in Cape Denison, Commonwealth Bay.
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Visit the world’s first in Unzoo

Tasmanian Devil Unzoo is the world’s first intentional Unzoo—a revolutionary project to create a model wildlife and nature experience of the future.
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Like what you see? We can create you a custom modern history tour

Our team of locals can help you plan and book and manage your holiday. Our on-the-ground concierge team can package everything you want to do. Having the insider knowledge will make your holiday even better than you ever imagined.
Please take me there

Six Historical Things You Must Do

Click the arrows and discover the must dos.

  • Beaconsfield
  • Rail History
  • Lost mines/Ancient pines
  • Hydropower history
  • Mawson's Hut
  • Tasmanian Devil
  • Book a Custom tour

Today We Are Making History

From the hippest cafes, to the coolest laneways, art, culture, history and heritage, our urban landscapes have it. Stay a day, stay a while, when it comes time to leave, you’ll wish you never had to.

The laser show during Dark Mofo is not to be missed with a spectacular combination of sound and light using super-powered lasers and impressive music.
Planning Your Tassie Trip is Easy Three ways to book
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Here's a little story...

In 1945 the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race set sail and has become one of the top three offshore yacht races in the world. In 1998 six lives were claimed when massive storms hit the race, making it the most disastrous race in its history.

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The Tasman Bridge Collapse in 1975 made headlines and profoundly impact the life of Hobartians. The Eastern suburbs were effectively isolated from the city and became more self-reliant as a result of the tragedy.

Festivals, Parties, Anything Really.

If you love festivals, parties and outdoor concerts, Tasmania is the place for you. The calender is red-hot with big ticket items all year-come to one, come to all, the decision is yours.

  • Upcoming Festivals

    Discover our music, food and sporting festivals.

    Find out more

  • Explore

    Learn about our cultural delights.

    Find out more

  • Stay somewhere cool

    We have the perfect hideaway.

    Find out more

Planning Your Tassie Trip is Easy Three ways to book

10 Museums You Must Visit

National Automobile Museum of Tasmania

10 Museums You Must Visit

National Automobile Museum of Tasmania

A must for car and motorcycle lovers! Launceston
Tourism Tasmania and Melinda Ta

10 Museums You Must Visit

Australian Axemans Hall of Fame

Learn of the history of Australia's pioneering bushmen and their families of which woodchopping was a big part of.
Tourism Tasmania Adrian Cook

10 Museums You Must Visit

West Coast Heritage Centre

Complex including four historic buildings that deeply explore the west coast heritage Zeehan, West Coast
Tourism Tasmania and Chris Crera

10 Museums You Must Visit

Bass Strait Maritime Museum

Explore exhibits of shipwrecks, discovery, and fascinating maritime history Devonport

10 Museums You Must Visit

Mawson's Hut (Original in Antarctica)

Small replica museum which tells an epic story of Arctic exploration Hobart
Tourism Tasmania Catherine Forge

10 Museums You Must Visit

MONA

Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) Find out what this “Subversive Adult Disneyland” is all about! Hobart

10 Museums You Must Visit

Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery (QVMAG)

Extensive Collection with focus on History, Natural Sciences, and Visual Arts & Design Launceston
Tourism Tasmania Simon Cuthbert

10 Museums You Must Visit

Salamanca Arts Centre

Centre visual and performing arts, festivals & events, literature, writing & film.
Tourism Tasmania Rob Burnett

10 Museums You Must Visit

Salmon Ponds the Museum of Trout Fishing

A museum of Trout fishing where you can find out where trout fishing in Australia began.
Tourism Tasmania Rob Burnett

10 Museums You Must Visit

Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery

Discover more about the natural and cultural heritage of Tasmania Hobart

Here's a little fact...

The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra (TSO) was established in 1948 and declared a “Tasmanian Icon” in 1998. The TSO gives over 80 concerts around the state every year!

Here's a little fact...

In 2011, Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) opened in Hobart, and became a top tourism attraction within a year. The term “MONA Effect” was coined after the incredible boost its existence gave to the Tasmanian economy!

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Learn the history of Tasmania’s Central Highlands carved in wood

The Wall in the Wilderness is an art installation located in the Central Highlands of Tasmania. A fascinating, one of a kind masterpiece, the Wall is a carved stretch of wooden panels which depict the history of the Central Highlands of Tasmania.
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Go to a “Subversive Adult Disneyland”

MONA is Australia's largest private museum and one of the most controversial private collections of modern art and antiquities in the world. This unique and provocative art collection will leave a lasting impression with visitors as they explore three floors of subterranean architecture, art pieces, and exhibits.
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Watch experts in their craft at Burnies, Makers Workshop

Burnie has reinvented itself as a maker's enclave. You can watch makers ply their craft or choose to get hands-on. Learn how to paint, draw, sculpt, make paper, create textiles, blow glass.
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Taste why Tasmania is fast becoming the whisky capital of Australia

Learn about the culture, history and passion that goes into crafting Tasmanian whisky and then taste for yourself why Tasmanian whisky is winning awards on the world stage.
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Stay in Australia’s first dedicated Art hotel

The Henry Jones Art Hotel is a former jam factory and is a perfect fusion of history and modernity, art and design. Australia’s first dedicated art hotel partners with a diverse range of Tasmanian artists to present a continuously changing exhibition of over 400 artworks.
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Go to the valley that put the apple the the Apple Isle

It was the stunning Huon Valley is where William Smith first planted his orchard in 1888. Visit Willie Smiths Museum and Australia’s first organic Cidery.
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Helicopter over the Port Arthur World Heritage Site

This tour takes in some of the most spectacular sights including Three Capes. The Port Arthur Historic Site will come into view as you pass over the Tasman National Park.
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Like what you see? We can create you a custom history tour

Our team of locals can help you plan and book and manage your holiday. Our on-the-ground concierge team can package everything you want to do. Having the insider knowledge will make your holiday even better than you ever imagined.
Please take me there

Things You Must Do Before You Leave

Click the arrows and discover the must dos.

  • Wall in the Wilderness
  • MONA
  • Makers Market
  • Tasmanian Whisky
  • First Art Hotel
  • Apple Isle
  • Flight over Port Arthur
  • Book with us
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