Sheffield

A Town of Murals nestled in the foothills of Mount Roland

WHAT SPARKS YOUR INTEREST?

Sunset in Main Street
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Kelly Slater

Mount Roland
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Kathryn Leahy

For 25 years the history of the region has been painted on almost every blank wall the town on Sheffield.
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Poon Wai Nang

Kentish Produce fresh from the Kentish Council area.
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Kelly Slater

Fishing in Lake Barrington
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Kelly Slater

Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat (previously known as Lemonthyme Lodge)
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Garry Moore

Sheffield mural
Image thanks to: Tourism Tasmania & Rob Burnett

Sheffield

Region

Sheffield is a small dairy farming town 23 kilometres south of Devonport. This inland area on Tasmania’s northwest coast is world-renowned for high-quality butterfat products. The land is also amazingly sustainable for lamb and beef production. But this small rural town now draws tourists by the thousands for its colourful murals.

Location

Sunset in Main Street, Sheffield, Tasmania, AustraliaWhile Sheffield is 23 kilometres from Devonport as the crow flies, you’ll have to drive 30 kilometres by road. It’s only a 30-minute drive from the northwest coast’s largest city. Launceston is a little over an hour away sitting nearly 90 kilometres east of town. Hobart is 266 kilometres and a 3-hour drive to the south.

Mount Roland towers off in the distance of this friendly rural town. Once an industrial hub for the northwest of Tasmania, Sheffield has reemerged as an arts community. Now it is a town covered in beautiful murals.

In the centre of Sheffield, you’ll find Mural Park. The park hosts an annual Mural Fest Painting Competition. Nine artists compete for over 6 days to be crowned with the prize of the town’s best mural. Now with over 140 murals, this rural town is its own outdoor gallery worth an afternoon walk.

Sheffield’s Mural House is full of indoor murals inspired by Aboriginal art. And the murals are not just relegated to walls. Every building front is covered in colorful paintings, and you’ll discover unusual letterboxes on a walk through town.

Sheffield mural, Tasmania, Australia

Sheffield became the Town of Murals due to the pioneering work of the Kentish Association for Tourism and a local named Brian Inder. The first murals went up in the mid-80’s and depicted the towns history as well as its thundering natural surrounds. More murals are added every year and Sheffield now attracts over 200,000 tourists annually.

The murals don’t only attract tourists. Artists flock to Sheffield to work in studios that are open to the public. There are a number of places in town where you can watch artists ply their crafts, and it’s not just for murals. You can watch photographers, fine art painters, glass workers, wood crafters, pottery makers and craftsmen create unusual and unique pieces of art.

The International Mural Fest started in 2003 and it takes place every April. Mural artists descend on Sheffield to create works inspired by a single poem for the competition. The nine best murals, including the winning mural, are left on display throughout the year until the next festival.

Besides artists, Sheffield attracts nature lovers. The town is nestled in the foothills of Mount Roland and its nearby conservation area and Lake Barrington. Nature lovers use Sheffield and its colorful backdrop as a base camp for the exploration of the nearby reserve. Image Credit: Tourism Tasmania & Kelly Slater (Sunset on Main Street) and Tourism Tasmania & Rob Burnett (Sheffield Mural)

Accommodation Offerings

Hundreds of thousands of people come through Sheffield every year, but accommodation is scarce. You’ll find a bed-and-breakfast, Motor Inn and a retreat in the middle of town. It’s best to make reservations far ahead of time.

Activities and Things to Do and See

Mount Roland towers over the town of Sheffield at 1,234 metres above sea level. The mountain not only gives Sheffield a beautiful view, it challenges hikers from around the world.

Mount Roland, Tasmania, AustraliaAll around the mountain is the Mount Roland Conservation Area and Regional Reserve. The 7,600-hectare of range are full of well-marked bush walks. You can also challenge yourself to the towering summit of the mountain. From the mountaintop, you’ll be able to see the Bass Street, Cradle Mountain and Barn Bluff.

Rowing, waterskiing, canoeing and fishing await at Lake Barrington. The site of the 1990 World Rowing Championships, Lake Barrington was flooded in 1969 by the Devils Gate Dam on the Forth River. There are two waterskiing clubs on the lake as well as a visitors facility, picnic sites, boat ramps and public toilets.

Built into a narrow gorge, the Devils Gate Dam that created Lake Barrington is one of the thinnest concrete arch dams on earth. Its overhanging crest allows flooding to waterfall into the riverbed below. More than 2,000 tons of water can fall per second during tumultuous floods. The dam was commissioned in 1969 and stands at over 84 metres tall.

Lake Cethana is a lovely day walk from town. The trailhead can be found near Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat. The challenging two-hour walk takes you across a fern gully through forests and to the backwaters of the lake.

What to Eat

Sheffield features a couple of casual local restaurants as well as a burger joint and a Chinese food restaurant in the heart of town.

History

Sheffield Murals, Tasmania, AustraliaSheffield was settled back in 1859. It was named after the town in England by Britain native Edward Curr. The town grew dramatically along with the Mersey-Forth Power Development Scheme in 1963 as construction workers moved to the area. Sheffield’s population declined dramatically at the completion of the project in 1973. It took more than a decade for Sheffield to reemerge as the Town of Murals. It now attracts over 200,000 visitors per year and its economy revolves around its famous murals. image Credit: Tourism Tasmania (Sheffield Murals)

Environment

Sheffield has a lovely warm and temperate climate. The temperature never climbs too high in the summer and it rarely gets to freezing in winter. But it is rainy throughout the year. It rains much more in winter than in summer.

Useful Information/Local Tips

Head over to the Kentish Museum which shows you the complete Mersey-Forth hydroelectric scheme. It also gives you information about the world’s first self-serve petrol pump.

After marvelling at the murals, head out on a nature walk at Badger Range or O’Neill’s Creek.

What's Nearby

Get lost over in Tasmazia. This massive maze complex features eight different mazes, a gift shop, pancake parlour and model village. You can find it in the nearby hamlet of Promised Land.

Thermal springs pool, Tasmania, AustraliaKimberley Warm Springs is a nearby geothermal phenomenon with a visitor center. Located in the town of Kimberley, the Warm Springs create an eerie and beautiful natural habitat.

Cradle Mountain towers high above Mount Roland. The northern end of the National Park is an hour drive southwest of Sheffield. There are plenty of walks at Cradle Mountain that can take just a few hours or a few days. Image Credit: Tourism Tasmania & Richard Bennett (Warm Springs)

Map of Sheffield

Sheffield Motor Inn
Sheffield - North West
Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge
Cradle Mountain - North West
Cradle Mountain Wilderness Village
Cradle Mountain - North West
Kentish Hills Retreat
Sheffield - North West
Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat
Moina - Cradle Mountain
Derwent Bridge Chalets & Studios
Derwent Bridge - Cradle Mountain
Cradle Alpine Retreat
Moina - Cradle Mountain
Discovery Parks Cradle Mountain
Cradle Mountain
Cradle Mountain Highlanders Cottages
Cradle Mountain
Cradle Forest Inn
Moina - Cradle Mountain
Cradle Mountain Hotel
Cradle Mountain
Mole Creek Guesthouse
Mole Creek - Cradle Mountain
Blackwood Park Cottages
Mole Creek - Cradle Mountain
Lake St Clair Lodge
Lake St. Clair - Cradle Mountain
Engadine Cottage
Mole Creek - Cradle Mountain
Acacia Bed and Breakfast
Sheffield - North
Frenchman’s Cap Guided Walk
Frenchman's Cap
The Overland Track
Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair National Forest
Dove Canyon
Dove Canyon
Lost World Canyon
Lost World Canyon and Dove River
Cradle Mountain – 4 day walking holiday
Cradle Mountain
Rugged Indulgence – EPIC Tasmanian Adventures
Launceston - Cradle Mountain
Show Me Your Map of Tasmania – Self Drive Motorcycle Tour (HBA)
Hobart and Surrounding Regions
Cradle Mountain Day tour
Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair National Park
8 Day Tasmanian Wildlife and Wilderness Encounter
Launceston
7 Day Tasmanian Wildlife and Wilderness Encounter
Launceston - East Coast
5 Tage Tasmanien für Genießer Westküste
Launceston - Cradle Mountain
7 Day Tasmanias Wilderness small group tour
Launceston - East Coast
8 Day Tasmanian Wildlife Encounter small group tour
Hobart - Tasmanian Tour
9 Tage Tasmanien für Genießer
Hobart
Tantalising Tasmania
Hobart to Launceston

Where to Stay

/points-of-interest/

Sheffield Motor Inn

Sheffield - North West

Situated in Sheffield, this motel is 13.2 km from Tasmania and 16.8 km from Lake Barrington International Rowing Course. Tasmanian Arboretum and Devonport Golf Club are also within 25 km.
A coffee shop/café, laundry facilities, and a garden are available at this motel. Free WiFi in public areas and free self parking are also provided. Other amenities include barbecue grills and a picnic area.
Rooms feature free WiFi, refrigerators, and coffee makers. Other amenities available to guests include hair dryers, ironing boards, and free toiletries.

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Kentish Hills Retreat

Sheffield - North West

Situated in Sheffield, this motel is 12.7 km from Tasmazia and 16.2 km from Lake Barrington International Rowing Course. Tasmanian Arboretum and Devonport Golf Club are also within 25 km.

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Silver Ridge Retreat

Claude Road - North

Situated in the mountains, this farm stay is 17 km from Tasmazia and within 40 km of Lake Barrington International Rowing Course and Tasmanian Arboretum.

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Manna Hill Farm

West Kentish - North

Situated in a rural location, this cottage is close to Tasmazia. Area attractions also include Lake Barrington International Rowing Course and Tasmanian Visitor Information Centre.

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AAA Granary Accommodation

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Sherwood View Accommodation

Latrobe - Devonport

Situated in Latrobe, this apartment building is within 10 km of Australian Axeman's Hall of Fame, House of Anvers, and Devonport Golf Club. Home Hill and Devonport Ferry Terminal are also within 15 km.

Star rating: 4 out of 5 stars
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Latrobe Art Apartments

Latrobe - Devonport

Situated in Latrobe, this apartment building is 0.9 km from Australian Axeman's Hall of Fame and 3.1 km from House of Anvers.

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