Location: Liffey Falls State Reserve
Length: 2 kilometres return
Grade: 2 (no bushwalking experience necessary with a flat and compact surface on a well-marked track)
Distance from: Hobart - 213 km, Launceston - 53 km, Devonport - 80 km
Liffey Falls is everything you want in a waterfall. The wide breadth of water cascades down several steps to create many little falls that look to be one. The water pools and then filters through a debris field of boulders before dropping down another small cascade that's even wider. Get low to take a picture from the proper angle to catch the entirety of the falls in all of its glory.
The surroundings of the falls are absolutely beautiful with towering and dense forest all around. A few rays of sunlight burst through the trees to dance off the water. And these falls are just as beautiful when the weather is rainy and drab. The green of the vegetation almost turns sombre blue from the glow of the pristine water. This is a must-see attraction in Tasmania. Be sure to bring a good camera.
You'll find the Liffey Falls carpark and trailhead just southeast of the town of Deloraine. The carpark is for the Gulf Road Picnic Area at the end of Bogan Road. The drive from Launceston is quickest at 53 kilometres which takes about 53 minutes. Devonport is 80 kilometres away which should take about one hour and 20 minutes. A drive from Hobart will take nearly three hours, and Tasmania's biggest city sits 213 kilometres to the south.
You have two options for getting to the falls. The shorter trail leaves from the upper carpark while the longer trail leaves from the lower carpark.
This walk takes about 45 minutes return and takes you along a very well-made, all-weather trail. There are developed picnic facilities at the upper carpark including gas barbeques, picnic awnings, toilet facilities and drinking water. The upper carpark trail will take you along the slopes of the Great Western Tiers through cool temperate rainforest full of myrtle, sassafras and leatherwood. You'll eventually begin to pass tall eucalyptus trees and giant ferns before getting to the first may lookouts for the falls. You'll encounter a steep descent to the lower falls right at the end of the trail, but it is so well-made that it's suitable for everyone.
You won't find any facilities in the lower carpark and the trail is less well-made. In fact, this trail can become muddy and slippery during rains. The entire walk is eight kilometres return. The first kilometre brings you through myrtle forest before along the eastern banks of the Liffey River. You then cross a bridge to the western banks where you'll meander along the river by giant ferns for 1.5 kilometres. You'll begin to gently ascend for the last kilometre before hitting a side trail that brings you to the falls. Further up the main trail, you can take advantage of a second viewing platform that will give you great views of the spout cascade.
Liffey River gets its waters from the Great Western Tiers. Rains up on the tiers can flood the river quickly and unexpectedly. Always keep an eye on water levels.
Pets are not allowed on the trail.
Weather can change quickly and it can rain at any time of year. Always pack a reserve jacket that can keep you warm and dry.