The West Coast area of Tasmania is made up of rugged coast, serene natural harbours, densely forested mountain ranges, fast flowing rivers, steep gorges, rainforest wilderness and ghost towns. Inland are a number of historic mining towns, including Queenstown, with it eerie, infamous “lunar landscape”, the result of a lethal combination of tree-felling, sulphur, bushfires and rainfall by mining activity around a century ago.
The region has some of the most pristine and beautiful wilderness in the world, encapsulated in the World Heritage listed Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. It is often said that in this part of Tasmania there are just four days a year when it doesn’t actually rain. Bushwalkers are rewarded by spectacular nature sights, and even the less energetic can enjoy the untouched rainforests along the Gordon River.
The coastline is dauntingly isolated, with only one small town, Strahan, directly on the seaboard. The region to the south of Strahan, both inland and by the coast, is pure, untouched wilderness. There are no roads into the area and there are no permanent settlements – access is either by sea, seaplane or on foot. Thouse who dare venture here discover some of the most stunning scenic vistas in the world.
The Best Time To Visit:
One of the best times to visit the region is from April to June when the days are fine and still. This is possibly the best time of the year to see the magnificent mirror image reflections of the Gordon River, also at this time many activities and accommodation places offer special standby rates.
Most of the activities in places like Strahan operate for the whole year although, there are more in summer. Peak season is from November to late April and during this time it is essential to book everything ahead as for the majority of this time all accommodation, cruises etc are fully booked for weeks in advance.
Summer time in Strahan sees mild to warm days with an average of 22 degrees, in winter the days are cold with snow often restricting travel throughout Tasmania during July and August.
How To Get There:
By car, from Devonport, follow Bass Highway west. At Somerset, take Murchison Highway. This highway approaches the region from the north. From Hobart, take Brooker Highway almost to Bridgewater. At Granton, take Lyell Highway or approach the region from the south via New Norfolk, Ouse and Derwent Bridge.
By coach, Tassielink Coaches services all major centres throughout Tasmania. A bus service operates to and from Strahan from most major Tasmanian centres, flights can also be charted as an all weather airstrip is located only 2 km from the town centre.