Planning a trip to Tasmania? Here’s what you need to know

Julija Zivanovic — 6 March 2024
Tasmania is a popular travel destination for ‘mainland’ Aussies, but there is a bit of pre-trip planning that is necessary for a successful trip.

Australia’s island state, Tasmania, has long been a popular travel destination for Aussies seeking a close but ‘overseas’ holiday. It’s truly a stunning island with bucketloads of natural beauty where there are countless walking trails and tourist attractions jammed into a relatively tiny area. It’s the perfect place to slow down and appreciate a different way of life. 

With recent records from our sister company Hema Maps showing Tasmania-related products are selling quickly, we’ve decided to put together this piece on essential pre-trip preparation. 

Whether you’re visiting to see the famous Freycinet National Park, the incredible views from Mount Wellington or even just to see a Tasmanian Devil up close, Tasmania is well worth visiting. 

Best time of year

Before you start planning your Tasmanian adventure, knowing what time of year to visit and what to expect during those times is essential. Unsurprisingly, as Tasmania is our most southern state, it is also the coldest. Therefore, the best time of year we recommend visiting is in the summer months of December, January and February. 

Autumn is also a popular time to visit, especially for sampling fresh Tasmanian produce. The annual Agfest is an award-winning agricultural festival held in Quercus Park (a 20-minute drive south-west of Launceston) that offers something for the whole family. This year’s Agfest will be held on 2–4 May, so you still have a bit of time to get organised.

What to bring

While most locations are accessible year-round, the weather in some parts of Tasmania is unpredictable and can change suddenly. For this reason, we recommend being prepared for any weather conditions. We recommend always carrying appropriate clothing for cold temperatures, rain, wind and even snow.

WIneglass bay from Mt Amos (Image Tourism Tasmania — Rob Burnett)

We should also mention that due to topography, Tasmania’s more remote areas may not have mobile phone coverage. Satellite navigation units and paper maps will be a more reliable alternative to your mobile phone in such regions. 

If you’re taking your tow vehicle and camper trailer across, be sure to have ample fuel on board and always carry a spare wheel or repair kit as phone coverage may not allow you to call for roadside assistance. The usual touring safety gear should also be on board — think first aid kits and recovery equipment.

How to get there

There are a few ways to get to Tasmania, and the cheapest/best way usually depends on where you are coming from. If coming from nearby Melbourne, a twice-daily ferry service — the Spirit of Tasmania — operates for most of the year. However, peak seasons and school holidays are exceptionally busy, so always book well in advance. 

(Image Emma Warren and Sam Richards)

Also remember, if you’re planning on bringing your own camper trailer across, this barge part of the ferry is extremely popular, so you must book your tickets to AND from Tasmania in advance. We’ve heard many stories of people only booking one way, expecting to easily get a return ticket, only to find out they are stuck on the island.

Visit the Spirit of Tasmania website for further information on sailing times, travel restrictions and fare pricing. 

Alternatively, regular commercial flights to Tasmania are offered by most domestic carriers and from all of Australia’s southeastern capital cities … at pretty great prices. Charter flights from smaller airports are also available for access to more remote locations, including Tasmanian islands. Just remember if you choose to save by flying, this introduces the need to then rent a camper trailer, which will incur additional costs — something to consider if you already own a camper trailer. 

Camper trailer hire options

At the following Tasmanian-based camper trailer hire companies, you can expect experienced staff, a convenient hire service and well-equipped, reliable camper trailers:

Additional resources

If you require more information or additional resources, simply head to the Hema Maps website. Specifically, the Tasmania Atlas & Guide ($49.95) and Tasmania State Map ($14.95) are indispensable companions to any trip to Tassie. And if you’re planning on spending a bit of time in Hobart, perhaps checking out the celebrated attractions of Salamanca Market or MONA (the Museum of Old and New Art), the Hobart & Region Map ($9.95) is for you.

Useful contact numbers

  • Emergency ambulance, fire or police — 000
  • Community alerts — 131 444
  • Tasmanian Fire Service — 1800 000 699
  • Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service — 1300 827 727
  • Road alerts and delays — 1300 139 933
  • Poisons Information Centre — 131 126

Adventure awaits

Keep an eye out for the next part of this series, where we’ll delve into some of the best destinations Tassie has to offer. 


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Tasmania Trip planning Best time of year What to bring How to get there Camper hire options