Exploring Tarkine Drive
Exploring Tarkine Drive, The tarkine is a region is Tasmania’s North West Located km out of Smithton. It is known as one of the world’s largest temperate rainforests. Did you know in Australia Tasmania holds 95% of Australia’s cool temperate rainforest and Tarkine is the largest uninterrupted tract of over 170,000 hectares. The Tarkine is definitely off the beaten path so it’s not overrun with tourists, but it is still easy enough to get around with a car and is worth the trip out here if you are in the Area. The Tarkine drive is a 205 km loop and can be done in 3.5hours without stops. I would recommend taking a couple of days to complete the loop and allow 1 hour for each stop. You can do the loop either way either heading counter clockwise heading to Arthur river first or anticlockwise where your first stop will be Trowutta arch.
Trowutta Arch was formed by the collapse of a cave. This is the most Popular attraction along the Tarkine drive. The roof fell in leaving the section between the two sinkholes It is a 30 minute return walk through the rainforest to the arch.
There is also an option to walk up to the right of the arch and walk around this is where you can see the second sinkhole, it is at your own risk and there is no official path.
There is 2 walks here a 15 minute return rainforest walk this is the one we completed a beautiful short walk. The second walk is to the top of the Milkshake hills which is a 1 hour return walk. This walk will take you up to the top of one of the three hills, where you will get views across button grass plains.
Dempster plain lookout
Is a 10 minute return walk with amazing views looking out to button grass Plains looking out to the mountains and the hills or the tarkine forest. Also as your heading to dempster lookout you will pass the sinkhole just off the main road.
An easy 30 minute return walk through the rainforest down to the lake which is an old flooded sinkhole. There is also an option to continue straight or turn right this is a short loop, if you turn right you will almost immediately be at the lake but whichever way you choose it doesn’t really matter as its only a short loop.
The rainforest walk a 30 minute return circuit. This was a beautiful walk through the rainforest it starts off nice and flat along a boardwalk following Julius River it then hits a set of stairs and loops around where then you will descend down back to the carpark. It is slippery and steep at this section but is an amazing walk and fairly easy. The sinkhole is a 1 hour loop through the forest. There is Picnic tables, barbecues and toilets which makes a perfect rest spot.
An easy 5 minute return walk.
The lookout looks over the forest and Arthur River.
Is the largest town along this drive, But it is quit small it has got a general store which also does take away across the road there is a ranger station and visitor information center which has local information on the walks in the area.
We visited Couta rocks and Sarah Anne rocks which is 16km out of Arthur river,they are both amazing spots to check out. It has incredible rocks along the ocean with massive waves spilling into the rocks.
Also at Arthur river there is Cruises up the river They are full day tours leaving at 10am returning at 3pm. The boats are seasonal and close during Winter June, July and August. Prices start from $100 per adult. You can keep up to date when there cruises are running on Facebook or Click Here for there website.
The edge of the world and Bluff Hill Point
It is a short walk along a boardwalk to the viewing platform leading out to a point just south of the mouth of the Arthur River.
is the remains of an ancient volcanic plug with a large, mostly flat surface that can be circumnavigated on foot. To get to the top of the nut you have the choice to take the chair lift up or walk to the top. The track to the top takes about 10-20 minutes and is suited to those looking for a challenge as its rather steep and you will be climbing the full 152 meters to the summit. Alternatively you can get the chair lift to the top which is $11 per adult one way. It rises 95 meters and is 250 meters in distance, the ride will last 5 minutes with plenty of photo opportunities along the way. The chair lift operates 7 days a week most day of the year but does not operate during high winds and in late June-August.
The Nut Circuit
Once you get to the top of the nut, there is a circuit walk which is a 2km circuit. Along the circuit you will get beautiful views across the ocean and into Stanley. We choose to go up towards the summit first you will reach a lookout just past the highest point on the nut. You will see 4 lookouts along the way including the first lookout which gives you Great views to Bass Strait and Bull Rock in the background, Tatlows beach lookout, Highfields lookout and Fisherman’s lookout. On the south side of the nut you will descend down the stairs from fisherman’s lookout into a shaded forest. Keep your eyes out for the Mutton Bird (Shearwater) burrows in among the grassy sand.
Also in Stanley check out the Jimmy Lane Memorial Lookout, Highfield Lookout and Godfreys beach if you come to this beach at dusk you will have the chance to see the penguins heading into their burrows.
The Big tree
Located just 30 minutes out of Stanley just past Dip Falls you will find the The Big Tree is believed to be over 400 years old and has a circumference of 16 meters around the base. The walk is a short 10 minute return walk.
Is a short 1km return walk, There is a upper lookout which has disability access. The lower lookout is down a set of stairs to a lower platform where you can look up at the waterfall, you will notice the unique rock formations.
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