I love Freycinet National Park. If you asked me what are my top places to visit in Tasmania, Freycinet would be at the top of the list and I would rank it in the top 5 of my favourite National Parks in Australia.
Whilst Tasmania has loads to offer as Australia’s smallest state with some lovely towns to visit, world heritage listed wilderness areas, history, Australian wildlife, and a terrific food and wine industry, it’s Freycinet that really captured my heart.
Freycinet is a spectacular peninsula of pink granite mountains surrounded by azure bays, pure white beaches, coastal dues and dry eucalypt forest.
Located on the east coast of Tasmania, it occupies a large part of the Freycinet Peninsula, named after French navigator Louis de Freycinet.
Freycinet National Park highlights
There are many amazing things to do in Freycinet National Park to enjoy the natural beauty. Here are a few of our highlights from our visit to this Tasmanian natural beauty.
Hike to Wineglass Bay
Within Freycinet Peninsular is famous Wineglass Bay – a consistently rated as one of the world’s best beaches. It’s definitely one of the best beaches in Australia.
Three pink granite peaks – the Hazard mountains – rise dramatically protecting the bay from the infiltration of humanity.
You’ve probably seen countless photos, the shimmering crescent of white sand meeting the turquoise water is easily recognizable.
There are only two ways to see Wineglass Bay – hiking in, boating in, or flying in.
Much of its beauty lies in its isolation and ability to retain its untouched charm.
We started our Wineglass Bay walk early, at 5.30am, as we wanted to reach The Lookout for sunrise, and to beat the anticipated crowds.
From the car park to The Lookout is approximately a 45 minute walk.
It’s a steady uphill climb up a well made path. Whilst we didn’t have the kids with us this time we did witness many others hiking with kids so it’s not beyond a family outing.
Once you reach The Lookout your reward is a spectacular view over Wineglass Bay, and by arriving early we were fortunate to have the moment all to ourselves.
We had time to sit and take it all in, enjoy a light pre-packed breakfast, with nothing but the sounds of the surrounding bush and uninterrupted views
From The Lookout, the walk down onto the beach itself is steep but short, only taking 20 minutes. I couldn’t believe we were all alone on famous Wineglass Bay.
Wineglass Bay Hikes
1.5 hours return to one of Tasmania’s most celebrated views. The track is a short, fairly steep climb to the saddle between Mt Amos and Mt Mayson.
2.5 hours return from the car park to The Lookout then downhill on to the beach. Take a 20 minute walk along the beach to the south will give you magnificent views back over the Hazards.
Wineglass Bay/Hazards Beach circuit
4 to 5 hours – from Wineglass Bay a 30 minute flat walk to Hazards Beach. Turn right and follow the beach to its northern end and join another track that follows the coastline for about 5 kilometres back to the carpark.
Tips for Hiking to Wineglass Bay
- Start early, arrive for sunrise and beat the crowds.
- Take a light breakfast and watch the day begin with magnificent views.
- Take a tripod for best photos + selfie shots.
Hike to Hazards Beach
Just a 30 minute flat walk across the small strip of land from Wineglass Bay brings you to Hazards Beach, a beach that is pure, remote, desolate, peaceful, and breathtaking.
Along the track, we got lucky and came across a Wallaby going about his morning, and he was kind enough to pose so we could get a quick pic.
Once you reach Hazards Beach, you’ll probably experience what we did and have this piece of paradise all to yourself. Sit for a while, then wander the rocks around the headland at the northern end of the beach and you’ll find pretty shells and starfish.
Both Wineglass Bay and Hazards Beach feature in our 38 best beaches in Australia list.
On a previous trip, I flew in a sea plane from Hobart to Hazards Beach. It was simply spectacular.
Things to do in Coles Bay
The village of Coles Bay is known as the gateway to Freycinet National Park.
Set in a spectacular location with uninterrupted views of the red and pink granite peaks known as The Hazards, it’s a small town with a few shops and cafes – don’t miss Tombolo Restaurant and coffee bar for great coffee + wood fired pizzas with stunning views.
Coles Bay is a great base to explore Freycinet National Park.
Beautiful Honeymoon Bay is a bay within a bay, being part of the larger Coles Bay.
It’s a popular destination for picnics and snorkeling and offers stunning views over the hazards.
The Friendly Beaches, Freycinet
The Friendly Beaches form part of Freycinet National Park.
Spectacular views and miles of unspoiled white sand beaches are the main features of The Friendly Beaches, which were added to the national park in 1992. The beaches can be reached via a signposted turnoff on the Coles Bay Road.
Getting to Freycinet National Park
Freycinet National Park Accommodation
There are many accommodation options in Coles Bay and the Freycinet National Park area.
Freycinet Lodge is the only accommodation located inside Freycinet National Park, and it overlooks the blue waters of Great Oyster Bay with the rugged Hazards mountain range as a backdrop.
Luxurious chalets range from one and two rooms to exclusive couples’ retreats and luxurious, 4.5 star premier suites. There’s free parking, free wifi, and two restaurants.
If you’re looking for luxury accommodation near Freycinet National Park, Saffire Freycinet has recently won a ton of awards, including number 1 luxury hotel in Australia.
We haven’t stayed there, but it looks and sounds spectacular.
The Blue House, Coles Bay
This is where we stayed, and as soon as I saw it I knew we were going to love it, if not for the name alone.
“Mummy, can we go back to The Blue House, now please?” Kalyra would ask.
The Blue House is located where the Swan River meets Great Oyster Bay, only a 5 minute drive from Coles Bay and world famous Freycinet National Park. It’s serene and quiet and stunning and the perfect place for a family to stay.
The owners provide kayaks free of charge, there are fishing rods for use, plenty of games to play, shelves of DVD’s and piles of magazines to read.
We could have stayed at Freycinet National Park for at least a week.
Spending our mornings enjoying the walking trails around the national park, having champagne picnics at the lighthouse for sunrise, rock scrambling at Honeymoon Bay, and hiking down into one of the world’s most iconic and beautiful beaches – Wineglass Bay.
More Tasmania Travel Tips
We spent a month road tripping around Tasmania. Here are some of our tips and highlights.