Cycle, Kayak and Walk Tasmania

Explore Freycinet National Park & Maria Island on this superb multi-activity adventure from Launceston to Hobart

Challenge Highlights

  • Cycling through sleepy fishing villages and along stunning coastal stretches of the East Coast
  • Kayaking in Coles Bay beneath the Hazards
  • A thrilling descent of St Marys pass
  • Superb walks in Freycinet National Park to view Wineglass Bay
  • Summit Mount Bishop & Clerk and enjoy other walks on Maria Island
  • Wildlife spotting and the chance to see Tasmanian Devils in the wild
  • Vehicle supported cycling so you can cycle as little or as much as you wish

Overview

Selected as one of National Geographic Traveler magazine’s ’50 Tours of a Lifetime’ this complete active adventure traverses all the must-see highlights of Tasmania’s spectacular East Coast. With a combination of vehicle supported cycling, kayaking and walking you will make the absolute most of this adventure playground.

Over six days you will cycle through picturesque rural landscape, past vineyards and lush orchards, along stunning coastline, and down deep forested valleys. You will kayak the sparkling aquamarine waters of Freycinet National Park and walk to one of the world’s most beautiful beaches – Wineglass Bay. You’ll catch a ferry to Maria Island and spend two days discovering the rich history, world class scenery and extremely friendly wildlife. A drive to the summit of Kunanyi (Mt Wellington) and a short walk into Hobart is the fitting conclusion to this fun filled trip. This tour caters to a wide range of fitness levels, with the constant support of guides and vehicle meaning you can complete as many or as few kilometres as your please.

Each day we make the most of the great outdoors, and each evening is spent celebrating and relaxing over a delicious 3-course meal showcasing the finest of Tasmania’s famous produce. Join us on this active and thoroughly rewarding tour of Tasmania.

Challenge Grade

This trip involves cycling, kayaking and walking and a reasonable level of fitness is required. Daily activity is between 5-6 hours, but be prepared for variable weather conditions which can impact the timing and comfort of the activities. That said, there is never any need to feel under pressure to ride or walk the full distances. It is important to remember that this is a journey to be enjoyed, and if at any point you do not wish to ride the vehicle is available to transport you and your bike. Come open minded and ready for a wonderful experience whatever the weather and whoever the group. We encourage you to contact our reservations office if you have any queries about your suitability for this trip – we love to hear from you and are happy to answer any and all questions!

2014/15 Itinerary

We will collect you from your accommodation in Launceston between 8-8.30 am. Our guides will call you the day before to confirm exact time and location. Our first stop in the morning will be for a briefing, where your guides will present an overview of the trip and distribute any pre-requested hire gear. We then drive an hour from Launceston through picturesque farming country and past Tasmania’s second highest peak, Legges Tor. Arriving in Fingal we hop on our bikes and cycle up the valley and through the wonderful eucalyptus forests of the North East. The highlight is an exhilarating ride down St Mary’s Pass to the dazzling aqua blue waters and white sandy beaches of the East Coast. In the afternoon we cycle south along the coastline towards the seaside fishing village of Bicheno, with a possible stop at the superbly located Ironhouse Brewery. Cycling distance: 42km (Fingal to Ironhouse Brewery). Please note that all cycling distances listed in these notes are approximate and your guides may offer more or less cycling depending on timing and weather.

Meals:  L,D

Today’s destination is the Freycinet National Park. We ride our bikes inland before turning south passing Friendly Beaches and the internationally renowned RAMSAR site of Moulting Lagoon. We arrive for a well-earned lunch in Coles Bay, an idyllic seaside town nestled between long, peaceful beaches. The afternoon options are to either ride or drive into the National Park then climb the well graded track to Wineglass Bay Lookout. Depending on timing we can walk to the bay itself for an invigorating swim in the glorious clear-blue water… or simply relax and admire from the beach! We then return to our Coles Bay accommodation to share an evening meal. Cycling distance: 46km (Bicheno to Freycinet) | Walking distance: 4-8km | Walking time: 2-4 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we swap our bikes for kayaks and meet our professional instructors on the beach before enjoying what is possibly one of the most scenic paddling tours in the world. We paddle our way beneath the imposing Hazards Range and across Great Oyster Bay, keeping an eye out for White-bellied Sea Eagles and the occasional friendly seal! Your kayaking guides revel in sharing the National Park’s fascinating history with you. After lunch we ride from Dolphin Sands through vineyard country to the quaint seaside town of Swansea. Depending on timing we complete our riding nearing Triabunna (your guides will offer more cycling if time permits) and are then transferred to the our accommodation. Kayaking time: 2.5 hours | Cycling distance: 61km (3 hours +)

Meals:  B,L,D

We start our day with a 30 minute ferry trip across Mercury Passage, docking at Darlington on Maria Island. Maria is one of Tasmania’s least visited by more wonderful locations – you will be completely captivated from the moment you step ashore. The island has a rich history from Aboriginal inhabitation, to convict penal station, farming, and the National Park it is today. Over the next two days we will walk to the Famous Fossil Cliffs and Painted Cliffs, and explore the ruins left from the island’s busy past. We pitch at our tents at a sheltered, grassy campsite behind the sand dunes of Darlington Bay and enjoy our first night under the stars. Walking distance: 4-8km | Walking time: 2-4 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

After a delicious breakfast we head off from camp to the summit of Bishop and Clerk (620m). Listen to the call of native birds as we climb steadily up through eucalypt forest, then out into scrub battered low by the elements. The view from this peak is incomparable as you gaze across the expanse of the island and out over the Tasman Sea. In the afternoon we can choose to walk back via the Reservoir Circuit Track. You may choose to spend the few hours before dinner soaking in the history of Darlington, or taking a quiet stroll along the beach as the sun sets and reflecting on all you have achieved over the last few days. Tonight we enjoy our last dinner together on tour. Walking distance: 12-15km | Walking time: 6-8 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we farewell the magical Maria Island and board the ferry back to mainland-Tasmania. Rejoining our vehicle, we travel up Prosser River and through the Coal River Valley to Hobart. The backdrop to Hobart is the impressive dolerite organ pipes of Kunanyi, or Mt Wellington. Depending on the weather we will drive to the 1270m summit for expansive views of the Derwent Valley and estuary. From here we can choose from a selection of easy to moderate walks offered on the slopes of the mountain. At approximately 4pm you will be dropped off at your accommodation in the waterfront city of Hobart, a beautiful place in which to end your amazing adventure. Walking time: 1-3 hours

Meals:  B,L

What's Included

  • Professional cycling/ walking/ kayaking guides
  • 5 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 5 dinners, snacks and hot drinks
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • 2 nights camping on Maria Island (hot showers are available for a gold coin donation)
  • Transport by private minibus
  • Maria Island ferry transfers
  • Half day Sea-kayaking activity
  • National Park entry fees
  • Bicycle hire and helmet
  • Tents, sleeping bag, inner sheet & air mattress
  • Group camping equipment including all cooking and eating equipment
  • Emergency communications and group first-aid kit

What's Not Included

  • Travel to Launceston and from Hobart
  • Accommodation before or after the trip
  • Coins for showers on Maria Island
  • Items of a personal nature: alcoholic beverages, car parking etc
  • Travel insurance

What You Carry

  • For each section of the trip a briefing will be given by your guides detailing exactly what you will need to carry. This varies each day depending on weather and activities, but the following gives you a general idea:
  • CYCLING – You will carry a small day-pack with your camera, some snacks and your drink bottle. The vehicle carries the rest of the luggage.
  • KAYAKING – The sea kayaks have store hatches and you will be given a dry-bag for your camera and drink bottle. Your kayak guides will provide snacks and hot drinks.
  • WALKING – We hand cart all luggage onto Maria Island therefore we ask that you take ‘only what you need’ in a pack of around 8-10 kilograms. When walking on the island you will carry your day pack with just what is needed for the walk: raincoat, camera, water, snacks etc.

Fast Facts

Trip Dates: DepartReturn
Duration:6 Days
Activities:Cycling
Day Walking
Sea-kayaking
Grade:Introductory to Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG5208