Freycinet National Park is among the most visited destinations in Tasmania and is famous for its stunning beaches, including the popular Wineglass Bay. The following tips will help you plan the best trip to discover the beauty of Freycinet National Park.
How long do you need at Freycinet National Park?
Many visitors spend only one day in Freycinet National Park, which is sufficient to see the most iconic attractions. However, I recommend staying overnight, especially if you enjoy hiking. First, it will increase your chances of having good weather since Freycinet National Park in the rain is not as good, and climbing Mount Amos in wet weather is not possible. Second, you will have more time to appreciate the beauty of the place and avoid the crowd. If you try to fit everything in one day, you will have a packed schedule and no time to relax.
Recommended itinerary for hikers
- Day 1: Wineglass Bay to Hazards Beach Circuit. It’s a four-hour walk, but I suggest allowing extra time to enjoy the views at Wineglass Bay Lookout and the stunning Wineglass Bay beach. I recommend doing it clockwise to avoid going up many steps and wearing shoes that can get muddy if you’re visiting after rain. You can finish the day by kayaking or watching the sunset at Coles Bay.
- Day 2: Mount Amos hike. It’s a steep climb, so be prepared for it and read these tips before starting this three-hour hike. After that, you can enjoy delicious seafood at Freycinet Marine Farm and perhaps join an afternoon tour with Oyster Bay Tours. You can finish the day by visiting Sleepy Bay, which is a short walk, and Cape Tourville Lighthouse.
- Alternatively, if you really love hiking, you could tackle the Freycinet Peninsula Circuit in two days, an overnight hike where you will need to carry all your camping equipment, food, and water.
Recommended itinerary for non-hikers
- Day 1: Return walk to Wineglass Bay Lookout, which takes 1.5 hours. Freycinet National Park is famous for seafood, so you can join a tour with Oyster Bay Tours and have lunch at Freycinet Marine Farm. You can also relax and swim at Honeymoon Bay or Friendly Beach in the afternoon before kayaking or watching the sunset at Coles Bay.
- Day 2: From Coles Bay, join a cruise to explore Wineglass Bay* or take a water taxi to Hazard Beach and walk to Wineglass Bay (30 minutes one way). In the afternoon, visit Sleepy Bay, which is a short walk, and Cape Tourville Lighthouse.
If you have your own bike (unlike us), cycling in Freycinet National Park may be an option for you. The Freycinet Walk and Cycle Track is a popular route that winds around the coastal heath and woodland, offering unique views of the range of granite boulders known as The Hazards. Cycling racks are available to park your bike while you explore Wineglass Bay Lookout or Mount Amos since bikes are not permitted in this part of the national park.
One-day itinerary in Freycinet National Park
You can see a lot in Freycinet National Park even if you only have one day there. I am fit and used to walking a lot, so I managed to fit Mount Amos, Wineglass Bay to Hazards Beach Circuit, Cape Tourville Lighthouse, and Sleepy Bay into the same day (as there was a risk of rain the next day!). Even if your schedule is packed, try to allow time for a detour to Freycinet Marine Farm if you love seafood, as it’s the best we found during our lap of Tasmania!
Where to stay when visiting Freycinet National Park?
There are several accommodation options near Freycinet National Park, but book well in advance because they’re very popular, and only a few will accept bookings for one night. Freycinet Lodge* is the closest accommodation to the hiking tracks. Big 4 Iluka* has often the cheapest rates, and if you want to upgrade for sea views, check out Freycinet Resort*.
When visiting Freycinet National Park, some people opt to stay in Bicheno, located half an hour north, to see penguins in the evening and explore nearby attractions like the blowhole and the Bay of Fires.
Tips to visit Wineglass Bay
Is Wineglass Bay worth it?
Wineglass Bay is stunning, so if you have time to visit Freycinet National Park during your trip to Tasmania, it’s definitely worth checking out. My favourite way to experience Wineglass Bay was from the Mount Amos summit, as I enjoy hiking and bird’s-eye views. However, it’s also worthwhile to descend all the way to Wineglass Bay Beach, which features striking contrasts of white sand, turquoise water, and orange lichen on granite rocks.
But if your time in Tasmania is limited, you may want to reconsider visiting Wineglass Bay. Personally, I found Cradle Mountain more special, for example. Although Wineglass Bay is stunning, there are many phenomenal beaches in Australia, whereas alpine landscapes (and wombats!) are harder to come by.
How long is the walk to Wineglass Bay?
Most people walk from the carpark to Wineglass Bay Lookout (approximately 1.5 km one-way) and then go down the many stairs to Wineglass Bay Beach (add another 1.5 km). As you can imagine, it’s much harder to climb back up!
Therefore, the return walk from the car park to Wineglass Bay is around 6 km and usually takes two to three hours to complete, depending on your ease with the stairs. Make sure you allow more time to enjoy the stunning views from the lookout and spend time on the beach.
How to see Wineglass Bay without hiking
If you don’t want to walk, you won’t be able to visit Wineglass Bay Beach. However, you can still visit Wineglass Bay on a cruise boat*.
The shortest and easiest way to Wineglass Bay Beach is to catch a water taxi from Coles Bay to Hazard Beach and then walk for 30 minutes on a rather flat path.
Where is Freycinet National Park?
Freycinet National Park is located on the east coast of Tasmania. The park is approximately 125 km northeast of Hobart, the state’s capital city, and 175 km southeast of Launceston. The nearest town to the park is Coles Bay, which is the main gateway for visitors.
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