Tasmania is a perfect destination for wildlife lovers and one of the best places to see wildlife in Australia, including the adorable and iconic wombat. With their cute bear-like appearance, wombats are an amazing sight for all visitors. If they can be elusive on the mainland, you don’t need to be lucky to spot them in Tasmania. We have seen wombats multiple times during our trips to Tasmania. I’ve listed below where to see wombats in Tasmania, along with helpful tips to help you find them and plan your trip!
The numbers correspond to the map at the end of the article.
Responsible travel tip: For their safety, do not feed or touch wombats – or wildlife in general. And when you’re taking photos, make sure you give them space and don’t disturb them. Remember that wild animals may not display visible signs of stress, and despite their adorable appearance, they should be respected as the wild creatures they are. Let’s ensure that these animals continue to thrive in their natural habitats so that we can continue to observe them freely.
How to know you’re in the right place to see wombats
If you’re hoping to spot wombats while out and about, there are a few signs to look out for. Their distinctive cube-shaped droppings are a tell-tale clue that you’re in an area where they reside. I read in an article their droppings are stacked to mark their territory and communicate with other wombats. Keep an eye out for burrow entrances too, as these are where wombats spend most of their day to stay cool and avoid predators.
While wombats can be seen during the day, they are primarily nocturnal creatures, so your best bet for spotting them is just after sunset.
One of the top attractions drawing visitors to Maria Island is the chance to spot wombats in their natural habitat. The island is home to the smallest species of wombats in Tasmania, so they’re adorable.
These adorable creatures freely wander the island, creating a memorable and unique wildlife experience. While wombats usually go out at dusk, we could spot them during the day on Maria Island. Wombats can be found all over the island, and you don’t have to go far from the ferry jetty to see them, even during the day. They love grazing on the grassy slope (1) on your left as you set foot on the island or may wander around Darlington (2), near the old penitentiary building and the campsite.
Upon arriving on the island, we were greeted by a friendly park ranger who showed us a taxidermied wombat. The ranger used it to educate visitors on proper behaviour when encountering wildlife, such as wombats.
How to get there
You can board a passenger ferry from Triabunna. It’s recommended to book tickets in advance, especially if you’re travelling during the peak season. This will ensure you can secure the first and last ferries, giving you ample time to explore the island’s many walking tracks. If you’re not into hiking or cycling, you may prefer to book a cruise that includes both Maria Island and Ile des Phoques*.
Where to stay
A limited number of rooms are available in the old penitentiary building, so it’s advisable to book well in advance to secure a spot. The accommodation is reasonably priced, but it’s pretty basic with bunk beds and no access to electricity. Alternatively, if you don’t want to camp, a day trip to Maria Island would be your best option.
If you’re planning a trip to Maria Island from Hobart, it’s possible to make it a day trip, but spending the night closer to Triabunna*, where the ferry terminal is located, would be less tiring. Driving to the ferry takes approximately 1.5 hours from Hobart. You could also consider booking a tour from Hobart* to avoid the hassle of driving.
Responsible travel tip: When you plan your trip to Tasmania, it’s best to avoid driving around sunset and sunrise since wildlife tends to be more active and may cross the road. If you must drive at night, exercise extreme caution and slow down, particularly in national parks and reserves where the chances of encountering wildlife on the road are high.
Cradle Mountain National Park
One of the best places to see wombats in Tasmania is Cradle Mountain National Park (3). It’s one of the most visited places in Tasmania, and it’s not surprising. The scenery is splendid, and it was magical to spot groups of wombats going about their daily activities while we finished our hikes.
For the best experience, I highly recommend strolling along the boardwalk at Ronny Creek about an hour before sunset. We saw wombats there every time we visited at that time as they love grazing on the large grassy moorland area. You don’t have to go far from where the bus stop drops you. Most of the wombats stayed away from the boardwalk, but a few ignored the walkers and came very close, even on the boardwalk. It’s a fantastic experience to see wildlife up close.
Although the main car park is only a short bus ride away, don’t miss the last shuttle, as walking back would take much longer.
How to get there
If you’re planning a trip to Cradle Mountain, the most convenient way to get there is by car. This will allow you to have the freedom to stay at Ronny Creek until late in the afternoon, which is the best time to see the wombats. I’ve only been to Cradle Mountain during the summer, so unfortunately, I cannot offer any recommendations for the winter season. However, checking the weather forecast and seeking advice from the visitor centre before adventuring in the park is crucial.
If you’re pressed for time or prefer not to drive, booking a tour to visit Cradle Mountain National Park might be your only option. If it’s important for you, I highly recommend asking the right questions and checking their itinerary to ensure that you get the chance to see the adorable wombats. It’s worth noting that day trips from Hobart* or Launceston* may not take you to Ronny Creek, or they might leave before dusk – when most of the wombats come out to graze. And if your multi-day tour* doesn’t include an overnight stay near the park, you may have to hit the road early, which could significantly reduce your chances of spotting the wombats.
Where to stay
Cradle Mountain National Park has stunning accommodations*, but it’s not for every budget. You should book early to avoid disappointment, especially if you’re travelling during the peak season. We camped outside the national park – where accommodation options are more affordable – but would have loved to stay in this stunning room with a spa*.
Mount William National Park
Mount William National Park (4) is located north of the Bay of Fires, on the North-East Coast of Tasmania. We visited the Bay of Fires but didn’t push to the national park as we weren’t allowed to drive on unsealed roads with our rental vehicle. It is reputed for wildlife spotting and is always on the list of the best places to see wombats in Tasmania.
How to get there
You’ll need a car to drive to Mount William National Park. If you’re renting a vehicle, check if you are allowed to drive on an unsealed road, as there’s no bitumen road further than Gladstone.
Where to stay
You can find basic campgrounds in the national park.
Narawntapu National Park
Narawntapu National Park (5), also known as the “Serengeti of Tasmania,” is a popular destination for wildlife lovers. It used to be an excellent place to see wombats in Tasmania. However, in 2019, a mange disease outbreak caused the tragic death of most wombats in the park. During our visit in 2023, we were able to spot numerous pademelons and kangaroos. Unfortunately, no wombats or their droppings were visible.
How to get there
A car is necessary to visit Narawntapu National Park, located on the north coast of Tasmania between Devonport and Launceston.
Where to stay
In the national park, there is a campground equipped with facilities. However, we were unable to spend the night there. We faced the difficult choice of either observing the wildlife at Narawntapu National Park or travelling a bit further on the north coast to see the penguins.
For those seeking a more intimate experience with animals or learning more about their lifestyles, Tasmania has several wildlife sanctuaries. Among the most renowned is Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary* (6), near Hobart. Here, rescued wombats are nurtured and prepared to be reintroduced into their natural habitat. Twice daily, guests can enjoy a unique opportunity to interact with these adorable creatures during wombat encounters.
While other wildlife sanctuaries exist in Tasmania, I have only personally visited Bonorong. However, the Trowunna Wildlife Sanctuary in Mole Creek, located between Cradle Mountain and Deloraine in the north of the island, is another name I often hear.
If you’re travelling to Tasmania with children, you might want to check out the Wombat Woodland Walk in the private reserve of Chauncy Vale Wildlife Sanctuary, located north of Hobart.
Map of where to see wombats in Australia
What’s your favourite place to see wombats in Tasmania? Share your experience in the comments below!
Did you like this article about where to see wombats in Tasmania? Add it to your Pinterest board: