The waterways south of Hobart around Bruny Island and the Huon River offer a labyrinth of sheltered channels, coves and bays, making it a Sunday sailor’s delight. On any weekend there will be a procession of craft heading to and from this area. Vessels range from yachts and pleasure cruisers to fishing tinnies and kayaks.
If you’d rather not paddle your own canoe (or sail your own yacht), there are plenty of ways to experience the Southern Trove from on, in, under and even above the water.
…over the sea to Bruny
Catching the ferry for the short hop from Kettering across the D’Entrecasteaux Channel to Bruny Island is always the start of an adventure.
Let someone else do the sailing
Try a tall ship
Yukon Tours offers calm water sailing experiences from Franklin. Built of oak in 1930 the privately owned Danish sailing ketch Yukon was rescued by Australian shipwright David Nash and his Danish wife Ea Lassen from the bottom of a harbour near Copenhagen. Rest assured that after a loving restoration, all is now ship-shape aboard this charming vessel.
Feel the need for speed?
If adrenaline is more your thing, then Huon Jet Boats offer excitement as you explore the Huon River, or the Bruny Island Cruise explores the outer coast with some heart-stopping scenery. Tasmanian Jet Ski Adventures offer guided jet ski tours of the D’Entrecasteaux Channel.
Esperance Adventures offer guided kayaking tours of the beautiful rivers and bays of Tasmania’s far south.
Enjoy the craft
Any lover of boats should visit the Australian Wooden Boat Centre at Franklin to see how traditional handcrafting skills are being kept alive and thriving, while creating beautiful craft out of Tasmanian timbers.
See the Trove from above
Experience the beauty of Bruny Island from the air in a Cessna 182 with Island Scenic Flights. Fly along the slim neck up to Adventure Bay and continue along the East coast of South Bruny, where you’ll see some of Australia’s highest sea cliffs – perhaps you’ll spot a whale or two! See other helicopter, fixed-wing and seaplane operators offering charters on Hobart and Beyond.
Beneath the waves…
There are two Marine Reserves within the Southern Trove, where you can get your snorkel on and explore beneath the waves.
Tinderbox Marine Reserve is a great place to go for a snorkel or scuba dive. To the south, the rock platform drops 2 or 3 metres to sand. It is an ideal place for snorkellers to explore the ledges and crevices in the reef, and maybe spot a weedy sea dragon or two.
Ninepin Point Marine Reserve is on the coast between Gordon and Cygnet, near the mouth of the Huon River. The tannin-rich waters of the Huon provide shade, and habitat for marine flora usually only found in much deeper waters.
If all this aquatic adventure has you feeling the chills, perhaps it’s time to warm your bones in the thermal pool at Hastings Caves, where the natural spring water is always a comfy 28 degrees Celsius, regardless of the outside temperature.
Of course, however you choose to explore the waterways of the Southern Trove, be sure to observe all safety advice and be properly equipped, and always check the weather forecast.
For accommodation tips, see Where to Stay.
- Our guide to visiting Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs
- Seaside Pearler: Four things to do in Kettering
- Tinderbox Marine Reserve -The Best of Both Worlds
- Coastal Paradise: Ten Coastal Beaches of the Trove
Header image: @sam_cooperphotography/instagram
Words: Andrew Ross