The pretty village of Strahan, perched on the Macquarie Harbour, is at the heart of some of Tasmania’s most incredible wilderness experiences. Cruise on the pristine Gordon River in the Wild Rivers National Park, learn about the harsh life of a convict at the Macquarie Harbour Penal Station and explore the wilderness by steam train.
Strahan has retained its historic village charm, with 19th-century streetscapes dating from its heyday as the port for the mining and logging industries. Experience the cruise up the Gordon River within the Wild Rivers National Park. Surrounded by ancient rainforest, this pristine waterway was saved from a controversial dam by almost 7 years of protests. It remains a significant ecosystem of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.
Many cruises stop at the former Macquarie Harbour Penal Station on Sarah Island. The remnants of the penitentiary tell a sad story of harsh sentences served here by convicts as early as 1822. At least one escape from Sarah Island has been reported. On summer evenings, listen to its retelling in a short drama in the auditorium near the West Coast Visitors Centre.
Before the show, spend an hour in the centre learning about the area’s ecology and the culture of the Aboriginal people who lived here as far back as 35,000 years ago. Nearby find a historic sawmill, where you can watch artisan wood turners creating bowls and sculptures from native Huon pine.
Experience the wilderness and incredible views over the King River Gorge on a steam train adventure. Travel in vintage carriages on the restored West Coast Wilderness Railway, originally built in the 1890s.
At the cozy pubs and fine dining establishments around Strahan, taste fresh Tasmanian seafood, from farmed Atlantic salmon and locally caught trout to crayfish and oysters.
Strahan’s nearest city is Devonport, located 3 hours away by car. From Hobart, Strahan is a 4-hour drive. Take a bus between Hobart, Lake St. Clair, Queenstown and Strahan.
Accommodation in Strahan
Strahan accommodation options may be limited. Be sure to book ahead with Expedia to secure a room that matches your style and budget.