Tasmania’s second major city after Hobart, Launceston is a vibrant hub for fantastic food, nature and culture.
With an estimated population of 70,000, it’s one of Australia’s oldest cities and excellently preserved.
Simply stroll along its streets and you’ll see classic Colonial and Victorian architecture − taking you back to the 1800s where it was a European settlement.
Situated near the city is the Tasmania Zoo, recognised for its wildlife conservation efforts and a breeding program for Tasmanian devils.
If you’re keen on seeing more wildlife, explore the nearby Narawntapu National Park, as well as Mt William National Park in the North East.
In Launceston, Tamar River Cruises offers trips along the picturesque Tamar River.
Just one kilometre away from the city centre is Cataract Gorge, which you can admire from walking tracks skirting its side.
Launceston’s also home to various historic buildings like the Entally House, Clarendon House and Macquarie House.
Established in 1891, the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery is worth a visit too, being the largest Australian museum located outside a capital city.
If you love winter sports, stop by Ben Lomond National Park during the winter season. The park’s alpine village turns into a winter wonderland and haven for skiers and snowboarders.
Launceston’s classy, historical atmosphere extends to its accommodation options as well. The Old Bakery Inn is a 100-plus year-old converted bakery, with two adjoining houses from the same era. Rooms are simple, but clean and comfortable.
A more upmarket option is The Grand Hotel Launceston, a 4.5-star hotel with city views and free private parking.
The Cornwall Historic Hotel also offers a central location, and is believed to be the oldest brick building in Launceston.
Near Mount William National Park, Icena Farm Accommodation caters to all kinds of travellers like couples, backpackers and family groups.
In Launceston, Bryher cafe is a local favourite, with interesting items like rarebit with leeks, local cheddar and ale bechamel.
The upscale Geronimos features a well-stocked bar, European-inspired share plates and savoury wood-fired pizzas.
In the CBD, Black Cow Bistro draws crowds for its premium dry-aged, free range, grass fed and hormone-free Tasmanian beef. On Saturday mornings, the volunteer-run Harvest Market offers quality fresh produce too.
And travelling up north along the Tamar Valley Wine Route, the cellar doors of Josef Chromy Wines and Jinglers Creek are known for their superb reds and whites.