A pleasant rural town of around 5,000 people, Wynyard is a major regional hub, servicing many of the surrounding rural districts. It makes a good place to start exploration of the north west of Tasmania. The area is excellent for fishing. The Inglis and Flowerdale rivers are ideal for trout fishing and there is good ocean fishing as well.
The town has an annual Christmas parade held on Christmas Eve, a colourful summer fair, and regular markets, on the foreshore, at a site near the airport and a farmers market at the showground, which backs onto the river.
For over 25 years the Bloomin Tulip Festival has made the local town of Wynyard buzz with activities, food, music, artists and festivities. For one Saturday each October the festival tempts visitors and locals alike to shake off the doldrums of winter and welcome in spring with joy and colour. The farm is a central part of the festivities, with thousands of people travelling up the Cape to see the showpiece of the festival & the tulip flower itself. The festival is one of the town's greatest attractions to tourists, whether from Tasmania itself or from the mainland.
Visitor Information Centre
8 Exhibition Link, Wynyard. Ph (03) 6443 8330
Where Is it?: 317 km north west of Hobart, 163 km northwest of Launceston, on the Inglis River.
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The Wonders of Wynyard is the local visitor centre with a world class collection of veteran cars and local art to enjoy. Its art gallery exhibits local creative works including paintings, sculptures, photographs and textiles -the perfect place to purchase a special memento of your holiday.
The Wonders of Wynyard is home to the Ransley Veteran Car Collection, which contains the equal oldest Ford in the world - a 1903 Model A. There is also a Darracq (1905), believed to be the only car of its kind in Australia. The collection has been lovingly restored and is an outstanding showcase of Australian motoring history. Rntry fees apply (car collection only).
October - April: 9am-5pm 7 days a week
Aug-Sep: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm/ Sat-Sun 10am-4pm
May-July: 10am - 4pm 7 days a week
Closed: Christmas Day, Boxing Day, Good Friday, ANZAC Day open 1pm-5pm
MADE WITH LOVE MARKET BAZAAR
45 Jackson St, Wynyard
Trading: 2nd Saturday of the month 9am 1pm
Type: Art and Craft, Handmade
WYNYARD FORESHORE MARKET
Foreshore, East Wynyard
Trading: 1st and 3rd Sunday of the Month 8am 2pm
Type: Art and Craft, Handmade
In The Area
The entrance to Cradle Mountain Lake St Clair National Park is around a 1hour 30 minute drive from Devonport. Australia's most recognisable mountain, Cradle Mountain forms the northern end of the wild Cradle Mtn. Lake St Clair National Park, itself a part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. The familiar jagged contours of Cradle Mountain epitomise the feel of a wild landscape, while abundant wildlife, icy streams, alpine heathlands, colourful deciduous beech and ancient pines reflected in still glacial lakes entice many visitors to stay and explore.
The cape is actually a volcanic plug which rises to about 190 metres above sea level. The cape is planted with tulip fields that are a blaze of colour in spring. The area is also famous for its lily fields. The cape's lighthouse and a lookout offer expansive views inland along the north coast and out to Bass Strait.
The Lighthouse was commissioned in 1888 and was manned by three keepers until 1920 when it was automated. It has rarely been open to the public, until 2010, after decades of lobbying by the local council and tourism authorities. Visitors can now take the 45 minute tour around the precinct and up the spiral staircase, stopping on the way to gaze out onto the magnificent views from the windows.
The cape's premier attraction in spring is Table Cape Tulip Farm, the home home of Van Diemen Quality Bulbs. They are specialist flower bulb producers and farmers who grow more than just tulips. The farm also specialises in Liliums and Dutch Iris as well as many other bulbs and plants which we sell directly to customers through our mail order and online catalogue.
During late September through to mid October the farm explodes with colour. Each year at this time the farm is opened up to visitors to walk in the tulips. Best viewing is normally from end of the first week to the end of the second week in October During the farm's spring open days, visitors can enjoy an impressive indoor display featuring floral arrangements, souvenirs, Devonshire teas, an art gallery, potted tulips, cut flowers and information on growing bulbs. The open days are a lure for photographers who have the opportunity to take fantastic shots utilising backdrops of Bass Strait, the lighthouse and the surrounding rich farmlands to showcase the vista of colourful blooming fields.
Table Cape from Wynyard
More or less circular in shape, Table Cape was originally a volcanic lake which flowed in a southerly direction forming the hills of the nearby Flowerfale area, and also laid a basalt cap on Fossil Bluff. As it weathered down this basalt rock formed some of the richest agricultural land in Tasmania. It is red in colour due to the high iron conent. Table Cape is one of a number of large volcanic plugs on the north west coast of Tasmania on the shores of Bass Strait. It was once a lava lake (hence its flatness). The rock is a Tertiary teschenite (a course grained basalt). The tuffs and breccias of the old crater are cut back by the erosional effects of the sea during level changes, leaving the solid neck as a promontory.
The Tommeginner tribe of Aboriginals traversed the area before and after the arrival of Europeans in the 19th century, living along the coastline, building fish traps at Freestone Cove and hunting for game on the inland coastal plains.
In 1798 George Bass and Matthew Flinders sailed in their sloop 'Norfolk" through Bass Strait, and named the large promontory Table Cape, which has now become the local landmark. The Table Cape area was first developed by the Van Diemen's Land Company in the 1820's, making it one of the oldest European settlement areas in Australia, preceding Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin and Brisbane.
The first white settlers west of the Inglis River was the King family, that took up land in the early 1840s. Back then, the cape had trees up to 12 metres in diameter at the base; the area was stripped of these huge stringybark eucalyptus gum trees in the late 19th century by timber cutters. When European settlement began, the beautiful red loam of the Cape was found to be most suitable for the growing of potatoes, peas, onions and corn and the raising of sheep and cattle, and more recently has changed to the cultivation of poppies, pyrethrum and tulips.
Table Cape is the remains a volcanic plug which rises to about 170 metres above sea level on the north-west coast of Tasmania. Located on Table Cape, Fossil Bluff is an unusual geological structure comprising glacial Permian Tillite, sandstone and basalt.
There is a small beach and the rocks at either end of the beach are characterised by shells which have been caught and fossilised. Embedded into the shore rocks and visible at low tide are Australia's oldest marsupial fossils. The beds of tillite are believed to have been created 275 million years ago, according to the Geology Department of the University of Tasmania. The were formed as boulder clay from a large glacier as the ice melted, and was later consolidated by a load of ice and other rocks on it.
Near high water mark close to the cliff face of Fossil Bluff there are many blocks of very fossiliferous sandstone or siltstone, which have fallen from the cliffs above. The cliffs contain a succession of light coloured rocks, scarcely consolidated sands and limey silts which were deposited on a beach and in a shallow bay some 22 million years ago. Fossil Bluff was named, but not discovered, by Sir Walter Baldwin Spencer, a controversial scientist who served for many years as president of the Victorian Football League (now AFL).
Boat Harbour Beach would have to be one of Australia's Top Ten beaches. Picturesque Boat Harbour Beach is noted for its clean, white sands, rock and coral formations and its crystal clear blue waters. At low tide, you may see abalone on the rocks. Precious stones are found in the rocks, and look out for fairy rings in the grass.
Open Feb to May, Flowerdale Lobster Haven is the home of the giant freshwater crayfish, unique to the streams of northern Tasmania. See this gentle monster in nursery streams and several in-ground viewing ponds. Individuals of over 5 kg in weight and over 80 cm long have been known in the past, but now, even individuals over 2 kg are rare. Set on a landscaped hillside overlooking Flowerdale River Valley, the Haven features a waterfall & many manferns. There is a tearoom featuring dishes made from the sherries grown in the proprietor s famous orchard.
Experience sweeping views of Bass Strait from the Rocky Cape Lighthouse, banksia dotted hillsides, and dramatic cliffs and coastal caves, combined with cultural history, as Rocky Cape has strong links to the Aboriginal community. Many of the bays along the coast are sheltered and tranquil, while the headlands experience the full force of the sea and wind.
Much of the vegetation in the park is low lying, wind and salt tolerant coastal heath. These heathlands flower during spring and summer, giving colour to the surrounding hills.which run down to the water where there are caves with a history of Aboriginal occupation.
Rocky Cape National Park, although small, offers visitors a varied experience on Tasmania 's coast. Here you can learn about Aboriginal life on the north-west coast. Swimming, fishing, boating and walking are popular activities. There are pleasant day and half-day walks over the hills from either Sisters Beach or from the lighthouse at the western end of the Park. Rocky Cape s unpolluted waters regularly attract dolphins and seals. At low tide on a calm day, the rocky foreshore reveals numerous rock pools inhabited by a variety of colourful fish and plants.
Within the park there is a picnic area with tables and a gas barbecue at Mary Ann Cove. Toilet facilities are available at Burgess Cove and Mary Ann Cove in Rocky Cape National Park. Drinking water is not available in the park.
Swimming, fishing, boating and bushwalking are popular activities. The park offers a fascinating variety of walks, ranging from less than 20 minutes to a full day. These take in Aboriginal rock shelters and caves, scenic hills full of wildflowers and birds, and tranquil beaches, bays and rocky headlands.
A quiet seaside village, Sisters Beach is located within the Rocky Cape National Park and is situated on the old horse trail known as the Postman s Track that once formed the only connection between Emu Bay (now Burnie) and the Van Diemen s Land outpost of Stanley. The village has a boat ramp, you can do quiet bit of fishing or catch a squid off the jetty. It is also possible to scuba dive around Rocky Cape. However, conditions can be treacherous and diving is recommended only for experienced divers. Sisters Beach has electric barbecues, toilets and drinking water provided by the local council.
Though a very pretty location, Sisters Beach is quite small and the building of new homes is currently restricted, due to the surrounding national park. A unique aspect of Sisters Beach is the prevalence of giant Banksia serrata. It is the only place in Tasmania where they occur.
Where Is it? Access is via the Boat Harbour Beach Road (Irbys Road).
152 steep steps descend to the bottom of the cubic-basalt formed Dip Falls (40 km south). These falls are very picturesque, particularly during the winter months. The track to the accessible viewing platform is beyond the falls.
A delightful wayside stop on the Murchison Highway south, the streeply winding gorge of the Hellyer River (44 km south) is filled with rainforest of tall myrtle beech, encrusted with mosses, fungi and epiphyte orchids. A number of walking tracks along the banks of the Hellyer River (near the rest area) provide a pleasant walk to refresh before journeying on. It is situated in the heart of a mountainous and heavily forested area, near one of the visually most impressive sections of highway in Tasmania.