The Huon Valley

The Huon Valley and the coasts of Port Huon and the D'Entrecasteaux Channel are places of natural beauty, perfect for a relaxing holiday, a short break or even a day trip from Hobart. Rich in maritime and rural heritage and populated friendly creative people, the region is known as much for its gorgeous scenery as it huon pine, apple orchards and boutique wineries and gourmet specialities. By big city standards, the roads are always quiet and there is something different around every corner.

Huonville

Huonville is a centre for the Huon District which services the local timber, paper mill and fruit growing industries as well as tourism. It is the gateway to the beautiful Huon Valley. It was the apple orchards of the valley that gave Tasmania the name 'The Apple Isle' in the 1960s. The Huon River and the nearby D'Entrecasteaux Channel are popular fishing and boating areas. The Channel is sheltered from the wrath of the Southern Ocean by the bulk of Bruny Island to the east. The drive from Huonville to D Entrecasteaux Channel via Cygnet is particulary scenic; the still waters of the river offer spectacular photo opportunities.



Franklin

A sleepy timber milling town on the eastern shores of the Huon River. It supports orchards and dairy farming. Franklin South has become well known for the Craft and Apple Houses at the southern end of the village. Ye Olde Franklin Tavern is a pleasant historic pub beside the road which proudly announces that it was established in 1853 and the jetty beside the river which was once used as a major point for shipping timber and fruit from the area. In the river at Franklin is the long narrow strip of land known as Egg Island.



Cygnet

The main town on the eastern shores of Port Huon, Cygnet is a centre for a prosperous fruit growing district (apples; grapes; strawberries; blueberries; cherries) which has numerous orchards and vineyards. The local area also supports a farming population and there are many second homes, sometimes known as shacks in Tasmania. About a mile south of the town centre is Port Cygnet (home of the Port Cygnet Yacht Club), a safe anchorage for pleasure craft with easy road and walking access to Cygnet. Cygnet and surrounding suburbs have access to the beautiful D'Entrecasteau Channel on one side and the Huon River on the other.



Geeveston

A small timber milling and apple growing town, Geeveston is the gateway to the rugged Hartz Mountains National Park. Some of the tallest hardwood trees in the world (up to 95 m high) grow here. Geeveston is also the stepping off point for the Tahune AirWalk and cruises on Port Huon. The town's most overt symbol (it is impossible to miss as you drive through town on the Huon Highway) is the huge trunk of a Swamp Gum (eucalyptus regnans) logged in Arve Valley on 10 December 1971. A sign on the side of the trunk proudly declares that the length is 15.8 m, the girth 6.7 m, it weighs 57 tonnes and its volume 56.7 cubic metres. Kermandie is a southern area ofGeeveston that runs along the side of the Kermandie River. The name preserves the name of Huon Kermandec, second in command of the expedition in 1792 by the French Admiral Bruni D'Entrecasteaux.



Dover

A small fishing port with quaint cottages and English trees, Dover was once a convict station. Today it is an important centre for both apple orchards and the salmon, abalone and cray fishing industries. Dover lies beside the waters of Esperance Bay and the D'Entrecasteaux Channel, with the imposing figure of Adamson's Peak in the background. The region enjoys a moderate climate, sheltered from the prevailing cold winds by Bruny Island, and is frequented by tourists keen to experience the idyllic coastal scenery or those eager to explore the deep wilderness further south.



Southport

A sleepy coastal village off the main road. In the early 1800?s Southport was a convict station, bustling mill town and international port. Being Tasmania s second largest town at that time, it was proposed as the capital of the colony. Today, it is just a nice quiet spot to relax, go swimming, sail the calm waters of Southport Bay, walk on the beach or a little fishing. There is a monument on Southport Bluff (40 minute walk from the road) to the convict ship George III which was wrecked off the coast in 1835 with the loss of 94 passengers. It is said that the guards on the ship, fearful that the convicts would panic if the ship went down, shot indiscriminately into the ship's hold. This is supported by the peculiar death toll which saw 81 convicts lose their lives while only 13 passengers and crew were drowned.



Recherche Bay

Recherche Bay is in every way the end of the road - a quiet, idyllic bay in the far south of Tasmania beyond the Huon Valley. There are three small settlements on Recherche Bay - Catamaran, Recherche Bay and Cockle Creek. These are the most southern communities in Australia. A signpost at Cockle Creek marks the most southerly point in Australia accessible by motor vehicle. The southern tip of Tasmania, Australia's southern extremity, which marks the beginning of the South West Walk, is just an hour's walk away. The bay was the first landing place of French explorer Bruny D'Entrecasteaux who came ashore here for water and stayed for a number of weeks in 1792 to rest his crew and complete maintenance on his ships.



Lower Huon Trail

No trip to Hobart and Southern Tasmania is complete without a drive along the Huon Trail. Taking in the the fruit growing district of the Huon River valley, Port Huon, Bruny Island and the vast expanse of the D'Entrecasteaux Channel, the Huon Trail incorporates busy towns and sleepy villages, serene boutique farms and World Heritage Wilderness areas accessed by roads that wind through a world of extensive and beautiful valleys and waterways.

The Huon Valley and the coasts of Port Huon and the D'Entrecasteaux Channel are places of natural beauty, perfect for a relaxing holiday, a short break or even a day trip from Hobart. Rich in maritime and rural heritage and populated friendly creative people, the region is known as much for its gorgeous scenery as it huon pine, apple orchards and boutique wineries and gourmet specialities. By big city standards, the roads are always quiet and there is something different around every corner.