Lilydale, Tasmania

A distinctly English town with gardens and cool climate bushwalks. Lilydale, nestling under the northern slopes of Mount Arthur (1187 m), is an attractive town noted for the distinctive 'Englishness' of its gardens which mix with the appeal of the diverse range of interesting bushwalks in the district. The appeal of Lilydale (which is promoted as Tasmania s Country Garden) lies around, rather than in, the town.


Main Road, Lilydale
Trading: Every Sunday  10am to 2pm
Type: Art & Craft, Artisans, Baby & Kids/Children, Designers, Farmers, Produce, Organic, Handmade, Wheel Chair Friendly, Food, Community
Phone: 0412 336 381

Trading: Every 2nd Sunday & some Saturday Nights  10am  2pm
Type: Other. Phone: 0438 582 876. 'Meet the Producer' Market  Lilydale

Where Is it?: 25 km north east of Launceston

Although only a short distance from Launceston (and only a few kilometres from the East Tamar Highway), the Lilydale district was not settled by Europeans until the 1850s when timber cutters began clearing the area. The township, originally known as Germantown but changed to Lilydale during World War I, appeared in the late 1870s when a track was out through the bush to the goldfields on the slopes of Mount Arthur

Lilydale Falls

Lilydale Falls (3 km ) offer an opportunity to explore temperate rainforest, have a picnic, go bushwalking, inspect the two small falls, and see two oak trees which were planted on 12 May 1937 from acorns collected near Windsor Castle on England. The oaks commemorate the coronation of King George IV.

Hollybank Forest Reserve

Hollybank Forest Reserve is a 140 ha forest reserve which was first settled by timber cutters and mill workers in 1854. it is now an arboretum with walking tracks, picnic facilities and an interesting Information Centre. It is reached from a turnoff near Underwood.

Mount Arthur

Mount Arthur sits imposingly overlooking the town of Lilydale. Because of its close proximity to Launceston, being directly to the north-east of Launceston, its summit is home to a number of radio towers. At 1188 metres, it is a 4 to 5 hour return walk through wet eucalypt rainforest to the summit, offering views to the northern coastline, the city of Launceston and the great western tiers. This fairly rigorous walk begins at the end of Mountain Road.

Pipers River wine region

The Piper's River and nearby Piper's Brook farming areas have emerged during the past decade as Tasmania's premier wine-growing district. Although the industry is small and new by national standards, the wines produced within the region are acknowledged as among the best in Australia.

The Pipers River region was pioneered by Andrew Pirie. He established Pipers Brook Vineyard in 1974. The vineyard brought Tasmanian wine to the notice of wine-lovers in Australia, and around the world, by producing excellent wines and marketing them effectively. Pipers River remains an important viticultural region of Tasmania in terms of quality and output. It produces about 30% of Tasmania's wine.

Pipers river is half an hour out of Launceston and is Tasmania’s most northern wine region. Though the Pipers River region has a smaller quantity of vineyards, there is no taking away from the quality. The Pipers River flows through the heart of the region, giving it life and nutrients. The location has been compared to Champagne, giving it the title ‘The Sparkling Region’; Its maritime climate and fertile soils provide wineries like Jansz, Bay of Fires Winery, Beautiful Isle Wines and Clover Hill great flavour and personality.

Bridestowe Estate Lavender Farm

This historic property is located approximately 30 minutes from the mountain and, apart from its acres of lavender that flower in November and December, it has a gift shop, cafe and picnic areas for visitors.
296 Gillespies Rd, Nabowla TAS 7260. Ph (03) 6352 8182

Bridestowe’s bees pollinate the flowers and begin producing our signature lavender honey. The endless curved rows of lavender blooms will take your breath away and create a memory to last a lifetime. When the lavender flowers are in full bloom in summer and it is then that the flowers are harvested. Each Autumn after flowering, the lavender bushes are pruned by about a third to stimulate growth for the year ahead. Without pruning, the shrubs grow thin and scraggly, which reduces the amount of flowers and oil that can be collected. Our gardens come into their own in autumn as the leaves change colour and create a technicolour landscape.

Winter is a time for regeneration at Bridestowe when cuttings are used to create new plantings. These can take up to four years to achieve good flower density and optimum oil production. At this time of year, guests enjoy sitting in front of our fire and watching the snow fall on Mount Arthur which frames our lavender fields against the moody sky. Weeding continues during spring as the plants grow and buds develop, preparing for flowering in summer.

Barnbougle Dunes

Barnbougle Dunesis a hidden gem and home to one of the world s top Links golf courses. The golf links, built on undulating coastal dunes, is the work of famed golf architect Tom Doak and Australia's Michael Clayton. The breathtaking landscape upon which the course has been created mirrors the wild coastal links courses of Scotland and Ireland and as Barnbougle continues to develop with age it looks set to follow in the footsteps of these great courses. Barnbougle Dunes has been ranked the No.1 public course in Australia and No.7 in the world.


When you see a place called Tunnel on the map, it's not hard to imagine what you'll find there. Tunnel sits near of Lebrina, just a few kilometres past Lilydale. The tunnel itself is little known and well hidden. It was part of the north eastern Launceston to Herrick railway line. Work on building the structure’s approaches began in late 1885. It would be a further two years until the two headings met. It was another 12 months until the 700 metre tunnel was completed. The first passenger train to run through the tunnel did so on February 2, 1889, with the state's Governor on board, but initially the line only went as far as Scottsdale.

At the time, the tunnel was a rare feature of Tasmanian railways. So rare, in fact, that the accompanying railway station was named Tunnel Station – hence, the tunnel at Tunnel. The last train to pass through the tunnel did so, carry freight, from Tonganah to Launceston, on October 1, 2004.

Moss now grows over the tracks, and blackberry shrubs edge further down the banks each season, but otherwise the tunnel is in good condition. Work on a 26 km long rail trail from Scottsdale to Tulendeena along the former railway line has been in progress for several years, and the trail sits at 26 kilometres in length. As progress continues on the trail, it is planned that it will be expanded to pass through the tunnel. Location: off Tunnel Road, Tunnel, Tas.

Scottsdale Station, 1907

The North East Railway

From 1882, the Tasmanian government constructed numerous branch lines including the Launceston-Scottsdale line as well as extending the Western Line along the North-West Coast. The Launceston-Scottsdale line was opened in February 1889 and passed through twelve stations along the way. The railway was extended to Branxholm in 1911, and later, Herrick.

Scottsdale Station today

Train travel was slow by contemporary standards. In 1923, a ‘modern’ motor train was trialled between Launceston and Scottsdale. While the journey took over 3 hours, it was deemed a success having shaved 23 minutes off the usual time. Due to increased competition from road transport, sluggish commute times threatened the future of rail. At the time, the fastest service to Launceston occupied 2 hours and 45 minutes compared to just 2 hours by motor car.

North East Rail Trail
Railway alignment near Lilydale Falls

The shift away from rail, including trams, was a widespread phenomenon in the post war years across Australia and the English speaking world. Urban and state planners anticipated savings and greater flexibility from promoting road and personal motor car use. By 1978, the last passenger trains closed down in Tasmania and the rail network, including the Launceston-Scottsdale line, focused on carrying freight. By the early 1980s there were just three daily services between Scottsdale and Launceston transporting logs, woodchips and other goods however, by 2005, the line was closed. Enthusiasts still hope that a passenger service might be revived as a result of the increased popularity of heritage railways.