The biggest town in the southeast, agrarian Huonville flanks the Huon River 35km south of Hobart, not far from some lovely vineyards and small villages. Having made its name as Tasmania’s apple-growing powerhouse, it remains a functional, working town – low on charm but with all the services you need.
The Huon Hwy traces the Huon River south, passing the settlements of Franklin, Castle Forbes Bay and Port Huon. These were once important shipping ports for apples, but nowadays the old wharves and packing sheds are decaying like old fruit. Nearby Ranelagh is an agricultural hub, while strung-out Franklin is the oldest town in the Huon Valley. The wide, reedy riverscape here is one of Australia’s best rowing courses.