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Tasman Peninsula & Port Arthur

Just an hour from Hobart lie the staggering coastal landscapes, sandy beaches and historic sites of the Tasman Peninsula. Bushwalking, surfing, sea kayaking, diving and rock-climbing opportunities abound – all good reasons to extend your visit beyond a hurried day trip from Hobart.

Don’t miss visiting the peninsula’s vertiginous 300m-high sea cliffs – the tallest in the southern hemisphere – studded with natural add-ons such as the legendary Totem Pole sea stack. Most of the cliffs are protected by Tasman National Park, which is best explored on the fabulous, four-day Three Capes Track that has fast become Tasmania's go-to coastal hike.

Waiting portentously at the end of Arthur Hwy is Port Arthur, the infamous and allegedly escape-proof 19th-century penal colony. Today kids kick footballs and families cook sausages on the BBQs here, but it’s impossible to totally blank out the tragedy of this place, both historically and more recently.