I’ve got family travelling in Tasmania at the moment and have been reflecting on walk suggestions to share with them. A favourite is the walk to Cape Raoul on the Tasman Peninsula which combines stunning views of the coast line including the famous big wave surfing spot of Shipstern Bluff, bush and cliff top walking as well as wildlife.
The walk starts in farmland off the Stormlea Road about 100 km east of Tasmania’s capital city, Hobart. After crossing a stile and passing through grasslands the track climbs through open trees before reaching the cliff top after about 2km.
The view from this point is jaw dropping and not for the faint hearted. I’ve walked to this point four times and each time it has taken my breath away. The track emerges from the tree line with little warning to a vantage point of Raoul Bay from some of the highest sea cliffs in the Southern Hemisphere. Be very careful near the edge and if you have young kids make sure not to let them run ahead!
From there the track provides two choices. To the right is a side branch down to Shipsterns Bluff (see below). I’ve not been down, but the footage of big wave surfers there is worth checking out if you haven’t seen it.
To the left the track continues out to Cape Raoul itself. I’ve done the walk out to the point once and would highly recommend it. The walk undulates along a good track with stunning views all the way before reaching the Cape where you may see sea lions, whales, dolphins and various sea birds.
The return walk to the Cape and back is about 5 hours, or 2 hours return to the initial view point. There are numerous track notes available including in John Chapman’s excellent Day Walks Tasmania, the Tas Trails website or local Parks and Wildlife Service.
The Tasman Peninsula is packed with world class walking routes including to Cape Huay and Cape Pillar. There is a new Three Capes Track due to open later this year linking the three capes into a multi-day great walk. It has been highlighted by Lonely Planet as a must do travel highlight for 2015 (read more here).
You can read more about day walks in Tasmania in our post Taste of Tassie: 5 Great Short Walks in Tasmania.