Tasmania’s heritage trail is a collection of quaint old towns off the inland highway between Launceston and Hobart. After seeing photos of the towns online during Autumn I knew I had to go!
Launceston to Hobart via the Heritage Trail
If you’re into old buildings, quaint little towns with tree lined streets and lots of sweet shops then you shouldn’t skip the heritage trail!
Some towns to stop at along the road that goes through the middle of the island ending back in Hobart:
- Campbell Town
- One of the old houses runs by the National Trust. I chose Clarendon House (grand old mansion)
If you have limited time I’d stop at only Ross and Richmond.
I started in Launceston and ended in Hobart. I do think the timing’s would’ve been better if I’d started in Hobart and ended in Launceston as RIchmond was a bit rushed in the end – I did get to see everything I wanted though.
Anyway, here’s my recommendations (and timings for each town).
Depart Launceston at 9:00am, drive 20 minutes to Evandale.
This town had a cute shop with a bit of everything and plenty of handmade things. Very nicely presented but also expensive. I expected every town along the heritage trail to have a knick knack shop like this but this ended up being the only one I found!
Recommended visit: There isn’t much to do in Evandale so I recommend a short 20 minute stop. The main street is very small, there’s really only the cute knick knack store and a couple of old buildings. This was one of the smallest towns on the route.
If you haven’t been earlier in your trip, you can go the longer route to Evandale via Ben Lamond if you’re game enough to try Jacob’s Ladder.
Depart Evandale around 9:45am and drive 10 minutes to Clarendon House (opens at 10am)
Clarendon House is a grand old mansion once owned by one of Tasmania’s early settlers. It’s paid entry (donation to the National Trust so they can do repairs). One of the volunteers told us some of the history of the place. Usually I don’t care too much about history and just want to look at old building, however the story of this place was actually interesting. The owners had a ton of kids (the place has like 10 bedrooms!) and there’s a bullet hole in one of the upper floor windows.
I’ve always had somewhat of an obsession with autumn leaves, probably because we don’t have them in QLD. So I’ll admit one of the main reasons for visiting Clarendon House was to see it’s tree lined driveway. Sadly I was a bit late for the Autumn leaves (visited 3rd week of April)
Recommended visit: 1 hour
Most of the drive is farmlands / scrub typical of mainland Australia however there was a small patch of tree line tunnel’s in some places
Next it’s a 45 minute drive to Campbell Town. This is one of the biggest towns on the route and has a huge bakery that’s worth a visit. If you follow my timings in this itinerary you’ll arrive in town around lunchtime.
Take a walk down the main street heading towards the bridge (that’s at the towards Hobart side of town) and you’ll come across the Heritage trail with bricks that have convict names and their crimes. Was quite interesting – 7 years if you stole a handkerchief!
Nowhere near as nice as the Richmond bridge but at the end of the convict trail so may as well take a look….
Recommended visit: no more than 1 hour (including lunch at the bakery)
Next, drive 10 minutes to Ross.
This was my favorite of the towns on the Heritage Highway.
The entire main street is tree lined, nice old buildings and the Tasmania Wool Centre. They have samples of different wool that you can touch which will be helpful when I’m buying winter clothes in the future e.g. different types of Merino
Once I saw a photo like this online, there was no way I was skipping this town. Autumn colors <3
Recommended visit: 30 – 45 minutes
I’d do a loo stop in this town. The public toilets were very clean and conveniently located in the centre of the town.
After Ross it’s a 30 minute drive to Oatlands.
The main attraction in this town is it’s mill.
They used to do tours of the mill but sadly don’t do them anymore 🙁 As a result this is a bit of a ghost town with not much happening.
If I hadn’t already
stuffed my face eaten some goodies from the Campbell Town bakery I would’ve stopped in at this cute crepe shop!
Recommended visit: 15 minutes (unless you’re stopping for crepes)
Drive 45 minutes from Oatlands to Richmond (aim to arrive no later than 3:30pm as most things shut at 4 – 4:30pm)
#1 things to do in Richmond? Visit the sweet shop and have some gelato of course!
The sweet shop is so cute (but also so expensive)
If you’re into jigsaw puzzles this town randomly had a puzzle shop! And a bakery of course.
The gelato at the Coal Valley Creamery was my favorite in Tasmania (liked it better than the Van Diemen’s Land Cramery).
Lastly, don’t forget to do a photo stop at the famous Richmond Bridge. Do this after visiting the town as things shut early, plus you’ll skip most of the tour buses with people photobombing.
Recommended visit: 1.5 hours
From Richmond it’s only a 30 minute drive to Hobart, or 20 – 25 minute drive to Hobart airport. If you run out of time and don’t fly out of Hobart until the next day you could swing by Richmond before heading to the airport.
- If you drive non-stop between Launceston and Hobart it is only around 2.5hours.
- There’s a town approx every half an hour
- Just about every town has a bakery
- There are public toilets at each town
- If you have limited time I’d stop at only Ross and Richmond
- There are various museums and historical sites so if you’re interested in that and prefer to go at a slower pace you could stretch the heritage trail to 2 days or do 1.5 days and half day in Hobart.
Planning a trip to Tasmania? See my 10 day self-drive itinerary in this post.
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