Australia, Road Trip, Tasmania, Trekking

Freycinet National Park Guide: What to do and Where to stay

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As explained in my Tasmania road trip planning post, we were in Tasmania for only 5 days. With such a short time, I decided to explore a little bit of the eastern coast of Tasmania and it’s pretty much a no-brainer that you have to stop by Freycinet National Park!

If you are planning a trip to Tasmania and are interested in a self-drive itinerary, please read this post first! For more travel guides to Tasmania, you can see more of my Tasmania posts.

In this post, you’ll find details on Freycinet National Park, the highlight of the great east coast drive of Tasmania.

Getting to Freycinet National Park

Driving a rental car

The easiest way to get to the park is to fly to Hobart/Launceston, rent a car and drive yourself from there. It takes approximately 2.5 hours to drive non-stop, but there are a few spots and lookout points to check out along the Tasman Highway (also known as A3 on your map). I recommend stopping by:

  • Katy’s Berry Farm in Swansea – we did not have time for this, but an acquaintance in Melbourne totally raved about their scones and berry jam. And he’s English, so that says a lot 😉
  • Great Oyster Bay Lookout point – you’ll see a few signs for this along the Tasman Highway. Just pull in quickly for some quick photos.
  • Spiky Bridge – Right off the highway, this bridge is just a 5 minute stop to admire the unique spiky design and the history that comes with it. The bridge is a result of convict labor from the 1800s.
  • Museum of Old and New Arts (MONA) – If you are driving up from Hobart, make sure to stop by this museum! It’s located about 15 minutes drive north from Hobart.

Tours from Hobart/Launceston

If you choose not to drive, there are plenty of day tour options leaving from both Hobart and Launceston. This is actually a pretty convenient option – you save some energy because you can just sleep on the bus and you don’t have to worry about planning any extra accommodation around Freycinet. The downside is, of course, you won’t be as free as you would if you go by yourself. You also have to leave pretty early and come back late.

Alternatively, if you have time to kill you can also check out the 4-day Freycinet Experience walking tour, which will take you through the most beautiful parts of the national park.

Where to stay overnight

If you decide to stay overnight, I’ve done research on all the sensible options, which comes down to staying in Coles Bay, Swansea or Bicheno.

Coles Bay

Coles Bay is the closest option since it’s pretty much within the park territory, but all the hotels were expensive and the town is very small so I immediately ruled them out.


I settled on Bicheno, a small quiet town about 30-minutes drive from Freycinet National Park. They are the closest and cheapest option to Freycinet. We stayed at Bicheno by the bay for two nights, a beautiful lodge just minutes walk away from the beach and city center of Bicheno. It’s a very simple accommodation, but I loved it! They have the best shower out of all the accommodations I had on this trip. The hot water heats up in seconds, has good water pressure and they have a heating lamp in the bathroom – something I truly missed on cold nights when I was stepping out of the shower.

There were more things to do there as well, such as the Bicheno Penguins Night tour and Bicheno Beach & Blowhole.

The Bicheno Penguins tour was honestly a little uneventful for us. With anything involving wildlife, it always depends on your luck and we were unlucky. We only saw two penguins in the wild during the entire tour. You still get to see the penguins since some of them have adopted a nest in the manmade boxes placed alongside the beach, but that’s not quite the same as seeing them in the wild. That said, The tour costs only AU$35 so you can still try your luck!

The Bicheno beach is beautiful though. I recommend going down there 30 minutes before sunset and just walk along the beach, and make sure to check out the blowhole too!

Bicheno Beach
Bicheno Beach
Sunset at Bicheno Beach
Sunset at Bicheno Beach
The Bicheno Blowhole


Swansea is a bit further away to the park than Bicheno (45 minutes drive). I did not choose to overnight in Swansea because of this, and also based on the prices of accommodation. However, if you want to splurge, you can stay at Thalia Haven – a luxurious accommodation boasting this totally Instagram-worthy outdoor bathtub facing the Great Oyster Bay! I was scrolling my Facebook feed when I saw a friend’s glorious photo inside this bathtub with a glass of champagne – you can get the same photo for about $650 – 800 a night.

Thalia Haven at Swansea
Thalia Haven at Swansea (picture taken from their website)

Things to do at Freycinet National Park

Now that we’ve settled on how you’ll be getting to Freycinet and where to stay, let’s check out what you can do at the park:

Wineglass Bay

Wineglass Bay is undoubtedly the poster child of Freycinet. One look at the beach from above and you’ll see why it’s so popular. Just look at that perfectly white sand and azure water! And you’ll probably quickly figure out why it’s named so – it curves like the base of a wine glass.

There are a few options you can choose from to enjoy the famous Wineglass Bay view:

Mount Amos Hike: The Most Difficult option (with the best view!)

At the top of Mount Amos, Freycinet National Park
At the top of Mount Amos, Freycinet National Park

Not gonna lie, I was quite nervous about this hike since I read many reviews on how difficult it is. And guess what? All those reviews were correct! If you are a tall, athletic person then it might be a walk in the park for you… but for this 160-cm short girl, it was not an easy hike. The first 10 minutes was pretty easy, then you start hitting slanted smooth granite surface and that’s when it starts to get challenging.

One of the many warning signs we saw on the way up of Mount Amos
One of the many warning signs we saw on the way up of Mount Amos

And I suppose this is what makes the hike very dangerous in wet conditions so here’s a long list of DON’Ts

  • I highly do NOT recommend doing this hike if it had rained earlier in the day, or if it is currently raining, or if you think it will rain in the next 2-3 hours.
  • I also do NOT recommend doing this after sunset, so make sure you allocate enough daylight time for this hike.
  • Do NOT wear regular running shoes. I recommend wearing proper trekking shoes. I was wearing my simple Nike running shoes which had absolutely no tread against the type of granite surface found on Mount Amos.
  • Lastly, do NOT try to go off track. Just follow the yellow arrows on the rock and you will be fine. I read some news about hikers who went missing on this track and had to be rescued by helicopter the following day. It turns out they went off track and couldn’t figure out their way back. So yeah, don’t go off track and don’t forget to sign in and out of the guest book at the carpark!

Anyway, back to the hike – about 30 minutes into it, the path started to get really steep and we had to get down on all fours to continue the climb, aka “scrambling”. It was quite challenging for me since the rocks were sharp, steep and high. At some points of the hike, I had to hoist myself up on a rock that is about the height of my stomach while making sure I don’t lose footing. My arms and legs were definitely sore the next day! And the rocks were sharp enough that I got a thin cut on my finger.

Super steep climb, albeit picturesque, at Mount Amos
Super steep climb, albeit picturesque, at Mount Amos

However, the good thing about the hike is that it’s relatively short so even though it was difficult it didn’t last that long. After all, it was only an elevation gain of about 400m. But it was truly a beautiful hike all the way through. The entire time, your back is facing the direction of Coles Bay and Great Oyster Bay, and because it was so steep you pretty much get an unobstructed picturesque view of those bays, while in front of you are endless slabs of huge, steep granite rocks. But once you conquer those pesky rocks – I swear, if you thought the view hiking up was beautiful, wait till you see the Wineglass Bay reveal on the other side of the mountain. THAT view was a million times worth it for only an hour hike up.

In total it took us a little over an hour to go up, then we spent about 30 minutes at the peak and another 1.5 hours to climb down. Yes, the descent took longer even though you take the exact same route down. I was basically crab-walking and slip-n-sliding my butt down the mountain.

At the end of our hike, we were rewarded by an adorable sight: Two curious, wild wallabies getting really close to the carpark and begging for food. Note: Do NOT feed the wildlife no matter how cute! You can see them sniffing around backpacks here but I’m glad to report nobody was trying to feed them even though they were so adorable.

Wallabies at the carpark!
Wallabies at the carpark!

Wineglass Bay Lookout: Moderate Difficulty (but still with a great view!)

If you think the Mount Amos hike is not for you, you can try the Wineglass Bay Lookout path instead. I did not do this one, but I read online that it is nowhere near as bad as Mount Amos. However, it’s still a considerably long walk – it would take you 2.5 hours to return to the lookout point and you get to actually go to the beach itself. You then have the option to continue towards Hazard Beach for a longer walk, which will take you 4-5 hours to return back to the car park.

For the complete list of day walks, you can visit the Freycinet National Park website.

Honeymoon Bay

Honeymoon bay at Freycinet National Park
Honeymoon Bay at Freycinet National Park

After climbing Mount Amos, we decided we had enough walking and we would only check out the short walks. If climbing the sharp steep rocks of Mount Amos is not your thing – don’t worry! At Freycinet National Park, you can still enjoy the amazing view and vivid colors without all the work!

Honeymoon Bay is probably the shortest of them all with a picturesque view right off the carpark. Honeymoon Bay is a gravely beach with plenty of flat granite rocks to sit on. It’s a popular spot for a picnic so definitely come here with some food. You can sit on one of the many rocks and enjoy the incredible view and colors.

Sleepy Bay

This is slightly longer than Honeymoon Bay, but still equally picturesque. It takes about 5-8 minutes to walk down to the actual beach. The terrain of Sleepy Beach is similar to Honeymoon Beach – rough gravel and large granite rocks line up the coast. We stayed a bit longer at Sleepy Beach though, because we decided to climb up the granite rocks over to the other side where there were MORE granite rocks and large Kelp forests you could see from the coast.

View from the walk down to Sleepy Beach
View from the walk down to Sleepy Beach
Large Rocks at Sleepy Beach
Large Rocks at Sleepy Beach
Beautiful shells at Sleepy Beach
Beautiful shells at Sleepy Beach
View from Sleepy Beach
View from Sleepy Beach

Freycinet Marine Farm

We came here for lunch after Mount Amos and before going back to Honeymoon Bay and Sleepy Bay. If you love oysters, this place is absolute heaven and very moderately priced. Me? I LOVE Oysters and have always been partial to the Tasmanian ones, so I was on cloud nine. At Freycinet Marine Farm, the Oysters and Mussels were harvested fresh from the farm on a daily basis, while the Scallops and Salmon were sourced from local fishermen.

We ordered half a dozen of natural oysters with lemon, half a dozen of baked oysters ($12) with smoked Tasmanian salmon and brie ($12), two garlic scallops ($15), and two glasses of local wine ($9 and $10 each). The total of this meal was $58 for 2 people!

Baked Oysters and Scallops at Freycinet Marine Farm
Baked Oysters and Scallops at Freycinet Marine Farm
Natural Oysters and Local Wine at Freycinet Marine Farm

We gulped those down rather fast, so we ordered more – Uni (aka Sea Urchin) for $15. It was interesting since the color and textures are different than the Uni that I’m used to – it was a darker orange and had a more rough/chunkier texture, but it was still delicious!

Sea Urchin at Freycinet Marine Farm
Sea Urchin at Freycinet Marine Farm

I highly recommend making this stop while you are in Freycinet, but take note they close early at 5 pm, so go for lunch or a mid-day snack. Optionally, you can also get a takeaway from here and go to Honeymoon Bay for a picnic! It’s only a 10-minute drive away.

BONUS: What causes the orange hues on the granite rocks?

While visiting Honeymoon Beach, I started to notice the orange hues on the granite rocks that line up the coastal areas I could see at a distance. I saw this again from afar at Sleepy Bay and thought some metals may have rusted. It didn’t make sense, but the gradient of orange looked like rust to me from afar.

It was only when we returned to our hotel that day at Bicheno that I finally got to see them up close at Bicheno Beach.

Lichen algae on granite at Bicheno
Lichen algae on granite at Bicheno

Turns out the granites were orange-colored because it is covered by lichens, a combination of algae and fungus. If you drive further up north along the east coast, you’ll reach the Bay of Fires which has the same orange hue. I wonder if this is why it’s called the Bay of Fires?

Either way, we know Orange and Blue are complementary colors, and perhaps that is why the coast of Tasmania is so pleasing to the eye.

If you are planning a trip to Tasmania and is interested in a self-drive itinerary, please read this post first! For more travel guides to Tasmania, you can see more of my Tasmania posts.

Note: I was sent on a road trip to explore Tasmania by and Tourism Tasmania (@tasmania). All thoughts and opinions remain my own.

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Filed under: Australia, Road Trip, Tasmania, Trekking

Written by Melissa

Hi there! 👋🏻 I'm the "Girl" in Girl Eat World. I love eating, traveling and sharing my travel experiences in this blog. During the day, I work as a designer in tech. More about me →


  1. Fay F says

    Loved the rundown as I’m off to this area in 2 weeks and was planning my trip…..thank you so much xo
    Will post once we have gone

  2. Quang says

    I had read thought your experiences, about Tasmania very exciting we going to pick up a car and hopefully all your information help

  3. Candace & Dylan says

    Hey Melissa,

    Thanks for providing such a great read, we have recently travelled through Tassie and were keen to see if others enjoyed it as much as we did. By the looks of it you did!

    Our favourite day in Freycinet was climbing Mount Amos and you are spot on by saying the view is one million times worth it! And the wallabies are so cute. You managed such a great close up shot! We were greeted by a little one next to our van in the car park. He was surprisingly friendly also and we managed to get a selfie with him!

    Thanks again for the great read. It’s awesome to get different peoples perspectives on travelling

    Candace & Dylan

  4. Yvonne Tan says

    Hi Melissa,

    Thanks so much for your information. Will definitely make a trip to the National Park.
    May I know what you mean unsealed road, does it means off the normal road, which is not path.

  5. Yvonne Tan says

    Hi Melissa,
    Thanks for the great travel blog. It is so informative. I am planning a short trip to Tasmania, 4 days 3 nites in end April. I have intend to make a one nite stay at Hobart (Sunday), I will miss the Salamanca market, and follow your 2 nites stay at Bicheno to explore Freycinet National Park and the various bays mentioned in your blog. However, I am not someone that enjoy hiking and based on your blog, it seems challenging. May I know if I don’t do any hiking, than I will just explore the different bays, may I know if there is any other things to do at the National Park. And if I don’t do a any hiking, is there anywhere for me to see those great view.
    I have also intend to wake up early and drive all the way to the airport from Bicheno, may I know the road condition, it is safe to do so.
    Appreciate your advice. Thanks

    • Melissa Hie says

      Hey Yvonne! I am glad to hear you are going to visit Tasmania!

      1. Freycinet National Park has lots of sights that do not require hiking at all. The only challenging hike was Mount Amos, but definitely you can still just visit Sleepy Bay and Honeymoon Bay. These two did not require hiking at all. Lots of other sights arealso reachable by car. Take a look here to see those walks: . Maybe you can check out Cape Tourville. If you really want to see Wineglass Bay, the only way is to hike. You can take a cruise if you don’t want to do that.

      2. The road in Tasmania was great. The only thing I have to caution is that there are lots of roadkills so you need to watch where you are going and try to not drive at night. I suspect the animals were hit at night. Also, we came across a stretch of unsealed road and drove on it for about an hour. It was alright, but could be a little scary if you have never done that before.

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