Tasmania 2023


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Tasmania's East Coast

15 - 27 March 2023 (13 Days / 12 Nights)

This is the 3rd time we’ve planned this trip. Editions 1 and 2 had to be cancelled due to a certain virus. 3rd time lucky. The good thing about planning a trip 3 times, is that after almost 2 years of research we think we’ve nailed the perfect itinerary.

Our trips are all about finding the right balance. The perfect mix of cycling, sightseeing, cafes, restaurants, and rest.

RIDE Holidays promises a fantastic 13 days along the scenic east coast of Tasmania. Team Macchiato (non-riding partners) are very welcome and will be well looked after. You will have a dedicated Team Mac (non-riding) guide (Katrina) and vehicle.

Thank you for your patience. We can’t wait to finally show you around.






Overview of the Tour

Our tour starts in Launceston. Known for being the vibrant food, wine and culture hub of Tasmania. And home to Richie Porte.     

We then travel towards the east coast. First stop – 2 nights in St Helens. Known for its beautiful beaches, oh, and oysters.

We spend 2 nights in Tasmania's oldest National Parks - Freycinet, 1 night at the seaside village of Orford, 2 nights in Eaglehawk Neck before enjoying 3 nights in Hobart.

We'll feast on some of the best seafood, produce and wine this region has to offer, tackle the challenging climb of Mount Wellington, visit the Heritage sites of Port Arthur and yes, experience the famous Salamanca Markets and MONA! ( Museum of Old and New Art)

Like all Ride Holidays trips, there will be Espresso, Latte and Cappuccino ride distances to choose from. There will be some relaxed days and some challenging riding.

Can’t wait!!









Tour of Tasmania | Tour Details


Our Cycle Tour | Inclusions and Highlights

  • Ride up Mt Wellington - Hobart
  • Famous Salamanca Markets
  • Australia's oldest National Parks
  • Walk to the scenic Wineglass Bay
  • Hand-picked cafes and restaurants
  • Multiple ride options for varying abilities
  • RIDE Holidays cycle jersey and souvenir tour booklet
  • GPS routes available for uploading to bicycle computers
  • Explore Port Arthur Historical sites
  • Separate tour guide (Katrina) and vehicle for Team Macchiato
  • Quality, central accommodation
  • Specific training program from a professional coach
  • Majority of meals as per itinerary. Cycling snacks on the road.
  • Ferry to Maria Island
  • Entry to MONA Museum, Port Arthur & Freycinet National Park

    The Tour Price Excludes

    • Airfares
    • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
    • Alcoholic beverages
    • Travel insurance
    • Mountain biking in St Helens (that’s an extra cost)

    The Tour Cost

    • Cost: NZD8400.00 (Twin Share)
    Want your own room? Single supplement NZD2400.00 extra for your own room.

      OPTIONAL EXTRAS:

      Bike hire can be arranged but it’s on a case by case. Depending on what you need. Please contact Dean for more details.

        Deposit & Balance terms and conditions. The initial deposit is $500.00 per person. Full payment will be due 60 days prior to departure. Our Covid guarantee - The most you will lose (including inside 30 days) is $500.00 which covers our fixed costs like the clothing etc. (which you would still receive)



          Click on map for larger version









          Tasmania Tour Itinerary

          Day 1, Wednesday 15 March

          Welcome to Tasmania

          Home to just 500,000 people, the island of Tasmania is as intimate as it is beautiful. Believe us, this will be an unforgettable trip.

          Ideally, you would arrive in Launceston by early afternoon. If you want to arrive a day before then that’s fine. We’ll arrange the extra nights’ accommodation for you. As well as airport transfers.

          Being one of the oldest cities in Australia, Launceston was settled by Europeans in 1806. Today it is Tasmania’s second largest city with a population of 70000 people. 

          This afternoon, we'll help you assemble the bikes and then pop out for a short ride along the Tamar River to make sure there are no mechanical issues.

          Team Mac – Katrina is your guide, and she will have a plan for each day. It’s a flexible plan though. If there’s anything specific, you want to do then she’ll make it happen. This afternoon the idea is to head out to explore the stunning Cataract Gorge and its sculpted gardens.

          Tonight, we've picked a local restaurant for our welcome dinner where we will run through the next few days and introduce the team.

          / Accommodation: Peppers Silo Hotel, Launceston
          / Meals Included: Dinner


          Day 2, Thursday 16 March

          Fish Shop 40, let’s make it the Fish Shop 100!!

          We've pretty much got one day to show you Launceston and its surroundings.

          Launceston’s favourite ride is called the Fish Shop 40 km and involves country roads to Exeter and back. The locals-only bike 40km. However we'll need a bit more, so we'll offer 50, 80km and 100km options. All rides finish where the locals finish - the Aromas Coffee shop. RH is lucky enough to have a few clients based in Launceston, so they'll join us today.

          Oh, keep an eye open for one Mr Richie Porte. This is his hometown and March is usually when he’s in the neighbourhood. He’s a really nice guy who often bikes with the locals. We will of course invite him to ride with us closer to the time. 

          Team Mac - we suggest that you join the cyclists in Exeter for coffee however like the next 10 days we certainly don't expect you to simply be following cycling legs bobbing up and down. So, your day consists of Exeter, the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery and of course - one of the vineyards that stretch northwest along the Tamar River.

          Tonight, we've booked a private boat for a dinner cruise… Why not!! We are on holiday, and I don't recall it being a weight loss program.

          / Accommodation: Peppers Silo Hotel, Launceston
          / Meals Included: Breakfast & Dinner


          Day 3, Friday 17 March

          The Pearl of Tasmania

          The total distance today is just over 160KM. The whippets will look at this as a challenge. Why not!! It’s your largest km opportunity of the trip. For the normal people – we’ll pick out the nicest 60km and 100km options. We’ll probably start in Scottsdale. While we prepare the bikes, you’ll time to grab a coffee from the local Art Café.

          Lunch today – will be where we find the perfect picnic lunch. Whippets will be offered EPO, blood transfusions and electrolytes. The rest of us will eye up the big box of donuts we’ve bought from the local bakery. Whippets and donuts do not mix.  

          Team Mac – Katrina will have a daily walk planned for you. Today on that walk you’ll be surrounded by lavender. You visit the Bridestowe estate where we’ve booked a guided tour of the farm. It’s no ordinary lavender farm though, welcoming thousands of tourists each year. There’s a huge range of activities, including the opportunity to make your own lavender soap. The setting is stunning and it’s well worth a few hours. We won’t make you eat sandwiches by the side of the road either. Katrina will take you to a nice restaurant for lunch.

          Our home for the next 2 nights is none other than St Helens. The largest town on the Northeast Coast with a population of about 2000 people and 6million oysters. What's for dinner you ask? Yep, you guessed right.

          / Accommodation: Panorama Hotel, St Helens
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

          Day 4, Saturday 18 March

          Bay of Fires  

          When we started researching this trip, it became obvious that St Helens simply had too much to offer to only stay 1 night. So, a 2nd night was built into the plan. Which gives you a great chance to have a good look around.

          There are the jaw-dropping beaches of the Bay of Fires, which made Lonely Planet's top-10 beach regions of the world. The southern end of these beaches is only a few kilometres from our hotel in St. Helens.

          Yes, we will ride our bikes. Dean will have you out on the road early. The plan is to check out the Bay of Fires this afternoon.

          There is also another option. St Helens is home to a 40km Mountain biking trail which starts in the Mountains and finishes at the Sea. Weirdly it’s called – Mountains to the Sea. We’ll offer mountain bikes, guides and transport for those that aren’t afraid of some trail. The first 15km is all downhill. (we are driven to the top) That sounds like fun. This ride actually finishes at the Bay of Fires so it’s the best of both worlds. 

          / Accommodation: Panorama Hotel, St Helens
          / Meals Included: Breakfast (Lunch and Dinner are own arrangements)



          Day 5, Sunday 19 March

          Freycinet National Park

          Today is a big day on the bike. We encourage you to ride as much as you can today. Tomorrow is a day off to explore Freycinet National Park on foot.

          After breakfast, we will load the luggage and roll out for the start of our coastal journey south. It's roughly 70KM to our lunch destination of Bicheno. Navigation - keep the blue stuff on the left and the mountains on the right. Hmm, we shouldn't lose anyone on this trip.

          After lunch, it's another 40km, but spectacular ride through the Coles Bay Conservation area to Freycinet Lodge which offers a stunning location with awe-inspiring views. You won't believe this is our home for the next two nights. It’s always been the focal point of this whole itinerary.

          Total distance today is approx. 114km with 1000VM. (that’s pretty much flat)  

          Team Mac - This morning you have a 10AM appointment with the devil. The East Coast Sanctuary Park has several feeding times throughout the day. I wouldn't suggest hand-feeding a Tassie devil for obvious reasons. Once you have had enough of cuddling the cute Wombats, let's join the cyclists for lunch in Bicheno.

          Dinner tonight is the world famous – Freycinet BBQ on the lawn.

          / Accommodation: Freycinet Lodge
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner


          Day 6, Monday 20 March

          Sunrise, Brilliant White Sand & Dolphins

          It's not every day you get to explore a National Park of this calibre. Enjoy.

          After breakfast we will head out to the Wineglass Bay lookout, the breath-taking views are simply not to be missed.

          We will continue walking down to the pristine sugar-white sandy beach of the bay. The walk from the hotel is approx. 3-4 hours return (10km) so good comfortable walking shoes would be highly recommended. It's not uncommon to see dolphins frolicking in the bay. We will also offer a shorter walking option.

          This afternoon is all about relaxing. It’s your choice. Do what you want to do. Golfers - Freycinet has an international golf course. Drinkers – yes, there are wineries close by. Workers – a good chance to catch up on those emails.

          Please note that the Lodge couldn’t fit us in as a group. You’ll need to make your own arrangements for dinner. There are 3 restaurants to choose from. Make sure you book a table early.

          / Accommodation: Freycinet Lodge
          / Meals Included: Breakfast & Lunch. (Dinner own arrangements)

          Day 7, Tuesday 21 March

          Orford

          We say goodbye to Freycinet National Park and ride (hotel to hotel) to the coastal village of Orford. Oxford in England was named after this small Tasmanian town. Fact or fiction?

          With just over 100km in distance, we first ride north out of the National Park before continuing south along the coast. Remember to keep the blue stuff on your left and green stuff on your right. Has anyone seen Evan Bayly?

          Swansea is our first coffee stop for today. In fact, let's have a pie. We are athletes after all.

          Team Mac - Tasmania's climate is fantastic for growing berries so we'll drop into Kate's Berry Farm to sample their amazing ice cream, fresh berries, and homemade chocolates. (salted caramel please)

          The village of Orford is located at the mouth of the Prosser River, on the coastal inlet of Prosser Bay.

          Total distance today is approx. 115km with 1020VM.

          / Accommodation: Eastcoaster
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

          Day 8, Wednesday 22 March

          Maria Island

          Your choice. It’s either an early morning ride out and back or a sleep in before we explore Maria Island. This afternoon we will load up the vans and transfer to our next hotel in Eaglehawk Neck.

          On the island, there are some amazing spots to explore. From the beautiful Painted Cliffs rock formations to the peaks of Bishop and Clark which offer stunning views over the island and the east coast of Tasmania. There is also plenty of wildlife to see with wombats, pademelons, wallabies, devils and a variety of bird species regularly spotted on the island. The island is a National Park and wildlife sanctuary. Vehicles are not allowed on the island so it's another walking adventure.

          Our home for the next 2 nights is the famous Eaglehawk Neck and the Tasman Peninsula. The narrowest part of the neck is known as the Dog line. It is here that you'll learn about the important role this small landmass had in creating what was effectively a natural prison for all those incarcerated at Port Arthur. A ferocious line of dogs prevented any convicts from escaping. A fascinating part of the world which is why it warrants staying 2 nights.

          / Accommodation: Lufra Hotel and Apartments
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner








          Day 9, Thursday 23 March

          Historical Port Arthur

          After breakfast, the plan is to ride 60km of the Tasman Peninsula stopping at Salem Bay then Barilla Bay for a coffee before finishing at the Port Arthur township. This afternoon is all about exploring this UNESCO world heritage site. Yes, there will be a test over dinner.

          We've booked a 40-minute walking tour along with a picturesque harbour cruise. You will also have access to more than 30 historic buildings, ruins, restored houses, and gardens.

          Port Arthur - The settlement started as a timber station in 1830, but it is best known for being a penal colony. (some of you people will need to watch out!!) From 1833 until 1853, it was the destination for the hardest of convicted British criminals, those who were secondary offenders having reoffended after their arrival in Australia. Rebellious personalities from other convict stations were also sent there. In addition, Port Arthur had some of the strictest security measures of the British penal system.

          Total distance today is approx. 60km with 1000VM.

          / Accommodation: Lufra Hotel and Apartments
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner


          Day 10, Friday 24 March

          Hobart here we come…

          We've been on the East Coast for almost a week and its now time to head towards the big smoke of Hobart. Actually, it only has a population 200k so maybe let’s refer to it as little smoke.

          The capital city of Tasmania sits on the River Derwent with its fashionable Salamanca Place, old sandstone warehouses host galleries and cafes. Nearby is Battery Point, a historic district with narrow lanes and colonial-era cottages. The city's backdrop is 1,270m-high Mount Wellington, with sweeping views, plus hiking and cycling trails.

          Team Mac - you head to Hobart via Richmond. One of Tasmania's most popular destinations, steeped in history, a hub for food and wine lovers. We then see you visiting the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens in Hobart. A natural wonderland with over 6,500 species of exotic and native plants, all in a beautifully landscaped setting that has been well-maintained for almost 200 years. (Sharon, like that?)

          Cyclists, it's only 90KM (hotel to hotel) however we will offer a shorter option (65km) for those who want to finish in Richmond. Let's join Team Mac for lunch in Richmond if we can.

          Tonight, we’ve booked a local craft brewery for dinner.

          / Accommodation: Salamanca Inn, Hobart
          / Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner


          Day 11, Saturday 25 March

          Tour of Hobart & the Salamanca Markets

          Hobart prides itself on being a cycle friendly city. There are literally hundreds of kilometres of bike paths. We’ll pick 75 of the best, combine that with 2 or 3 of the best cafes and voila – the perfect day is born.

          Team Mac - we have organised a walking tour to explore Hobart's waterfront and surroundings. Victoria Dock, (a working fishing harbour) Elizabeth Street Pier, and

          Constitution Dock. Famous finish to the annual Sydney to Hobart Yacht race.

          Later – we will follow Beverly Main to the award-winning Salamanca Market. It is a must-see. With over 300 stalls. These markets are a fantastic opportunity for local artists to display and sell their quality products.

          Tonight, is a free night. The staff are heading to a local Pizzeria. You are very welcome to join them. Please make sure you get an early night though. Tomorrow your biggest climb of the trip awaits. 

          / Accommodation: Salamanca Inn, Hobart
          / Meals Included: Breakfast & Dinner

          Day 12, Sunday 26 March

          Mt Wellington, MONA Museum and Dinner

          Big day. Great day. It’s our last on tour so let’s make the most of it.

          16.8km from our hotel is the top of Mount Wellington. Officially named Kunanyi in the indigenous Tasmanian language. It sits 1,271m above sea level with some of the most spectacular views of the city and the Derwent estuary. Our plan is to ride early to avoid the traffic. It's only a short 40km return, however the challenging part is the climbing.

          Let’s put this into perspective. Many of you are from Wellington. Mt Vic is 200m above sea level. This particular Wellington is 6 times that height.   

          Team Mac – you follow us up Mount Wellington as it’s a must for every visitor to Hobart.

          Let’s finish off in style. Late this afternoon we visit MONA. (Museum of Old and New Art) Another must. But wait, there’s more. Let’s stay at MONA for dinner at the Faro Restaurant. A light-drenched bar and restaurant suspended over the river, with lashings of fancy food, music and performance. The perfect end to a perfect trip.

          / Accommodation: Salamanca Inn, Hobart
          / Meals Included: Breakfast & Dinner


          Day 13, Monday 27 March

          Home James

          Hobart is a fantastic finishing location, and we would encourage you to spend a few more days exploring what the Capital of Tasmania has to offer.

          Those heading to the airport today will be looked after. We'll drop you off.

          Otherwise - thank you for travelling with Ride Holidays. You are now part of the RH family. We appreciate your loyalty. We hope you'll join us on one of our other worldwide adventures.

          Until next time. Safe travels. Safe riding.

          Thank you.


          / Meals Included: Breakfast


           

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