Gardens of Tasmania
Meander Valley, Bay of Fires and the Derwent and Huon Valleys
with Jennifer Stackhouse
28 October – 05 November 2018 (9 days)
Traverse the Island State with garden writer Jennifer Stackhouse to explore springtime gardens from the Meander Valley and Bay of Fires in the north to the Derwent and Huon Valleys in the south.
In the north, explore historic Culzean Gardens, Old Wesley Dale and the apple orchards of Wychwood. Visit Brickendon Estate and Highview country garden near Scottsdale. Explore the spectacular Bay of Fires National Park on a guided walking tour before heading south towards Hobart.
In the Huon and Derwent valleys get to know some of the private gardens and nurseries that make the island bloom, including Eggs and Bacon Cottage Garden and Prospect House Garden.
Complement your exploration of Tasmania by joining our four-day tour to the Tasmanian Chamber Music Festival in the charming town of Evandale beforehand.
AT A GLANCE:
• Visit Culzean Gardens and Old Wesley Dale in the Meander Valley and Brickendon Estate near Longford, and explore the stunning Bay of Fires National Park
• Discover cottage gardens in the Huon Valley, and visit Crawleigh Wood Nursery, set within lush rainforest
• Gain access to private gardens near Scottsdale and in the Derwent Valley
• Before the tour, take the opportunity to enjoy four days of fine music at the Tasmanian Chamber Music Festival in Evandale
Note: At time of publication (April 2018), most but not all garden visits were confirmed. Private owners, in particular, are reluctant to commit more than two to three months prior to the visit. Therefore, while we undertake to operate the tour as published, there may be some changes to the itinerary.
Sunday 28 October 2018 / Arrive Launceston
Suggested arrival in Launceston in the early afternoon. Renaissance Tours or your travel agent can assist you with your flights and other travel arrangements.
Make your way to the hotel and check in. Tour arrangements begin at 17:00 with an orientation tour, encompassing Launceston’s elegant City Park, historic Albert Hall and the thriving Tamar River waterfront.
Continue to Cataract Gorge Reserve for a welcome dinner and drinks with Jennifer and fellow travellers. (D)
Mon 29 Oct / Launceston (Meander Valley)
This morning, drive west of Launceston through the Meander Valley to Culzean Gardens in Westbury. Culzean features an Anglo-Indian-style house built in 1841 and a 1.2 hectare lake. During the late spring this colourful garden bursts with rhododendrons and azaleas.
Continue through the Meander Valley to the 1830s estate of Old Wesley Dale near Mole Creek. After lunch, explore this beautifully restored rural property with wonderful views of the Great Western Tiers.
Then visit Wychwood Garden & Nursery, a gorgeous one-hectare temperate garden whose features include sweeping borders full of perennials, old roses and ornamental grasses, a fruit and vegetable garden, a heritage apple orchard, water features and woodland areas.Return to Launceston in the late afternoon before an evening at leisure. (BL)
Tue 30 Oct / Launceston
Discover Tasmania’s World Heritage Brickendon Estate. Enjoy a morning tea and a guided tour of its special garden, with the added enjoyment of the beauty of 180-year-old trees from all parts of the world.
Enjoy lunch at the Jolly Farmer Inn, followed by a tour of its Georgian-style building dating back to 1826 and charming garden.
Continue to Evandale, a National Trust-classified Georgian village. Visit Leybourne private garden, and then enjoy some free time in the village before returning to Launceston. (BL)
Wed 31 Oct / Launceston – St Helens
Depart Launceston for a full day’s drive across the Northeast to St Helens. On the way, visit Anabel’s Garden in Scottsdale and Highview country garden. Enjoy a warm country welcome from the owners and lunch in a garden.
Arrive in St Helens in the late afternoon and check in to the hotel. Enjoy dinner in the hotel restaurant. (BLD)
Thu 01 Nov / St Helens
During a half-day guided walk, explore stunning Binalong Bay and the Bay of Fires, a coast of white sandy beaches dotted with giant granite boulders. Its landscape of coastal heathlands and woodlands co-mingles with 100 species of birds and wildlife.
The afternoon is at leisure, with the opportunity to embark on a one-hour return walk to St Helens Point where you will find the spectacular Peron Dunes and vast ocean beach overlooking scenic Georges Bay. Dinner tonight is at a local restaurant. (BD)
Fri 02 Nov / St Helens – Hobart
Enjoy a leisurely day’s drive along the picturesque East Coast down to Hobart. On the way, stop for a visit to the picturesque port town of Bicheno.Then, explore the Tasmanian Bushland Garden near Orford. This regional botanic garden is devoted to Tasmanian native plants, featuring some of the rare and threatened plants of this region. Continue to Hobart and check in to the hotel, before dinner in a local restaurant. (BD)
Sat 03 Nov / Hobart (Huon Valley)
After breakfast, enjoy some free time to explore the iconic Salamanca Market at your own pace. This weekly outdoor market takes place every Saturday and gathers over 300 stallholders from all over Tasmania including creative artisans and talented musicians.
After lunch at a local restaurant, continue to Eggs and Bacon Bay Cottage Garden, located in a sheltered bend of the Huon River. Discover its flowering Tasmanian understory garden before continuing to Crawleighwood Nursery and Garden. Wander between rhododendrons, maple woodlands, Gondwanan rainforest species, rare and unusual plants. Enjoy afternoon tea on the property before returning to Hobart. (BL)
Sun 04 Nov / Hobart (Derwent Valley)
After breakfast, depart for Hamilton for a visit to Prospect House and Garden. Admire the elegant early-colonial architecture of the house and half a hectare of colourful gardens.
Continue to New Norfolk, located in the upper Derwent Valley, with lunch at leisure and free time in the town. Visit a private garden in Richmond before returning to Hobart in the late afternoon. (B)
Mon 05 Nov / Depart Hobart
In the morning, visit the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens. Begun in 1818, this is Australia’s second oldest botanic garden, this year celebrating its bicentenary. Explore the garden with a guided introductory walk followed by free time to continue at your own pace.
Enjoy a special farewell lunch with Jennifer and fellow travellers.
Tour arrangements conclude after lunch in central Hobart. Make your way to the airport for suggested flights departing from 18:00 onwards. (BL)