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Longford is a country town full of colonial charm, lovely convict-built buildings and grand estates that relive the past.

Longford is a classified historic town with many fine houses and estates built by convicts in the early 1800s. The town also boasts the elegant Longford Christ Church and settlers cemetery, an impressive collection of hotels and inns, and the oldest continuously operating motorcar racecourse in Australia.

Longford has a strong agricultural tradition that continues today and a visit to one of its impressive estates provides a real taste of the pioneering days when the original farming families used convict labour to create grand reminders of their English heritage. Woolmers and Brickendon estates, both World Heritage listed sites, and Panshanger Estate are authentic examples of Australian pioneer farms with their impressive architecture and many stories.

Longford also has a strong motor racing history. In its heyday in the 50s and 60s, Longford saw the likes of Brabham, Hill, Clark and Surtees race on the 7.2 km Longford circuit. Sections of the Formula 1 track, which was closed in 1968, still remain today including its most famous stretch, The Flying Mile, where cars once reached a staggering 288km/h.

There are more treasures to be found in Longford - antiques shops, hearty food to be had and some of Tasmania's best Bed and Breakfasts in beautiful old homes.

The Woodstock Lagoon Wildlife Sanctuary is a must for nature and bird lovers, with a huge area reserved as a nesting and breeding sanctuary for large numbers of waterfowl.

Longford is a 20-min drive (24 km) south-west of Launceston.

Local tips

  • Pick up a National Trust brochure from the Post Office and take a self-guided walking tour of the town
  • Visit the Tasmanian Honey Company and sample unique leatherwood honey.