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Choose nature as your companion across Tasmania’s lingering winter evenings.

In Tasmania, winter nights are long and dark, and nature blows its cool breath over jagged mountain ranges, quiet coastlines and across the glittering sky. Rug up and chase auroras, gaze out at distant solar systems, meet the island’s nocturnal critters, get cosy by an outdoor firepit, or soak in a warm tub with ‘million-star’ views.

A lighthouse made of brick and painted white stands against the night sky, full of stars.
Aurora Australis, Cape Bruny Lighthouse
Luke Tscharke

Southern Light sights

Tasmania is one of the best places in the world to see the ethereal Aurora Australis, aka the Southern Lights. On some of the darkest and clearest winter nights, the elusive natural phenomenon blankets the southern sky with a shimming glow. Some top spots to watch the show include kunanyi / Mount Wellington, towering above Hobart; southern vantages on Bruny Island, like Cape Bruny Lighthouse or Truganini Lookout at the Neck; Coles Bay on the east coast, where the glow can sometimes be seen behind the granite peaks of the Freycinet Peninsula; and Stanley in the north west, where it’s possible to spot an aurora dancing beyond the hulking shadow of the Nut.

A large telescope stands in the foreground, while people stand in a group, gazing at the clear night sky filled with stars.
Nocturna, Beaker Street Festival
Rosie Hastie and Beaker Street

Dark-sky gazing

Long winter nights mean more time to ogle inky skies. Join a candlelit Dark Sky Dinner at Beaker Street Festival, merging astronomy with scintillating talks and fine fare. After sipping whisky under Turrakana / Tasman Peninsula skies at McHenry Distillery, head to the onsite observatory for some contemplative stargazing and mull over the meaning of it all. Pack a camera and snap away on an east-coast astrophotography workshop, or immerse in southern star bathing and see a different side to Hobart in winter with Walk on kunanyi’s informative dark sky winter experience.

For a deeper darkness, head to Cockle Creek, virtually untouched by light pollution on the edge of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, and as far south as the road will take you. Pitch a tent or snuggle into local accommodation and gaze out.

A wildlife park giude feeds a small, black and white Tasmanian devil a piece of kangaroo meat.
Devils @ Cradle
Tourism Australia
Low Head Penguin Tours
Flow Mountain Bike

Wildlife by night

Much of Tasmania’s wildlife is nocturnal. See the action up close on a night-time visit to a wildlife sanctuary: watch Tasmanian devils feeding under the stars at East Coast Natureworld at Bicheno or Devils @ Cradle near Cradle Mountain; and help feed an array of animals on a night tour at Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary on Hobart’s outskirts.

Little penguins mingle along the island’s coastline each evening. Watch them waddle ashore in Bicheno with Bicheno Penguin Tours or on the Bass Strait coast with Low Head Penguin Tours.

Discover a different kind of magic on a Glow Show Awe Hunters tour, seeking plants, animals and fungi that glow in the dark (think vibrant pink possums, wallabies glowing mint-green, glimmering ghost mushrooms and brilliant-blue sea sparkles).

A group of people sit around a fire pit enjoying conversation with large, dome tents lit from the inside in the background against the silhouette of tall trees.
Bay of Fires Bush Retreat
Adam Gibson
A woman sits beside a fire pit, reading a book and drinking red wine.
Bay of Fires Bush Retreat
Adam Gibson

Soak up the evening air

Embrace life outdoors during your Off Season stay. On King Island, Tiny Rupetta is a pint-sized getaway perched atop sand dunes: expect expansive skies, ocean views and a deckside tub to soak up the solitude. Survey Tasmania’s northern valleys from the steaming outdoor bath at the Trig on Mount Arthur, or sit around the crackling firepit at Bay of Fires Bush Retreat on the east coast, before retreating to your glamping quarters. For an unforgettably remote winter glamping expedition, head deep into World Heritage wilderness with Par Avion’s Southwest Wilderness Camp to walk, cruise, relax and reconnect.  

Want more?

Be it by day or night, make the most of Tasmania’s nature-inspired Off Season offers:

  • Embrace being present, mindful and meditative in the most breathtaking of seascapes when Tasmanian Walking Company leads a guided wellness yoga walk along the inimitable Three Capes Track.

  • Tall Timbers Tasmania provides a cosy haven for your winter escape. Explore the ancient cool-temperate rainforest of takayna / Tarkine and, when staying for two nights, enjoy woollen beanies and Hellyer Road whisky to keep you extra toasty.

  • The Off Season is a chance to get closer to cold-blooded reptiles at Serpentarium Wildlife Park. Learn how to hydrate these scaly animals in an interactive experience, then roam the park and befriend some more charismatic creatures.

  • Soak in the healing properties of nature during a two-night stay at Cedar Cottage Meander. Wake up with winter’s chill: take a cold lake dip in the elemental wilderness, then heat back up in an open-air hot tub with complimentary hot chocolate. Rustling trees, nocturnal animals and starry skies keep you company.  

What's on your winter bucket list?

Strike your burning desires off your to-do list: fill your nights with wild wonder, expand your creative horizons, hike deep into Tasmania’s wilderness, and taste seasonal feasts and silky libations. Maybe you’ll even shatter the bounds of your comfort zone on a caving or cold-plunging adventure? This winter, it’s up to you.

Inspire me

A young man with a beard up to his shoulders in water.

Set your compass to Tasmania's regions

Explore things to do across Tasmania's five distinctive regions, from the sizzling south to the gourmet north; the wild west, luxurious east and snow-capped north west. Wherever you decide to roam on this heart-shaped island, you’ll find treasured places to eat, stay and play (that's how you keep the winter chill at bay).

Take me there

Two mountain bike riders riders lean into the corner of a gravel track looking down the side of a slope to a large lake in the distance.

Stay in the know

A flurry of unmissable Off Season offers and events has blown in for the winter. Subscribe for curated Off Season updates and handy tips.

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