Nature and nurture meet on Bruny Island, where dramatic landscapes are matched by great produce.
Bruny is effectively two islands – North and South Bruny – bound together by a narrow isthmus called The Neck, with many of its most spectacular landscapes scattered through South Bruny National Park.
The island’s local produce is as refreshing as its beaches, cliffs and wildlife, with Bruny producers specialising in oysters, cheese, honey, whisky and chocolate.
- The views from Truganini Lookout.
- Visit one of Australia’s oldest lighthouses at Cape Bruny.
- Take a half-day boat trip to explore the island’s cliffs and marine wildlife.
- Source a picnic from Bruny’s gourmet producers.
Reach Bruny Island via a 20min vehicular ferry that crosses from Kettering, which is a 30min drive (32km) south of Hobart. The ferry runs several times daily.
Things to do
Bruny Island’s main road could easily double as an aisle in a gourmet grocer. Heading south from the ferry terminal, it passes Get Shucked oyster farm, with the world’s first oyster drive-through window, and the Bruny Island Cheese and Beer Co – pause for a cheese fix out under the eucalypts, before discovering Bruny’s sweet tooth at the Honey Pot and Bruny Island Chocolate.
What’s food without something to wash it down? Bruny Island Premium Wines is Australia’s southernmost winery, while the Bruny Island House of Whisky, near the ferry terminal, showcases Tasmanian spirits, including its own Trapper’s Hut single malt.
Bruny has a suite of coastal day walks, including two of Tasmania’s 60 Great Short Walks. Keep an eye out for the island’s famous white wallabies on the trail to Green Point and lofty Fluted Cape, and circuit the remote Labillardiere Peninsula.
Pass a striking rock arch rising from the sands of a beach on the walk to Cape Queen Elizabeth, and savour the long beach and wild surf of Cloudy Bay on the hike to East Cloudy Head.
Pennicott Wilderness Journeys
Bruny’s most dramatic edge can be seen only from the sea, with some of Australia’s tallest sea cliffs lining the coast from Fluted Cape to the island’s southern tip, where the Southern Ocean meets the Tasman Sea.
Three-hour Pennicott Wilderness Journeys boat trips cruise beneath these cliffs, skimming past tall sea stacks, edging into caves, and drifting past an island seal colony.
Cape Bruny Lighthouse
Rising 114m above the fierce Southern Ocean, Cape Bruny Lighthouse was the fourth light station built in Australia. It’s the only lighthouse in southern Tasmania open for tours, offering the chance to climb the cast-iron spiral staircase to its balcony for a vast ocean view.
A short walking track also descends from the lighthouse to a beach on Lighthouse Bay, passing a grave site thought to be the burial place of two children from the late 19th century.
The narrow isthmus at the heart of Bruny Island is home to curious bedfellows. Each evening, little penguins arrive ashore at the northern end of The Neck, climbing into the dunes where, in summer, they share space with muttonbirds (short-tailed shearwaters). The procession can be observed on dusk from a viewing platform and boardwalk.
High above this activity, Truganini Lookout commands one of the island’s best views, staring along the length of The Neck and into Adventure Bay. Note the optical illusion that makes the sea level appear higher on one side of the isthmus than the other.
Places to stay
Find your ideal Bruny Island accommodation – from off-grid escapes to picturesque farm stays and secluded beachside retreats with a view.