Join Taylor as she rides from Devonport to Dover, 480km across the Apple Isle on the Tasmania Trail, and start planning your own odyssey down south.


We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the Countries on which these adventures take place who have occupied and cared for these lands, waters, and their inhabitants for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.


Long live the tradition of taking a photo from the bike’s perspective


When the idea of cycling the Tasmanian Trail was pitched by a friend over a morning coffee, I was instantly intrigued. I was interested in travelling in a way I hadn’t previously, but mostly I was fascinated by the idea of moving across a state from coast to coast.

My naivety worked as an advantage to committing whole heartedly to this new adventure. Before I knew it I was researching bikes, placing an order and paying a deposit on a new touring bike.

The Tasmanian Trail traverses the heart of the state from north to south (or south to north). A patchwork of forestry paths, technical trails, and gravel roads link small villages and local attractions.

Though less  shiny than the Tasmania we are well acquainted with (hello Cradle Mountain and Bruny Island!), this rugged trail takes you on a journey unlike any other across this island state.

Quick Overview

This is Tassie’s only long distance multi-use trail, designed to be tackled on horseback, two wheels, or on foot. It’s 480km long, running between the cities Devonport and Dover. The trail can be ridden in as little as five days or up to two weeks, depending on how many kilometres you want to ride each day.

Being our first bikepacking trip, we went in without time limitations and completed it in 14 days, including one rest day. The terrain is varied so let’s be real – a mountain bike is your best option. A gravel bike is still fun. A touring bike (me) was doable with a fair amount of hike-a-bike.


It’s a hiking + biking kind of deal. We call it ‘iking

About the Tasmanian Trail

This trail is for anyone wanting to explore Tasmania off the beaten path. It’s no secret that Tasmania is wild and beautiful, but there are also areas that are harsh, isolated, and exploited. It’s a land of extreme contrasts and I haven’t seen a better example of this than the Tasmanian Trail.

Like the diverse scenery, it’ll likely take you on an emotional journey that goes from calm and serene to bold and frustrating. It’s not always straightforward, and ever-changing track conditions will often test your patience, but like most things in life, these are the moments that make the journey even more memorable and rewarding.

Taking to two wheels lets you feel the environment around you; the air is crisper, the smells are stronger, and the colours are brighter. Riding the Tassie Trail you’ll be cradled by the green of the Gog Range Regional Reserve, see the sky reflecting off the lakes on the Central Plateau, spot echidnas and platypuses going about their days, and spend hours rolling through vast fields and farmland.

Tasmanian Trail History

For the Palawa people, Tasmania has been and continues to be known as lutriuwita. Riding the trail will take you through the country of the Northern nation, Big River nation, South East and South West nations.

Inspired by the Bicentennial National Trail, the trail was conceptualised by the Australian Trail Horse Riders Association. By establishing and curating a web of respectful partnerships between volunteers, land owners, and state and federal government bodies, the Tasmanian Trail Association has made the trail what it is today.


It’s easy to forget that these trails don’t happen by accident

Planning Your Ride

In terms of getting information about the trail, the Tasmanian Trail Website  has got plenty of useful information. I highly recommend joining the Tasmanian Trail Association ($70) for access to the official guide book and GPX file. Additionally, a key can be purchased to make navigating locked fences a little easier. There are also some shower facilities on the trail that require key access. 

The association relies on volunteers and membership fees are used to keep the trail safe and accessible for users. The group of volunteers who manage the trail do a great job at updating the guidebook and maps, advising on weather conditions, road closures, and other changes.

How to Get to the Start of The Tasmanian Trail?

By Car:

Being a relatively small place, you can get to most places in Tassie within a 4-5 hour drive. This makes it pretty easy to get a lift to the start of your ride or even organise a car shuffle if you have the time and resources.

By Plane:

Devonport airport is only 7km from the city. Alternatively, flying into Launceston and joining the trail around Sheffield is a great option.

By Ferry:

Jump on the Spirit of Tassie from Mebourne and start your ride straight away.

By Bus:

Intercity buses run in between Hobart, Launceston, and Devonport.

Bookings need to be made in advance, and you’ll need to give them a call the day before the trip to buy a ticket for your bike ($10).

Note: there are no bike carriers. Your bike will go in the luggage compartment under the bus.

We needed to take a regional bus to Hobart at the start of our journey. It’s up to the driver’s discretion whether bikes can come on board. Our driver was very friendly and assisted us the best he could, but we ended up having to keep the bikes in the aisle of the bus on a pretty busy morning route. Not ideal.


Your precious metal sidekick is your MVP for this trip – leaving it behind wouldn’t be a good start


As I’ve done more and more bike trips I’ve realised that the journey to and from the route is often an adventure in itself. I now like to dedicate a little extra time and energy into the planning of this day. It doesn’t always make it more smooth or any easier, but it’s nice to know where we might be able to grab a coffee on the way, or pack a picnic lunch to eat along the trip.

Where to Stay Along the Tasmanian Trail

Regardless of how you like to bikepack, there is an option for everyone. Tasmanian towns have pubs, motels, and B&Bs. With careful planning you can have a bed each night of the ride! Contact hours and availability are not always available online so I recommend calling providers ahead of time to confirm availability and check in times.

The trail is set up to ride 30-40km per day and there are designated campsites along the way. These sites varied from bush camps, to public ovals, and facilities varied at each.

The Tasmanian Trail Guidebook thoroughly outlines the directions to each camp and lets you know when it is essential to stock up on food for more remote sections.

Wiki Camps Australia is a another great resource for campsites in between the sections.

Read more: Remember to leave no trace


Finishing set up BEFORE the sun goes down… priceless

Skill Level


The terrain of the trail is varied. Across the route you can expect small gravel, big gravel, overgrown fields, river crossings, bitumen road, forest floor, and of course lots and lots of hills.

Parts of the trail are remote. Phone service is limited.

Although one of the information boards along the way described the trail as ‘Soft Adventure’, I politely disagree. There are sections of the trail that are hard going, and plenty of sections that require you to lift your bike over fallen trees or other obstacles. It’s hard, but not impossible.

As our first bike packing trip, there were lots of lessons to be learnt. We took the trail on seeking a physical challenge and with the desire to push ourselves out of our comfort zone (we are all avid hikers), and that is what we got. It was liberating to navigate our way from coast to coast whilst constantly having to be flexible and adaptable in the face of new hurdles.

Do some reading, make sure you have reliable gear, and pack your bike for a wild adventure!

Read more: Take a Peek at Tom Connell’s Bikepacking Adventure Rig

Essential Gear for the Tasmanian Trail

Read more: Essential Gear for Bikepacking Adventures


Remember you’re carrying everything you need with you – be selective

Our Tasmanian Trail Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive in Devonport – Devonport to Latrobe –  7.8km

Day 2 – Latrobe to Sheffield – 31.8km

Day 3 – Sheffield to Gog Range – 29.4km

Day 4 – Gog Range to Deloraine – 15km

Day 5 – Deloraine to Bracknell (via Liffey Falls) – 43km

Day 6 – Bracknell to Arthurs Lake – 50.2km

Day 7 – Arthurs Lake to Bronte Park (via Miena) – 52km

Day 8 – Bronte Park to Ouse – 58km

Day 9 – Ouse to Bushy Park – 56km

Day 10 – Bushy Park to New Norfolk – 23.1km

Day 11 – Rest Day in New Norfolk – 0km

Day 12 – New Norfolk to Judbury – 40.8km

Day 13 – Judbury to Geeveston – 28km

Day 14 – Geeveston to Dover – 32.4km

Day 15 – Dover to Cygnet (home) – 61km

What it’s Like to Ride the Tasmanian Trail

The Tasmanian Trail is divided into 16 sections. We ended up riding one or two sections per day. It was at the start of summer, relatively hot, and we wanted to leave ourselves free to have a leisurely morning coffee and a lunch break along the way. There were a LOT of highlights!


Northern Farmlands

After the first few kilometres on the bike path out of Devonport the true Tasmanian Trail began. We’re talking riding through some chin high grass to our first (yep, there’s more than one) locked gate. With its signature murals and backdrop of Mount Rowland, the town of Sheffield is very picturesque.


Don’t get off your bike here… you may never find it again

Forested Ranges

In the forest you get to enjoy the rise and fall of elevation throughout the Gog Ranges. This section consists of mostly large fire trails before a steep descent into the Mersey River Campground.

After a refreshing swim we spent New Years Eve around the fire looking back on all that had happened in the year before.

Crossing the Mersey river was great fun. We crossed on a rainy day and the mist added to the magic of the area. There had been quite a lot of rain in the lead up to our ride, so we knew the river was going to be high. Our tired legs were grateful for the icy dip as we crossed back and forth, shuttling first our gear, and then our bikes.

At one point we turned a corner and were met with a fallen bridge. After the initial shock of the devastation, we simply go off our bikes for a bit more pushing and pulling. We soon discovered this would be an ongoing theme throughout the trail, and grew to love these extra challenges.

A detour into Deloraine for the night meant we could camp on the grassy banks of the river Meander.


This is livin’ folks

Central Plateau

Long stretches of winding gravel road in the Central Plateau allowed us to keep a bit of momentum while we rode. This section of the trail felt extremely remote at times.

After a hearty lunch with a view at the Miena Hotel we crossed the Great Explorer road over to the west of the state.

The ride between Bronte Park and Ouse was a highlight. The day quickly turned into riding through dense forest on single track, before opening up into the vast plains of the Derwent Valley.


Guess this bridge has Friday’s off


Derwent Valley

As well as a solid 8km of hike-a-bike due to trees down on the path, the ride from Bushy Park to New Norfolk involved a huge section of riding over rolling grassy hills – so much fun!

A spontaneous rest day in New Norfolk gave us the day to lounge by the River Derwent and catch up on some reading. We also enjoyed a chai latte and brownie from Black Swan Bookshop.


Bikes are made to be….walked, right?

Southern Forests

This section, like many before, took us through long stretches of logging zones. Knowing how much of Tasmania is protected by National Parks, it’s confronting to see the bleak residues of the logging industry in the areas left exposed.

The island has a tumultuous forestry history and even today, as our climate crisis worsens, it’s sad to see native forests rich in biodiversity and carbon continuing to be destroyed. Journeying through these areas, and witnessing other forms of mining on the Tasmanian Trail was an abrupt reminder of this darker side of Tassie.

A huge rocky descent on the final day had us walking our bikes downhill and contemplating the landscape of contradictions.

There is no designated camp spot in Dover. We were lucky to meet some friendly locals at the RSL who invited us to pitch our tents in their yard. The next day we started our final day of riding, getting us home to Cygnet.

Heading home

We decided to take the road, which meant we got to enjoy the hospitality and produce of the fertile Huon Valley. Taking a break on the side of the road, we devoured a bag of cherries from a roadside stall.

We also took a heavenly lunch break at Osteria in Franklin where we inhaled some pasta and tiramisu, reminiscing about the trip before it had even finished!


Missing an opportunity for cherries? Not today my friends, not today

Tips For Riding the Tasmanian Trail

  • Tasmanian weather is volatile. Keep this in mind in regard to track conditions and relevant gear
  • Be ready to push, pull, lift, and hike your bike. Even mountain bike riders will encounter sections where they’ll need to navigate fallen trees, river crossings, and big logs
  • The trail has been tackled in many different ways, and there are a number of great blogs and youtube videos outlining each experience
  • Go in with an open mind. There are so many variables on this route, so approach the trail however suits you best. Read ahead in the guidebook and adjust accordingly depending on your bike, abilities, and weather. Don’t hesitate to take a rest day or make a detour to enjoy attractions and towns along the way

Read more: 5 Reasons to Carry a Bandana Bikepacking


The good times roll both on and off the bike

FAQs the Tasmanian Trail

Where is the Tasmanian Trail located?

The trail stretches from Devonport to Dover in Tasmania.

How long is the Tasmanian Trail?

The Tasmanian Trail is 480km in length.

How do you get to the Tasmanian Trail?

The easiest way to get to the start of the Tasmania Trail in Devonport if you’re from out of state is via the Spirit of Tasmania. Otherwise you can access it at either end by using public transport.

When is the best time to ride the Tasmanian Trail?

This trail is best enjoyed between the months of October through to March. This is to avoid the extremes of winter and ensure the best experience.

Is the Tasmanian Trail good for beginners?

This one might be a stretch for absolute beginners to endurance adventures. It’s a really nice trail and relatively easy to navigate the whole way but the distance is long, there are plenty of obstacles, and you’re often off grid. While it was our first time bikepacking this distance, we were all confident on bikes and had done distance hiking before. If you’re keen to take on the challenge, make sure you allow extra time so that you can rest as you need to along the way, and take a mate with you.

How long does it take to complete the Tasmanian Trail?

It took us about two weeks to complete this trail, but people have done it much faster and much slower than that. It isn’t really a trail where people brag about their time versus distance  – it’s more noteworthy that you did the trail at all!

What are some similar rides to the Tasmanian Trail?

Double the distance and take on the Oodnadatta Track in South Australia, or dial down the difficulty with the more leisurely Otway Rip in Victoria. For another local Tassie ride, you can’t go past riding alongside the loveable wombat population on Maria Island.


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