There are many famous viewpoints on the Tasman Peninsula…the Tassellated Pavement, the Tasman Arch, and Remarkable Cave, but none of them compare to Cape Raoul.
On the southern end of the Tasman Peninsula is a promontory called Cape Raoul. This can only be reached by hiking, as no roads go here. It is a 14 km round trip hike, most of it through forests but some of it along the coastal cliffs. Once out on Cape Raoul, enjoy the views of Cape Pillar and then west to Hobart and Bruny Island. This is a gorgeous hike and another great way to experience the Tasman Peninsula coastline.
Cape Raoul Hiking Stats
Distance: 14 km (8.7 miles)
Difficulty: Moderate. This hike would be suitable for most people of average fitness levels. Some of the trail is located along the edge of the cliffs, so keep an eye on children.
Allow five hours for this hike.
Getting here: This hike is located on the Tasman Peninsula, a two hour drive from Hobart. The trailhead starts at Stormlea. Here are the coordinates for the trailhead and car park: -43.195411, 147.777166
We did this hike in May. During our week in Tasmania, most of the days were overcast and rainy. We saved this hike for the one brilliantly sunny day of the week.
From the trailhead, it is an almost totally uphill walk through a forest to the first viewpoint. It takes about half an hour to reach the first viewpoint. And that first view of the coastline is jaw-dropping! This is probably one of the best views of the entire hike.
From this spot, is a mostly downhill hike out to Cape Raoul. The trail first takes you through a dense, dimly lit forest. Then you emerge back out onto the coastline for more amazing views.
The next section of the walk out to Cape Raoul is flat and on a wide plateau. The trail is lined with shrubs and you have endless views of the coastline. To the east is Cape Pillar and to the west you can see Bruny Island and Mount Wellington.
Once on this plateau, the trail becomes sketchy and difficult to follow (at least it was when we did this in 2015). The trail appeared to end, so we thought this was the end of the hike once we made it to this viewpoint. What we didn’t realize was that the trail continues out to the dolerite columns that you see in these photos.
You can enjoy the view and turn around here, like we did, for a 12 km round trip hike. Or continue on for the full 14 km hike and stunning close up views of the columns. Hopefully the trail is better marked now.
For more information before you go, check out this post on Hikespeak.
More Information about Australia
TASMANIA: In Tasmania, hike Wineglass Bay, explore the Tasman Peninsula, spend some time on Bruny Island, visit Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary, and cruise to Tasman Island.
ULURU: In our Guide to Uluru and Kata-Tjuta, learn how to get here, what to do, and how to plan your time. We also have information on a great hike in Kings Canyon and a recap of our experience in the Red Centre of Australia.
GREAT OCEAN ROAD: Driving the Great Ocean Road is one of the most scenic drives in the world.
GREAT HIKES FROM AROUND THE WORLD: For more great hikes, check out our article listing the 20 Best Day Hikes in the World. See our full list in our Hiking Guide.
Planning a trip to Australia? Read all of our articles in our Australia Travel Guide.
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You’re right…we didn’t go that far. When we did this it looked like the trail ended so we thought we reached the end. Thanks for letting me know. Cheers, Julie