02 July, 2024

Tasmania's Top Tourism Towns 2024

Drum roll, please! We have the winners of Tassie’s Top Tourism Towns for 2024.

Wondering about what places to visit in Tasmania? The state’s annual Top Tourism Towns awards can point you in the right direction. This year’s top town, small town and tiny town are now in the running for the Australian Top Tourism Towns awards. Hurry down and beat the rush!

Mersey Bluff Beach, Devonport. Photo: Kelly Slater

Top Tourism Town: Devonport

Congratulations to Spirit of Tasmania’s southern home on getting the top gong for the second year in a row. Taking out the category for places with populations above 5,000, Devonport offers a great first taste of Tassie fresh off the ship, and a convenient final bite before boarding.

The island’s third-largest city boasts epic Bass Strait vistas, especially from Mersey Bluff. Head for its sandy beaches, the lookout near the candy-striped 1889 lighthouse, or neighbouring seaside restaurants Mrs Jones and Drift.

Devonport’s other tasty destinations include fish ‘n’ chips favourite Strait Off the Boat, and Melbourne-style cafe Laneway. When you’re feeling thirsty consider visitor-friendly Southern Wild Distillery and Island State Brewing.

Time travel aboard tall ship the Julie Burgess or Don River Railway’s heritage trains, and at Home Hill, the former residence of Australian Prime Minister Joseph Lyons.

In the heart of town find everything from Devonport Regional Gallery to recently opened waterfront hotel Novotel Devonport. In the wider local government area, top destinations include Spreyton Cider Co and the beautiful Tasmanian Arboretum.

Richmond Bridge. Photo: Alastair Bett

Small Tourism Town: Richmond

Leading the category for towns with a population between 1,500 and 5,000, Richmond is renowned for its picturesque bridge – which just turned 200. This village a little north-east of Hobart has so much more heritage charm to offer, however.

Stroll back in time, taking in other structures among Australia’s oldest including the school and St Luke’s church. At Richmond Gaol, which opened in 1825, explore the dark side of Tasmania’s history.

Many lovely old buildings have found new purposes that enhance Richmond’s visitor appeal. There are gorgeous gifts and homewares to buy at Lafayette on Bridge, for example, and scrumptious meals and gourmet products at Wattlebanks cafe.

On the outskirts of town, a graceful 1830s home now offers fine dining and accommodation as Prospect Country House. Across the road, buildings of similar vintage and grandeur have become Pooley Wines – one of several Coal River Valley vineyards.

Of course Richmond has modern buildings too. Killara Distillery and luxe eco-cabin in the woods, The Croft at Arden Retreat, are among the notable newcomers.

The Nut Chairlift. Photo: Lusy Productions

Tiny Tourism Town: Stanley

Winner of the category for towns with a population under 1,500 for the second year running, Stanley is about 90 minutes’ drive west of Devonport. Like Richmond, this village has a charming heritage streetscape, but it’s best known for a big geological formation jutting into Bass Strait.

This 143-metre-high volcanic plug fondly known as The Nut offers 360-degree views. Reach the summit via chairlift, or by conquering one of Tasmania’s 60 Great Short Walks. Then admire The Nut from almost anywhere in town, including with a great meal on the Stanley Hotel bistro’s deck. Horizon Deluxe Apartments’ view of this mighty rock is positively cinematic.

If you’re drawn here by that heritage charm you’ll love Ship Inn, an 1849 pub now operating as rustic-chic accommodation. Other old buildings reborn for tourism include handcrafted-in-Tasmania shop The Angel’s Share, and Stanley Wine Bar in an eclectically decorated Victorian cottage.

For straight-up history head to Highfield Historic Site. Constructed in the 1820s and 30s as the Van Diemen’s Land Company headquarters, this complex ranges from Georgian house to convict quarters.

Tassie itinerary sorted!


Information included in this blog is correct at the time of publishing. Please contact individual operators for further information.

Book now

Come aboard and experience the joys of sailing for yourself. Book now

Geelong Terminal

Discover Spirit of Tasmania Quay, Geelong, the new Victorian home of Spirit of Tasmania. Geelong Terminal


Read our latest blogs on experiences in Tasmania and the mainland Discover
Close Window