Guide To The Famous Wineglass Bay Walk, Tasmania

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You’ve probably seen a photo of Wineglass Bay in a tourism advertisement for Tasmania, it’s one of the most photographed beaches in all of Tas.

The shimmering crescent of white sand meeting the turquoise water is easily recognizable.

Beautiful and remote, Wineglass Bay in Freycinet National Park is noted as Tasmania’s best beach, and one of Australia’s must-see destinations.

people standing on a lookout above a lake

And it didn’t disappoint when we finally made the Wineglass Bay walk to The Lookout, and then onto the beach itself.

But visiting this beach isn’t as simple as parking up your car and stepping onto the beach. Because of its remote location, you can only access it by boat, foot, or taking a scenic flight.

In this guide, I’ve shared how you can visit this beautiful wonder in Tasmania and all about our experience visiting it.

Where is Wineglass Bay?

a man standing on a beach

Nestled on Tasmania’s east coast in the Freycinet National Park on the Freycinet Peninsula, Wineglass Bay is a hidden gem that can only be accessed by traversing a winding path through dense bushland.

The beauty of the bay is only enhanced by its seclusion, and yet it’s still one of the most famous and most beautiful beaches in Tasmania.

How to Get to Wineglass Bay?

To get there, you must first reach the gateway to Freycinet National Park, which is a small town called Coles Bay.

The distance from Hobart to Coles Bay is roughly 195 kilometers and takes 2.5 hours of driving time. From Launceston, the drive is two hours (175 kilometres), and from Port Arthur, it’s 238 km and takes roughly 3 hours.

Wineglass Bay, Tasmania

The route from Launceston and Port Arthur to Freycinet is incredibly scenic and should not be done in a hurry

The road to the Freycinet passes along the A3, otherwise known as The Tasman Highway, which is one of the main roads in Tasmania.

If you don’t want to rent a car, you can get to Coles Bay by public transport. There are buses from Hobart to Coles Bay twice a day.

Wineglass Bay Walks

person walking along sandy trail with ferns on either side

The best way to see Wineglass Bay is to hike there. There are a few different walks you can take, but these are the main ones…

Walk to The Lookout

A walk to the look out takes 1.5 hours and is a loop trail to one of Tasmania’s most celebrated views.

The track is a short, fairly steep climb to the saddles between Mount Amos and Mount Mayson.

Walk to Wineglass Bay

If you want to walk all the way to Wineglass Bay, then it takes 2.5 hours return walk from the car park on Coles Bay Road to The Lookout, and then downhill onto the beach.

You should walk for 20 minutes along the beach to the south as this will give you magnificent views back over the Hazards (Pink granite mountains that sit as a backdrop of Wineglass Bay).

Wineglass Bay/Hazards Beach Circuit

Personally, if you are staying in Coles Bay and you have the time, we highly recommend walking along to Hazards Beach as well.

It takes 4 to 5 hours to hike from the car park to Wineglass Bay, to Hazards Beach, and back around to the car park in a loop. The route is well-signposted and easy to find.

The walk from Wineglass Bay to Hazards Beach is only a 30 minute flat walk along the Isthmus Track, but since it takes 3 hours to get there, you would be better off continuing on this trail following the northern end, rather than turning back.

The return journey follows the coastline for about 5 kilometres back to the carpark and is quite easy going.

The Freycinet Circuit Hike

If you want to do a challenging hike in Freycinet, the Freycinet Circuit is the hike for you.

It’s a 30.4-km loop trail (2 days, 3 nights) that is considered challenging because it’s long, but you can break it up over a few days and camp at the campsites in Freycinet.

The route takes you past Wineglass Bay, Hazards Beach, and Botanical Creek, to the summit of Mount Freycinet, to the summit of Mount Graham, Graham Creek, and several lookout points.

There is plenty of signposts to lead the way, but you should take an offline GPS just in case.

This 5.5-Hr Small Group Guided Walking Experience will take you to Hazards Beach via Wineglass Bay. After exploring Hazards, you’ll jump aboard the Freycinet Aqua Taxi to see the peninsula from a different perspective as you journey back to the Freycinet Lodge where you tour concludes.

Other Ways to Enjoy Wineglass Bay

aerial view of wineglass bay with boat cruising in

Take a Scenic Flight

As mentioned, Caz experienced Freycinet and Wineglass Bay via seaplane earlier in the year.

And you don’t even have to drive to Wineglass Bay, as this experience starts and ends in Hobart. It’s on my bucket list for a return visit.

You can watch our scenic flight experience in this video:

Take a Boat Tour

You can also join the only cruise into Wineglass Bay like my parents did.

Whilst you don’t get to set foot on the sand, you do enjoy a lunch on board overlooking the beach.

This is a great option for those with reduced mobility or young kids, who still want to see the beach but are unable to hike. The only downside is that you can’t walk on the beach.

Our Experience Hiking to Wineglass Bay

man walking on a hiking trail

We started our walk early, at 5.30am, as we wanted to reach The Wineglass Bay Lookout for sunrise to beat the anticipated crowds.

From the car park to The Lookout is approximately a 45-minute walk.

A steady uphill climb, but a well-made path, and whilst we didn’t have the kids with us this time (nanny and poppy were visiting) we did witness many others hiking with kids so it’s not beyond a family outing.

Once you reach The Lookout your reward is a spectacular view over Wineglass Bay.

Whilst we didn’t get our magical sunrise – the sky was completely covered in dark clouds – by arriving early we were fortunate to have the moment all to ourselves.

We had time to sit and take it all in, enjoy a light pre-packed breakfast, with nothing but the sounds of the surrounding bush and uninterrupted views

From The Lookout, the walk down onto the beach itself is steep but a short one of 20 minutes.

By the time we had finished our bite to eat and made the walk onto the sand, to our joy the clouds had started to lift and the sun’s rays brought to life what we had witnessed many times before in photos.

I couldn’t believe we were all alone on the famous Wineglass Bay.

A rocky beach next to the ocean
A sandy beach next to the water

We had the whole beach to ourselves – rewarded for starting the day early. This must see Aussie destination was all ours to walk barefoot in the white sand and wade in the pristine waters.

To allow time for the clouds to completely clear, we next made the 30-minute flat walk to nearby Hazards Beach, another famous beach in Freycinet National Park.

Along the track, we got lucky and came across a Wallaby going about his morning, and he was kind enough to pose so we could get a quick pic.

a kangaroo on a path

Once you reach Hazards Beach, you’ll probably experience what we did and again have this piece of paradise all to yourself.

Hazards Beach, Tasmania, Australia

Hazards Beach also looks amazing from the air, as Caz experienced on a previous trip to Freycinet earlier in the year.

white sand and blue water of Hazards Beach, Tasmania, Australia

But set foot on the sand and wander the rocks around the headland at the northern end of the beach and you’ll find pretty shells and starfish.

A rocky beach next to a body of water
A close up of a starfish
shells on a beach

We spent about an hour on Hazards enjoying the serenity. The sky was completely blue now so we headed back to Wineglass to get some better photos.

And there it was, in all its glory, showing off like we had envisioned. We set up the tripod – don’t forget the tripod for some selfies – and then just sat there, in the moment.

But, this time, we didn’t have Wineglass all to ourselves. It was about 10am by now and we had been joined by a dozen others. Still not Grand Canyon crowded, but not the serenity we had at 6am.

a lake surrounded by mountains

Tips for Visiting Wineglass Bay

Before you go, here are some tips we want to share with you for your visit…

  • Start early, arrive for sunrise and beat the crowds.
  • Go to the bathroom at the car park before you leave as there are no toilets or facilities on the walks
  • Take a light breakfast and watch the day begin with magnificent views.
  • Take a tripod for best photos + selfie shots.
  • You can swim, but note that the sea is cold between April and October so pack something to warm you up.
  • Wear insect repellent, there are a lot of mozzies in this park.
  • Bring plenty of water and snacks.
  • Wear sunscreen as there is minimal shade on the beach.
  • Don’t skip Coles Bay, take a day or two to see the town, try sea kayaking from the bay, eat fresh seafood at The Freycinet Marine Farm and check out Cape Tourville Lighthouse.

Freycinet National Park Accommodation

When it comes to finding accommodation near Freycinet Peninsula, you need to base yourself outside the park in Coles Bay. Coles Bay is a great base to explore Freycinet National Park.

There are many accommodation options in Coles Bay and just outside the Freycinet National Park area.

Freycinet Lodge

Freycinet Lodge on edge of water

Freycinet Lodge is the only accommodation located inside Freycinet National Park, and it overlooks the blue waters of Great Oyster Bay with the rugged Hazards mountain range as a backdrop.

Luxurious chalets range from one and two rooms to exclusive couples’ retreats and luxurious, 4.5 star premier suites. There’s free parking, free wifi, and two restaurants.

The Blue House, Coles Bay

The Blue House, Coles Bay, Tasmania, Australia

This is where we stayed, and as soon as I saw it I knew we were going to love it, if not for the name alone.

“Mummy, can we go back to The Blue House, now please?” Kalyra would ask.

The Blue House is located where the Swan River meets Great Oyster Bay, only a 5 minute drive from Coles Bay and world famous Freycinet National Park. It’s serene and quiet and stunning and the perfect place for a family to stay.

The owners provide kayaks free of charge, there are fishing rods for use, plenty of games to play, shelves of DVD’s and piles of magazines to read.

Read our full review of the Blue House here, or you can check prices and availability for The Blue House here.

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