Tips for enjoying Tasmania's northern capital – Launceston »

Charming architecture, great beer and excellent food and wine

By Kerry Scambler
Josef Chromy vineyard, northern Tasmania

Josef Chromy vineyard, northern Tasmania

Launceston Basin Chairlift
Launceston City Ghost Tours
Bridestowe Lavender Farm
Tamar River view across to Stillwater Restaurant


Launceston, Tasmania is home to great beer, charming architecture and excellent food and wine.

Tasmania’s second largest city sits at the confluence of the North and South Esk rivers that forms the headwaters of the Tamar River. It’s at the heart of the Tamar Valley, home to over 30 cellar doors and some of the country’s best cool climate wines.

At this point it would be easy to get side-tracked and expound the wonderful offerings of the Valley as it follows the Tamar River to Bass Strait, but today we’re going to sit tight in Launceston and I’ll share a couple of favourite spots in my old home town:

Here’s cheers:

  • Tasmanian ciders, beers and wines available. Friendly atmosphere – Dickens Ciderhouse »
  • In 1881 James Boag I bought the Esk Brewery and the first first Boag's beers started pouring from this site. Take a brewery tour with a beer tasting of course! J Boag & Son Brewery »
  • A new venue recommended by trusted friends is Red Ted’s – will update you soon!

Casual dining

  • For one of the best Eggs Benedict breakfasts, lovely lunch, great coffee and staff who know how to laugh – Café Culture Trevallyn.
  • Friendly bar for a pre-dinner beer then into the Bistro. Eye fillet and Kelvedon Pinot were stars – Sporties.

Dining in style

  • One of our best ever dining experiences is the degustation with wine at Stillwater »
  • For steak and good red wine lovers – Black Cow »
  • Lovely old house in the city serving up beautiful Italian – Novaro's »

Picking up the supplies

  • Next door to Stillwater in Ritchies Mill is a smorgasbord of Tassie goodies – The Mill Providore »
  • Specialising in fresh local produce and deliciousness from Daniel's kitchen – Alps & Amici Foodstore & Kitchen.

Getting some rest

  • Great art deco renovation of the old Launceston General Hospital, it's quiet and walking distance to Sporties and other good Charles Street cafés – Hotel Charles »
  • On the waterfront with surrounding bars and restaurants (we like Mud and Levee) – Peppers Seaport »

Culturally speaking

  • The Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery (QVMAG) is over two sites, the first a grand old building near Kings Park housing the art gallery and the other at the 1870s tramsheds in Invermay.
  • See the latest artistic and pracical creations from a vibrant arts community at the Design Centre.
  • A gorgeous old heritage listed shop in George Street, it is now run by the National Trust, check out the umbrellas of course! »

Out and about

  • Right on the doorstep of the city is the spectacular Cataract Gorge. Bush setting with the river flowing under a swinging bridge plus swimming holes and pool, it's a lovely natural place. Take the chairlift for a bird's eye view!  »
  • The City Park is another special oasis with plenty of grass to lounge around on, beautiful old trees for shade in summer and provide some stunning scenes in autumn, a Conservatory with regular displays and of course, the famous Macaque Monkey enclosure.
  • As you walk around the streets make sure you look up. The old buildings give a feel of what it was once like ine one of Australia's oldest cities (Melbourne was founded from Launceston). Wander along upper Charles, George and St John Streets where roads are lined with old houses and churches, some with lovely gardens.

Time your visit for:

February and aguably Tasmania's best food and wine feast, set in the natural surrounds of City Park – Festivale »

OK let's head a bit further out then!

There’s much, much more to discover in this city and its surrounds so spend a good few days here. Romantic weekends, wine and food indulgences and plenty for the family too.

Yep, just a bit proud of my old home town these days! 

This list is being updated regularly – if you think we've left out anything, please post it in the Facebook comment box below. Thanks!


  • Launceston (TAS)
  • Tamar Valley (TAS)

August 11th, 2014
Subscribe today - it's free

Subscribe now - for news and reviews, our newsletter (optional), to join our forums, and more.

Enter your email address and click the Subscribe button. We respect your privacy.

Welcome sycas | Log Out

Kerry's corner - your free benefits
Premium listing


Premium listing