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Vote forMaria Island, TASTop Island Destinations Badge Which are Australia's must-visit destinations? You help us decide.


Image: Rob Burnett

Maria Island, Tasmania


The diverse and picturesque Maria Island lies just 15km off the east coast of Tasmania and combines a number of elements that help make it unique. Blanketed entirely by national park, its natural features are obvious in terms of both physical beauty and wildlife, however, it's the island's remarkably intact collection of convict buildings that add an extra layer of intrigue.

More on Maria Island below...


Image: East Coast Cruises


Why Maria Island?


State: Tasmania

Why it's special: Island off Tasmania with a rich heritage & beautiful landscapes

Best time to go: Winter

Few islands in Australia blend together such a rich depth of history along with quality natural offerings quite like Tasmania's Maria Island. Formerly used as a probation centre for convicts, a number of these architectural remnants can still be explored in the present day, with guests to the island even able to stay overnight within the old former penitentiary to spread out exploration over an extended two days.

That extra day comes in handy, as there's plenty of wonderful sights to take in on Maria Island; it offers plenty of potential for walking and hiking, ranging from short strolls to longer, multi-hour treks, during which the likes of wombats and kangaroos can be frequently seen in the wild - along with the occasional glimpse of a Tassie Devil - while its environment is teeming with bird life as well.

Along the way, you'll also encounter a number of beautiful and unpopulated beaches, with quality snorkelling available within the island's marine reserve. Add in cavernous sea caves and the largest seal colony on this side of the state, and Maria Island makes getting back to nature a marvellous proposition.


Adventurers can hike atop its Mt. Bishop & Clerk mountain range for incredible views of cliffs, seascapes, and other specks of coastal majesty. Accessible only by ferry, operator East Coast Cruises can take aspiring travellers to embark on a Maria Island adventure. Elsewhere on the island you'll be able to explore some of its highlights on foot including the Painted Cliffs, Fossil Cliffs and the Darlington World Heritage convict site.

Maria Island's sense of isolation and escapism owes a large part to the complete lack of cars; as a result, travellers here journey everywhere on foot and instead revel in the peacefulness of no traffic or noise. Those looking to save on the energy levels can also opt for a number of cruises that circumnavigate the coastline, and provide an alternative vantage point on its many gorgeous cliffs, coves and sea caves.

What Maria Island has to offer:


Highlights that set Maria Island apart include:


Top Things to Do


Looking to pay a visit to Maria Island but not sure what to do? Here are some of the most essential experiences.

What's new on Maria Island in 2017/2018?


Maria Island in Pictures

Maria Island Tasmania
Maria Island Tasmania
Maria Island Tasmania
Maria Island Tasmania

Follow Encounter Maria on Instagram at @encountermaria and Experience Oz at @experienceoz

Maria Island in Motion


Is Maria Island Australia's Top Island Destination to Experience for 2017? Vote now for the chance to WIN an epic trip to one of Australia's top destinations!

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