Quick Facts of Launceston
- A city in north of Tasmania
- 2nd largest city in Tasmania after Hobart
- 1st Australian city to be lit by hydroelectricity
Day 1 – Arriving in Launceston
1. Flying in
We flew from Singapore to Melbourne via Jetstar Business Class (7 hr 20 min) SGD$1,408.66 both ways per person. You can read my Jetstar Business Class blog post, here.
Then, another Jetstar domestic flight from Melbourne to Launceston (1 hr 10 min) SGD209.15 both ways per person.
Total round trip flight ticket per person: SGD$1,617.81
2. Renting a car
We rented a basic car from Launceston airport for our 10 days driving trip in Tasmania.
Total car rental for 10 days: SGD$493 (SGD$49.3 per day)
3. Local Prepaid Sim Card
The easiest way to roam is to buy a local prepaid sim card at the airport. We bought from Optus, 12GB data that can be used for 28 days. AUD $20.
12 GB was more than enough to use our phone GPS, WhatsApp and a little bit of FB-ing along the 10 days trip. (Of course, we also try to use wireless network whenever it was available).
4. Accommodation – Airbnb with a view
We always love Airbnb, not only it’s cheaper than a local hotel, it also gives us a chance to interact with the locals. And if you’re lucky, you’ll find some amazing property that’s beautiful with a great view that most hotel will charge you a bomb for it.
We stayed for 3 nights in Launceston in this beautiful house at Grindelwald (just 15 minutes drive north of Launceston), with the amazing view of Tamar River and 2 lovely dogs to play with, $172 AU/ night.
This is just one of the many beautiful Airbnb around Launceston. You can book yours through Airbnb. We would recommend staying at Grindelwald (Tasmania) while you are staying at Launceston! You’ll love it! Use my link here and you will get 45 SGD free travel credit if you are first time user at Airbnb.
5. Dinner at Launceston seaport
We just wanted to take it easy on the day 1 in Tasmania after the long flight. We checked in to our lovely Airbnb in the afternoon, then went to Launceston seaport for sunset and a fish and chips meals.
Launceston is not a big town. We came back 2 nights at the seaport to try different restaurants. There are a few nice restaurants overlooking the marina such as Mud Bar & Restaurant (modern Australian), Fish N Chips, Levee Food Co.
Day 2 – Lavender Estate, Best of the Best Sparkling Wine in Australia
1. Bridestowe Lavender Farm
After a well-rested night, we were ready to rock and roll on the second day!
Bridestowe Lavender Estate is believed to be the largest commercial plantation of Lavandula angustifolia in the world. We were not going to miss that especially when we were there in January which is during the lavender blooming season.
We arrived early at 9 am and spent about 2 hours there before it gets busy. There’s a souvenir shop selling lavender oils, soaps, spa products and the signature Bridestowe bear.🐻 We bought a small bottle of lavender oil (15ml) for $30 AUD and had an ice-cream ($5) at the field! 🍦 Happy day!
Open every day : 9 am to 6 pm
Flowering season: December to early February
Entry fee: $10 per person during the flowering season only
Distance from Launceston: 50 minutes drive
2. Wine Tasting at Pipers Brook and Janz
20 minutes drive from Bridestowe Lavender there we reached Pipers Brook Vineyard and Janz wine room.
Pipers Brook is known for their Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir and Kreglinger Vintage Brut Rosé.
Janz was Tasmania’s first sparkling wine made using the traditional Méthode, which now they called in Tasmania “MÉTHODE TASMANOISE”.
3. Lunch and Wine Tasting at Bay of Fires Cellar Door
After Pipers Brook Vineyard, we took a short 15 minutes drive to reach Bay of Fires Winery/ House of Arras cellar door.
Awarded ‘Best of the Best Sparkling‘, House of Arras is Australia’s most awarded Sparkling Wine producer. Shared the same cellar door with Bay of Fire, we had a good tasting session of different Bay of Fires wines (Pinot Noir, Chardonnay), and some beautiful Arras Sparklings.
4. BBQ Dinner At Airbnb, Drink Wine Under The Stars
After the late lunch and lots of wines in our bellies, we decided to call it a day and back to our lovely Airbnb to rest and prepare for the bbq dinner.
Day 3: Grindelwald Swiss Village, Josef Chromy Lunch, Cataract Gorge
1. Grindelwald Swiss Village in Tasmania
During the 3rd day in Launceston, we had a good walk around the neighbourhood that we were staying – Grindelwald. If you don’t already know, Grindelwald is also a village in Switzerland. While this “Grindelwald” in Tasmania was established in the 1980s as a unique residential development, all houses here have been built in Swiss style (including our Airbnb house).
The local attraction is a Swiss-themed Tamar Valley Resort which includes hotels, shopping arcade, gift shops, lake activities, mini-golf course and a 10-hole public golf course. A very family friendly place especially during the weekends.
2. Lunch at Josef Chromy Cellar Door Restaurant
One of the best lunch spots in town, Josef Chromy is listed as one of the Top 10 Cellar Doors of Australia and awarded One Chef Hat in the 2017 Australian Good Food and Wine Guide.
We had a wine tasting session before lunch. Spent $140 AUD for lunch of 2 (including wines). Food, view, service were all very good! Highly recommended!
This place is very popular for lunch even during the weekday, so be sure to make a reservation a few days in advance.
The restaurant overlooks the picturesque lake and vineyard, just beautiful!
Josef Chromy Cellar Door, Vineyard and Restaurant
370 Relbia Rd, Relbia TAS 7258. (15 min drive south of Launceston, 10 minutes from the Launceston Airport)
Cellar Door: Dailly 10 am – 5 pm,
Lunch : Daily 11.45am – 2.30pm
3. The Cataract Gorge
If you need to visit only one place in Launceston, it has to be Cataract Gorge.
Cataract Gorge is just 15 minutes walk from the city centre, there are walking and hiking trails, the world’s longest single span chairlift, swimming pool, cafe, peacocks and wildlife, beautiful gardens, suspension bridge, panoramic lookouts with spectacular views.
It was certainly fun but felt quite scary at the same time while looking down on the chairlift.
There is a beautiful garden as well as the panoramic lookout on top of the mountain. Wild peacocks and wallabies can be spotted too.
- Everyday from 9am
- Winter at 4.30 pm
- Spring and Autumn 5.00 pm
- Summer 5.30 pm to 6.00 pm
Thanks for reading up to this point! I made a short video of our 3 days in Launceston. Watch from this link if you can’t view it from below.
Summary of 3 days in Launceston
- fly in, rent a car, buy a local sim card
- check in to Airbnb at Grindelwald
- Explore the town
- Dinner at Launceston Seaport with marina view
- Bridestowe Lavender Estate
- Pipers Brook and Janz vineyard – wine tasting
- Lunch at Bay of Fire/House of Arras (Best Sparkling of Tasmania)
- BBQ dinner at Airbnb
- Grindelwald Swiss Village
- Lunch at Josef Chromy Cellar Door Restaurant (One of the best lunch spot in Launceston)
- The Cataract Gorge (Scenic Chairlift)
- Wine tasting at Tamar Ridge Cellar Door (Brown Brothers)
- 1 hr 54 min drive to East Coast Freycinet. Read the next post, here.
Read more about the trip
【Part 5】Bruny Island – Hobart Day Trip