With the money you’ve saved on cheap car hire with DriveNow, you can splash out on the best hotels Launceston has to offer. If you’re only in town for a short time, then we recommend staying in the compact city centre. Otherwise, consider spending a few nights at a charming property in the captivating Tamar Valley, in pristine Coles Bay or by the spectacular Bay of Fires.
Cars are the most popular form of transport in Tasmania so parking is plentiful. Within Launceston city limits however, most public car spaces are metered or require drivers to display a voucher on the dashboard. Fortunately, the cost of parking in Launceston is relatively low compared to Australian cities on the mainland while traffic congestion on the island is virtually non-existent.
Best Places to Stay in Launceston
The Sebel Launceston
The Sebel Launceston stands out for more reasons than one. Firstly, its oversized guest suites are housed in a modern structure of concrete and glass, in stark contrast to its red-brick 19th century neighbours. Secondly, it’s been one of Launceston’s leading contemporary hotels since 2006, when it first opened its doors. Thirdly, the property has a great onsite restaurant. Did we also mention that it’s just up the road from the James Boag brewery?
Peppers Seaport Hotel
Built on the city’s old dry dock, the waterfront Peppers Seaport Hotel features a fresh take on the traditional nautical theme. The hotel exterior subtly resembles a ship, while inside you’ll find soft blue feature walls and hanging black-and-white photographs of Launceston’s old harbour. Enjoy your morning coffee while watching the wharf wake up, or sample some of Tasmania’s most superb wines at the onsite restaurant.
Two Four Two
This darling little boutique hotel occupies a highly coveted location on trendy Charles Street alongside an old-fashioned grocer, artisanal pasta merchant, and specialty delicatessen. Luckily for guests, each of the stylish apartments at Two Four Two comes with a fully equipped kitchen so they can enjoy the island state’s gourmet goodies in comfort and privacy. Wash it all down with a local wine - you’ll find a selection of bottles in your room, along with espresso coffee, French teas and homemade biscuits.
Spectacular Destinations Farther Afield
As mentioned before, if you plan to stay a little longer in Tasmania’s north, you would do well to consider the Tamar Valley. From Launceston, follow the majestic Tamar River all the way to the Bass Strait, passing vineyards, orchards and pastures. This scenic drive covers 140km in total and can be done in a day or three. En route, you could stop to pick sweet strawberries at Hillwood Berry Farm, sip a premium Pinot Noir at Native Point, and see the world’s smallest penguins at Low Head Coastal Reserve. If we had to choose a place to overnight, it would be at the romantic Federation-style Pomona Spa Cottages in Beauty Point, which offers accommodation in three cute cottages with panoramic views of the surrounding area.
Alternatively, head to the east coast which is home to the dazzling Bay of Fires, where you can participate in the award-winning Bay of Fires Lodge Walk. This multi-day journey allows visitors to immerse themselves completely in the natural beauty of Tasmania’s most dramatic coastline without sacrificing on creature comforts. Tours depart daily from Launceston between October and May.
Two hours’ by road south-east of Launceston, there’s Coles Bay, gateway to Tasmania’s unspoilt Freycinet Peninsula. This is where you’ll find iconic Wineglass Bay, a flawless curve of white sand lapped by gleaming blue waters.
If you have the cash, don’t miss a stay at the outstanding Saffire Freycinet. This remarkable stingray-shaped luxury lodge is nestled discreetly in the lush vegetation of the Freycinet Peninsula and treats its guests to a range of signature experiences including a visit to the local oyster farm. It also has its own Tasmanian devil enclosure.
Saffire Freycinet, a lodge like no other