The best natural attractions to visit near Burnie

Burnie is a small coastal town in Tasmania, perfectly situated as a basecamp for those interested in exploring the Cradle Coast.

 

With so many incredible gardens, rainforests and beaches only a short drive away, this list of the best natural attractions to visit near Burnie is a must for all nature lovers. 

 

Guide Falls © Mason Doherty

 

Guide Falls 

Just a 20 minute drive from Burnie’s CBD is a popular picnic spot, decked out with tables and BBQ facilities. From here, it’s only a 10-minute stroll to the base of Guide Falls, a stunning waterfall in the heart of the rainforest. Eager explorers are invited to climb the steep stairs to a viewing platform which offers a birds-eye view of the falls and the surrounding flora.

While visiting at any time is lovely, we recommend going in Winter for less crowds and more natural beauty. 

 

Leven Canyon © S. Group

 

Leven Canyon 

For those seeking more of an adventure, the deepest limestone ravine in Tasmania is an easy 1 hour drive from Burnie. Divided by the beautiful Leven River, the canyon contains several walking tracks that cater to all levels of experience. The Leven Canyon Lookout is a 1.2 kilometre circuit that takes you up 697 steps to Cruickshanks Lookout, a viewing platform suspended 27 metres over the river. Following the track around, you will then descend into the canyon while passing giant ferns, lichens, fungi and plenty of native wildlife.

Leven Canyon is a great destination for those seeking to escape the busy city and enjoy the serenity of nature. In the middle of the rainforest, you’re bound to find solitude.

 

Gunns Plains Caves © Oscar Sloane

 

Gunns Plains Caves

45 minutes from Burnie, you will find the Gunns Plains Caves. Often paired with the Leven Canyon for a jam-packed day trip, these caves were first discovered in 1906 when Bill Woodhouse was on a hunting trip, and have been hosting curious visitors ever since.

The caves were formed by an underground river that still flows, home to crayfish, fish and eel. Look closely, and you might even spot a platypus resting on the sandy banks. 

After descending into the caves, you will find yourself in a 275 metre long cavern popular due to its calcite shawls and crystal formations. Those wishing to learn more can join one of several guided tours hosted every day.

 

natural attractions to visit near Burnie
Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden © Tourism Australia

 

Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden 

Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden is an 11 hectare garden home to over 24,000 rhododendrons and similar plants. The property is divided into unique sections, designed to represent different parts of the world where rhododendrons are found, including the freezing Himalayas and tropical New Guinea.

While wandering the grounds, you will come across walking tracks, lakes, bridges, and lots of native fauna including platypus, echidna, frogs and birds. The garden is also home to a delightful tea house, with peak flowering occurring between September and November. 

 

Burnie waterfront © Bob Iddon

 

Burnie Waterfront 

Burnie’s West Beach is a hub of local activity all year round. In front of the Surf Lifesaving Club, you will find volleyball nets where the Burnie VolleyBall Association organises competitive games over the summer. 

On Saturdays, locals and visitors are invited to join the Burnie Parkrun, which starts and ends at the waterfront. Next to the beach you will find BBQ areas, a playground, walking tracks and cafes for the perfect morning coffee. Plus, the Eastern Promenade Lookout features a wonderful viewing platform which is lit with colourful LEDs at night. 

 

Cradle Mountain © Sean Scott Photography

 

Cradle Mountain

Cradle Mountain is the fifth highest peak in the state, and is located in a World Heritage National Park. Surrounded by alpine lakes, riverbanks and rainforests, there’s no reason to miss the 1.5 hour trip from Burnie to this green oasis. 

Here, you can venture along the Overland Track. This famous Aussie hike spans 80 km over a five or six day journey through forests and waterways. Or, for a single day adventure, we recommend heading along the Dove Lake circuit. This 6 km track starts at a glacially carved lake beneath the mountain, where visitors can hire kayaks, before passing through unique vegetation to offer incredible views of the region. 

For the best experience, we suggest joining a day-tour which starts and ends in the Burnie CBD. Hosted by Tassie Tours Tasmania, the tour includes a stop at the famous mural town, Sheffield, and a wine tasting at a local vineyard.

 

natural attractions to visit near Burnie
West Beach, Burnie © Mason Doherty

 

Burnie Lookouts 

If you’d rather stay close to home, there are several breathtaking lookouts spread throughout Burnie. The Roundhill Lookout is our favourite for unbeatable sunset views, while the Wilf Campbell Memorial Lookout is ideal for panoramic views of the city and the coastline.

 

Travel to Burnie

Rex flies to Burnie. Book your tickets here and check out the route map below.

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