St Helens is located on the northeast coast of Tasmania, in close proximity to the Bay of Fires. There are many sites worth visiting along the drive from St Helens to Launceston.
Things To Do
1) Binalong Bay
The gateway to Bay of Fires, Binalong Bay is a quant beach town with a beautiful beach and a colorful rocky coastline.
2) Bay of Fires
The Bay of Fires extends from Binalong Bay in the South to Mt William National Park in the North. Colorful rocky boulders are scattered along this coastline.
There are a couple of hikes on the list of 60 Great Short Walks in Tasmania.
This short hike (1.2km roundtrip) leads you through a rainforest to one of the largest waterfalls in Tasmania. It is worth the 30 minute stop, if you are in the area.
B) Ralphs Falls
Another short hike located in northeast Tasmania. We were advised that a 4 wheel drive was required to reach this destination and thus did not make the trip.
The Pyengana Dairy Company is located off of C428, in route to St Columba Falls. Stop in for a free cheese tasting and stay for a tasty lunch at their cafe, or enjoy a scoop of their ice cream on their sunny back patio.
The largest privately owned lavender farm and the only lavender farm in Tasmania. Lavender is in full bloom in December and is harvested in the beginning of January. (The pictures look amazing.) The lavender had been harvested when we visited in early February. In our opinion, it was not worth the stop and entrance fee. However, we might think differently if we were their prior to harvesting or if we were in the market for some lavender souvenirs.
6) Wine Tasting
The Tamar Wine Region is located just outside of Launceston. If driving from the East Coast (St Helen’s / Freycinet Peninsula), your routing can include stops at some of the wineries that specialize in cool weather wines, specifically sparkling wines and Pinot Noir. A couple wineries we would recommend in the eastern Tamar Valley are:
Bay of Fires is world known for their sparkling wines. However, we also found ourselves enjoying many of their wines, including their Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Sauvignon Blanc. We would highly recommend a stop at this winery.
This small family run winery produces some good cooler climate varieties. We enjoyed the Rosato and their Chardonnay. (Even though I do not like Chardonnay.)
The Pyengana Dairy Company is located off of C428, in route to St Columba Falls. After doing a cheese tasting, we had a fantastic lunch at the Holy Cow Cafe. The cafe uses local ingredients from their farm. It was well worth the stop, even if it is just to taste the cheese and enjoy a scoop of their ice cream!
There are a handful of motels and B&Bs around St Helen’s and Binalong Bay. We stayed cheaply at a very old motel, Bayside Inn. Let’s just say the price was right, but I was happy to move on.