SOUTH WEST National Park is a pristine wilderness in the south west of Tasmania. It is a land of towering mountains, tall forests and fast flowing rivers. This area has practically never been touched by civilized man. Going there is like going to another planet. There are no settlements or facilities in the Park. You must be moderately fit to walk the track to South Cape Bay and very fit and brave to walk the Port Davey Track. The only other way to see this area is by plane. The Park can be accessed from a number of points.
From the west coast the South West National Park can be accessed via the Gordon River from boats from STRAHAN.
From the northern Derwent Valley area the South West National Park can be accessed via a track exiting from the road to the Scotts Peak Dam. This road connects with B61 the road to STRATHGORDON.
From the east the South West National Park can be accessed from a track exiting from near the Tahune Air Walk, east of GEEVESTON.
The South West National Park can also be accessed from the east from COCKLE CREEK.
Finally there are flights into the South West National Park to the Melaleuca Airstrip and there are boat cruises into Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour. These depart from Hobart. The above named locations are in the southern part of the South West National Park.
View Region Huon Valley in a larger map
TOURIST information is located at 22 Main Street, HUONVILLE. The telephone is (03) 6264 8460
Another tourist information office is 134 Macquarie Street, Hobart. Their telephone number is 1300 135 513 or the Internet contact is www.parks.tas.gov.au
FLIGHTS into the South West National Park are flown by Paravion. Telephone (03) 6248 5390 or contact www.paravion.com.au
ADVENTURE WALKS in the South West National Park contact (03) 6288 2210 or 0400 786 327
SIGHTS: The South West National Park is a World's Heritage area, because it is a pristine wilderness. It contains spectacular forests, many beautiful bays and many mountains, including Federation Peak, which is 1224 metres high.
Apart from a short walk to SOUTH CAPE BAY the rest of the SOUTH WEST National Park is for experience bush walkers only. However, you can fly into the MELALEAUCA airstrip. The telephone number is (03) 6248 5390 or contact www.paravion.com.au
The sights of the national park are accessed from the SOUTH COAST TRACK and its continuation, the PORT DAVEY TRACK. This is often difficult and muddy. If takes 8 days to do the full walk and if you have an accident, then you must have an EPIRB or you will die!
All visitors are asked to respect this pristine area and obey the rules of the Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service:
Plan ahead & be prepared,
Only walk and camp on durable surfaces,
Dispose of waste properly,
Leave what you find,
Use a camp stove
Be considerate of your hosts & other visitors
WARNING: The South West National Park is frequently subjected to extremely cold and wet weather, as well as mist, in any season. Come prepared with a compass and an EPIRB and do not attempt the journey, if the weather prediction is doubtful. This area is definitely only for expert bush walkers.
ROUTES: The easiest access to the South Coast Track is from COCKLE CREEK. Many people do the short 8 kilometre walk to South Cape Bay and then return to COCKLE CREEK. This is the only part of the area that can be done safely by amateurs.
The continuation of the South Coast Track is the Port Davey Track. It can also be access from near the TAHUNE AIR WALK, which you approach from GEEVESTON via C632.
The Port Davey Track can also be access from Camp Huon near the Scotts Peak Dam. You approach the Dam by travelling west towards STRATHGORDON on B61, you then drive south on C607, which is a gravel track, to the Scotts Peak Dam and Camp Huon. Here a short track links up with the Port Davey Track. These tracks are for experienced 20/20 bush walkers (Those who can carry a 20 kilogram pack for 20 kilo metres per day).
For those who can't, an easy option is to fly into the Melaleuca Air Strip in the southern part of the South West National Park. This gets you in and out of the heart of the south western wilderness. There are also cruises to Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour. The telephone is (03) 6248 5390 or www.paravion.com.auLAKE
- SOUTH CAPE BAY
1/ The South West National Park is in the south west of Tasmania. This photo shows the track to South Cape Bay, which is rated at moderate. It travels through a variety of landscapes. It is the only part of the South West National Park that is easy to access.
2/ This photo shows a brilliant white sand beach near South Cape Bay. The rest of the coastal areas of the South West National Park are very similar.
3/ The roar of the Southern Ocean dominates the aura of South Cape Bay. It is a pristine and beautiful place.
4/ This beach at South Cape Bay was totally unspoiled by man. These rounded stones are the work of thousands of years of wave action. There are many more beautiful beaches in the South West National Park.
5/ This is the famous Lion Rock at South Cape Bay. From this angle you can see how it got its name.
6/ This is another view of the famous Lion Rock at South Cape Bay. There are many more spectacular things to see in the South West National Park.
7/ An over night stay at South Cape Bay is great way to experience the serenity of the South West National Park.
8/ This shows the colors of sunset over a peaceful lagoon on the track to South Cape Bay.