What are the Seasons in Tasmania?

 
Book with confidence
Our COVID-19 flexibility promise

Read on to learn what makes each season in Tasmania so beautiful, and how to make the most of your time in Tasmania, no matter the time of year.

Tasmania

Seasons and weather in Tasmania

Tasmania’s weather varies greatly throughout the year, with maritime, mountain and rainforest climates. The best time to visit Tasmania is not clear cut, as each season has its benefits and it also depends on what you’re interested in doing and seeing during your Tasmanian vacation. 

  • Summer is December - February, and they are the warmest months, perfect for visiting the beaches and wineries. 
  • Autumn can vary quite a lot, however it’s a gorgeous time to visit with trees changing colour from March through May. 
  • Winter (June - August) brings snow, sunshine and “bluebird” days, with colder temperatures and snow-capped mountains. 
  • Spring is September through November, there can still be late snow but the weather is starting to warm up and the flowers are blossoming.

In general Tasmania gets quite a lot of rain - this is why there is such stunning greenery all around the island, so it’s not all bad news! As a general rule, rainfall is frequent throughout the year, with a maximum in winter and a minimum in summer. However, it varies greatly in quantity, since the bulk of the rain falls on the western side. In fact, annual precipitation is equal to or higher than 1,500 millimeters (60 inches) on the west coast, around 2,000 mm (80 in) and more on the western slopes of the inland hills, around 900/1,000 mm (35/40 in) on the north coast, and down to 600/700 mm (24/28 in) on the east coast.

winter

WINTER

I love snow and crackling fireplaces, tell me more about winter…

Winter in Tasmania is a sight to behold, it’s a truly beautiful time to visit the Apple Isle. The air may be crisp, but in Tasmania winter definitely doesn’t put a freeze on activities! Celebrate the vibrant culture, rich history, outstanding natural beauty, and first-class events and foodie attractions that shine in Tassie’s cooler climate. There are outstanding museums and galleries that are ideal places to keep warm, embrace the natural beauty of snow-capped mountains, gushing waterfalls, and rugged ocean views, and feast on fabulous local food, wine, and spirits.

Less crowds, more relaxing...

Whether you enjoy relaxing by an open fire with a cheese platter and a locally distilled Tasmanian whisky, or if you prefer skiing, hiking and mountain biking, winter is the season for you. Fewer tourists travelling during winter means you'll enjoy less traffic, less crowded attractions and less queuing. Accommodations are often cheaper and the elusive Southern Lights (Aurora Australis) are more likely to show themselves. 

The ideal winter itinerary

The specialists at First Light Travel have done the hard yards and created the perfect lux winter getaway, take a look at the Tasmania Winter Wonderland Self Drive itinerary. It’s packed with fantastic ideas to help you make the most of winter, and includes gorgeous accommodations to ensure you stay warm and relaxed. You will especially enjoy Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge in the colder months, the King Billy suite comes with a cozy fire and a private deck with a hot tub, which is even more romantic in winter, when falling snow dusts the mountains and eucalyptus trees. 

Whale watching

Winter is also the perfect time for whale watching, where you can see orcas, southern right whales and humpback whales just to name a few. Humpback whales migrate past Tasmania’s east coast between the end of May and the end of June and again between October and December. This is the best time of the year for whale watching in Tasmania! 

Festivals

Each June in Hobart, the Dark Mofo winter festival delves into centuries-old winter solstice rituals and celebrates the dark through art, music, food, film, light and noise. The festival is organised and curated by the infamous Mona (Museum of Old and New Art). August brings Chocolate Winterfest in Latrobe, near Devonport, an indulgent celebration of all things chocolate.

For more details about winter in Tasmania, read our recent blog on What to do in Tasmania during Winter. There’s information on whisky tasting, perfect winter walks, underworld caves, ghost tours and more, plus all the important details on road safety and weather. Remember to pack your beanie and gloves and we’ll see you there!

Autumn

AUTUMN (FALL)

I love being surrounded by orange and gold coloured trees in the mountains, tell me more about autumn...

The autumn months are March, April and May. The weather is changeable, but so are the leaves, with the famous Fagus tree changing to glorious reds and yellows in April, the glowing swathes of forest are a wonderful sight. This is usually the driest time of year, and the days are still warm and long, but the nights are beginning to cool down and everywhere is much quieter compared to summer. The Turning of the Fagus may sound like a Shakespearean tale, but it actually refers to the autumnal change in colour of Tasmania’s only deciduous tree. A beech species, it covers the glowing range of rust reds, oranges and brilliant golds during the months of April and early May. In the north of the state, some of the best fagus is found around Cradle Mountain, in Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park. The Loop Track around Dove Lake is an easy two hour walk that passes through some particularly dramatic patches of fagus trees.

Experience the autumnal beauty of Cradle Mountain and Dove Lake as part of our Luxury 10 Day Tasmania Self Drive itinerary.

Festivals

Beer lovers will enjoy the Fresh Hop beer festival, held in Launceston in late April. Tasmania might be a little island but it grows the majority of Australia's hops, many of which are in growing demand globally. So it's only fitting that the state should celebrate its annual bounty, something the team at Saint John Craft Beer in Launceston has been doing in recent years. More than 25 breweries from across Australia (most of which hail from Tassie) will launch new beers they've created with hops that have been rushed straight from their bines to the brewery.

The Tasmanian cider trail

Autumn is a great time to visit a cider mill or two (or more). Tasmania – also known as the Apple Isle – is famous for its delicious ciders made from 100 percent locally-grown apples, pears and, on occasion, cherries. Most of the state’s best cider makers can be found in the apple and pear growing heartlands of the Huon Valley, just a 30 minute drive south of Hobart, as well as in the fertile soils in the north-west, close to Launceston. Meet the people that make Tasmanian cider special and discover their stories, love and passion that goes into crafting every bottle of Tasmanian cider. 

Hiking

Ready to walk the world’s edge? Journey along some of the world’s highest sea cliffs with the Three Capes Lodge Walk, the only fully guided Three Capes Track experience with accommodation inside Tasman National Park. After the summer crowds have long departed, autumn is a fantastic time to head outdoors and dust off those hiking boots. The experience begins with salty wind in your hair – a boat cruise across to Denman’s Cove. It’s then onward to Crescent Bay Lodge, sitting loftily with views across to Cape Raoul. Each day will offer different adventures as you alternate between walking on timber boardwalk to gravel and stone steps, to getting that top-of-the-world feeling when you scale Australia’s highest sea cliffs (hinged 300m above the Southern Ocean) especially at key lookout points on Cape Pillar and Cape Hauy. Orchids will be in full bloom during autumn, while sightings of migratory whales and short-tailed shearwaters are possible.

Reconnect with nature on this world class guided hike on our 10 Day Tasmania and the Three Capes Walking Adventure itinerary.

Just quietly, but we think autumn is one of the best times of year to visit Tasmania! It’s not as busy or crowded as summer, with cool, dry days and crisp nights. Eggshell-blue skies and the slow creep of red, gold and orange as the leaves start to turn. Seeing the uniquely Tasmanian Turning of the Fagus is a must!

flowers

SPRING

I want to see bright colourful flowers and explore local food and wine events, tell me more about spring...

Spring is the time for change. From September through to November the land begins to wake from its winter slumber. Flowers and fruit orchards bloom and the valleys of Tasmania are awash in more shades of green than you have ever seen in your life! As temperatures rise you may also notice periods of strong winds – they don’t call them the ‘Roaring 40s’ for nothing. But they don’t normally hang around long, a day or two at the most, before being replaced by still days and sun showers.

Tulips

The Tasmanian tulip season runs from late September to mid-October. One of the best places to see the tulips growing is in the fertile volcanic soil of Table Cape on the north-west coast near Wynyard. At the Table Cape Tulip Farm, row after row of colourful [/colorful] Tulips, Dutch Iris and Liliums create a photographic spectacle. The 90-acre farm is home to more than 80 varieties, some of which are even exported back to the Netherlands as bulbs. The Bloomin’ Tulips Festival celebrates the annual tulip flowering with a three-week program of art, food, and music in mid-October. Spring is also just as spectacular down south during the Spring Community Festival in Hobart's Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens.

Food and wine festivals

Food and wine events are held around the state, each exploring their local flavours and farmers. Tasmania's east coast region is known for outstanding wine production and many quality cellar doors. The Great Eastern Wine Weekend in early September showcases the best food and wine of the region, explored through dinners, tastings and cellar door discounts. The Devonport Food and Wine Festival runs for the month of October with a program of more than 70 events – cooking classes, dinners, wine tastings, producer visits and workshops. Devonport is on the north-west coast and surrounded by fertile farmland and ocean. The area is known for producing some of the best apples, potatoes, seafood, beef, berries, wasabi and saffron. The annual Bicheno Food and Wine Festival is a popular mid-November festival that brings together the best produce, wine, cider, beer and spirits from the east coast region of Tasmania. The festival is held overlooking the blue waters of Waubs Bay and Redbill Beach, which is a constant reminder of the oceanic influence in the area. The Tamar Valley near Launceston is prime farming land, producing some of Tasmania's best produce. During the annual Farmgate Festival in late November, farmers and producers from the region will open their gates and invite festival-goers to tour their farms. Jump in the car and drive from farm to farm, learning about the agricultural heart of this area along the way. 

Tantalize your tastebuds on our gourmet 8 Day Tasmania Wine and Dine Self Drive Tour, taking you to some of the island’s most iconic sites via local wineries and food producers. Fine-wine connoisseurs and gourmands will be in their element as they savour some of the finest drops and morsels in the Tamar Valley and stunning Bruny Island.

Fly fishing

There are four species of salmonids in Tasmania: brown trout, rainbow trout, brook trout and Atlantic salmon. The Tasmanian fishing season opens in September and by mid-October fly fishing for trout in Tasmania is in high gear with lakes, rivers, and creeks all options. November is a terrific month on the highland lakes for large trout cruising the shallow shorelines. With a strong angling community in Tasmania and arguably Australia's best fly fishing, Tasmania is the place for you whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro.

Freycinet National Park

SUMMER

I love spending time outdoors exploring the wilderness, relaxing by the beaches and indulging in al fresco dining with a local sparkling wine in hand, tell me more about summer... 

December through to February are the warmest months in Tasmania with daily average temperatures ranging from the low teens to the mid 20s Celsius (mid 50s - mid 70s Fahrenheit) across the state. It’s also the driest time of year and experiences the longest daylight hours anywhere in Australia – up to 15 hours! As you can probably guess, it is also the most popular time of year for visitors to Tasmania – including many cruise ships that temporarily inject thousands of visitors onto Hobart’s historic waterfront. Therefore do keep in mind that whilst the weather is warm and sunny and the days are long, this is also when Tasmania is the busiest and accommodation prices can rise.

Bushwalking

Bushwalking options are plentiful around Tasmania, and the jaw-dropping scenery is one of the biggest reasons for visiting. Of course, visiting in summer means less chance of rain but so long as you pack smart and dress in layers (including a waterproof layer), you’ll have a blast no matter when you visit. Tasmania is a brilliant location for a hiking experience and interest in hiking based holidays is growing fast, as we all increasingly want to disconnect and get back to nature. Whether you’re after a quick day hike to add some exercise to your self-drive holiday, an overnight camping trip or a deluxe guided hiking adventure with gourmet food included, let us help you find the ideal hike to add to your next Tasmania trip. From mountains to rainforest to coast, breathe in the fresh air of the Tasmanian wilderness and feel instantly invigorated and refreshed.

For a deep-dive into some of the First Light Travel team’s favourite hikes and bushwalks around Tasmania, read our blog on The Best Tasmania Hikes. We share a great mix of short hikes and overnight guided hikes, catering to all levels of fitness.

Music festivals

Summer is the perfect time to discover the music scene in Tasmania with outdoor events happening all around the island state. The glorious Marion Bay on the East Coast hosts a three day music festival over New Years called The Falls Festival, with a huge line up of both international and local acts. Marion Bay is a pristine location to bring in the new year, with the local beach for a fresh morning dip, and a range of food vans for festival tucker. Spend the last days of the year soaking in the sunshine, perched on the hill watching over top music acts with a stunning ocean view to compliment. The vibrant community of Cygnet hosts Australia’s most iconic folk music festival in mid-January, highly regarded by musicians and festival-goers alike. Drive 50 minutes south of Hobart to find Cygnet, a food and cultural hub of the Huon Valley. The festival celebrates a collection of eclectic music genres through local and international talented folk artists. Tasmania’s leading celebration of folk and world music, dance, poetry, performance art, food, and cultural pursuits.

Sporting events

One of the world’s toughest ocean races, the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race pits sailors against the might of the great Southern Ocean and the wild winds of the Roaring Forties. Hobart is the finishing line for this international yacht race, sought out by passionate yachties and maritime lovers. To join in the landmark event, visit the race village on Constitution Dock with plenty of food and fun for the family. We’ll catch you for “a quiet little drink” at your choice of the Hobart waterfront eateries and bars post-race! With the race being unpredictable in every way, wandering the docks after the race is fascinating - watch and listen on as the yachties debrief and recall tales (tall and otherwise) of the open ocean. The Hobart International is held in mid-January and you can watch top tennis talent battle it out with a glass of sparkling in hand, to the backdrop of Hobart’s scenic river and mountain. Celebrate top female athletes with live music, the finest local food and drink, and a twilight market - the Hobart International is Tasmania’s premier international women’s sporting event.

The Taste of Tasmania Festival

A celebration of Tasmania’s best food and drink? Yes please! The Taste of Tasmania is Australia’s biggest and longest running food and wine festival. With stunning waterfront views, awe-inspiring performances, live music and local gourmet offerings, ‘the Taste’ (as it’s affectionately known) is an unmissable free event. The Taste of Tasmania festival is held at Princes Wharf Shed on Hobart’s docks, for a week from late December until early January. The festival offers culturally diverse food stall selections, with a focus on local, seasonal and vegetarian produce. We also can’t forget to mention the array of local wineries, breweries and distilleries on offer. You can try anything from small samples to buying a whole bottle of wine to share with friends in the picnic area, along with indulging in fresh local seafood, tempura mushrooms, wood fired pizzas, berry ice-creams and loads more. Our favourite Tasmanian summer festival for sure!

The perfect summer itinerary

All of our self-drive itineraries are a perfect option for exploring Tasmania during the summer time. A fantastic introduction to the island if you want to see a little bit of everything is our fully customisable 12 Day Complete Tasmania itinerary, and for those wanting to take advantage of the long warm days with some time sailing and walking, we highly recommend the 7 Day Wineglass Bay Sail and Walk Trip.

kayak tasmania

The Best Time to Visit Tasmania

As you can see, the best time to visit Tasmania is whenever you can get there! Each season has its own positives to look forward to, so it really does depend on your interests and the best time for you to travel. The seasons of Tasmania are distinct and unique and offer their own rich experiences from romantic snowy mountain escapes in winter to crunching on colourful leaves in autumn, from enjoying the wildflowers and wine festivals in spring to lazing away the warm days in summer. 

Have we convinced you to try a Tasmanian winter escape for your summer vacation? How about a colourful [colorful] autumn adventure over the Easter holidays? To explore your options further, our Free Planning Service is here to help. Our Locally-Based Travel Specialists will work closely with you to create a trip tailor-made to your exact specifications. We love Tasmania with a passion and can't wait for you to get in touch.

More Articles that may help you plan your Tasmanian Vacation

Tags

sali smith
Submitted by
Salli Smith
: 18 Dec 2020 (Last updated: 5 Jul 2021)

Subscribe to our blog

Sign up to our blog newsletter to get the latest updates.

*We will not spam your email, this newletter is sent once a month or so.

Other currencies
Pricing terms

The price is based on current exchange rates but is only an approximation. Please contact us for a final price