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Australia’s smallest state, the island of Tasmania is a natural wonderland for the outdoor-lover. Bass Strait isolates the island from mainland Australia. Hobart, the capital city, is Tasmania’s busiest settlement. Launceston and Devonport are two of the largest towns outside the capital. From these settlements, attractions like Cradle Mountain, Mt Field National Park and Port Arthur are easily reached via car hire in Tasmania.
Travellers can pick up a car from major cities, towns, and transportation hubs across the state, like Devonport Ferry Terminal and Hobart Airport. It is advised that tourists compare car hire options via the internet, long before reaching Tasmania. Hertz, Thrifty, Avis and the ever-reliable Budget make sure vehicles are readily available for tourists.
Hobart and Launceston Airport are the major gateways into Tasmania. Most flights actually arrive from Melbourne though. The main ferry port into the state is located at Devonport. Ferries connect the island to the Port of Melbourne. Highway 1 is the busiest road through the state, connecting Devonport with Launceston and Hobart.
Tasmanian roads and highways have a speed limit of 100km/h outside built up areas. However, motorists will rarely get above 60km/h, as the roads across the state wind through mountain areas and along coastal routes. Many roads fail to provide overtaking lanes, so care is required when passing. Watch out for wildlife crossing roads, especially in the evening and at night. There are some sections of dual-carriageway located in Tasmania.
The historically beautiful Port Arthur is a must-see destination and can be easily accessed from Hobart using car rental in Tasmania. It is one of Australia’s first convict sites and is still well preserved. It is also the site of the Martin Bryant Massacre of 1996. The Bay of Fires, near St. Helens, is a magnificent cove boasting crystal clear waters and red-coloured rocky outcrops. Visitors should head to Cradle Mountain/Lake St. Clair National Park to embrace Tasmania’s true natural landscape.
Rainfall is high throughout the entire year, although the summer months of December, January and February generally receive less than the cooler months of the year. Summer is the best time to explore the island state, as temperatures are a comfortably mild 21°C. Winter temperatures (between May and August) can drop to nearly 0°C regularly.