Mount Field National Park is one of those less-known Australian parks that are well-worth visiting. It is located in the heart of Tasmania – my favorite Australian state – about an hour’s drive northwest of Hobart. To be honest, I stopped there only because I passed by on my way from Hobart to Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park. I didn’t regret it; it’s a spectacular piece of nature.
Mount Field National Park
Probably the most diverse of all national parks in Tasmania, Mount Field National Park is known for its inspiring landscapes, lakes, rainforests and diverse wildlife. Especially the diversity of flora is mind-boggling. There is rainforest and alpine vegetation, ancient tree ferns and massive swamp gums. Those swamp gums, by the way, are the second-tallest trees on earth, after the redwoods on the west coast of the United States, and they are by far the tallest flowering plants on the planet. They’re huge. Wildlife includes Tasmanian endemics, such as eastern quolls, eastern barred bandicoots and Tasmanian devils. Eleven of Tasmania’s twelve endemic bird species can be spotted in Mount Field National Park as well. Additionally, there are, of course, also . In terms of wildlife, it doesn’t get more Australian than that.
As such a diverse place, there is also a wide variety of activities on offer. I, myself, hiked a lot – I did four different trails in two days. Besides hiking, you could also camp, cave and ski (in winter). There are several caves, as well as many thundering waterfalls. The alpine highlands are great fun to explore on foot and the mountain peaks offer pretty amazing views.
A popular loop hike takes in Russell Falls – the park’s main attraction and so scenic that they were featured on Australia’s first postage stamp –, Horseshoe Falls, Lady Barron Falls and the Tall Trees Circuit. The Tall Trees Circuit is a short (30 minutes) and pleasant loop walk underneath the tallest of swamp gums, which make you feel like a dwarf. It’s pretty spectacular to see these mighty plants reaching towards the sky.
Mount Field National Park lies only an hour from Hobart. If you follow the A10 from Hobart past New Norfolk to Westerway, then turn left and follow a pleasantly winding road to the village of National Park, you will see the clearly signed national park’s entrance.
The one and only suggested way to see Tasmania is by renting a car. There is one main road on the island, which loops around and connects nearly all major attractions. I spent exactly two weeks road tripping around the hidden gem that Tasmania really is and, in addition to Mount Field National Park, also visited Hobart, Freycinet National Park, the Bay of Fires, Launceston, Lake St Clair and Cradle Mountain.