cradle mountain in Tasmania

The Best 5 Amazing Cradle Mountain Walks

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Cradle Mountain is one of Tasmania’s many National Parks and a must-see for anybody visiting the island state. It is one of the most incredible locations thanks to its snug lodgings, intriguing animal encounters, and various on-site trails. To make the most out of this, Cradle Mountain walk tours offer a variety of hikes to suit your strengths.

As a treat, visitors to Cradle Mountain may expect to see craggy peaks, dense forests, and an abundance of animal life. With this in mind, you will need excellent walking shoes, warm clothing, and an adventurous spirit to experience this lovely portion of Australia.


How to Get to Cradle Mountain?

In my opinion, bringing your own vehicle or renting one is the best way to see Tasmania Cradle Mountain. You may save money by booking a vehicle or camper on the Spirit of Tasmania boat to Devonport if you’re travelling from the mainland. Looking at renting a car? Check out Discover Cars for affordable and cheap rates.

When leaving Devonport, you can expect a 1.5-hour journey, and when leaving Launceston, you may expect a 2.5-hour drive through Sheffield. Also, you can take C136 and C132 from Sheffield to the Visitor Center.

Take note that this road has a notably meandering layout that, when wet, can turn out to be dangerously slick. However, the entire route is fastened, so good weather shouldn’t be a problem for most travellers.

From the Cradle Mountain Visitor Centre, a shuttle bus will take you to Dove Lake. Between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. in the summertime and 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 in the cold season. With this, the free Cradle Mountain Walk shuttle bus is the only way to get about during park hours.

You may catch a shuttle to the Interpretation Center, Snake Hill, Ronny’s Creek, or Dove Lake from the Visitor Center about every 15 minutes or more often if there are more passengers.

Please note that visitors to Tasmania Cradle Mountain National Park must pay an admission fee upon arrival at the Visitor Center, which includes using the park’s shuttle service. In our case, we shelled out $80 for access to all Tasmanian national parks.

Cradle Mountain Walks - Path

Cradle Mountain Walks

Dove Lake Circuit Walk

Start: Dove Lake parking lot

Time: 2-3 hours

Distance: 6 km

The Dove Lake Circuit Walk is one of the park’s best attractions. You can walk for around two hours on a well-maintained trail and boardwalk. It’s one of my favourite short walks in the Tasmanian wilderness. Even for a brief trip, it provides stunning views of Cradle Mountain’s summit and traverses various terrain.

Moreover, scrubby button grass, the sandy shores of Dove Lake, and lovely streams softly pouring into the cradle mountain lake are in sight along the path. Not to mention, the magical ‘Ballroom Forest,’ with its moss-covered myrtle beech trees, beckons travellers to linger and take in the sights and sounds of the place.

The dove lake boat shed in cradle mountain
Dove Lake Boatshed


Enchanted Walk

Start: Interpretation Centre

Distance: 1.2 km 

Time: 30 minutes  

This Cradle Mountain walks you through a forest of shaggy trees, through waterfalls that murmur quietly amid the foliage. Even though it’s just a short walk, “The Rock” is a fitting title for this place. This trek in the woods, surrounded by glistening raindrops, seemed like entering a fairytale.

Pay attention to the elusive platypus that lurks in the murky ponds between the trees, as well as the wombats and paddymelons that emerge at nightfall to graze beside the route.

If you’re looking for another short and easy walk across comparable terrain, the 30-minute King Billy Track, which starts near the Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge, is an excellent option too.

Knyvet Falls in our list of Cradle Mountain Walks
Knyvet Falls in Cradle Mountain


Marion’s Lookout

Distance: 2-3 km

Time: 1 hour

Start: Dove Lake

Marion’s Lookout showcases one of the most spectacular vistas throughout Cradle Mountain National Park. In fact, the glittering surface of Dove Lake and the sharply jagged twin mountains rise high above you.

Not to mention, the pinnacle of a high glacier-carved plateau, offers beautiful panoramic views and tiny mountain lakes. Tourists flock to Cradle Mountain during the summer months when alpine wildflowers blossom in abundance.

However, since Marion’s Lookout is 1,200 feet above sea level, the weather at Cradle Mountain is uncertain. So at any time of year, walkers should provide warm clothing since snow might fall at any moment.


Overland Track

Start: Cradle Mountain

Time: 6-10 days

Distance: 65-80 km

It’s possible that the Overland Track could be too much for you if this is your first time trekking. In contrast, the Overland Track is a relatively easy trek for most folks who are fit and already had experience. However, poor weather may soon make this adventure more challenging.

With that, pinpointing near Cradle Mountain Walk is the 77.7-kilometre Overland Track. It is extensively castoff to track a lake and is sort as challenging if you ask me. The path best utilizes October through May as a hiking and camping destination.

With this beautiful and challenging excursion, the Lake Saint Clair climb is one of the most popular in the park. Permits are necessary from October to May, and the walk must finish off from north to south. However, you will need to make a reservation ahead of time.

Moreover, over 8000 individuals from all over the globe walk this track every year. However, in order to complete the trek, one must be physically fit. It is essential to carry cold-season apparel and waterproof shoes in the summer because of the unpredictable weather.

Most people will need 6-10 days to finish the route, depending on the weather and any side excursions in the itinerary. Cradle Mountain, Dove Lake, Mount Ossa, and the Du Cane Range are just a few suggested side excursions. If you’re an adventurer, this should be on your list of Cradle Mountain walks.

In addition to the Overland Track, Tasmania is home to the Bay of Fires, Maria Island, and a slew of other classic Cradle Mountain hikes. However, one does not need to go on a multi-day adventure to enjoy the finest of Tassie hiking.


Cradle Mountain Summit

Distance: 10 km (one way)  

Time: 3 hours  

Start: Dove Lake

The Cradle Mountain Summit is an incredible full-day climb that takes you through many of the top vistas, including Hansons Peak, Marion’s Lookout, and the Dove Lake Boatshed.

Indeed, the Cradle Mountain Summit is one of the most popular hikes on Cradle Mountain. The peak, on the other hand, is a natural attraction!

In addition, you may choose from several different Cradle Mountain climbs that will take you to the top. Still, I suggest doing the following route: Hansons Peak – Cradle Mountain Summit – Marion’s Lookout. It is a challenging and exhausting walk, but it is well worth it if you are ready for the task.

The portion between Kitchen Hut and the peak has to be the most difficult. Even just the return journey will take you three hours, and it will need you to scale large, uneven boulders.

After dragging yourself over stones and squeezing through tiny spaces, you’ll reach the summit, which provides pristine panoramic views of gorgeous Cradle Mountain lakes, rolling hills, and craggy peaks in the distance, among other things.

Now, the descent is just as tricky, forcing you to stoop and slide down the same huge pebbles! With that said, climbing Cradle Mountain may be risky, so only attempt it if you’re fit and familiar with heights.


Where To Stay in The Cradle Mountain?

Cradle Mountain Accommodation can cater to any level of extravagance that you choose. Hence, here are some of my favourite hotels to stay at throughout your vacation, from budget to five-star luxury.

Budget

Discovery Holiday Parks

Discovery Holiday Parks Cradle Mountain is located on the outskirts of the scenic Cradle Mountain National Park. Indeed, they offer warm gas log-heated cottages and cabins, as well as relaxing bunk rooms and campsites.

Whether you’re searching for a campsite or a spot for your van, Discovery Holiday Parks provides it with all.

In fact, regardless of the season, this is one of the most beautiful vacation parks you’ll ever see. To begin, you’ll want to see what’s beyond the site, and you won’t be disappointed.

The property is within walking distance of several tourist spots, among them the Enchanted Nature Walk. If you wish to venture a little farther, you can also find Dove Lake and Cradle Mountain.


Mid-range

Cradle Mountain Highlanders

There are sixteen cabins at Cradle Mountain Highlanders Cottages to select from. Some of which are spas, with names like ‘Buttonwood,’ ‘Telopea,’ and ‘Lanceolata’. In fact, each room has its own kitchen and bathroom, and it even has its own privacy and convenience.

Not to mention, WiFi, a DVD player, and a coffee maker are all available, despite the place’s rustic appearance. Cribs may be used instead of rollaway beds in cases when there is a baby in tow.

In actuality, the most fascinating aspect of the experience is found off-site. The world-renowned Devils At Cradle conservation site, home to the native Tasmanian Devils, is only a short drive away.

If you’d want to see Cradle Mountain Walks from a new perspective, consider the Enchanted Nature Walk. Here, it is only fifteen minutes away by car or bus from Glacier National Park. There are several hiking and biking paths in the vicinity, including horseback riding, kayaking, and helicopter rides. The weather may change at the drop of a hat, so it’s best to incline for some range of scenarios.

This cottage is nestled in the highlands just over a mile from Devils at Cradle and Enchanted Nature Walk. Dove Lake and Cradle Mountain are also within a 6-mile radius (10 km).

This cabin also includes tour/ticket help and BBQ grills in addition to laundry amenities. Public spaces are equipped with free WiFi, and self-parking is free of charge.

Luxury

Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge

Cradle Mountain’s Peppers promises a luxurious experience. Here, Enchanted Nature Walk and the Cradle Mountain Visitor Center are only a short distance away. This family-friendly hotel has two restaurants, a full-service spa, and a complimentary breakfast every day.

In addition, rainfall showerheads bathrobes, and quality linens provide a restful night’s sleep in your hotel room. Best of all, spa massages, aromatherapy, and mani/pedis are just some of the treatments at Waldheim Alpine Spa. Breakfast and supper are also in service at the Highland Restaurant. You may have a drink in the hotel’s lounge bar.

Furthermore, the Cradle Mountain Lake at St. Clair National Park and Devils at Cradle are both within a 15-minute walk of this 4.5-star Cradle Mountain hotel’s location.



Cradle Mountain FAQs

What Do You Need to Know About Cradle Mountain?

All around Tasmania, you’ll find a variety of short walking trails. These paths are popular with novice walkers, families, and visitors searching for a variety of activities in a single day. Dove Lake Circuit at Cradle Mountain Lake is among the few included in Cradle Mountain’s 60 Great Short Walks.

The 60 Great Short Walks provide the finest of Tasmania’s day ​walking experiences. Whether you choose a quiet stroll or a strenuous hike, these Great Short Walks have it all.

At sundown, Cradle Mountain bathes in golden light that shimmers across the hillside, creating an awe-inspiring scene. If you get up early enough, you can experience Cradle Mountain’s stunning morning light and almost empty paths.

As Launceston is a popular day-trip destination, the tourists often begin to build about mid-morning. Before the crowds gather to spend the day buzzing about Dove Lake, you may get an early start on the trails by hopping on the first few shuttles of the day.

The Wrap-Up: Cradle Mountain Walks

Cradle Mountain, in a nutshell, is a magical location. There are acres of tea plants with delicate white flowers that sparkle beneath a crisp covering of raindrops. For example, there is a plethora of animals, as well as an abundance of freedom for them to wander.

It’s a beautiful journey, from the boardwalks to the woodlands. Try these Cradle Mountain walks and surely you will enjoy the nature and animals that you will encounter.