Please return car full of fuel and park off the street.
The city of Burnie is located on the north coast of Tasmania. Due to its position and geography, it was once a thriving port town, exporting paper and timber to the Australian mainland. Burnie’s past is evident in its architecture; with the city being nearly 200 years old, Burnie has a rich history. Like many of the coastal towns in Tasmania, Burnie has been transforming from a port city to a tourist hot spot. Burnie is now home to many fine dining establishments, museums, bars, pubs, galleries and attractions.
The north coast of Tasmania is full of places to drive and attractions to see. Burnie is just an hour and a half drive from the picturesque Tamar Valley. The valley is full of bushwalks, beaches, forests and more. The valley is known for its food, with around 60 operators producing world-class wine, cherries, cheese, walnuts and more. Within the valley’s space, there are now 32 vineyards that make up the Tamar Valley Wine Trail. The wine trail produces world-class, award-winning wine. Take a tour of the vineyards and purchase a few bottles to take home with you. If wine isn’t your drink of choice, you will also find beer, cider and spirits being produced in the region.
Looking for something more solid? Pair the wine with some fantastic produce from the area, with cafes, bakeries, and restaurants that all serve locally made food and goods. From pork, salmon, truffles, honey, and award-winning olive oil, there’s a lot to sink your teeth into. It’s lucky that the north coast has so many fantastic walking trails, from forest reserves and national parks, as it will be easy to burn all those calories!
If you are in Burnie on the first and third Saturday of each month, then head to the Burnie Farmers Market. With over 50 stalls selling the region's best produce, pick up some baked goods, wine, and other handmade delicacies. The market has a great atmosphere; it doesn’t matter if you are in Burnie for a day or a week, there are products you can take with you. The Burnie Farmers Market was the first community established market in Tasmania. The market is held in the Wivenhoe Showgrounds, just a 5-minute drive from the city centre in your rental car.
Keep the produce theme going and visit the Hellyers Road Distillery. See how the whiskey is made and take the fully guided half-hour tour and meet Henry Hellyer, the owner and namesake of the distillery. The tour needs to be booked in advance; children are welcome under adult supervision, and entry into the café and gift shop is free. The distillery is just a 7-minute drive from Burnie Downtown.
Burnie is surrounded by forests, nature walks and a unique animal attraction. Burnie is a nesting ground for the smallest penguin species on earth, the aptly named little penguin, with an average height of just 33cm or 13 inches. See them from the viewing platform on the Burnie foreshore, a short walk or drive from the CBD. From October through to March, you will find the Friends of Burnie Penguins volunteers providing free information and a guided experience of the penguins.
Burnie is full of walking trails. The Fern Glades are less than 4 kilometres outside town and offer a fun riverside walk. The Emu River is home to wallabies, wombats, and more birds than we can list here. If you’re quiet and lucky, you might see some of these native animals on your walk. Other great walking options are Burnie Park, the Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden with over 22,000 individual rhododendron plants, and the Guide Falls Reserve with its fairy-tale-like waterfalls. There is a lot to pack into your time in Burnie, so whether you’re there for the food, nature or culture, you won’t be short on activities to do and places to drive in your rental car.