CAPE RAOUL DAY TOUR
Grade: T2 – Narrower but distinct tracks which can be muddy in some places, in pristine natural environments. Facilities are minimal and you will encounter few other walkers. These moderate tours require a reasonable level of fitness.
Walk through a variety of landscapes and plant communities, culminating in the stunning view of Cape Raoul
Much of Tasmania’s most dramatically beautiful coastal scenery is found on the east coast of the Tasman Peninsula in the south-east of the state and the walk to Cape Raoul (one of Tasmania’s 60 Great Short Walks) is the southernmost point on the Peninsula. To access the walk, we travel southeast from Hobart on the Tasman Highway, over the Dunalley Canal and the Forestier Peninsula to the infamous Eaglehawk Neck on the Tasman Peninsula and then on past the Port Arthur settlement to our trailhead at Stormlea.
From here we enter the coastal forest of tall stringy bark eucalypts (Eucalyptus obliqua) with an attractive and varied understory before arriving at our morning tea spot – the breathtaking and precipitous cliffs overlooking Shipstern Bluff to the west and Cape Raoul to the east. From here the character of the scenery changes to one of a remnant rainforest sustained by sea-mist (a cloud forest) with seemingly out-of-place ora more usually found at higher and wetter altitudes, then to a dry she-oak (Allocasuarina littoralis) grove as we skirt the precipitous cliffs above the sea below, and finally to a wind-pruned plateau of coastal heaths (Epacridaceae sp.) and dwarf banksias (Banksia marginata) before we arrive at our lunch stop atop the vertiginous cliffs overlooking the dolerite columns of Cape Raoul.
The route generally is a pleasant and easily traversed bush track, with some steep sections and some quite thrilling sections close to the cliff edges requiring careful negotiation.