Planning a visit to Tasmania? Do you love getting out of the cities of Australia and exploring the countryside, wandering pristine beaches, and enjoying local gourmet produce? If this is what you love to do, well, a Bruny Island day tour from Hobart will tick all of your boxes and more.
Bruny Island abounds with nature, pristine beaches, gourmet produce, wines, whiskey, cheese, honey, its world-famous oysters and a stunning coastline that equals anywhere else in the world. We were smitten after our day tour to Bruny Island, you will too! You may even be lucky enough to see the white wallabies around Mount Mangana.
We visited Bruny Island with Bruny Island Safaris on their Bruny Island Full Day Food, Lighthouse and Sightseeing Tour. For more information, latest prices and availability click here.
We joined the tour in Hobart where we were staying at the new centrally located and hip Vibe Hotel.
When is the best time to visit Bruny Island?
Bruny Island weather conditions are perfect for travel between September and February. We travelled in the month of April where the weather was cooler, brisk mornings and bright brilliant blue skies.
There are so many things to do in Bruny Island, one day won’t be enough.
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We have put together a Youtube Video of the highlights of our Bruny Island Day Trip, you can view it here.
Bruny Island Map
The map of Bruny Island showing North Bruny Island and South Bruny island separated by the Isthmus known as The Neck.
Our Bruny Island Day Tour of Gourmet Food & Sightseeing
Bruny Island Safaris were our choice for the day tour of gourmet food, Cape Bruny Lighthouse tour, and sightseeing. Our guide, Rick, a local of Bruny Island, was our bus driver, if you are lucky enough to get Rick for the day you are in for a great day out full of fun and laughter.
Our departure from Hobart was around 7 am. Rick was keen to get us to Kettering where the Sealink Ferry departs for Bruny Island for the 8.30 am crossing. Hobart to Bruny Island is an easy journey. We made it in great time and even had time to enjoy a coffee and freshly baked muffins from the Mermaid Cafe at the Ferry Port. If you missed out on breakfast due to the early start of the tour we can highly recommend the steaming hot coffee and the scrumptious berry muffins.
Travel tip: this is the last toilet stop until after the first picnic stop on the island.
During the ferry crossing of 20 minutes, you can leave the bus and walk around the deck to take photos. It can be a bit breezy so make sure you have a jacket.
After stopping at Get Shucked Oysters to collect enough oysters for the group and another stop at the Bruny Island Cheese and Beer Company for freshly baked sourdough baguettes and the three kinds of cheese that we were tasting we drove to one of the prettiest spots on South Bruny Island – Two Tree Point – Resolution Creek Historic Site in Adventure Bay for a picnic.
Two Tree Point has changed little since 1792, so the sign states at the site. The site was known as the ‘watering place’ and was noted on the navigational charts in 1773 of Captain Furneaux on his ship the Adventure and for Captain James Cook in 1777 on his ship the Resolution. This waterway provided freshwater supplies for both expeditions. Later the watering-place was named Resolution River by Captain William Bligh when he sailed on the Bounty in the area in 1788. When Captain Bligh next visited the area in 1792 on the Providence, Lieutenant Tobin painted Two Tree Point showing the two Eucalyptus trees which date them back to over 250 years of age.
The oyster lovers in our group remarked how good the oysters were from Get Shucked. The three kinds of cheese tasted were some of the best.
If you are heading to the Bruny Island Cheese Company we can recommend:
- o.d.o. – stands for one day old, fresh cow milk cheese marinated in olive oil
- 1792 – named after the year the French first set foot in Tasmania – cows milk soft cheese with the rind washed with huon pine
- George – semi-hard cheese with a natural rind aged for 6 – 8 months
Next, we were off to find the wild white wallaby (aka the Bennetts Wallaby) that roams in the Mount Mangana Rainforest. Over the last few weeks sightings had occurred but today we were out of luck. Currently, there are over 200 white wallabies on the island, they are prone to skin cancers and are sun-sensitive. They can only be found on Bruny Island. They have survived because of a lack of predators and with the support of the locals.
The journey through the rainforest was very scenic. Along the way Rick stopped to allow us to try the Tasmanian Pepper Berry – the berry when dried can be used as pepper, it certainly had a kick to it. Mount Mangana is the highest peak on Bruny Island at 571m.
Cape Bruny Lighthouse
Cape Bruny Lighthouse was constructed during 1834 – 1836, and was the fourth lighthouse to be built in Australia, and is the 2nd oldest still-standing lighthouse in Australia. It is located on South Bruny Island in the South Bruny Island National Park.
As part of the Bruny Island Safari, you have your own private tour with a local guide for a 20-minute tour. NB: The climb to the top of the lighthouse is suitable for all levels of fitness.
Our guide explained the history of the lighthouse and how it was constructed by 12 convicts in 18 months. They were granted their freedom after the completion of the Lighthouse. The first light shone was in 1838. The original light consisted of 15 whale oil lamps, the oil came from sperm whales. In 1902 the whale oil lamps were replaced with a single kerosene light which needed pumping every hour. If there was a draught the flame would go out.
In the 1980s automation began in the lighthouses around Australia and by 1996 the Cape Bruny Lighthouse was decommissioned and a smaller autonomous lighthouse was built on the hill to the east.
As part of your visit to the Cape Bruny Island Lighthouse, you have time to visit the small museum near the car park, the original Lightkeeper’s Cottage, the gravesite and the convict garden.
Travel tip: The Lighthouse is located in the National Park and there will be a National Parks Fee if you visit on your own.
Lunch at the Hotel Bruny
One of the popular places to eat is Hotel Bruny. Our lunch at Hotel Bruny was included as part of our tour costs. Produce is locally sourced and the portion sizes are large. Excellent food!
Travel tip: try the local Apple & Cherry Cider from Bruny Island that can only be purchased from the hotel. It has no sugar and 8% proof.
Address: 3959 Bruny Island Main Rd, Alonnah
Open from 11 am to late
Reservations are required you can phone (03) 6293 1148.
As part of the Bruny Island Safaris, we had priority seating so it is recommended to book ahead, it was quite busy if you are visiting the island on your own.
Bruny Island Chocolate Company
Bruny Island Chocolate Company is famous for its fudge. We have tasted fudge all over the world but there is nothing quite like their products. Why is it different? Most fudge that we have tasted is sugary and gritty. Bruny Island Fudge is very smooth and velvety. It is made by Chef Michael Carnes from a 40-year-old recipe from when he was working as a pastry Chef in an English hotel.
You can also purchase chocolates, truffles, sauces, jams and they even have an on-site whiskey distillery – Houndstooth Whiskey distillery that they bottle and also use in the whiskey fudge.
Address: 55 Adventure Bay Road Adventure Bay
The Neck Lookout & Wildlife Reserve and Truganini Lookout
The Neck is a narrow isthmus that joins North Bruny to South Bruny. There is a small car park at the bottom of the lookout. We can recommend climbing the 200 steps to the Truganini Lookout for 360 degrees views over both islands.
The lookout has been dedicated to Truganini, who was a full-blooded aboriginal born on Bruny Island, in 1812 and died in 1876. She was the daughter of one of the aboriginal leaders of Bruny Island.
Between the months of September and February, the little penguins come out at dusk. They may cross the isthmus so you do need to take care.
Travel Tip: Do not use the flash on your camera when taking photos of the little penguins. Do not use flashlights either. There will be a Park Ranger who can supply red plastic that you can place over your flashlight.
Bruny Island Honey Shop
Honey tasting and ice cream eating if you have any room left after your lunch at the Hotel Bruny and the chocolate and fudge tasting. Not only are there a range of different types of honey to purchase, there are also honey-based face and hand creams, books, apparel, sweet treats and condiments.
Bruny Island Cheese & Beer Company
As a group, our timekeeping was impeccable, so much so, that we had time to head back to the Bruny Island Cheese & Beer Company to purchase cheese, enjoy the local craft beers, wines or just have a coffee.
Having caught the 4.30 ferry back to the mainland we arrived back in Hobart before 6, just in time to head out for more local food, wine and beer.Book Your Bruny Island Tour here
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We hope you enjoyed our review of our Bruny Island day tour. If you are interested in visiting Bruny Island this is a great way to see the island and learn more about the history, daily life and taste some of the best produce in Tasmania. For the Bruny Island traveller, you will enjoy your time on the island so much you will want to return as there are so many things to do on Bruny Island.