Tasmania Motorcycle Rental/Hire
Renting a motorbike and exploring Tasmania is like discovering a way of life that has been forgotten in other parts of the modern world. Mountainous, forested and surrounded by beaches, Tasmania is like a collection of incredible motorcycle roads linked together and interrupted only by stops at historical sites and rest areas that often look out over incredible scenery.
Becoming increasingly popular with foodies and travellers looking for something a bit different, Tasmania has a selection of boutique eateries, wineries and top quality accommodation and then there are the roads and National Parks! Charley Boorman who leads a tour with Compass Expeditions through Tasmania said that he had “never before experienced such consistently incredible roads for literally hundreds of miles,” when talking about Tasmania and he should know.
Around 40% of Tasmania is protected in National Parks and reserves and in these areas you will find tight and twisting roads weave their way up and over the hills and mountains, alongside lakes, waterfalls and steams and deep into the green heart of Tasmania. Along the coastal areas with wide open, empty beaches you’ll find some of the most scenic motorbike roads in the world. Motorcycling in Tasmania offers the chance to explore on or off-road and there are plenty of challenges whether you prefer the Tarmac or to hit the trails.
Tasmania Motorbike Rental collection points
With Compass Expeditions our BMW Motorcycles can be hired from our Melbourne locations and taken across on the Spirit of Tasmania ferry (9 hours overnight – which is a fantastic experience in itself).
Once you land in Devonport it is time to saddle up and discover for yourself why a Compass Expeditions motorcycle rental in Tasmania is such a rewarding experience. The combination of Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales works fantastically well for an Australia Motorcycle adventure with many of our clients starting in Sydney, riding through the High Country National Parks or the Outback through to Melbourne and then heading across on the ferry for a final week of taming the corners of Tassie.
*No one-way fees apply to Tasmania when the motorcycle is collected and dropped off in Melbourne.
Tasmania offers a climate and landscape much more similar to New Zealand than Australia with lush green rain forests, a high and exposed plateau in the central region and beautiful beaches around the outside and with this geology comes micro-climates and changeable weather. The best time of year for a Tasmania Motorbike Rental is from October until early May when there is less rain and the temperatures are at their highest. Expect average summer temperatures of 22 – 24 degrees Celsius (72 – 75 F) during the December, January and February months with highs tapering off either side of those months but still comfortable. During Tasmania winter months the high drops to the low teens with overnight temperatures dropping to just above freezing at times. There can be snow in the central regions during winter.
July is the wettest months with that being the peak of the bell curve but expect that there can be rain even during summer.
Where to ride during your Tasmania Motorcycle Rental
This is where the Spirit of Tasmania ferry arrives into Tasmania (normally in the morning) and where your motorcycle trip begins and ends. This is a fairly busy city with a rich maritime history and a good start point to go either West towards the west coast and the vast wilderness areas of the National Parks or east towards Launceston and the more populated and horticultural areas famous for its wineries, orchards, farms and plantations.
Video courtesy of James Bean who took part in
our Charley Boorman Motorcycle Tour
Launceston is the second largest city in Tasmania (behind Hobart) and is one of the best preserved old cities in Australia with fantastic colonial architecture, beautiful parks, art galleries and museums. It is also a city with some fantastic fine dining restaurants drawing from the fresh locally produced produce, wines and breweries.
The East Coast of Tasmania is a rich diversity of features and geographies and riding a motorcycle through the stunning roads of the east is an exercise in taking your time and enjoying what is around you. If you aren’t terrified at the thought of riding the motorbike on gravel surfaces then the area from Gladstone and east towards the Mt William National Park and then south towards Bay of Fires Conservation area offers the chance to get into the quiet zone. Beautiful, tranquil and with some good riding it is a nice way to get to the Bay of Fires. If the thought of gravel makes you break out in a rash then the main road through to St Helens offers some great riding and nice scenery and towns.
Bay of Fires
The stunning white beach of Bay of Fires sits beside beautiful turquoise waters and features large boulders covered in orange lichen. A great place for snorkeling and diving and a nice place to enjoy in the north-east of Tasmania.
Freycinet National Park
On the East Coast just below Bicheno is Freycinet National Park which sits out on a peninsula and offers a whole bunch of hiking and trekking opportunities. Pink Granite peaks, perfect white sand beaches and amazing views over wineglass bay and back to mainland Tasmania are not to be missed.
Hobart and Surrounds
Hobart is the capital of Tasmania lies at the south end of the “Heritage Highway”. The city originally began life as a penal colony being the second oldest capital cities after Sydney. Today Hobart is a vibrant city that also forms the homeport of Antarctic Operations for Australia and France.
Home of the some of the best preserved buildings from Tasmania’s Penal Colony past, Port Arthur is a fantastic place to visit during your motorcycle rental in Tasmania. At one time this was home to some of the most notorious convicts from Britain as well as many of those who had re-offended in Australia. The former prison has a colourful history as it was one that was promoted as being inescapable and, obviously with human endeavor being what it is and the unwillingness to be held captive there are many stories of daring escapes. Today this is one of the best visited sites in Australia and, while it’s history is one that is a mixture of brutality and notoriety, it is a site that should definitely form part of your Tasmania motorcycle journey.
Continuing south from Hobart there is some wonderful riding to be had on the Channel Highway as it twists and turns on its way south to the wonderfully named Snug and Cygnet where you find great views of the D’entrecasteaux Channel before returning to Hobart via Huonville.
The lower South West corner of Tasmania is some of the wildest and untouched terrain on the planet with rugged mountains, vast lakes, ancient forests and numerous waterfalls, rivers and streams.
Beginning just to the west of Hobart and stretching almost all the way back up to Devonport this huge area offers everything that a person could want in terms of natural wonders.
If Tasmania is naturally shaped like a heart, then the chamber on the left is all green and the rivers and waterways are its blood.
There are literally thousands of waterfalls throughout this beautiful island but Russell Falls is one of the most popular in Tasmania, shrouded in ferns these falls are located within the Mt Field National Park and offer some spectacular short walks amongst the towering Huon Pine. These falls are located about 70 km west of Hobart on the Gordon River Road.
Franklin Gordon Wild Rivers National Park
The Franklin and the Gordon River are just two of the many waterways that drain this vast green corner of Tasmania and lies in the heart of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. From Hobart you follow the Derwent river westwards on either the Lyell Highway or Glenora Road and continue on to Gordon River Road into the heart of the National Park.
This is the only road in and out of the park so you’ll need to double back on yourself but in our opinion the 115 km journey each way from the Lyell Highway is worth it for some of the best scenic motorcycle riding in Australia. Stunning mountain views, riding through dense and wet forests past lakes and rivers and some great flowing curves means that Gordon River Road is fantastic on the motorcycle. You do have to be careful of log trucks, which do sometimes appear around tight curves and you need to watch the road surface carefully but motorbiking on the Gordon River Road rewards you with some great memories. At the end of the road is the Gordon River Dam which was built to supply Tasmania with a substantial portion of its electricity needs and, as well as its practical purpose, it creates a vast lake which is a fantastic end to a nice ride and great for camping, bbqs, etc. A walk on the wall of the dam is mighty impressive too!
Continuing northwards up the Lyell Highway, which skirts the eastern edge of the indescribably picturesque Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park, the scenery continues to impress with Queenstown being the next largest population to be reached. An old mining town, it is abundantly clear that Queenstown has been severely affected by the mining and logging industries with large areas of earth exposed to the sky but today, regrowth is starting to happen again. The ride down into Queenstown is pretty spectacular with no less than 90 corners to make the motorcycle ride memorable.
Strahan today is still a fishing harbor but increasingly there are multiple tours and services such as cruises, etc that service the National Park.Strahan which lies on the west coast on the edge of Macquarie Harbour is today a beautiful little town that is considered to be the gateway to the Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park. In its early history it was well-known as the home of the Sarah Island Penal Colony which was regarded as one of the worst places to be incarcerated in Australia. Reserved for those who were the worst offenders or who had escaped from other colonies, it was a treacherous location and was feared by many. There were also several escapes made and very macabre survival stories that emerged after the escapees were recaptured.
Ocean Beach is a one of the best beaches in the area but not really recommended for swimming due to the large tides and strong currents.
Cradle Mountain – Lake St Clair National Park is perhaps considered to be the celebrity National Park in Tasmania most well known for its Overland Track which is a 6 day epic through Tasmania’s finest mountain terrain and finishes at Lake St Clair, Australia’s deepest lake. Stunning scenery and a variety of habitats ranging from deep ancient rainforests to high glacial valleys, waterfalls and mountain peaks this is an incredible part of Tasmania and it is well worth exploring it during your motorcycle hire in Tasmania.
Banner: View over central Tasmania and riding on Strahan Beach – Compass Expeditions; Bay of Fires – Graham Freeman, Tourism Australia
Tasmania Map – Compass Expeditions
Video – James Bean
Freycinet National Park, Tasmania. Photo: Tourism Australia, Photographer: Graham Freeman and Ian Butterworth
Winding Roads and Port Arthur Prison – Compass Expeditions
BMW F800GS – Compass Expeditions
Lake Pedder, Tasmania. Photo: Tourism Australia, Photographer: Graham Freeman
Riding on beach – Compass Expeditionsby