The Nut, Stanley


Remote locations and stunning wilderness make Tasmania a remarkable destination to explore by car.

The island is compact, the roads uncrowded and the scenery varied. Tasmania's network of highways allows drivers to loop around the island discovering an ever-changing landscape.


Drivers are reminded to fill up their tank if they are travelling long distances off the main routes, to or from the west coast, or to the far south - particularly if driving after around 6pm.

No fuel is available on the Western Explorer between Marrawah and Zeehan, in the north-west.

Road types and conditions

Tasmania has a small population and there are very few freeways however the two-lane roads are mostly well-maintained and the traffic is light.

To help plan a motoring holiday the chart below shows driving distances and travel times.

Many road maps have letters ascribed to Tasmanian roads. These are:

  • A - major sealed highways.
  • B - secondary sealed roads.
  • C - often unsealed.

Some unsealed roads such as the Cockle Creek road in the far south or the Western Explorer road in the far north-west require extra care. Be aware that some car hire contracts have special conditions in relation to unsealed roads.

When estimating driving distances and times, you should always allow extra time for the journey. Roads can be winding and steep, especially on the west coast.

During the winter months – and occasionally in spring – highland roads may become icy and snow covered. Please take the usual safety precautions and discuss driving requirements with your car hire company or local police.

Drive times 

Launceston to: Distance Duration (approx.)
St Helens (via Scottsdale) 163 2 hrs 20 min
Bicheno (via Scottsdale) 236 3 hrs 30 min
Coles Bay (via Campbell Town) 209 2 hrs 30 min
Hobart (via Midlands Hwy) 198 2 hrs 20 min
Cradle Mountain 149 1 hr 55 min
Strahan (via Cradle Mountain) 298 3 hrs 55 min
Devonport 99 1 hr 15 min
Queenstown (via Sheffield) 251 3 hrs 30 min
Hobart to: Distance Duration (approx.)
Bicheno (via Sorell) 178 2 hrs 25 min
Port Arthur 93 1 hr 30 min
Cradle Mountain (via Midlands & Bass Highways) 302 4 hrs 15 min
Queenstown 260 3 hrs 40 min
Strahan 300 5 hours
Coles Bay 192 2 hrs 20 min
Geeveston (via Huon Hwy) 62 50 min
Kettering (via Channel Hwy) 37 30 min
Devonport (via Midlands Hwy) 277 3 hrs 30 min
St Helens 265 3 hrs 40 min
Burnie to: Distance Duration (approx.)
Queenstown 176 2 hrs 25 min
Devonport 49 40 min
Smithton 85 1 hour
Hobart 349 4 hours