Cataract Gorge Reserve, known as the Gorge, is a rare natural rock formation just a two-minute drive from central Launceston.

Lake with bridge in distance

Cataract Gorge / Credit: Poon Wai Nang

At the Gorge you’ll find walking tracks, a swimming pool, the world's longest single span chairlift, a restaurant and cafe, a suspension bridge and panoramic lookouts with spectacular views.

On the southern side of the river is First Basin, where you can swim and relax on the grassy area surrounded by bushland with a picnic or barbecue. At the Cliff Grounds, you’ll find a Victorian garden with ferns and exotic plants, as well as a restaurant and kiosk - the perfect place for a restorative cup of tea and scones. Wandering peacocks and native wildlife add to the experience.

A footbridge links the two areas or you can take a chairlift ride across the expansive gorge itself. Further upstream is the historic Duck Reach Power Station, now an interpretation centre and well worth the short walk.

Where: Launceston

When: Open every day from 9am (365 days a year).

Local Tip: The Gorge is home to the longest single chairlift span in the world at 308 metres. Spanning the unpredictable and sometimes surging water of the South Esk River, the chairlift is a now quaint and beautifully slow experience that allows for reflection and photography. During the warmer months, take your bathers for a dip in the outdoor pool afterwards.

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