Located around 1.5 hours from Hobart is the engineering marvel, the Tahune Airwalk. This suspended and cantilevered aerial walkway provides incredible views of the Hartz Moutain, old growth forests and the merging of the Huon and Picton Rivers.
While you are some 45 metres above the ground at the highest section of the airwalk, you get an incredible sensation of freedom, of being lost amongst the treetops of the regrowth forest immediately below. This part of the forest is only around 25 years old, which pails in insignificance against some of the mighty King Billy Pine, Myrtle, Beech, Sassafras and Blackwood trees which are suggested to age between 200 and 1000 years old! That really is old growth forest.
The total length of the walk is around 600m and can be used in nearly all weather conditions – and given Tasmania’s reputation of providing all seasons in one day, you’ll never know what amazing scenery you will be presented with. Walk with confidence though, the AirWalk has plenty of anti-slip features designed to stand strong against winds of up to 180kmh. Impressive.
The really exciting part of the AirWalk is the cantilevered section of the attraction which has you hanging high above the river below. From here, the world behind you seems lost and insignificant. The air is crisp and clean and the sounds and smells of the forest really do have quite an impact.
It’s at this point, depending on the conditions and the number of people on the walk that you can feel a gentle sway of the section. It’s not huge, but the slight movement is quite relaxing.
Heading back along the main section of the walk you can explore different viewing platforms and get a little closer to the forest.
Once you are finished exploring the AirWalk, a must see secret is the Huon Pine Trail. This easy loop track is a return walk of around 20 minutes duration, so don’t be concerned about how far you are walking.
The track gives you the opportunity to see the different stages of the Huon Pine, one of Tasmania’s most well know trees and has been an instrumental part of Tasmania’s early history. The Huon Pine has been used in all sorts of industries, from boat building to arts and crafts and is particularly popular for its natural oil which stops the timber from rotting and for its unique pleasant scent.
The trees in this area are thought to be in the vicinity of 1000 – 2000 years old, the species themselves can live well over 3000 years (second only to the Bristle cone pine of North America).
There are also two swinging bridges that allow you to walk over the rush of the Huon and Picton Rivers below you. Those modern bridges are narrow to imitate swinging bridge designs from many generations ago, and as the name suggests, they have some movement in them. It’s a great one hour return walk that drops you back off at the main visitor section. Even better, this experience is included in your entry fee.
After your exploration of the area, you can head back up from the river and drop into the café for warm drink and reflect on your experience. There are also barbeque facilities available to feed the family.
This is a great and unique experience in the Tasmanian wilderness and can be enjoyed with family and friends.
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