Bruny Island quickly caught our attention when we started looking deeper into our road trip through Tasmania. With almost four months in Tassie, we thought that we would have enough time to visit Bruny Island. This little island sounded so dreamy! We saw promising pictures of white sandy beaches as well as Albino Wallabies, which are only found on Bruny Island, they say. We also heard that it is a Foodie’s paradise, and we were excited to taste if it was true. With sheltered beaches and farmlands, lush forests, open bays, and wild coastlines, we figured Bruny Island offered a huge variety for everyone. Our aim was easy: to experience all the best things to do on Bruny Island. And we couldn’t wait to get on the “island off an island off an island”!
Where is Bruny Island?
Located off the south-eastern corner of Australia’s island state of Tasmania, Bruny Island lies in the Tasman Sea. The waterway from mainland Tasmania to Bruny Island is called “The Channel”. Bruny Island is only 50 km long and stretches from North Bruny to South Bruny. Driving from the North to the South you will pass The Neck, the isthmus, which connects the two halves of the island.
How to get to Bruny Island?
To get to Bruny Island, you must use the ferry from Kettering, which is about 30 minutes south of Hobart. Operating daily, the crossing itself takes only 15 min. However, we would suggest arriving about 20 min before your desired departure time to make sure you get on the ferry. You can purchase the tickets directly at the Kettering Ferry Terminal. The price depends on the size of your vehicle, and pedestrians are free of charge. We were traveling with Putu, our 5-meter-long Toyota Hiace campervan, and we paid $65,00 with return.
Tip: If you travel before 7.30 am Monday to Sunday, and from 5 pm – 7 pm Saturday to Thursday, the fares are a bit less. They are called “Light Fares” and you can find prices and timetables here.
When is the best time to go to Bruny Island?
With the different seasons, anytime would be a great time to visit Bruny Island. However, we chose to visit Bruny Island in February, the Australian Summer, in order to enjoy those summer feelings with sunny days and mild Tasmanian temperatures. As it was after Australia Day (26th of January), it also wasn’t very crowded, which is always a nice bonus. For us anyways. If you like warm and sunny, try to visit Bruny Island between September and February.
How long should you stay on Bruny Island?
The island is small, but don’t be fooled. There are so many awesome things to do, that you should stay for a few days to enjoy it all. There are walks for every type of fitness level. You know that we like to walk- on golf courses! But Tasmania has taught us to get out and try some hikes, so we didn’t want to miss out on all the great hikes on Bruny.
You will also want to savor all the great wine and beer tastings this tiny island has to offer! Not to mention the beaches and wildlife. To do so, we stayed for one week, just to travel slow and enjoy our time. We think that 3-4 days are enough to get a good insight into the island.
It is also possible to do Bruny Island in one day. There are fantastic tours that take you to all the top attractions, like the Lighthouse, The Neck, and Adventure Bay. They also offer a delicious sampling of the island’s fresh oysters and cheese.
Book your certified One-Day-Bruny-Island-Trip here: Bruny Island Day Trip*
Best eats on Bruny Island
You will be amazed at how much this tiny island has to offer! You can literally start your foodie tour as soon as you drive off the ferry! We tried almost everything and even came back to some of the places multiple times. If you love good food, exquisite wine, and craft beer, Bruny Island will be your little gourmet paradise. Here are our favorites!
Bruny Island House of Whisky
This Tasmanian Single Malt Whisky and Gin Tasting Bar is only a short 4-minute drive from the Bruny Island Ferry Terminal and the first stop on our “foodie” tour. The House of Whisky offers a true whisky experience with an enormous range of single malt whiskies. Or, if you are more into gin, be sure to sample the limited released gins! Cheers!
Bruny Island House of Whisky
Address: 360 Lennon Road, North Bruny Island, 7150 Tasmania
Phone: + 61 362 606 344
Website: Bruny Island House of Whisky
Bruny Island Cheese Co.
The next stop is the Bruny Island Cheese Co.! Trust us, once you arrive, you won’t want to leave! Only a 10-minute drive from the Bruny Island House of Whisky, or about 15 minutes from the ferry terminal, you will find yourself in delicious cheesy heaven. Bruny Island Cheese Co. also offers beer and wine paddles, so make sure you try it all! We shared a beer paddle and a cheese platter, and it was incredibly delicious!
The cheese served on the platters changes regularly. The homemade wood-fired sourdough bread that comes with it is to die for! One bite was all it took to convince us to come back and try the famous Cheese Toastie!!
You might want to share one because they are very filling. But our eyes were bigger than our stomachs, and knowing how superb the cheese is, we ordered a toastie each. We wish that we would have one right now. My mouth waters just thinking of biting into the crisp warm bread and watching the melted gooey cheese create long strings as I slowly pull my hand away! Delicious!
Bruny Island Cheese Co.
Address: 1807 Main Road, Great Bay, Bruny Island, Tasmania
Phone: +61 362 606 353
Website: Bruny Island Cheese and Beer Co.
The Honey Pot and Bruny Island Honey
Fancy something sweet after your savory stop at the Cheese Co? Then continue driving south for 4 minutes and you’ll arrive at the family-run Honey Pot. Sample the honey, get some souvenirs, be amazed by what little bees can do, and don’t forget to shop for your favorite honey! Our favorite was the Blue Gum. Interesting fact: the 900 beehives are moved around Bruny Island and mainland Tasmania in order to get a bigger variety of honey. We liked the idea that we purchased honey made from bee-abonds 😊
The Honey Pot and Bruny Island Honey
Address: 2184 Bruny Island Main Road, Great Bay Tasmania 7150
Phone: +61 362 660 342
Website: The Honey Pot & Bruny Island Honey
The Bruny Baker
When I say that the Bruny Baker is the best bread that we had in our entire travels through Australia, I am not exaggerating! The wood-oven baked sourdough bread is simply out of this world! It also is sold in a very unique and fun way: on the side of the road in two refrigerators.
Just drive up, park, open the fridge door, and enjoy the smell of freshly baked bread. You pay in an honesty box, which is located inside the fridge. Don’t forget to use the Scrabble letters to leave a note on the door!
Living in Germany, we are used to hearty bread with a hard crust. And to be honest, we haven’t been able to get used to the super-soft buns and bread in Australia. So, finding Bruny Baker was an absolute highlight for us. Shortly after 10 am each day, we drove up to the Bruny Baker fridges to buy fresh bread. The bread we bought never made it very far in one piece because we broke off little chunks and ate it while driving. It was that good! We don’t even have a picture of the sourdough bread. The Bruny Baker also sells Anzac cookies, and there’s even fruit bread on the weekends, and all of it tastes delicious.
But we loved the sourdough bread the most and are deeply missing it. In fact, we loved it so much that we asked a friend to bring us a loaf back with him to Tasmania after we left Bruny.
So where is this gem located? Drive to the corner of Sheepwash Road and Bruny Island Main Road and keep an eye out for little wooden signs.
Tip: You can learn how to bake this delicious sourdough bread with The Bruny Baker at Sheepwash Bay.
The Bruny Baker
Address: on the corner of Sheepwash Road and Bruny Island Main Road
Phone: +61 430 439 269
Website: The Bruny Baker
Get Shucked Oyster Farm and Oyster Bar
Producing the world’s finest oysters, Get Shucked Oyster Farm and Oyster Bar is very well known and often the first stop for visitors. Since we are vegetarians, we didn’t try them but heard only great things about them. The oysters can’t get any fresher, so if you want to spoil yourself with outstanding quality, don’t drive past this place!
Get Shucked Oyster Farm and Oyster Bar
Address: 1735 Bruny Island Main Road, Great Bay, North Bruny, Tasmania 7150
Phone: +61 439 303 597
Website: Get Shucked
The Best Walks on Bruny Island
We got into taking nice small hikes during our time in Tasmania. We heard some great walks on Bruny Island and wanted to check out a couple while we were there. Even if all of them sounded awesome, we chose to do the Fluted Cape Walk, the Cape Queen Elizabeth Walk, and The Arch. And we started with the most challenging!
The Fluted Cape
The Fluted Cape Walk is reachable via Adventure Bay, which is known for its white wallabies and its serene beach. It combines the Grass Point Walk and the Fluted Cape Walk. The Grass Point is a grade 2 walk (1,5 hours return) and the Fluted Cape is a grade 4 (2,5 hours return). The entire walk is 12.5 km and takes about 4 hours.
Grass Point Walk
To take the Fluted Cape Walk, you first walk from the parking lot of Adventure Bay over the beach to the start of the Grass Point Walk. This is the area where you should be on the lookout for Albino Wallabies. We didn’t have any luck spotting them, but we did see an Echidna.
Following the dirt path, we stopped at a small rocky beach. And that is where we saw the towering sea cliffs. At this moment, I was still not aware that our walk would take us up to the top of these cliffs. We took some pictures and started off to the Fluted Cape after this easy introduction.
Tip: Even if it is recommended otherwise in the brochures, for the best views walk clockwise. This way you have amazing views, and go uphill during the steepest section, which we feel is safer! We met people doing the walk anti-clockwise, and they had a hard time walking down the very steep path and couldn’t enjoy the views. After all, it is a 272-meter-high sea cliff!
Fluted Cape Walk
Continuing towards the Fluted Cape, the view of this incredible bluff made us realize once again how beautiful nature is! And while admiring the shimmering sun on the blue ocean, my fear of heights kicked in. Following the paths took us almost directly to the edge! And no fence! Feeling like I was about to panic, I asked James if he thought the walk goes all the way to the top of the cliff. I mean, it can’t, right! That is too high, too steep, and too dangerous! His reply came with the biggest and most excited smile: “Yes, it does! Isn’t it beautiful?!” With mixed emotions and legs like Jell-O, I continued.
And guess what. After a while, I was able to put my fear away and could enjoy the walk. Even with my Jell-O legs! We stopped several times to pinch ourselves and embrace nature. And the best part was that we made it all the way up! This walk was one of the best (and most scary) hikes that we have ever taken. Even weeks afterward, I kept saying to myself before falling asleep: “We did the Fluted Cape Walk!”
After our big Fluted Cape Walk, we decided to do a short, simple, easy walk. We drove to The Neck and climbed the 279 steps to the viewing platform. 279 steps sounded much better than the 272-meter height to me. The viewing area gives you a breathtaking 360° panorama and is best experienced at either sunrise or sunset.
A boardwalk leads to an endlessly long-looking golden beach, perfect for a stroll and to take in some fresh ocean breeze. The Neck is also an important habitat for wildlife. Maybe you will even see some Fairy Penguins!
The Cape Queen Elizabeth Walk
Another fun walk on Bruny Island is the Cape Queen Elizabeth Walk. You’ll find the start of the trail on the Bruny Island Main Road, across from The Honey Pot and Bruny Island Honey. The track itself starts easy over a dirt road and leads to the Mars Bluff. From there you can choose to go in different directions. The entire Cape Queen Elizabeth Walk is a 12km return walk. But we came here primarily to see The Arch.
If you also decide to shorten your walk and see The Arch only, it is best to come at low tide, because it is only then that the shorter way is passable. If you are too late like we were, you can’t walk along the beach below Mars Bluff, but have to take the long way.
The advantage of the longer way is, however, that you are rewarded with amazing views of Adventure Bay, The Neck, and the incredible scenery of this area.
We had seen so many beautiful pictures of The Arch and really wanted to get to this awesome beach ourselves. We knew that we would have to come at low tide to be able to walk on the beach to The Arch, but we were running late. Nevertheless, we decided to give it a try. But there was no way we could make it! Miles Beach was marvelous, but there was no way we could walk around the rock to reach The Arch on the other side at high tide. We were so close, yet so far! Our only alternative was to take the long and arduous walk up and down Mars Bluff.
The walk to The Arch via Miles Beach only takes about 1,5 hours to return and is an easy walk at low tide.
Tip: Don’t forget to check the tides before you set off for The Arch! You can get your information here.
Mars Bluff and The Arch
Taking the longer route to see The Arch wasn’t the worst thing that has happened to us. We didn’t know what to expect and were astonished by the dazzling views we saw.
The weather wasn’t quite on our side because it started to rain on and off, but we still enjoyed our day. While walking, a black cockatoo accompanied us for a little while. As soon as we reached the top of Mars Bluff, we couldn’t believe our eyes. From here, not only could overlook only Miles Beach but could also see The Neck down in the distance! In the end, after a longer walk than we intended, we made it down to the Arch!
If you want to do more walks, there are many others such as The Labillardiere Peninsula Walk (5-hour circuit), The Mavista Nature Walk (45 min, easy short rainforest walk), or The Nebraska Beach to Bligh Point (10 min to 2 hours). You have so many choices, and magnificent views of nature are guaranteed.
More things to see and do on Bruny Island
Jetty Beach is the most southern campground on Bruny Island and was where we spent our first night. It is a lovely, secluded bay and has a bush-feel campground. We enjoyed our night at Jetty Beach and went for a nice stroll in the evening. We were fascinated watching thousands of little crabs wander in the sand.
From this little bay, we continued the next day to the Cape Bruny Lighthouse, another highlight. The road there is very corrugated, but for sure is worth it. Have a look inside at the spiral staircase, and then climb to the top for incredible views.
Note that the Cape Bruny Lighthouse is in a National Park, so you will need to have a Tasmania Parks Pass, which you can get here: Welcome to Parks Passes.
We had mentioned Adventure Bay earlier as the gateway to the Fluted Cape Walk. But it is also worth just bringing a picnic down to the pristine white beach while enjoying an afternoon and going for a dip in the crystal-clear water. If you haven’t seen an albino wallaby yet, here is a good chance to admire one. The best times to spot one are at dusk or dawn.
Tip: There is only one petrol station and grocery store on Bruny Island, the Adventure Bay General Store. If you want to save some money and have a bigger variety of groceries, we recommend buying petrol and items you need before taking the ferry.
Bruny island cruises
At the end of Adventure Bay, right where you find a huge parking lot, you will find Bruny Island Cruises*, a family business that started in 1999 and has won several tourism awards. We love the fact that this company cares about the environment and is a 100% Carbon Offset and Advanced Ecotourism certified operator. Their Bruny Island Tour will bring you to majestic cliffs which are considered some of the highest cliffs in Australia! You will also see sights such as The Monument and may spot wildlife such as dolphins and seals.
Book your Bruny Island Cruise here*.
Almost everything on Bruny Island is found south of the isthmus, but don’t miss driving up to the north! The landscape changes and you will find a beautiful, sheltered bay at Dennes Point. We gave in to the temptation and jumped into the crystal-clear water for an invigorating dip. It was such a gorgeous place that we spent most of the day there, just having a picnic, reading, and going for swims.
Bruny Island took us by surprise! And if you ask us if it’s worth it to go there, you will get a loud and clear YES! We loved everything about this laid-back island. It has delicious food and beers, some unforgettable hiking trails, you can surf, you can relax, and there is unique wildlife and breathtaking coastlines. It simply has something for everyone.
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