The clean air, open space and lush countryside of King Island – off the north-west Tassie coast – has long attracted visitors seeking nature, solitude and a secluded spot to recharge. The island is home to world-class golf courses overlooking the wild Southern Ocean, some of the best cheese and seafood in Australia, and an array of lodgings both luxurious and affordable, where you can bed down to enjoy some well-earned peace and quiet.

Here’s a guide to some of the best getaways on one of Tasmania’s best kept secrets.

Stay

Kittawa Lodge
Nature needs no embellishing at this self-contained eco-retreat on the doorstep of the Southern Ocean. Kittawa Lodge is just a 15-minute drive from Currie, the main town on the island, but it feels like another planet – an undiscovered one at that. Hosted by Sydney escapees Aaron Suine and Nick Stead, the lodge is off-grid and on-point, offering sustainable luxury with the wild Southern Ocean just metres from the door. Tend to the French-designed fireplace, iron out kinks on the yoga mat while watching the waves roll in, or lie back in the concrete, freestanding bath as inquisitive red-necked wallabies watch at the window. There’s a selection of premium Tassie wine, whisky, gin and vodka for purchase, and platter of King Island produce will be waiting on arrival.

1272 South Road, Pearshape

Taraki Lodge
Take a stroll on your private beach, eye the jaw-dropping vista from the sauna or watch wildlife from the outdoor hot tub at this spacious lodge perched atop sand dunes. All four bedrooms have king beds, ensuites and luxury linen, or there’s the option to split the beds into eight singles. Have evening drinks on the wraparound deck or by the firepit at sunset, or light the indoor fire and enjoy sweeping views of the ocean from the picture windows in the living area.

The chefs in your group will love the commercial kitchen, or you can arrange a private chef to serve up gourmet meals. And if it’s golf you came for, then this place was made for you with Ocean Dunes and Cape Wickham golf courses a short drive away.

1419 North Road, Loorana

Eat

King Island Dairy
The King Island Dairy cheese store stocks varieties of cheese you’d never see at your local supermarket, offering free tastings of more than 12 different types. You can’t go wrong with their soft whites, such as Cape Wickham double brie or Victoria Cove smoked camembert. If you’re a blue cheese fan, seek out the Nine Mile ash blue, a delicately creamy centre handrolled in a layer of coconut ash. The store is also licensed, so you can enjoy a glass of local wine with your platter.

Stock up on cheesy goodies before you board the plane (staff will even give you free ice packs to keep your purchases fresh). Cheese dreams guaranteed.

869 North Road, Loorana

King Island Seafood
Surrounded by the pristine waters of the Southern Ocean, it’s no surprise that King Island is home to incredible seafood. Head down to Currie Wharf to see the fishing boats unload their catch and soak up the sea spray and the salty air.

King Island Seafood supplies wholesalers throughout the island with its catch of the day. Call in to King Island Foodworks, View Dining (in the club house at King Island Golf & Bowling Club) or Wild Harvest restaurant for lobsters and fresh oysters. And if you’re planning to eat your weight in seafood you can place orders of more than 10kg directly with the business. Just email kingislandseafood@bigpond.com.

131 Main Street, Currie

Drink

King Island Distillery King Island Distillery is a one-woman show founded by Heidi Weitjens, a “solopreneur” with a dream to bring the unique botanicals of her island home to the mainland masses. Drop into the artisan distillery on Racecourse Road (first green shed on the left) to sample the ever-growing portfolio of handcrafted King Island spirits, including Native Gin (silver medal winner at the Australian Gin Awards 2020), ruby grapefruit vodka, oak-exposed vodka, and Heidi’s special Bella Chella limoncello. Open daily.

1 Racecourse Road, Currie

Do

Walk in a calcified forest
The calcified remnants of a lost forest wouldn’t be at the top of a Things You Expect to See list on King Island, but this is an island full of surprises.

A secluded 1.3km walking track leads to these bizarre natural limestone sculptures – skeletal stumps and twisted bits of wood sticking out of the desert-like ground. The forest was formed by calcium carbonate encasing the decaying remains of coastal trees, preserving their shape, before being exposed when wind blew away the lime-laden sand.

You too might be blown away by the science, but you don’t have to fully understand these natural processes to be awed by the landscape. The wild ocean thunders beyond the ancient forest, and you might even spot an elephant seal.

Surprise Bay

This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with Tourism Tasmania. Be sure to check hours and book ahead where you can. For more information and Covid-safe travel tips for your next trip to Tasmania, visit Discover Tasmania.