Tasmania’s Derwent River flows 113 miles (182 kilometers from Lake St. Clair toward Storm Bay. Hobart, 12 miles (19 kilometers from the river’s mouth, sits on an estuary and has a deep-water port for vessels sailing to or from the Tasman Sea. Along its course, the river cuts through Cradle Mountain-Lake St. Clair National Park.
The Derwent River is immediately visible when touching down in Hobart, and its clear waters have become a playground for water sports enthusiasts. Visitors can experience Hobart from the water during a yacht sailing excursion on the river, or tackle the Class I-III rapids while whitewater rafting.
For something more laid back, take a cruise by jet boat or ferry on the Derwent, or cross the water by water taxi. Cruises often go upriver to Moorilla Winery or the Cadbury Factory, or out to Iron Pot Lighthouse near Bruny Island.
Things to know before you go
- The Derwent River is a popular attraction for outdoors enthusiasts and adventure travelers.
- Don’t forget to bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat on your river excursion.
- Leave your valuables in your hotel during sailing and whitewater rafting trips so they don’t accidentally go overboard.
How to get there
The Derwent River flows past Hobart’s central business district, where many boat tours and sailing trips depart from Kings Pier Marina. The portion of the river used for rafting begins near Bushy Park.
When to get there
The best time to enjoy the River Derwent is from December to February—summer in Australia—when temperatures are warm and rain is scarce.
Seven Bridges Over the River Derwent
A total of seven bridges span this Tasmanian River, ranging in size from a foot bridge in the aptly named town of Derwent Bridge to the massive Tasman Bridge, a 5-lane bridge near Hobart’s central business district. The New Norfolk Bridge marks the spot where the river transitions from freshwater to saltwater.
- Things to do in Tasmania
- Things to do in Melbourne
- Things to do in Yarra Valley
- Things to do in Ballarat
- Things to do in Victoria
- Things to do in South Australia
- Things to do in New South Wales
- Things to do in South Island
- Things to do in Queensland
- Things to do in North Island
- Things to do in Northern Territory
- Hobart Sandy Bay
- Tasman Bridge
- Battery Point
- Parliament House
- St. George's Anglican Church
- Sullivan's Cove
- Hobart Salamanca Market
- Mawson's Hut Replica Museum
- Maritime Museum of Tasmania
- Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
- Lark Distillery
- St. David's Cathedral
- Hobart Convict Penitentiary
- Constitution Dock
- Macquarie Wharf Cruise Ship Terminal (Hobart Cruise Port)