On Location: 5 Films & TV Shows Shot in Southern Tasmania

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We don’t mean to brag, but the small screen loves us. The silver screen, too. We’re a raw, natural talent (humble, too). Don’t go to Hollywood to get your celebrity fix—they come to us now! Instead of red carpet, we roll out layers of mountains. There’s no need to be a diva, we delight in the drama of our epic vistas. Hours in hair and makeup are not required—our natural beauty shines through.

We’ve put together some tips to help you discover the amazing places you’ve seen in the cinema and on TV over the last few years (act cool though, don’t be one of those oddball celebrity stalkers).

1. Laughs: Rosehaven

Homegrown comedic talent Luke McGregor and best mate Celia Pacquola are bringing the laughs with season three of Rosehaven (on Wednesday nights at 8.30pm and on demand on ABC iView). The quirky, lovable comedy is set in the small, eccentric (fictional) town of Rosehaven. There is no real estate problem that these two can’t (creatively and hilariously) solve.

Scenes were filmed at New Norfolk in the Derwent Valley and Geeveston in the Huon Valley. Both towns have their own charming quirks (at Geeveston, the bank is a cafe and some of the locals are made of wood). Explore the towns and pop into the quaint shops, cafes and restaurants. At Geeveston, the friendly folks in the Visitor Centre are generous with their travel tips (they may or may not be as eccentric as Rosehaven’s townsfolk). Stroll along the Geeveston Platypus Walk for your chance to spot—you guessed it—a platypus. Some scenes were also filmed at Oatlands, Longley, Richmond, Seven Mile Beach, Mountain River, Brighton and Chigwell.

Geeveston makes a great base for exploring the scenic Huon Valley, Far South Tasmania, and the greater Southern Trove region. At Longley, have a drink in the pub from the show. Hit the cider trail for an authentic taste of the Apple Isle. Discover a giant underground cave and naturally heated pool at Hastings Caves & Thermal Springs.

2. Thrills: The Nightingale

The Nightingale (2018) is a historical revenge thriller following Clare, a young Irish convict woman (played by Aisling Franciosi, aka Lyanna Stark!) as she chases a British officer through the rugged Tasmanian wilderness, hell-bent on getting revenge for a horrific act of violence. She enlists help from an Aboriginal tracker who has experienced his own share of violence and trauma. Filming locations included the scenic Derwent Valley and High Street in the historic town of Oatlands, in the Southern Midlands.

Visit Oatlands and you’ll see why it was an excellent choice for a film set in 1820s convict-era Tasmania. Oatlands has the greatest amount of historic sandstone buildings of any town in Australia. A self-guided walking tour is a great way to learn about the town’s fascinating colonial history. Explore the quaint, well-preserved Georgian streetscape and pop into the shops, cafes, and galleries.

3. Mystery: The Kettering Incident

If you like your thrills wrapped up in an unsettling cloak of mystery, The Kettering Incident (2016) is sure to grab you. The landscape has a starring role in this modern Gothic series. The show was mainly shot in the Southern Trove around the seaside town of Kettering, moody Mountain River, and natural beauty Bruny Island.

At Mountain River, you’ll recognise the striking view of Sleeping Beauty. Stroll the marina at Kettering and catch the ferry across to Bruny Island. Climb the steps to Truganini Lookout at The Neck, eat and drink to your heart’s content, spot a white wallaby, relax on the beach, and explore the South Bruny National Park.

 4. Drama: Lion

We’ve put this one down the list because we like to put off dealing with our feelings for as long as possible. Lion (2016) is a gripping biographical film with a golden heart, based on the true story of a five-year-old Indian boy who gets very lost before being adopted by an Tasmanian couple. Twenty-five years later, he sets out to find his lost family.

Lion was filmed in several locations around Hobart, including a scene jogging up kunanyi/Mt Wellington (you don’t have to run up, there’s a bus). There are some stunning shots of the Tasman Region, including a game of beach cricket at Marion Bay and sailing with views of Cape Hauy. A beautiful aerial shot of The Neck at Bruny Island features in the trailer. At the end of the southern-most road in Australia, discover Cockle Creek.

5. Adventure: The Hunter

The Hunter (2011) stars Willem Dafoe as a mercenary disguised as a scientist, who is sent into Tasmania’s pristine wilderness to hunt the supposedly extinct Tasmanian tiger. There are psychological thrills, treachery, unexpected twists and turns, and impressive shots of the rugged landscape.

Filming locations included Maydena, Westerway General Store, the National Park Hotel, the Upper Florentine Valley, and the Central Plateau. In Hobart, kunanyi/Mt Wellington has a moment, as does the Hobart International Airport. The Hotel Grand Chancellor and Lenna of Hobart appear as a Paris hotel room.

Explore the Derwent Valley and Central Highlands and conduct your own search for the elusive thylacine. Discover adventure at the Maydena Bike Park and the Mt Field National Park. If (when) you can’t spot the real thing, find the Tasmanian tiger sculpture at Maydena as a consolation prize.

While the fires are still going, please check the latest updates on track, road and area closures from Tasmania Parks and Wildlife ServiceTasmania Fire Service, and Tasmania Police. Visitor Information Centres can assist with travel plans.

🌲 National parks (including campgrounds):

🚫 Road closures:

👨‍🚒 Current alerts:

📻 Listen to ABC Radio:

We love it when you share your adventures with us! Share your snaps by tagging @hobartandbeyond and using #HobartandBeyond on Instagram and Facebook – we’ll share our favourite pics on social media and in the blog.

Related posts:
Our Guide: Beaches of Southern Tasmania
Hobart to Cockle Creek: An Adventurous Itinerary
10 Tips for Watching Wildlife in Southern Tasmania
5 Historic Sites to Visit in Hobart & Beyond
Step Back in Time: 6 Things to Do at Oatlands
Unravelling the Mystery of Kettering

Header image:
Maydena | @tomallett/Instagram

Isabel Galloway

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