Around-Oz: Living the Dream!

Oatlands - Fantastic Free Camping in Tassie
An Absolute Credit to the Local Council!

One of the biggest attractions to Tasmania for most of us would have to be the incredibly fantastic attitude of the local councils towards the travelling tourist. In this case the Southern Midlands Council. Would you believe in your wildest dreams that the beautiful waterside spot pictured below is actually a totally free overnight rest area, for the use of motorhomes and caravans. And yes fellow RVers, there is a sign on the main highway proclaiming this as shown further down this page. What a wonderful sight and one can only wonder in bewilderment why our mainland councils don't realise how much they are losing out on tourism. It's all happening in Tasmania, so come on down and have a ball. Our apologies for the low quality piccies - we arrived late afternoon on a very dull day. Just remember, it's many times better than this!


 
 

The rest area/campsite is for a maximum stay of 48 hours and is situated on the charming Lake Dulverton and it is nice and level with ZERO noise at night. Smaller rigs can even park on the grass right at the waters edge. So where are we? Well we are a couple of kms off the Heritage Highway (Midlands Highway). Interestingly this place is spotless with users really looking after the area - we have visited about six times as it is around halfway between Hobart and Launceston.


 
 
 

Facilities wise this spot is excellent. Easy access drinking water (you can't stay connected though), flushing toilets, clean BBQs and a few tables, some with shelter. The dump point is tricky to find as it is not in walking distance with a cassette. Anyway, it's in William Street opposite Wellington Street and on your left if travelling north from Hobart. If you pass a church, you've missed it! Best to get a map from the tourist office.

Allow lots of time to walk around the township. It has the best collection of Georgian houses in Australia. The oldest building is the convict built old courthouse. Be sure not to miss the "Doctor's House". A photographers delight. If you are interested in old stone buildings - about 140 of them, then we suggest you get the brochure Let's Talk About Oatlands. A couple of pubs and a good RSL means you wont have to cook! Lots of history about Oatlands on this excellent page. The Central Tasmanian Tourism Centre is located in High Street. The main tourist attraction would have to be the Callington Mill - easily seen from the rest area. We found it fascinating as it is both steam and wind driven. There is a brilliant photo of it showing lots of moss and stuff on this page.


 
 
 

Oatlands like so many towns in Tassie has an excellent Online Access Centre. It is in the Oatlands School in High Street directly opposite the BP servo. Opening hours are all over the place. Basically you can get access on any afternoon except Tuesdays from 2 to 4PM. They have a great Website with tons of useful info. You can even get a copy of their newsletter emailed to you etc.


 
 
 

Now don't have a fit of the horrors - the "track" shown above right is not the entry but a nice walking track linking to another much higher area. The locals here are a very friendly lot and intensely proud of their town and it shows everywhere you look. Other "must sees" in the immediate area - Campbell Town, historic Ross and the Chauncy Vale Wildlife Sanctuary ($2 entry). We can't praise Oatlands enough - what more can we say?

Absolutely recommended.

Chrissy Eustace

HEMA 55 K 10

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