Stanley Tourism & Travel
Situated in the North West region of Tasmania, Stanley is some 379kms northwest of Hobart and 224kms west of Launceston. The quaint, amiable town of Stanley is renowned for its interesting historic buildings and charming little craft shops, teahouses, potteries and galleries. Endless attractions are found in and around town, including the iconic geographical formation of Circular Head or colloquially named, The Nut. Stanley is the perfect base to explore the many great beaches in nearby towns and within the ruggedly beautiful, Rocky Cape National Park. In the municipality of Circular Head, Stanley has a population of 458 souls.
Described by early explorer Matthew Flinders as a giant geographical formation resembling the shape of a Christmas cake, the iconic Circular Head or more commonly known as The Nut, offers breathtaking coastal views.
Historic buildings are situated around the Stanley wharf including Lyons Cottage, the birthplace of the former Prime Minister, J.A. Lyons. Many intriguing historic structures are also found at Highfield Historic Site, including an impressive homestead, which served as a headquarters of VDL, an 1824 wool-growing venture.
Other popular attractions around Stanley include the Discovery Centre Folk Museum showcasing local history; Tasmanian marine species at the Stanley Seaquarium; numerous art galleries, craft and woodwork stores; and the many little penguin colonies seen around the wharf at dusk.
The nearby River and Duck Bay is popular for fishing and boating, and the beaches near Marrawah such as Periwinkle Beach and Marrawah beach, just under an hour southwest of Stanley, are excellent for serious surfing. The pristine Sisters Beach, within Rocky Cape National Park, is renowned for beautiful white sand and crystal clear water.
The major annual event of Stanley is the Dockside Festival, celebrating the culmination of the Melbourne to Stanley Yacht Race. Food, entertainment and live jazz music are just some of the highlights of this popular event.
Stanley - Near by
The beautiful Allendale Gardens are located in Edith Creek, 30 minutes southwest of Stanley. Linked to a section of rainforest, the gardens also include the enchanting Fairy Glades for the kids. Dip Falls, a striking double waterfall amongst dense rainforest and towering eucalypts is located some 40kms southeast of Stanley.
National Park Rocky Cape National Park
A scenic 50-minute drive along the Bass Strait shoreline leads to the Rocky Cape National Park. Rugged rocky headlands, wildflowers, intriguing little rock pools and many picturesque bushwalking trails are just waiting to be explored. Rocky Cape National Park is also comprised of a series of caves occupied by Indigenous people from around 8000 years ago.
In 1825, the Van Diemens Land Company was granted land in the Stanley area and the British employees of the company began settlement in 1826. Stanley was named for Lord Stanley, the British Secretary of State who later became British Prime Minister. The town made history again in 1936 when the first telephone transmission from Tasmania to mainland Australia was made from the Stanley Township.
Today Stanley is a tourist destination and the main fishing port on the northwest coast of Tasmania.