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Arthur River is in Tasmania’s far northwest, it is approximately:

  • 1 hour by road from Smithton
  • 70 minutes from Stanley

The road is sealed all the way and there is plenty of parking.

Arthur River Map

About the region

The small settlement of Arthur River is named after the river and is home to fewer than 50 permanent residents. Located on Tasmania’s rugged west coast, Arthur River lies at the mouth of Tasmania’s only major river which is completely wild; a river in the heart of the Tarkine wilderness which has never been logged or dammed; a river where the world’s greatest tract of cool temperate rainforest drains into the mighty Southern Ocean.

Five hundred year old forest giants of Tasmanian oak, Blackwood, myrtle, or sassafras, become the foundation of coastal dunes, and lay buried in the sand for perhaps 1000 years. The reason they called this place “The Edge of the World” was because the battered coastline and isolated river mouth stand before 15,000km of unbroken, untamed, unforgiving sea – the longest stretch of ocean in the world.

Wild Ocean

Wild Ocean

Only a small percentage of tourists who come to Tasmania make the effort to visit Arthur River, and those who do, have the unique opportunity to drive to this wild and windy vantage point to experience the “Roaring Forties”, the swells of the Southern Ocean and the resulting waves which pound the rugged rocks. Here tree trunks have been heaved ashore as if they were twigs. Miles of beaches north and south of Arthur River are littered with these ancient logs.

Thirty years ago a local bushman named Turk Porteous recognized the value of the untouched Arthur River for a world class river cruise. Turk built a boat from scratch, and then cleared a landing area in the heart of the ancient rainforest. And so in 1985 the iconic Arthur River Cruises was created. Today visitors can cruise the magnificent Arthur River on the same charismatic boat, and enjoy a BBQ lunch at the same cleared landing. ARTHUR RIVER CRUISES truly is Tasmania – in all its pioneering history, natural majesty, and relaxed welcoming atmosphere.

The river offers good trout, salmon and blackfish for fishing enthusiasts.