Travel to the North-West corner of Tasmania and you will find the Corinna Wilderness Experience. Tucked away in the Tarkine Wilderness, Corinna is more than just a lodge stay, it is a wilderness experience like no other. Here you will disconnect from the outside world and connect with nature
Corinna lies north of Strahan and west of Cradle Mountain on the west coast of Tasmania. You can access the lodge from the south by the unique Fatman barge crossing on the Pieman at Corinna or the north via Smithton, Marrawah, and Arthur River to the Western Explorer Road. This journey really embodies the wilderness experience.
Alternatively, many guests travelling from Burnie will come through Waratah. Whichever way you come, note that you will be travelling on a section of the famous “silica road”, an all-weather surface using the tailings from the nearby silica mine.
The eco-friendly retreat once was a mining town, set in the pristine rainforest on the banks of the majestic Pieman River in Western Tasmania. It was inhabited by white settlers in 1881 and proclaimed a town in 1894, following a flood of people coming to the area in pursuit of gold. The township of Corinna (in the Pieman River State Reserve) is singularly placed in Tasmania’s history as a unique example of a remote mining town that has survived.
The accommodation uses as much of the original town buildings as possible, including the original Roadman’s cottage with a double bed, the old pub which is like a guest house (with single and double rooms) available for groups and sixteen new wilderness retreats built in the original style. The rooms are rustic with a charming air of yesteryear. You can almost picture yourself in the era when the gold rush was booking here. There is a fireplace in the living room, so in winter it heats the entire cottage. There is a full kitchen with a cooktop stove, fridge and tea and coffee supplies.
There are no TVs in the rooms, nor will you find phone reception and internet. You will be completely disconnected, forcing you to relax into “switching off” and tune in to nature instead. This very factor enhances the connection to the surrounding wilderness even more. If you are quiet when sitting on the back deck, you may find some friendly locals visiting like pademelons or possums.
Tannin Restaurant is located in the Tarkine Hotel, a focal point for the Corinna community. Here you can sip on fine Tasmanian wines and beers in the tavern section or taste the best of Tasmania’s local produce at the Tannin restaurant for lunch and dinner during the Summer season only (mid-Sept to mid-May). During the Winter season (mid-May to mid-Sept), you can purchase chef-prepared dishes that have been frozen to maintain freshness and can be reheated in your cottage using your gas stovetop, and the crockery provided. Alternatively, guests can bring their own supplies to cook in their cottage.
What to do there
Adventures in the Tarkine are as wild as the region itself, providing an archipelago of experiences. From land to water, you will be lost in the remoteness and beauty of the region. There is a range of unique wilderness experiences, including cruises on the Pieman River in the legendary Huon pine vessel MV Arcadia II, kayaking, walking, boating, fishing, bird watching and nature experiences.
Wildlife is abundant at Corrina, with a rich variety of animals including platypus, echidna, wombat, bandicoot, possum and glider – not to mention the famous Tasmanian Devil and Tasmania’s other carnivorous predators, the Spotted-tailed Quoll and Eastern Quoll. Spotting wildlife will be a part of your day to day while at Corinna, so keep your eyes peeled and camera ready.
Forest walks and hikes vary in length and difficulty. Most walks will take in picturesque lookouts and places to stop for a break and picnic. From the township of Corinna, you can head out on the Whyte River Walk, the 20 minute Huon Pine Walk or longer hikes like the 3km trek to the Savage River, the Mt Donaldson hike (4 hour return trip), and the Philosophers Falls (moderate 2hrs hike) to name a few.
For the Pieman Cruise, step onboard the Arcadia II and cruise the near-black waters of the Pieman River towards the ocean and visit the wild west coastline. The Arcadia II is a magnificent 17m ship built of huon pine in 1939 and listed on the Australian Register of Historic Vessels in 2009. The journey on the river takes in excellent commentary from the Captain, stunning reflections off glassy water, dense rainforest hugging the riverbank and a truly immersive experience into the wild from the river’s flowing waters.
Address: PO Box 105 Zeehan, TAS, Australia 7469
Phone Number: (03) 6446 1170
Disclosure: The writer stayed at Corinna Wilderness Experience with assistance from Corinna Wilderness Experience.