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Tasmania is an island state of Australia. Situated just south of Melbourne, it has plenty to offer for the tourists of Australia.

To describe the best places for you to visit when you arrive in Tasmania, I will start with the city of Hobart. Every Saturday the open-air markets take place at Salamanca Place. These markets are known as the Salamanca Markets. Situated near the docks of Hobart and in front of old stone warehouses, the Salamanca Markets offer an atmostphere that makes you feel like you have stepped back in time. The stalls offer beautiful pieces of arts and crafts created by the residents of Tasmania. With a large range of pottery and sculptures, included are carvings from Huon Pine. The State of Tasmania is the home to the Huon Pine Tree, which, I have heard, never rots. Wood carvers produce beautiful pieces of art with this wood, from practical items such as bowls, vases, and butter knives, to more decorative items like sculptures and picture frames. Salamanca Markets are an excellent place to purchase your souvenirs and relax by the docks with live entertainment.

After your visit to the Salamanca Markets, you must pay a visit to Hobart's beautiful Mt Wellington. Just a short distance away and overlooking the city of Hobart, you have over 180 degree views of the city, neighbouring towns and the coastline. Remember to bring warm clothes with you, as Mt Wellington can get quite windy and cold. It is not uncommon for the roads to be closed in winter due to ice and snow.

On your drive down the mountain, heading south towards Huon Valley, you can follow the coastline and enjoy one of Tasmania's most scenic drives. You will drive through the small towns of Margate, Snug and Kettering. On a calm day the water is as clear as glass, giving you a reflection of serenity. To visit Bruny Island, drive your car onto the ferry at Kettering. Bruny Island is small enough fo you to tour in one day, but if you wish to see the penguins crossing the 'neck' of the island it is a good idea to stay overnight. Other activities of interest on the island include boating, bushwalking, fishing and surfing.

Continuing your journey on the main land of Tasmania, head south along the Channel Highway and you will arrive in a small town called Cygnet. Cygnet is an excellent place to purchase antiques. Another area in the south of Tasmania that is filled with natural beauty is Hastings. Here you can visit the thermal springs and take a tour through Hastings Caves.

On the other side of Hobart is the Tasman Peninsula. This is where the famous Port Arthur is located. Surrounded by beautiful beaches, dense forests and good camping grounds, Port Arthur is a must to visit when you arrive in Tasmania. It's history stetches back to the 1830's when convicts were transported to its prisons. The historical site holds the prison ruins where 12,500 convicts resided. There are many tours available that include a visit around the Isle of the Dead by ferry, the Commandant's House and the exciting Ghost Night Tours. Many people have claimed to have seen ghosts in the area and photos of unidentified lights and objects have been captured. The Tasman Peninsula is also a good area to go bushwalking, fishing and surfing.

If you enjoy beaches and ocean views then continue your holiday up the east coast of Tasmania. Here you can enjoy Freycinet National Park, Wineglass Bay, St Marys and St Helens. The drive from St Helens to Launceston is on a windy road, covered in fernery and towering trees. It takes you to St Columba Falls not far from the town of Pyengan.

For a city, Launceston is quite small. It does offer a few tourist attractions such as the Cataract Gorge, Penny Royal World and cable hang gliding.

South of Launceston is Meander Valley, and the serene Golden Valley. Here you can visit Trowunna Wildlife Park and see Tasmanian Devils, Koalas, Wallabys and other Australian wildlife. Liffey Falls is a great area for buswalking and makes a good stop over for lunch. In the central highlands of Tasmania you can easily enjoy camping and trout fishing by the Great Lake, Lake Echo or Lake St Clair, while the rest of the family go bushwalking or boating. If you wish to see more waterfalls and put your skis into action, pay a visit to Mt Field National Park. Lake St Clair has superb scenery with Cradle Mountain providing alpine forests, waterfalls, bushwalking tracks and camping grounds. It is a major tourist attraction in Tasmania.

Near the west coast of Tasmania is the old mining town of Queenstown. Queenstown's vegetation was damaged and stripped by sulphur fumes from mining. A visit to Queenstown will give you the feeling you have reached the moon due to the bare and golden landscape. Nearby, on the west coast of Tasmania, is the attractive and historic fishing town, Strahan. Large forests of Huon Pine envelope the Gordon and King rivers. With picturesque rainforests and inlets, Strahan is a great place for fishing and experienced bushwalkers. For the more serious bushwalkers is Lake Pedder in the south west of Tasmania. Here the forests are so dense that you can only reach the walking trails by plane or boat.

With lavender farms, ocean views, blooming apple trees and greenery everywhere else, Tasmania is a State of Australia worth visiting if you love natural beauty.