Cape Tourville, Sleepy Bay and Moulting Lagoon

Freycinet National Park is gorgeous and we try to visit it every time we go to Tasmania. Last year’s trip included Wineglass Bay (of course), Mount Amos, Friendly Beaches and the lower reaches of Moulting Lagoon.

This year we stayed at the Richardson’s Beach camping area in the National Park and drove down to Cape Tourville and Sleepy Bay nearby. We also noticed a small day-use area on the inland (northern) end of Moulting Lagoon and called in to see the swans.

Freycinet Peninsula from Richardson's Beach
Freycinet Peninsula from Richardson’s Beach

Cape Tourville

Cape Tourville lighthouse
Cape Tourville light from the loop track

Cape Tourville lighthouse is neither historic nor particularly tall but it occupies a spectacular cliff-top position looking north to the Friendly Beaches, south to Sleepy Bay and the entrance to Wineglass Bay, and east to … New Zealand, actually, if we could see that far.

A wheelchair-accessible loop track, perhaps 400 m long, circles the lighthouse.

Freycinet from Cape Tourville
The lower Freycinet Peninsula from Cape Tourville

Sleepy Bay

Sleepy Bay, Freycinet NP
Sleepy Bay

The beach, just out of sight to the left of the picture, is only 20 or 30 metres wide – just enough for a swim (in summer!) – but the rocks are fun for young and old. In fact, the rocks behind me as I took this shot lead directly on and up to Mount Dove and sport a warning sign which is even more intimidating than the one at the bottom of the Mount Amos track.

Moulting Lagoon

Swans on Moulting Lagoon
Black Swans in the protected waters of Moulting Lagoon

Moulting Lagoon (map) is, to quote National Parks’ management plan (pdf), one of 10 Ramsar sites (wetlands of international importance) listed in Tasmania. Moulting Lagoon is on this list because it supports a large number of waterbirds, particularly black swans and Australian shelducks, at key stages of their lifecycles. It provides year-round habitat for about 8000 black swans and is a critical late-summer staging area for shelducks, chestnut teal, and several shorebird species.”

We had seen the lower part of it last year, camping at River and Rocks Road, so it was good to be able to see the swans in its protected northern end. Binoculars and/or a telephoto lens would have added to the experience but … next time.

Richardson’s Beach

tree on foreshore
A tree catching evening sunlight on Richardson’s Beach foreshore

Introduction and index to Tasmanian blog posts Dec 2021-Jan 2022.

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