As the third oldest settlement in Tasmania, (established in 1807), New Norfolk oozes history at every turn. There are many colonial buildings found in the town including Australia's oldest Anglican Church, St Matthews and the Bush Inn which is Australia's oldest continually licensed pub.
On a darker note, the town is also home to Willow Court which started life as a depot for infirm convicts and became a 1,000 bed mental hospital which only closed in recent times. You are not able to go inside the buildings, though the grounds are used for local events. It is also home to the Agrarian Kitchen Eatery and Store which focuses on showcasing local produce.
One of the biggest drawcards in New Norfolk is the Salmon Ponds Heritage Hatchery and Gardens. This is a must-see for fisher-folk as this is where trout and salmon fishing in Australia and New Zealand started. Not only is there a museum of trout fishing and the historic ponds and hatchery to see but it is all set in beautiful gardens where you can picnic or choose to visit the restaurant/cafe.
From New Norfolk, it is a pleasant drive to Hobart and a shorter drive to MONA – The Museum of Old and New Art, which can be reached in around 20 minutes. A trip to the historic town of Richmond takes about 30 minutes and in under an hour you can also be at Tasmania's oldest National Park, Mt Field.
Although the town of New Norfolk itself is not large, it has all the services needed including a large supermarket, chemist, restaurants and banks as well as an antique store and several smaller specialty shops. There are many places to stay, some of which provide the visitor with a historic adventure in their own right, such as The King's Own Inn which was built in 1826 and retains many of its original features.
Everywhere you look, there are historical buildings.
Tasmania is known for its natural beauty and this area is no different. From the lovely Derwent River to the mountain views from almost every part of the town, there are pleasing vistas all round.
New Norfolk is a pleasant place to spend a few days unwinding and exploring. You are close to many big-name attractions, and yet if you choose to, you can really slow down and relax and take in the history of the area and the stunning scenic beauty.