Today I drove to Hastings Caves to have a look, and then took a short stroll to Duckhole Lake.
How do you get there? Well, thanks to Google Maps, I can show you:
There is also this excellent Parks & Wildlife Map that will show you in a little more detail:
Hastings Caves Road is unsealed, but it’s pretty good for a dirt road.
I went to Hastings Caves first, then drove up Chestermans Road/ Coal Hill Road to Duckhole Lake. The signpost to Chestermans Road is a little overgrown, but look for it just before the only bridge and sealed section of the Hastings Caves Road. A word of warning: Chestermans Road is not really suited to a normal two-wheel drive car, so if you decide to visit Duckhole Lake, the unsealed road marked ‘Old Hastings Road/ Darcy Link Road’ may be your best bet.
Another word of warning: The only sign on the Huon Highway showing the location of this road is here:
But it’s on the northern side, and not really that visible if you’re heading south…
But anyway, I digress.
Where did I digress to…?
Oh yeah, Hastings Caves.
There’s lots to do at the Visitor Centre. A couple of short walks and a thermal pool are key attractions.
Visiting the caves does cost – I paid $24 as an adult. I tried to convince them I was not, but they didn’t fall for it.
Parks Tasmania describe it way better than I can.
Once you pay, you drive along Hastings Caves Road until the end of the road and park your transport here:
Make sure if you leave your coffee cup on the back of your car, that you remember to grab it off again.
The tours are run by friendly Parks & Wildlife Guides and take 45 minutes. It’s cool inside, 9 degrees Celsius all year round. There are stairs. Quite a few stairs. If you cannot manage stairs, then this may not be the place for you to visit. The tours are catered for the slowest moving members of the party. I attended today with 29 other people.
Once inside, you follow the guide, and can’t possibly get lost. The cave known as Hastings Caves is called Newdegate Cave, and is amazing:
Of course, people familiar with the underdark and drow elves will expect to see a few of these here:
Duckhole Lake is one of the 60 great walks, according to the sign.
It’s a nice little walk: you follow the trail, get to the lake, turn around & come back. It’s nice. No ups & downs, very easy to follow. The trail does link up with a few others in the area, but I just wandered out to the lake today.
Here’s a link to my Endomondo Workout which shows the trail:
I walked about 5.5km in about an hour.
No random encounters with orcs, goblins or dragons.
Which, I have to admit, was a little disappointing.
Thanks for reading!