the jetty at Port Sorell
Port Sorell (including Shearwater)
Sleepy holiday retreat for boating and
Located on the Bass Highway 117 km north of
Launceston via Devonport, Port Sorell and the
nearby township of Shearwater, are little more
than quiet and sleepy resorts (there is a strong
emphasis on caravan parks and simple fibro
accommodation) which are popular for fishermen,
boating enthusiasts and people who want to get
away from any kind of mainstream holiday
activities. There is a transient feeling about
the Port Sorell which, as a town, is really a
few shops and a small number of holiday homes
located behind the sand dunes.
Port Sorell is located on the Rubicon River.
It was established in the early 1820s and named
after Lieutenant-Governor William Sorell who
arrived in Hobart Town in 1817. Originally
developed as a port by the Van Diemen's Company,
it was the oldest European settlement on
Tasmania's north coast and, by the 1840s, it had
grown to be the largest town on the coast. It
declined with the development of Devonport and
most of its early history was wiped out by
bushfires. There is no evidence today of the
town's interesting historic origins.
Things to see:
A popular haunt for people eager to catch some
fish. The jetty can be accessed by the road
beside the town's main caravan park. It offers
good views across the water to Bakers Beach and
Asbestos National Park which are well worth
exploring although you have to leave Port Sorell
and drive around the Port to the south and east
to access the park.
Watch House Hill
It might be better to describe it as Watch House
sand dune. There was a time when there was an
old gaol on top of this prominent sand dune. It
was destroyed and today it has been replaced by
the town's bowling green.
a tidal beach at Shearwater near Port
After the rather sleepy experience of Port
Sorell it is surprising to find Shearwater which
has been developed in the past decade. It has a
modern shopping centre, good access to the
beaches - particularly Freers Beach - and the
Shearwater Country Club is a very substantial
and modern holiday destination.
Port Sorell is ideal for people seeking a quiet
and uncomplicated holiday. There are walks along
the beaches and in the nearby Asbestos National
Park. The fishing is good. There are a wide
range of water activities available. And there
is a sleepiness which is relaxing and pleasant.