Nestled in the heart of the Coal River Valley, Richmond is a picture-perfect colonial village clustered with elegant Georgian buildings. Most have been lovingly restored and now house gourmet cafes and restaurants, as well as antique shops, art galleries and cozy accommodation.
Wander down the High Street to soak up the 19th-century ambiance and stop in at the Hobart Town Historical Model Village to learn about life for early settlers in the Tasmanian capital. Don’t miss a visit to the Richmond Gaol (the oldest jail in Australia) where you can discover the harsh reality of early convict life in Van Dieman’s Land within its former prison cells.
The town is home to the photogenic Richmond Bridge that was built by convicts in the 1820s. Today it stands as the oldest bridge in Australia, with a long sweep of grassy lawn beside the Coal River that is perfect for a picnic. If you’re interested in discovering more of the town’s history, make a point of visiting the cemetery at Australia’s oldest Catholic church, St. Johns, which was built in 1836.
Richmond is just a 30-minute drive from Hobart but can be visited as part of a leisurely scenic drive through the Coal River Valley, which is dotted with cellar doors and farms. Grab a gourmet lunch at Coal River Farm or sample the wines on offer at Frogmore Creek Vineyard. Tasmania’s reputation for growing apples and pears is also on show in the handcrafted ciders available at Coal Valley Cider and Lost Pippin.