Wilderness residencies

Arts Tasmania’s unique wilderness residencies are based in some of Tasmania’s most iconic and wild destinations. Offering typically rustic accommodation, each location has been chosen for its outstanding natural qualities. These residencies are made possible through a partnership with Tasmania’s Parks and Wildlife Service and include sites in the World Heritage area as well as National Parks. Parks and Wildlife Service management is consulted regarding the selection of applicants.

Funding and availability

Funding for wilderness and cultural residencies is capped on set amount per week.

Four weeks     $2 500 max
Five weeks       $3 125 max
Six weeks        $3 750 max
Seven weeks    $4 375 max
Eight weeks     $5 000 max

Residency bookings may be made for a minimum of four weeks to a maximum of eight weeks. However, some locations may not be available at the times requested.

These residencies are only available from April to September unless otherwise stated.

Cockle Creek

Surrounded by rugged landscape and serene white sandy beaches, Cockle Creek is located 90 km south of Geeveston at the end of the most southerly road in Australia. This very quiet corner of Tasmania is the beginning of the wild and inspiring World Heritage Southwest National Park and is steeped in history. Accommodation consists of a two bedroom ranger’s shack overlooking the bay and river. It is twenty-five kilometres from nearest shop. There is limited mobile phone coverage. Note: this site will not be available from April to August 2014 and only by arrangement after that.

Accommodation fee: $175 per week

Cradle Mountain

At this very popular location you will find rainforests, glaciated landscapes and a wide variety of wildlife. Cradle Mountain forms the northern end of the wild Cradle Mt – Lake St Clair National Park, itself a part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. The jagged contours of Cradle Mountain epitomise the feel of a wild landscape, while ancient rainforest and alpine heaths provide a range of environments to explore. Accommodation is in a basic but comfortable cottage situated above Ronny Creek near the start of the famous Overland Track. Note: only available May to September.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week

Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs

Hastings Caves are believed to be among the largest dolomite show caves in the southern hemisphere. Settled under the majestic Adamsons Peak, the site features an abundance of warm thermal springs. The area is surrounded by state forest, borders on Southwest National Park / World Heritage Area, and is well known as a place to observe platypus. Computer access is available at the nearby visitor centre.

There is no accommodation onsite and it will need to be arranged privately.

Lake St Clair

Located at the isolated, southern end of the world famous Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, this incredible area is famous for its rugged mountain peaks, icy lakes, wild forests and alpine moorlands. Carved out by ice during several glaciations over the last two million years, Lake St Clair is the deepest lake in Australia. Accommodation is available in rustic two bedroom cottage 300 metres from the lake and close to walking tracks.  There is limited mobile phone coverage.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week.

Maria Island

Located off Tasmania’s East Coast, Maria Island is noted for its spectacular cliffs and abundant wildlife, as well as the remains of a township and penal station. The island is traffic-free, apart from a few park management vehicles. Accommodation is in a small, rustic cottage nestled behind sand dunes (limited availability in 2014), or alternatively in the old penitentiary at Darlington.

Accommodation fee: depending on venue, from $140 to $210 per week + ferry costs.

Maatsuyker Island

Maatsuyker Island is dramatic, rugged and isolated. Lying 12 kilometres off the southwest coast of Tasmania, it is part of the Southwest National Park and Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.  The island is a significant breeding ground for seals and seabirds and also has one of Tasmania’s best preserved lighthouse stations. Access to Maatsuyker is by helicopter only and special conditions apply to this residency. Accommodation is in the ex-lighthouse keepers’ house. Not available during 2014, and only by arrangement in 2015.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week + helicopter. (All-up, costs could vary from $6 000 to $10 000 depending on the length of residency and costs of helicopter operations. Supplementary funding and a longer residency may be required.)

Mole Creek Caves

Located in the Mole Creek Karst National Park and featuring Marakoopa and King Solomons Caves, this site offers excellent displays of flowstone, stalactites, straw stalactites, stalagmites, columns, shawls, and calcite crystals within two of Tasmania’s most celebrated caves. Access to caves is allowed only when accompanied by Parks staff. Accommodation is located near the entrance of the caves.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week.


Stretching from low coastal ranges to long Bass Strait beaches, Narawntapu includes a historic farm, a complex of inlets, small islands, headlands, wetlands, dunes and lagoons and an amazing variety of plants and animals. Among the features of the park are the easily observed animals that come out in the evening to graze on the grasslands. Accommodation consists of the old ranger’s quarters – also known as the single men’s quarters – which is located a short walk from the beach and ranger’s station.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week.

Rocky Cape

The residency site is located close to the water’s edge in the small township of Rocky Cape and has views across to the village of Stanley and the volcanic plug known as The Nut. Accommodation is in a simple two bedroom shack close to stunning rock formations, beautiful hills, an incredible variety of flowering plants as well as a dramatic cave in the nearby cliffs. Accommodation is located five kilometres from nearest shop.

Accommodation fee: $140 per week.