The Hobart

Bellerive Beach To Little Howrah Beach

by Elizabeth Osborne
Bellerive Beach To Little Howrah Beach

Walk in the footsteps of Charles Darwin on this exhilarating coastal trail.

One of Hobart’s most beautiful walks, along Bellerive Beach to Little Howrah Beach, is just ten minutes from Hobart CBD. There’s a car park at Victoria Esplanade, next to the children’s play­ground, where we started our walk, an easy 3km walk each way. There are spectacular views of the Derwent Estuary to the south and, to the west, Hobart city and kunanyi/Mount Wellington.

We enjoyed an exhilarating walk on a cool, grey day, with clouds low on the surrounding hills. The beach, usually alive with activity, was deserted apart from a few hardy dog walkers. Waves rolled up the river. A solitary Pacific gull wheeled overhead, a scattering of silver gulls raced along the sand.

Pacific gull with Sandy Bay across the river

The dunes, covered in remnant coastal vegetation, are constantly being restored and maintained by the Howrah-Bellerive Coastcare Group and Clarence City Council, and provide a buffer between the community and the awesome power of the sea. Walkers can protect the dunes by using only marked tracks.

Sandstone steps at the eastern end of Bellerive Beach led up to the Coastal Trail across Second Bluff. Charles Darwin walked along these cliffs when he visited Hobart on HMS Beagle in 1836. Unlike modern walkers, Charles Darwin was unimpressed by the sandstone cliffs and the rocks sculpted by the sea.

Waves at Bellerive Beach

Second Bluff trail passes through coastal forest and woodland with tall eucalyp­tus trees, stands of sheoak and coast wattle inhabited by a variety of birdlife, bandicoots and echidnas. A sandstone seat offers the perfect viewing place to con­template the coastline, and the surround­ing suburb.

A gentle slope took us down to Howrah Beach, where we went to the pretty cove of Little Howrah Beach. A lone cormorant perched on a rock, drying its wings. We relaxed on a seat at the southern end of Little Howrah Beach, enjoying the view. We retraced our steps to Bellerive Beach, invigorated by wind and waves, soaking in the beauty of the Derwent Estuary. We retraced our steps to Bellerive Beach, invigorated by wind and waves, soaking in the beauty of the Derwent Estuary.

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February 2024

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