Are you wondering where to go for a family holiday in Tasmania? Tin Dragon Cottages near Branxholm and Derby is your ideal location in the centre of the North East. We have a 36 Ac alpaca farm surrounded by the Ringarooma River. So you can enjoy the farm, meet the alpacas and chooks, explore bush trails and mess about in the river – in a secluded and safe environment. Of course there is more adventure and great places to eat just a short drive away, too!
Self-Contained Family Cottages
Although there are six cottages at Tin Dragon Cottages, the cottages shown above are best suited to a family holiday in Tasmania. Both Ah Ping and Ah Moy have two bedrooms, however Ah Moy has a queen bed in the second bedroom rather than two single beds. The Settlers Hut has four single bunk beds. Each cottage is fully self-contained with a kitchen and clothes washing machine and you can read more about each cottage on our web site. You can book direct here on our web page, too. Prices start from $160 for a family of four. in the Settlers Hut. Please note that there is a minimum booking requirement of three days over the Christmas to new Year holiday period. Outside these period the minimum booking is for two days.
Activities for a Family Holiday in North East Tasmania
On Our Alpaca Farm
Feed the Chooks & Walk with the Alpacas
Each morning Graham opens the chook palace and the chooks come flying out! He then feeds the hungry hordes. The chooks receive wheat and the alpacas a muesli treat. After the feast he takes the alpacas for some exercise down our front road. If you are up early enough you are welcome to join him! Just let him know the day before.
Mess About in the Ringarooma
The Ringarooma River is just below your cottage. You are most welcome to use the two kayaks which we leave on the river bank. The river is usually quite shallow in summer. So most people can easily stand up in the water. But please ask us for a life-vest and child’s helmet.
Here’s a hint: it is so much easier to paddle upstream! (otherwise you may need a recovery vehicle to bring the kayak back)
By the way, this is a great river to practice your fly-fishing too.
Trail Blazing – Walk Through an Abandoned Tin Mine
Ah Ping’s Sculpture Walk is an easy 2km walk taking you along the Ormuz/Arba water race and through the historic alluvial tin mine site. At the centre of the tin mine there is a meditation area with sandstone seats. A steel bollard has the inscription, “when you put yourself in another’s position, your wisdom reveals”. Graham and Christine can provide a brief history of Henry Ah Ping and the Chinese miners of Branxholm upon request.
How many Chinese workers can you find hidden in the bush? You get extra points if you can find the abandoned eagle’s nest!
Farm to Plate – Pick your own!
Locally grown grass-fed beef and sheep and free-range organic pigs provide the most tender and tasty meats you are ever likely to eat! Our local supermarket and the General Store in Derby stock Pyengana Meats and Scottsdale Pork. Of course you can also order a bar-be-que pack from us, too!
At different times of the year our organic garden is bursting with green goodness. You are most welcome to pick your own salad. Just ask us. If you are really lucky there may even be some sweet berries in season. Also, at most times of the year you can collect freshly laid eggs from our wonderful free-range chooks.
Experience the Wild Life
Monotremes are only found in Australia and there are only two – the echidna and the platypus. Although these unusual creatures are rarely seen on mainland Australia, we often see them here at Tin Dragon Cottages. Ask us about the house platypus!
Many marsupials come out to feed at night. If you go quietly with a torch along the river and on our road you may see bandicoots, quolls, possums and padimelons. On occasions you may be lucky enough to see a wombat, antechinus, or even the most rare Eastern Barred bandicoot. You may hear the distinctive mopoke call… Why not ask us for a flash light?
In Our Region
North East Tasmania is jam-packed full with family-friendly adventures. In fact,there are too many for us to list them all here. So ask us to help you plan your daily itinerary. For example, there are amazing waterfalls, short bush walks, white-sand beaches and tin-mining heritage. For most of the short walks there are great picnic spots, too. Please ask us!
Mountain-Biking and Rail-Trail
Just 8 km down the road, Derby is home to one of the world’s premier mountain bike networks. Encompassing 125 km of purpose built mountain bike trails with options to suit all skill levels. If you are new to mountain biking, Derby has an excellent range of options with a pump track for the kids and the stunning newly opened Lake Derby trails and tunnel trail. Derby is also home to the Derby Mini Shredders babysitting service. They offer childcare for families staying in and around Derby (mob: 0413 966 416; firstname.lastname@example.org).
Another great family ride is the North East Rail Trail. This trail starts just a few km from Tin Dragon Cottages and will take you 26 km into Scottsdale. Even better- the good news is – it is a gentle down-hill ride most of the way!
There are several local businesses that can help make your mountain-biking into an even better experience. For example, you can hire bicycles, including children’s mountain bikes, from Vertigo MTB, Mad MTB and Evolution Biking. Each business also offers uplift shuttles and Vertigo offers skills clinics for beginners. Mad MTB offers airport pick-up shuttles for groups, as does Premium MTB Transfers.
Other Awesome Adventures
Tasmania is world renowned for it fresh-water fishing. And some of the best freshwater is in North East Tasmania. North East Tasmania offers a variety of locations to enjoy trout fishing, from forested rivers to coastal lagoons. Of course you can fish right here at Tin Dragon Cottages, too! But if you love river adventures, you might like to book a tour with Secret River Tours.