St Catherine's School Maria Island Trek

A fantastic walking adventure for the students of St Catherine's School through one of Tasmania's most spectacular National Parks, Maria Island

Challenge Highlights

  • Summit of Mount Maria (711m), the highest point on Maria Island
  • Fully supported trekking, day pack carry
  • Staying in the Penitentiary
  • Witnessing all the animals roaming free on the island
  • Exploring the fossilised cliffs
  • Incredible views over the island and onto the mainland
  • This program is 100% carbon offset. World Expeditions Schools absorb the cost of credits mitigating 100% of the unavoidable carbon emissions as its ongoing commitment to responsible travel


On this exclusive adventure for St Catherine's School students we spend 4 days exploring Maria Island. We will aim to take on the peaks of Mount Bishop and Mount Clerk, as well as the islands highest peak, Mount Maria (711m) all while staying in our cabins on the Island. There are a number of loop walks we can also try.


After all the training and preparation the wait is finally over! Our group will fly into Launceston and be met on arrival by our experienced guide and vehicle and have a full trip and safety briefing. We then commence our journey (approx 2.5 hour drive) to Triabunna and the Maria Island ferry terminal. On the way we'll have morning tea and stretch our legs in Campbell Town before continuing to Swansea. Here we will undertake our first walk, the Loontitetermairrelehoiner Coastal Walk (approx 45 minutes). We'll enjoy beautiful views of the Freycinet Peninsula in the distance and learn about the Tasmanian Aboriginal history. This easy walk also provides a great opportunity to learn safe trail walking skills in a beginner environment. After having lunch in Swansea we continue our journey to Triabunna and check-in for the ferry ride to Maria Island. The ferry takes about 30 minutes across Mercury Passage, docking at Darlington on Maria Island. Maria Island is one of Tasmania’s least visited yet most wonderful locations – you will be completely captivated from the moment you step ashore. The island has a rich history from Aboriginal habitation, to a convict penal station, farming, and the National Park it is today. We will arrive in the late afternoon at our cabin accommodation and get ready for a short exploration of the Darlington Convict buildings and history. This day with several shorter walks will prepare us for the longer walks over the coming days. Overnight cabin accommodation Penitentiary dorms

Meals:  L,D

After a delicious breakfast we head off from camp on our first full days walk. There are a number of loop trails we can try depending on weather. Our goal will be to walk to the summit of Bishop and Clerk (620m). Listen to the call of native birds as we climb steadily up through eucalypt forest, then out into scrub battered low by the elements. The view from this peak is incomparable as you gaze across the expanse of the island and out over the Tasman Sea. In the afternoon we can choose to walk back via the Reservoir Circuit Track. You may choose to spend the few hours before dinner soaking in the history of Darlington or taking a quiet stroll along the beach as the sun sets. Overnight cabin accommodation Penitentiary dorms

Meals:  B,L,D

Our goal today is to summit Mount Maria at 711m, the highest point on the island. Mount Maria is a dolerite outcrop with sweeping views south of the isthmus and out towards the Tasman Peninsula. The track begins south of Darlington near the mouth of Counsel Creek and meanders through open woodlands ascending quite gently at first, and ends with half an hour of scrambling over rocky debris and large boulders to reach the summit where the views are breathtaking. Overnight cabin accommodation Penitentiary dorms

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we rise very early and walk to the Painted Cliffs, arguably the main attraction on Maria Island. We have time to explore the cliffs and have breakfast on the beach. After enjoying this special location without the many day visitors on the island, we return to our accommodation, collect our bags and head to the dock for the journey home. We farewell Maria Island and board the ferry back to mainland Tasmania. Rejoining our vehicle, we travel north-west to Launceston. On our way we will stop at Cataract Gorge. The Cataract Gorge Reserve on the South Esk River is a unique natural formation just minutes from central Launceston. We will have lunch in this beautiful reserve and explore the area on a last walk before flying home. Our bus will drop us off at the airport in Launceston in time for check-in for our flight back to Melbourne.

Meals:  B,L

What's Included

  • Flights ex Melbourne to Tasmania return
  • Teachers from St Catherine's School accompanying the journey
  • 3 nights at the historic Penitentiary
  • Sleeping bag
  • All meals
  • Professional guide/s
  • Transport by private minibus
  • Fully supported itinerary; you only need to carry a daypack
  • National Park fees
  • Emergency communications & group first aid kit

What's Not Included

  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, email etc

What You Carry

  • Each night we stay at the Penitentiary dorms so our walks are day walks carrying a day pack only. In our day pack we will carry essential items like water, snacks, sunscreen, a waterproof jacket and camera.

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Fast Facts

Trip Dates: DepartReturn
Duration:4 Days
Activities:Day Walking
Grade:Introductory to Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG7420