Flinders Island is located at the eastern end of Bass Strait, between Victoria and Tasmania, and is the largest of 52 islands that make up the Furneaux Group of islands. It’s named after English explorer Matthew Flinders, who circumnavigated Tasmania with George Bass in 1798.
Cattle and sheep grazing, fishing and tourism are the island’s main industries. We’ve spent many wonderful hours getting to know the locals and their beautiful island. They enjoy a relaxed lifestyle, living on island time, mingling work with a great deal of pleasure.
The number of people calling Flinders Island home increases each year, with the current permanent residents numbering around 1000, which doubles during holiday season.
The island has two prominent peaks: Mt Strzelecki (756m) and Mt Killiecrankie. Elsewhere, it’s rolling countryside with pastures mown by lazy cows, native bushland home to abundant wildlife, quiet lagoons filled with migratory birds from around the world, rocky headlands, sprawling white beaches and secluded coves. Commonly seen wildlife include Bennetts wallabies, pademelons, possums, wombats and echidnas. The birdlife is incredibly diverse with over 200 species living or visiting here.
Flinders Island was once part of a land bridge that extended between today’s Wilsons Promontory and Tasmania. Around 10,000 years ago at the end of the last Ice Age, glaciers melted and the sea level rose, isolating Tasmania from the rest of Australia, leaving a beautiful chain of granite islands strung across Bass Strait.
This place has had a chequered history, including thousands of years as peaceful Aboriginal homelands; a brief and bloody sealing industry; and more recently – in the early 1800s, as the tragic place of exile for Tasmanian Aborigines.
Today’s Flinders Islanders are fiercely protective and passionate about their island home, its people, and its stories. And you’ll soon see why.