Ralphs Falls, John Fairhall / Auscape International

Population 302

This small north-eastern town was born when tin was discovered in 1874 and the 'Brothers Mine' opened two years later. The Cascade Dam was built and the mine prospered until 1929, when the dam flooded and swept through the town, killing 14 people. The mine closed and, although it eventually reopened, the town never fully recovered. Tourists stroll through the charming streets to view the old buildings and tin mine memorabilia.

Visitor Information

Derby Tin Mine Centre, Main St; (03) 6354 1062

Nearby national parks

  • Mount William National Park

    Tucked away in the remote north-east corner of the state, Mount William National Park is fringed with gorgeous bays stretching from Ansons...more

  • Ben Lomond National Park

    Ben Lomond National Park, enclosing the largest alpine plateau in the state, is a mountain environment with extensive and dramatic dolerite...more

  • Douglas–Apsley National Park

    Situated between the Douglas and Apsley rivers, this national park spans rugged hills of superb dry sclerophyll forest. Its tranquil...more

Nearby towns

  • Scottsdale

    Scottsdale, the major town in Tasmania's north-east, serves some of the richest agricultural and forestry country in the state. Indeed, as...more

  • Gladstone

    The north-eastern district surrounding Gladstone was once a thriving mining area, yielding both tin and gold. Today many of the...more

  • Bridport

    On Tasmania's north-east coast, facing Anderson Bay, Bridport is a popular holiday retreat for residents of Launceston and nearby...more

In Town

Derby Tin Mine Centre The town's major attraction, the centre is a reconstruction of this old mining village. It includes a miner's cottage, general store, butcher's shop, huge sluice and the historic Derby gaol. The old Derby School houses a comprehensive museum with history displays, gemstones, minerals and tin-panning apparatus. Main St.

Red Door Gallerae: paintings, carvings and furniture; Main St.

Bankhouse Manor: arts, crafts and collectibles; Main St.


Ralphs Falls The longest single-drop waterfall in Australia. A 20 min return walk under a myrtle rainforest canopy arrives at Norms Lookout at the top of the falls. From here views of the Ringarooma Valley, Bass Strait and the Furneaux Islands. Picnic and barbecue facilities are available. 15 km SE of Ringarooma.

Gemstone fossicking: Weld River in Moorina, where the largest sapphire in Tasmania was discovered; Tasman Hwy; 8 km NE.

Miners cemetery: historic cemetery where early tin miners, including some Chinese, were buried; Moorina; 8 km NE.

Fishing: excellent trout fishing along Ringarooma River north of town.

Fishing spots near town

St Helens 44 km

Most mainlanders once regarded Tasmania’s east coast seaport of St Helens as a gamefishing destination, and little else. Anglers came here to head offshore in search of marlin, tuna and sharks. However, the... Find out more

Eco-friendly activities around town

Forest Ecocentre, Scottsdale 24 km

The uniquely designed building is probably the key attraction here. Designed to use 20 per cent less energy than conventional structures, it has a building within a building, with a central funnel and large fan. Learn... Find out more

Bay of Fires Walk 44 km

A deluxe four-day walk along the magnificent north-east coast at the edge of Mount William National Park, staying in solar-powered accommodation designed for sustainable living, is one of the newer ecotourism treats in... Find out more

Golf courses around town

Barnbougle Dunes Links (Lost Farm course) 34 km

When Barnbougle Dunes opened for play in 2004 it did have a few critics who suggested it was too far away from the golfing masses to be financially successful. How wrong they were. If a golf course is good enough,... Find out more

Barnbougle Dunes Links 35 km

Bridport used to be a sleepy fishing village on Tasmania’s north-east coast. That all changed in 2004. In December of that year Barnbougle Dunes Links opened for play on the eastern outskirts of town – and... Find out more

Cafes & restaurants around town

Berries Cafe

On Derby’s main street, this weatherboard cottage cafe has a selection of morning and afternoon tea goodies as well as light lunches. There’s a lovely front verandah where you can sit with a cuppa and a slice... Find out more

Holy Cow Cafe

Tasmania is famous for its world-class cheeses, and Pyengana’s traditional cloth-bound cheddar is made using methods unchanged for 100 years. The quality speaks for itself, with 3 tonnes of this multi-award-winning... Find out more

Dannebrog Cafe Bar and Grill

There are good-value counter meals at this country pub, but a clue to its real attraction is the sign at the highway turn-off: ‘Come and see our beer drinking pig’, it reads. Armed with special pig beer from... Find out more

Nearby eco-friendly places to eat

Purple Possum Wholefoods and Cafe 58 km

Purple Possum is in the great little town of St Marys, midway between St Helens and Bicheno. The cafe is wholly vegetarian, and you can take away a range of organic fruit and vegetables and locally grown supplies.... Find out more

Campsites around town

Branxholm Centenary Park camping area 6 km

Branxholm is a sleepy little timber town on the Ringarooma River, east of Scottsdale. The camping ground is near the Red Bridge in the middle of town, close to the start of the historic Briseis Race walking track, and it... Find out more

Weldborough Hotel Campground 10 km

Tiny Weldborough (blink and you’ll miss it) has shaded, grassed camping sites with good amenities out the back of its delightful historic pub. Before you get too comfortable with a cold beer in the pub, be sure to... Find out more

Northeast Park camping area 24 km

Surrounded by beautiful parkland, trees and lakes, this pretty camping ground is 1 km east of Scottsdale on the A3. There is a playground on-site and you can stay at the park for up to 7 days, giving you plenty of time... Find out more

Blackmans Lagoon camping area 31 km

This camping area is used by duck shooters in season and is suited to big rigs. It is reached along Blackmans Lagoon Rd off Waterhouse Rd, 23 km east of Bridport. Camping is in a pine plantation by a network of lagoons... Find out more

Big Waterhouse Lake camping area 32 km

A few cleared camping sites are provided here on the northern shore of the lake, but there are no facilities at this location. Access is signposted 4 km along Homestead Rd, then it is a further 3 km to the camping area.... Find out more

Ransons Beach camping area 35 km

At the eastern end of Homestead Rd, there is a small camping area and beach boat-launching place near a couple of fishing shacks. This is a popular spot for off-roaders as it has 4WD and bike access for surf fishers... Find out more

Griffin camping area 36 km

Along the banks of the South Esk River are pleasant, grassed camping sites close to a network of tracks heading into the North East Forests, so this place is ideal if you are into trail bikes or ATVs. There is good trout... Find out more

Waterhouse Beach camping area 36 km

North of Waterhouse, these campsites sit behind the beach and are sheltered by coastal scrub. Head towards the coast along Homestead Rd, turning left to Croppies Point, then left again at the Y-junction. No facilities... Find out more

Casuarina Hill camping area 36 km

Leave Homestead Rd east of the main track to camp at this sheltered site, with 4 camping areas. You will need a 4WD to cope with the steep, sandy track. Bring drinking water and firewood.... Find out more

South Croppies Point camping area 36 km

These campsites are at the northern side of this scenic point. They have spectacular ocean outlooks but are relatively exposed to the weather. From Homestead Rd, turn left 2 km north of the Big Waterhouse Lake track,... Find out more

Caravan parks around town

BIG4 St Helens Holiday Park 43 km

This is a good quality establishment 1.5 km south of town. The park is a popular holiday destination and bookings are required in peak periods; a minimum-length stay applies at Christmas, Easter and long weekends.... Find out more

Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Cobblers Accommodation

At the turn of the 19th century Derby was a hard-working mining town, but a disastrous flood blighted both the town and its tin mine, which eventually closed for good in 1948. This rustic timber miner’s cottage on... Find out more

Tin Dragon Trail Cottages

The trail of the Tin Dragon follows the history of Chinese tin miners in north-eastern Tasmania and invites you to walk in their footsteps. These little cottages in pretty farmland surroundings are on the trail and offer... Find out more

Winnaleah Hotel

In one of the most isolated corners of Tasmania, this historic pub has that warm country welcome only found in out-of-the-way places. They have seven comfy rooms with shared bathrooms, and serve good hearty pub meals and... Find out more

Eco-friendly places to stay around town

Rainbow Retreat 58 km

The owners of this 30-hectare nature reserve at St Marys are wildlife carers who rehabilitate then release wildlife on the property, so there are plenty of their old friends wandering around, including wombats,... Find out more

Rest areas around town

Derby park area 1 km

At Derby

Adjacent to the highway on a riverbank. Town's north side.

Scottsdale rest area 23 km

At Scottsdale

Just off the highway. On the east side of town.

Sideling Lookout park area 33 km

17km SW of Scottsdale (L) or 45km NE of Launceston (R)

Adjacent to the highway with good views over the surrounding countryside.

Myrtle Park camping area 41 km

T/O 31km SW of Scottsdale (R) or 31km NE of Launceston (L)

Well off the highway on the banks of St Patricks River.

Cosy Corner North camping area 41 km

T/O at St Helens

In the scrub on the foreshore 15km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay and Garden rds.

Cosy Corner South Camp Area 41 km

T/O at St Helens via Binalong Bay Road

Large camp area in the scrub on the foreshore 14 kilometres north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay Road and Garden Road.

Swimcart Beach camping area 41 km

T/O at St Helens

Surrounded by scrub on the foreshore 13km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay and Garden rds.

Jeanneret Beach camping area 42 km

T/O at St Helens

Surrounded by scrub on the foreshore 12km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay and Garden rds.

Grants Lagoon camping area 43 km

T/O at St Helens

In a natural bush setting 10km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay and Garden rds.

Moulting Bay camping area 43 km

T/O at St Helens

In scrub near the foreshore 7km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay Rd and 1km (unsealed) south via Moulting Bay Track.

St Helens park area 44 km

At St Helens

On the foreshore on the south side of town. Adjacent to the highway.

Dora Point camping area 46 km

T/O at St Helens

In scrub near the foreshore 8km north-east of St Helens via Binalong Bay Rd and 5km (unsealed) south of Binalong Bay via Dora Point Rd.

Scamander Forest camping area 48 km

T/O at Beaumaris

Among trees on the banks of Trout Creek 11km west of Beaumaris via Skyline Dr.

Dianas Basin camping area 48 km

T/O 10km N of Scamander (R) or 8km S of St Helens (L)

Well off the highway with numerous secluded campsites located in the scrub between the basin and the beach.

Paddys Island camping area 49 km

8km N of Scamander (R) or 10km S of St Helens (L)

Just off the highway surrounded by scrub.

Shelly Point Camp Area 51 km

4 km N of Scamander (R) or 14 km S of St Helens (L)

Small camp area located just off the highway in the scrub near the foreshore.

NOTE: Campervans only.

What's on around town

Derby River Derby: raft race down Ringarooma River with markets, exhibitions and children's activities; Oct.

comments powered by Disqus