Boat Ramp Picnic Area

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DISTANCES: Launceston 20Km

The quaint town of Windermere has an idyllic riverside location within an easy drive of Launceston, and is full of historic tales of life in the Tamar Valley.

Windermere was awarded its name from a Dr Matthias Gaunt, who arrived by ship from London with his wife. They brought with them two sons and two daughters, and many other children were born to them after they arrived in Van Diemen's Land. Dr Gaunt undertook the building of a church, dedicated to St Matthias, with a sum of 100 pounds. St Matthias Church is the oldest church in Australia with a continuous history of regular usage since its foundation. This splendid example of 1800s architecture may be photographed in different settings from both sides of the Tamar River. Visitors can wander through the historic cemetery, with the tombstones of many notable locals.

The original Chaplain’s residence, built by Gaunt on the mound opposite the church, was later called ‘The Grange’ and had another storey added. These days the church is a popular wedding venue and an extremely popular subject for photographers and painters.