History of the Business

Aran is the owner of Tasmanian Safaris, quite often the lead guide as well. The origins of the business date back to 1998, with sightseeing tours based out of a four-wheel-drive and trailer, using swags and tents to make camp at bush locations around the state.

After guiding the tours for many years from 2007, Aran later purchased the business and started to focus on providing small group tours from standing camps, combining his kayaking and canoe experience along with the hiking excursions.

A range of tours is now available featuring Hobie kayaks with foot-operate drives to allow even those with no kayaking experience to access the waterscapes in a safe, stable and highly efficient way.

We have focused on quality and entertaining tours in the North and North West of the state for over a decade.

Our private campsite on the southern edge of the Tarkine is used as a base for a range of excursions.

Elsewhere, we use cabins, private-house rental, or lodge accommodation for multi-day voyages.

Broader Tasmanian History

The development both past and present of this part of Tasmania is sometimes contentious. We seek to provide the background so you can make up your own mind. Naturally, we have an interest in preserving the quality of wilderness that makes this region so wonderful. Our approach is to recognise some of the major influences that shape it.

Foremost among these is accepting the long history of the palawa or Tasmanian Aboriginal people. Part of the land for over 40,000 years, the intervening generations made the island home. Western science holds the view that they arrived while Tasmania was connected to mainland Australia during the last ice age, subsequently cut off by rising waters. They were a culture that was isolated from any other society for approximately 12,000 years.

We acknowledge them as the traditional owners of the land and pay respects to leaders past, present and emerging.

The development both past and present of this part of Tasmania is sometimes contentious. We seek to provide the background so you can make up your own mind. Naturally, we have an interest in preserving the quality of wilderness that makes this region so wonderful. Our approach is to recognise some of the major influences that shape it.

Foremost among these is accepting the long history of the Palawa or Tasmanian Aboriginal people. Part of the land for over 40,000 years, the intervening generations made the island home. Western science holds the view that they arrived while Tasmania was connected to mainland Australia during the last ice age, subsequently cut off by rising waters. They were a culture that was isolated from any other society for approximately 12,000 years.

We acknowledge them as the traditional owners of the land and pay respects to leaders past, present and emerging.

Aborigines using fire to hunt kangaroos – Lycett, Joseph, approximately 1775-1828, National Library of Australia, NLA ref 151912

The colonial impact on Tasmania is a complex and sometimes dark chapter in our history. The discovery of tin deposits in 1871 around Mt Bischoff in North West Tasmania came at a tough time for the state, heavily reliant on primary agriculture and in a dire financial situation. The discovery lead to an explosion of prospecting for minerals in the West. The first tin mine provided a return of around 200-to-1 for the shareholders. Taxes and revenues for this period of rapid development secured the future prosperity of the state for many years to come. Of course, it came with a degradation to the environment that we are still reckoning with today. The pioneers working in these harsh conditions deserve recognition for the contribution to the development of the state.

More recently, another major influence was the pioneering environmental protection and green politics that began in Tasmania. The nascent movement came into conflict with the major economic activity of the region – namely mining, forestry and the construction of dams for hydroelectricity. It is through their efforts that many thousands of hectares of Tasmania’s most precious wilderness were preserved for future generations. We know there continues to be conflict about the use of the region and it presents many a contradiction and conflict for those of us making a living in tourism. However, we believe the struggle to protect areas like the proposed Franklin dam in the 1980s secured Tasmania’s image as one of the last great frontier wildernesses.

These three aspects of our history will continue to have competing interests, but we genuinely believe it is important to recognise each of them to allow progress for a lasting and more sustainable future.

The colonial impact on Tasmania is a complex and sometimes dark chapter in our history. The discovery of tin deposits in 1871 around Mt Bischoff in North West Tasmania came at a tough time for the state, heavily reliant on primary agriculture and in a dire financial situation. The discovery lead to an explosion of prospecting for minerals in the West. The first tin mine provided a return of around 200-to-1 for the shareholders. Taxes and revenues for this period of rapid development secured the future prosperity of the state for many years to come. Of course, it came with a degradation to the environment that we are still reckoning with today. The pioneers working in these harsh conditions deserve recognition for the contribution to the development of the state.

More recently, another major influence was the pioneering environmental protection and green politics that began in Tasmania. The nascent movement came into conflict with the major economic activity of the region – namely mining, forestry and the construction of dams for hydroelectricity. It is through their efforts that many thousands of hectares of Tasmania’s most precious wilderness were preserved for future generations. We know there continues to be conflict about the use of the region and it presents many a contradiction and conflict for those of us making a living in tourism. However, we believe the struggle to protect areas like the proposed Franklin dam in the 1980s secured Tasmania’s image as one of the last great frontier wildernesses.

These three aspects of our history will continue to have competing interests, but we genuinely believe it is important to recognise each of them to allow progress for a lasting and more sustainable future.

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