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Maria Island is a natural wildlife sanctuary with historic convict ruins, a dramatic coastline and fantastic walks. The entire island is a national park with ferry access only, and with no cars allowed on the island it provides the perfect safe haven for Tasmanian wildlife. Maria is one of the best places in Tasmania to observe wildlife in its natural habitat. Wombats are often seen around the island along with abundant Forester kangaroos, pademelons and Bennetts wallabies. It's also one of Tasmania's great bird watching hot spots. You'll find 11 of the state's 12 endemic species here, including the endangered forty-spotted pardalote and the rare Cape Barren goose. Once used as convict prison, Maria Island has a rich colonial heritage and has the most intact example of a convict probation station in Australia. The stone Commissariat Store, 150 metres from the jetty, is the island's oldest building on the island and is now a visitor centre with displays and information about the island's fascinating past. There's also excellent walking and cycling with short walks that explore the island's buildings and ruins or a longer walk to the summit of Bishop and Clerk, the island's towering peak. Basic bunk accommodation is available as well as free camping at several sites around the island. Ferry bookings are essential. Maria Island is a 30-minute ferry ride from Triabunna - 1.5-hr from Hobart and 2.5-hr from Launceston.