Featured image: Come for the steam, stay for the scenery. Photo: Anjie Blair
Nature-lovers and adventure-seekers, this one’s for you: Australia’s first floating sauna, tucked away in the tiny Tasmanian township of Derby (north-east of Launceston).
There’s something so right about this Nordic tradition landing in the fresh air and pristine scenery of Australia’s southern isle. And since firing up late last year, the Floating Sauna Lake Derby has garnered plenty of attention, not least for its ‘grammable good looks.
Plan a wild and wonderful honeymoon in Tasmania
Designed by Tasmanian architect Jason Licht, the contrasting gable sheds offer a modest yet striking focal point within the area’s verdant landscape. There’s a translucent, light-filled changing space (don’t worry, the remote locale offers ample privacy) and a timber-clad Finnish sauna, both floating above Lake Derby.
The ritual is blissfully simple. Leave your shoes on the shore and turn up the heat in the wood-fired sauna. Then plunge off the pontoon into the brisk waters below (hello, endorphin rush) before legging it back inside to dream and re-steam.
Repeat if you dare.
The sauna has proved a perfect companion experience to Derby’s other drawcard: 125 kilometres of world-class mountain bike trails. The once-booming tin mining town had almost faded into history before its recent revival via the Blue Derby Trail Network that threads through the verdant hillsides. And the best antidote to a gruelling day’s ride? A trip to the sauna of course.
Although it can accommodate up to ten, the Floating Sauna can be booked exclusively for a private couple’s experience.
Nearby: Swap bikes for beaches on Tasmania’s eye-popping east coast. The pristine Bay of Fires region is around an hour east of Derby.
Design note: Licht Architecture wasrecently honoured with the Peter Willmott Award for Small Project Architecture in the 2021 Tasmanian Architecture Awards.
Take the plunge: The Floating Sauna Lake Derby