It Took the Earth Millions of Years to Make This Strangely Pavement-like Rock Formation in Tasmania

Eaglehawk Neck, Tasmania
Photo: Getty Images

When you think “pavement,” you probably think of a hot, flat, asphalt parking lot. But it turns out that you can even find “pavement” in nature.

According to Atlas Obscura, a strangely rectangular rock formation of saltwater pools called the Eaglehawk Neck Tessellated Pavement in Tasmania, Australia is actually a particular kind of erosion created by the earth itself, rather than by some human-made mechanism.

This strange natural wonder is called “tessellated pavement” because of its resemblance to the Roman style of tile flooring, but these pools definitely weren’t laid out by some interior designer. Instead, the formation, which sits on flat rocks on a small strip of land that connects Tasmania to the Tasman Peninsula, was made with millions of years of natural erosion.

According to the Eaglehawk Neck Action Community Taskforce (ENACT), the oddly straight and narrow cracks in the rock were made by the Earth’s movements. The cracks filled with salt water, which slowly eroded the edges.

The so-called “pavement” is made up of two kinds of formations: one that looks like a rectangular pool or “pan,” and another that’s slightly raised and rounded, “leaving a rounded crown resembling rising bread,” according to Atlas Obscura.

Although this type of erosion is very rare, there are some other places on earth where you can find it, including the famous Giant’s Causeway in Ireland and Fingal’s Cave in Scotland.

And this otherwordly attraction is amazingly easy to get to as well. Eaglehawk Neck is considered a main gateway to many attractions in Tasmania, including Port Arthur Historic Site, Tasman's Arch, Devil's Kitchen, and Tasman National Park, according to Discover Tasmania.

The tessellated pavement is located on the northern end of Pirates Bay beach, according to Atlas Obscura. One of the best ways to get there is to take a stop on your way to Port Arthur from Hobart.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles