Strahan (pronounced "straw-n"), is a small town and former port on the west coast. It is now a significant locality for tourism in the region. Strahan Harbour and Risby Cove form part of the north-east end of Long Bay on the northern end of Macquarie Harbour.
Originally developed as a port of access for the mining settlements in the area, Strahan was a vital location for the timber industry that existed around Macquarie Harbour. For a substantial part of the nineteenth century and early twentieth century it also was port for regular shipping of passengers and cargo. The Strahan Marine Board was an important authority dealing with the issues of the port and Macquarie Harbour up until the end of the twentieth century when it was absorbed into the Hobart Marine Board.
Historically Strahan has been a port to a small fishing fleet that braves the west coast conditions and Hell's Gates. It is the nearest inhabited locality to Cape Sorell and is literally the 'gateway' to the south-west wilderness - as boats, planes and helicopters utilise Strahan as their base when travelling into the region.
Strahan is the base for boat trips to Sarah Island, the notorious penal settlement that garnered the reputation as the harshest penal settlement in the Australian colonies, and the lower Gordon River.