Carol and her friend from Singapore enjoyed an 8-night personalised tour featuring Tasmania’s main tourist attractions as well as a few less visited places. The tour began with a light lunch at 41 Degrees Salmon & Ginseng Farm, just out of Deloraine, following a morning pick-up from Launceston Airport. Early afternoon saw us feeding the kangaroos, viewing Tasmanian devils, and patting wombats at Trowunna Wildlife Sanctuary. Then straight to Cradle Mountain in time to see the famed mountain through the mist.
Our second day began with the Enchanted Forest walk from Cradle Mountain Lodge followed by another ride on the shuttle out to Dove Lake and Cradle Mountain for another, less forthcoming, viewing of the mountain. We then visited Sheffield to inspect the latest addition to the murals before a great lunch at The Conservatory. A cheese tasting and an ice-cream later we were in Evandale. After a look through a couple of shops we took the back road through Relbia to Launceston and the Pepper’s Silo Hotel.
The third day began with breakfast at Stillwater Restaurant before exploring Cataract Gorge. After an hour, or so, of retail therapy, a stop at Boags Brewery for a beer tasting, and a visit to City Park, it was off to Josef Chromy Wines for a long lunch. We then headed for Tamar Ridge Wines for a tasting and then drove across the Batman Bridge heading for St Helens via Scottsdale. With the sun setting so early this time of year the last 90-minutes driving, in the dark, was a slow process on the twisty road.
Day four started with a drive along a little used dirt road to Eddystone Point. The sun came out and afforded some great photo opportunities of the magnificent sand dunes, turquoise ocean, and orange and red lichen covered rocks, synonymous with The Bay of Fires. We then visited the southern end of the beach via Binalong Bay and The Gardens. Rain was making its presence felt as we grabbed fish and chips for lunch at the St Helens Wharf. We then drove south, stopping at White Sands Resort for a beer tasting, before exploring the geological features at Bicheno, namely, the Gulch and Blowhole. Following some more shopping it was off to our final destination for the next two nights, Edge of the Bay Resort at Coles Bay.
The fifth day of the tour was spent exploring the local area beginning with the Wineglass Bay Lookout walk. It was windy but fine and we got some good photos before descending. We then walked into Sleepy Bay from the designated carpark before continuing on to Cape Tourville. Following the 20-minute return walk here we stopped in at Honeymoon Bay on our way to Friendly Beaches. All this exercise had given us quite an appetite which meant a trip to Freycinet Marine Farm was next on the list. After lunch we did a little more shopping at the Visitor Centre, had a look around Coles Bay, and then drove out to Devil’s Corner Vineyard for a wine tasting, as the final activity for the day.
Our sixth day began with breakfast at The Pondering Frog, featuring a scallop pie, on our way to Swansea. A quick stop at Kate’s Berry Farm and it was off to beautiful Spring Beach at Orford for a final beach walk. Upon reaching Hobart we headed to the University of Tasmania for a special purchase for Carol. Lunch at the Beach House Café at Sandy Bay was followed by a beer tasting at Cascade Brewery. The pair then took a tour through MONA before finishing the day with a little more shopping, this time for food stuffs!
Day seven was a day largely dedicated to visiting the Port Arthur Historic Site. We stopped at the Pirate’s Bay Lookout and walked on the Tessellated Pavement at Eaglehawk Neck before marvelling at the geological features of Devil’s Kitchen and Tasman Arch. We enjoyed the introductory tour and boat ride at PAHS, separated by lunch. We called in at the lavender farm and chocolatier on our way back to Hobart. They enjoyed a tour and tasting at Tas Live Abalone before the final activity for the day, a drive to the Mount Nelson Signal Station to take in the city lights at night.
Our final full day together began with the iconic Salamanca Market. Carol said the morning flew by with so many shopping stalls to inspect as they browsed the aisles of the market. Lunch at Frogmore Creek Vineyard followed a quick tour of Richmond. The last activity for the private tour was the drive to the summit of Mt Wellington. It could be said that this was the pinnacle of the tour with the road only open for a few hours affording the opportunity of walking around the snow covered top of the mountain and taking in the fabulous views of Hobart and beyond.
The next morning it was straight to Hobart Airport for their flight back to Singapore. They both agreed it had been a great week in Tassie and a good time of year to visit with the different moods of the winter weather and less people at the main attractions.