Our Tasmania-leg of the journey was fairly short, only 12 days in total. At the same time, we got to see a lot during those 12 days – drove around the whole place almost. We got lucky weatherwise and didn’t have to spend more than two days waiting for a clear sky for the Cradle Mountain Summit walk.
Next stops following Cradle Mountain were brief each.
“Day off” – Penguin
While hoping for better weather for the hike we took off to the North coast of Tassie, final destination was a town called Penguin. I had promised to Richie that we’ll see some penguins on our travels but was too optimistic for out-of-the season penguin sightings. This little town was quite dead, the floods of tourists had just deserted the street(s) and friendly staff at the info center informed us that penguins are gone.
The only thing left to do was to take a photo with the only penguin in town and move forward.
Day after Cradle Mountain – Bay of Fires & Wineglass Bay
These are two must-see destinations in any list made of Tasmania and we obediently turned our car towards the East coast. Bay of Fires does boast impressive beaches that one didn’t expect to find in Tasmania but the appreciation of beaches really doesn’t kick in when it’s ten degrees, windy and cloudy. I was quite certain I would dig up my Finnish “sisu” (courage) from deep down where I have hidden it for the past three years living abroad and dive into the sea no matter the weather. Sisu did not appear, nor did I enjoy the crisp touch of ice-cold seawater. Maybe next time.
From Bay of Fires we headed off to South, towards Wineglass Bay in Freycinet National Park. This is the place where we were going to learn a valuable lesson of checking you can drive to the camp site you have picked to stay in for the night. Only after a lot of googling, zooming in to the map and reading some comments did we discover that to get a nice night’s sleep without a $200 fine we would have to do a “quick” hike with our stuff up to the Wineglass lookout point and then down to the beach and enjoy a different type of Bondi-soft-sand-run in the dark with a 20kg backbag.
But I am glad we did. As I wrote earlier, we also survived a night without pillows – maybe we have potential for multi-day hikes after all!
Next morning a slower walk back to the lookout point for photos and run down for brekkie since we didn’t carry any food with us – it would’ve taken the room needed for the Target duvet and we couldn’t camp without it..
Original plan was to do the Mt. Amos hike where you get higher than the lookout point and less tourist crowds but these views were enough and our hiking eagerness was not enough to conquer this peak.
Port Arthur, Richmond, MONA
After this we had done the most must-sees and were left almost on a limbo –what to do now? Pick a random camping spot, go experience history at Port Arthur and Richmond.
To be honest, I was interested on Richmond more because of the chocolatiers it hosted. And the chocolate was good…
Now the only thing left for us to experience was more culture! Museum of New Art - MONA - was our destination on a Good Friday. Full of crowds and very strange art. I am not a museum person at all but I did enjoy this visit a lot – until to 3 hours later and you still have a full floor to go. I would maybe split the visit into two days to fully enjoy everything it has to offer as now we really experienced an art-overdose.
Tasmania was our first test of the budget-camping-roadtrip life that would face us for the next 14 months and as it’s only me grading my own homework I would pass us easily! Some way to go for an A+ but I can tell you we’re almost there now a week in in New Zealand. More to follow..