I’m just back from a long weekend in Tasmania. One of my good friends lives down there and we had a whirlwind tour of the beautiful Apple Isle. Wanna see what we saw? C’mon then.

First was the tiny but beautiful city of Hobart. Compared with the enormity of New York City it is but a dot on the map. The best thing about its size, though, is that it is easy to get around. Not many traffic jams here. Yep, Tassie has a much slower pace. The people are generally more friendly than back on the mainland and the buildings are to die for. I have never seen more well-preserved convict buildings. Breathtaking… if you love architecture.

Tassie offers so much to the tourist. My local friend popped on her ‘tourist’ glasses for a few days as we jetted about in our four-wheel-drive. First was pizza at Salamanca; a popular and trendy part of Hobart. The food was sensational and the ambiance modern and cosy.

 

The next day we found ourselves in Richmond. A grand old historical town boasting Australia’s oldest bridge. We walked, we talked, we got lost, we walked across a weir to get back on track.

How adventurous were we? Then stop at the old fashioned lolly shop before heading somewhere even sweeter…

…the chocolate factory. Who doesn’t like chocolate? Hands down… strange people. This ordinary looking building houses the ingredients of Cadbury’s finest choccy. We sat through an information session which turned my pal off white chocolate forever (it’s made of fat people! Say no more). Back to another trendy part of town for some late lunch… day’s end.

The next day the sun shone and the Salamanca markets were jam packed with tourists just like us! We elbowed our way through the crowds, offering a polite, “excuse me” as you do in Tassie. The coffee was outrageously good, the parking a nightmare but we saw, we shopped, we squinted in the sunshine. Paradise!

With the clear skies, the next stop was a no-brainer, Mount Wellington.

Round and round we drove. Higher and higher. Through trees of green and towns of cuteness. We arrived. I staggered over to the edge of the viewing platform, feeling a bit weak of knee but keen to take in the breathtaking view. It was incredible. So darn high, looking over gorgeous Hobart with its waterways, other mountains and green, green everywhere.

After such a high, we were ready for a rest. Touring is hard work baby.

When the babysitting arrived, pally and I hopped in the car with packed bags and headed down/up to Port Arthur for a girls night away. We popped on our pjs, ate some delectable, sophisticated junk food, drank some Midori Splices (oh yum) and watched a sad, sad movie. The next day we headed to the Port Arthur site.

A spot of rain then blue skies for 5 hours. We walked, we sailed, we read and learned and listened. This is an incredible place. Not only is it famous for convicts and oldy worldy stuff but in 1996 it was the site of a horrific massacre which makes it feel very eerie. It’s like you walk around it ever so gently and respectfully. So much horror, so much history and sadness.

When we hopped in the car the rain began to pour down. We headed back to Hobart town and back to a sense of normality. This was my last night. As with all last nights a chilling was in order. We ate toasted sandwiches and watched another movie. Bliss!!!

So to Tassie and my exceptional Tasmanian friends! Thanks for a fun and peaceful time. Think I will bring the Tassie way of life back to crazy Sydney!

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