Lynn & Mike ..around the world
Mike Drinkrow & Lynn v/d Hoven
Sun 30 Mar 2014 09:34
Trip to Tasmania
As someone said ...”nothing goes to Windward like a 747”
After flying across 10 time zones, we landed in back Brisbane on 19 March. We dumped our luggage, did a quick check on Time2, well taken care of at Rivergate Marina, and then headed back to the airport to fly to Hobart.
We had met a Tasmanian family cruising in French Polynesia last year, and they tempted us to visit.  Gai and her daughter Sarah were at the airport to meet us and after an afternoon and evening around the city we headed down to their home in Kettering, south of Hobart. What a beaut spot, on a protected bay, with a jetty at the bottom of the garden, where they  will  have their yacht Offshore based next year. As you can imagine, Mike and Will had many discussion on the build of upgrades that need to be done.
We spent the weekend getting into the  tourist thing – the Salamanca market in downtown Hobart & and a trip up Mount Wellington which overlooks the city.  On the Sunday we did a ferry trip over to Bruny Island to sample their gastronomic delights (Oysters, Cheeses and deli products, including Kangaroo Pate .. not too bad at all!)  We did try to spot the Fairy Penguins, but they were elusive.  Tasmania feels very much like rural England, lots of old British style housing and rolling farm hills. More than 50% of the population live in Hobart.
mount wellington 
View from Mount Wellington ..and YES it was very cold!
 w g sarah
Lovely day with Will, Gai and Sarah at Bruny island
On Monday morning we set off on a 1000km road trip in Gai’s Nissan Xtrail – although it was 4x4, we stayed on tarred roads. We first crossed the island from east to west, spending the night in Strahan, where we enjoyed a day cruise on a large catamaran through the large bay and up the Gordon River. This massive bay has a a very narrow entrance with a fierce current – also called Hells Gate. The bay is filled with fish farms and we enjoyed some of the farmed Atlantic salmon at lunch, whilst we meandered up the river. What is with people who live on boats? Still have the need to go on boat trips?!  The tour also stopped at Sarah island which was one of the most brutal of the British Prisons in the early 1800’s.
From Strahan we headed to the north coast and stayed at Burnie, where again we searched for the Fairy Penguins, but again saw none. The Penguin guides were very impressed to see the pics on my phone of the thousands of penguins we have at home in Simon’s Town.  Tasmania is a big island, with a small population and many small towns. We drove through lots of them and found it quite sweet to see how many have tried to carve a tourist niche. While Railton excels in Topiary , Sheffield has massive murals painted on most of the buildings in town!
topiarry   side of building 2
Our next visit was to Will’s parents farm outside Deloraine. We had also met them in Moorea and it was lovely to see their beautiful “hobby farm” with quite a few cattle and horses. They also treated us to an evening at the theatre in Launceston, where their daughter performed the lead role in Phantom of the Opera. An excellent evening.
We had then planned to head to the west coast, but the weather turned foul again and we headed back to Kettering. En route we stopped at the very famous (infamous?!) MONA. A very dramatic and quite controversial purpose built museum of old and modern art, funded from the the millions made out of gambling by the owner David Walsh.  One of the more disgusting exhibits is a machine that is fed, digests and then poops – the smell was something else.  There are however some great techno pieces and then one that is quite funny, is a big fat Porche. You are given a mobile device which navigates your through the exhibitions and gives you as much or as little info as you require – brilliant!
porche   parking
Like our society ..even the cars are getting FAT                                              Our friends from FBYC will love this parking for the owner & partner
A last day with our super hospitable friends in Tasmania and we were off on our next adventure – a visit to Mike’s nephew in Sydney.
Lastly a map of Tasmania !