Monthly Archives: November 2017

Lime Bay Camp to Bechino

Wednesday 30th November 2017
We had a really nice start to today. A very leisurely stroll along the beach at Lime Bay, a nice breakfast in the bush, a pack up and then a great swim and play with Emma, Kate, Paul and Ali. It was a lovely morning.

We then headed on our way – destination “Bicheno” – near Freycinet National Park. Looks like we are in for some hairy weather over the next couple of days. We called in to a Coal Mine site, and then drove the dirt road north which was a definite short cut. A quick stop at Marion Bay. A view of Maria Island from the mainland, but that is definitely a place we will go to at another stage.

We then went to the Freycinet National Park and went on a quick hike up to Wineglass Bay lookout before heading to our campsite at Bicheno. The view at the lookout was fantastic. We did a quick pitstop at Honeymoon Bay. Also beautiful. Then on to Bicheno East Holiday Park.

Port Arthur to Lime Bay Camp

Wednesday 29th November 2017
Well this morning we woke to the beautiful sounds of the bush. The birds were tailing in the trees. It was a peaceful way to start the day. We packed up again and headed to do a little sightseeing. First stop was Maingon Bay Lookout, then the Remarkable Caves. The coastline was spectacular and the cave was quite remarkable.

We then headed to Fortescue Bay which was to be our camp for the night. Unfortunately the good sites near the beach and protected from the wind were closed due to construction and upgrading of the facilities there, so we decided to head to Lime Bay Campground. First things first, DB and I decided to go for a hike to Cape Huay which is part of the Three Capes Coastal Walk which is a 3 day hike from Fortescue Bay to Pillar Cape.
The track was absolutely amazing, well graded and the steps were well formed all the way. It took us about 3 hrs 20 mins to hike about 11km return. The views were amazing. The flowers were colourful. The cliffs spectacular and the steepness cannot be shown in our photos. The rocks were a variety of colours. The walk was a pleasant climb and meander through the bush. It was a great day.

We then headed to Lime Bay Campground.

Port Arthur

Tuesday 28th November 2017
Today we went to the Port Arthur Historic Site. It is the best-preserved convict settlement in Australia and among the most significant convict era sites in the world. It has won many awards and has been called one of Australia’s great tourism destinations. The Site combines rich history and scenic beauty to tell the stories of the harsh discipline and determined industry of the settlement. It is a place to discover Australian history and connect with the origins of Australian culture.It was a very informative day, teaching us a lot of early Australian history.

Although the grounds are picturesque green gardens all of this area was actually buildings from the settlement which were all built by the convicts. The convicts were set to work at the age of 4. It was very interesting hearing about the early settlement and how they tried to reform the convicts and teach them a trade. As always some were ready to take advantage of this and others were not and became repeat offenders receiving further sentences. Some of the crimes were as little as stealing a handkerchief or a loaf of bread. The repeat offenders received lashings and extended sentences and many of them eventually ended up in the asylum.

Hobart to Port Arthur

Monday 27th November 2017
The rain fell quite heavily during the night but we were cosily in our little B&B room. This morning we woke to improved weather, overcast and a chance of rain but at least it was not pouring rain like yesterday.

After a lovely cooked breakfast, we drove down to Salamanca and rode our bikes south to Battery Point, then headed back to Hobart city where we rode around Constitution Dock, past the museum and art gallery, the wharves, the Cathedral etc. The old sandstone buildings were amazing although quite a number appeared to have been refurbished. The parks in the city were also lovely. We then rode back to Salamanca to the car. We managed about 15km cycling.

By this time the weather had cleared considerably and we could see the top of Mt Wellington so we decided we would head up there before we left Hobart. The drive takes about 30 minutes to get to the top and luckily for us the weather stayed clear. The view from the top is fantastic. It is amazing to see the shapes of all the peninsulas  from such a height. It was a bit cooler up there and a little windy but quite pleasant all the same.

We then headed on our way to Port Arthur. Along the way we stopped at Tasman Bay National Park Lookout, Tessellated Pavement, The Blowhole and Fossil Bay Lookout, Tasmans Arch, Devils Kitchen and Waterfall Bay. By this stage it was about 5.30 so we headed to camp at Port Arthur Holiday Park. A lovely campground frequented by pademelons. They aren’t shy here either. We had a mother and her joey come right up to where we were sitting. We have really enjoyed the experience of seeing the wildlife up close.

Strahan to Hobart

Sunday 26th November 2017
Today was a bit of a dreary driving day. We woke to rain and were lucky to have a small window of opportunity to chamois dry and pack up the tent. We decided against the cruise on the Gordon River and the train through the gorge in favour of doing this on a nicer day.

We headed of to Hobart, via Queenstown, Brady’s Lake, Tarraleah and New Norfolk. It was pretty miserable so we didn’t do much sightseeing outside of the car. The views were still beautiful but would have been better on a nice day. Oh well, that’s the life of the traveller, you are at the mercy of the weather gods.

Well as we headed towards Hobart and the weather didn’t improve we decided on a B&B for tonight’s accommodation. We know we are soft, but the benefits of staying in a couple of freebie campsites we can now justify our stay in a nice warm house with a comfy bed and inside bathroom. Go the softies.

Derwent Bridge to Strahan via Queenstown and Zeehan

Saturday 25th November 2017

Well today was a very big day. 
We left our freebie camp by King William Lake at Derwent Bridge and headed on our way to Strahan via Queenstown and Zeehan. This was only a 2hr 20min drive, but with all the sidesteps we arrived at about 5.30pm. We went on on few short walks which in the end was about 2 hours walk time. They were the Franklin River Nature Trail, Franklin River Suspension Bridge, Donaghy’s Hill Wilderness Walk, Nelson Falls and Horsetail Falls. It was a diverse range of scenery, from mountain lookouts to rainforest to mining towns. It was a great day. We arrived at Strahan by about 5pm and were setup by 5.30pm. A very unusual occurrence for us. Now most people would just relax and enjoy the rest of the afternoon at the camp ground, but not us, there was still 3 hours of daylight left. We went for a 12km bike ride to Ocean Beach which was half road half dirt track. Then we went back to the camping ground and were trying to decide how we could get the washing done and have dinner before going to watch the sunset at the headland. DBs idea was awesome. Washing was put on then as we were mobile we took the car to Macquarie Heads so  would cook dinner there and watch the sunset. We were not aware that this would encompass dinner on the beach. Mind you we almost got stuck in the sand on the way. All part of the adventure. It was amazing.
All in all it was a fantastic day.

Lake St Clair National Park

Friday 24th November 2017
This morning is Paul’s birthday. It was a lovely day with a chance of afternoon thunderstorms. We headed off to see the Wall in the Wilderness. It is an amazing timber sculptured wall. It was amazing and was very moving, it left me feeling quite emotional. The talent of the sculptor Greg Duncan is incredible. His is an electrician by trade and he has been working on the wall for over 30 years. Each artwork is sculpted from one panel of timber. I loved it.

Step into a story …
…an inspirational tale carved from the mountains and rivers of the Central Highlands of Tasmania.
Artist Greg Duncan is creating a stunning sculpture. The Wall in the Wilderness is his commemoration of those who helped shape the past and present of Tasmania’s central highlands.
A work in progress, The Wall is being carved from three-metre high wooden panels. The carved panels will tell the history of the harsh Central Highlands region – beginning with the indigenous people, then to the pioneering timber harvesters, pastoralists, miners and Hydro workers. The Wall will be 100 metres long. Greg Duncan’s sculpture The Wall will rank as a major work of art and tourist attraction in Tasmania.” Check out the website, it was amazing.

After this Paul, Ali and the girls headed to Hobart and we are staying in the area a little longer. We decided to go for a hike in the Lake St Clair National Park. This is where the Overland Track finishes – a long-distance walk which runs from Cradle Mountain in the north to Cynthia Bay on the southern shore of Lake St Clair.

We did a 5 hour hike of the Shadow Lake Circuit with a quick off shoot to the Plateau on the way to Mt Rufus. DB was disappointed that we didn’t have time to go up to Mt Rufus but as always, we started the hike too late. It was 3pm and we had at least a 5 hr hike. Sunset today was about 8.26pm. We made it to the end at about 8pm. No animals today but some amazing flowers and a couple of huge bumble bees. We then headed bake to the camp ground from last night. Should have left our tent set up this morning but we thought we were moving on today. Lucky we are getting quick at setup. We had a hikers dinner tonight which made for quick food and into bed by 10pm.

Launceston to Derwent Bridge

Thursday 23 November 2017
We packed up our river camp at Longford this morning and went to Launceston Aquatic Centre for a swim. It was a lovely facility. We had a look around Launceston and then drove  to Derwent Bridge. There was some beautiful scenery along the way. We saw our first roadkill Tasmanian Devil. I made DB turn around and drive back to have a look to confirm it wan’t just a possum and it REALLY was a Tasmanian Devil. The first one we have seen outside of a zoo. It was pretty cool even though it was road kill. We drove through some really heavy rain and a thunderstorm on our way to our new camp. Ali has done a great job sourcing our camping grounds. Tonights is a free camp along the river at Derwent Bridge. Our first freebie for the holiday. It is very pretty.


Wednesday 22nd November 2017
Today we started the day with a scenic 22km bike ride from the caravan park to Brickendon, Wolmer and Panshanger. It was a scenic ride along a quiet road through farmland. A great start to the day. The homesteads we passed were heritage listed and on some amazing properties.

We then headed to Cataract Gorge, where we went on a chairlift across the gorge, saw wild peacocks everywhere, and then walked along side the gorge to Kings Bridge and back, up to Eagles Lookout then back across the gorge in the chairlift. The chairlift was one of the highlights for Emma and Kate. We then had a lovely picnic lunch by the water and the girls had a swim in the 50m outdoor pool in the park. It was a lovely day.

Cradle Mountain to Longford Launceston

Tuesday 21st November 2017

After packing up camp we headed back to the National Park and went on a guided walk through the Enchanted Walk. Our guides Emma and Kate gave us an informative walk through the bush describing and naming plants, and their varying uses. Their information and imagination was amazing. We ended the tour with an echidna sighting. It was fantastic to see these animals up close in the wild.

We then headed on our way the scenic route to Launceston. Via Mersey Valley, Chudleigh where we went to the Honey Farm. Here they had every imaginable type of honey that they make on  the premises, as well as nougat and ice cream, also made by them. We both had an ice cream which was LOVELY!

We then headed to Launceston where we had intended staying in the Big 4 but due to its location on the highway and the noise,  Ali made the decision to head out of the city to a lovely little riverside camp at Longford.