Monday 2/4/18 – Sunday 8/4/18
Alas the rain continued the morning we left Cockle Creek ensuring a soggy camp pack up. And no, I did not get to see a Tasmanian Devil or Spotted Quoll whilst there. Nevertheless, our stay at Cockle Creek remains a definite highlight. It’s a great spot.
We headed along the dirt road back toward Geeveston where we found the laundromat that came highly recommended by Peter and Coralie. Being Easter Monday, the town was busy with people out for coffee and brunch. It was extremely windy, making a walk along the street a bit of an adventure. We got our washing done and feeling more organised, continued on to Franklin in the Huon Valley to camp for the night again. We like it there.
Hobart was our next destination. On the way we stopped at the Shot Tower at Taroona. It is the only climbable shot tower left in Australia. So we thought we’d better do that! What a view from the top. Such interesting history surrounding this structure.
We stayed at Hobart Showgrounds for two nights. It has great facilities and is also in very easy reach of the city. We have both been to Hobart many times before. Can highly recommend a visit to MONA although we did not do that this time. The first day we went to Battery Point, had lunch in Princes Park and visited St Georges Church where my great great great grandparents, Mary & William Tedman, were married in 1845. The next day was absolutely stunning. Warm with clear blue skies. We first made a visit to Cornelian Bay Cemetery, resting place of many local historical figures. I was looking for the grave of my great great grandparents, William John and Emily Jane Tedman. And we found it! The headstone was virtually unreadable until Brendyn cleared the lichen growth away. It’s been quite a wonderful adventure finding these pieces of family history along the way.
We then had the day in Hobart wandering around Constitution Dock and Salamanca Place. Brendyn also went to the Maritime Museum. That afternoon we went to the top of Mount Wellington and enjoyed the spectacular view.
The beautiful Tasman Peninsular was our next destination. There were fabulous views along the way and interesting features such as the Tessellated pavement and Tasman Arch. Fortescue Bay was the next place we stayed. Another highlight. So much natural beauty, wildlife, epic walks and a great campground. We stayed two nights and enjoyed it here so much. It’s a fairly rough dirt road to get there but plenty of fisherman towed their boats in as the weekend commenced. They were after the Tuna which are around at the moment apparently. We heard many tales of massive fish and epic battles to pull them in.
A day at Port Arthur followed. Neither of us had been there for decades. Thoroughly enjoyed the walking tour and harbour cruise. The commentary gave a more comprehensive understanding of what happened here. The (very little) good, the bad and the really ugly. Regardless of its awful past, Port Arthur is a very beautiful place with fascinating history that is integral to the story of the early British settlement of Australia.
On from there we found a great little camp spot at Murdunna. It was run by Harvey and his trusty old (very old) dog Ben. Harvey is choosy about who he lets stay on his land and as a result we’ve noted some online controversy regarding this campsite. He’ll tell people to keep moving if he doesn’t want them there. We found him to be a really nice and helpful guy however. For $7.50 a person Harvey & Ben provide a campsite right on the water, camp kitchen and lovely hot showers. Bargain. And very much appreciated.
After a lazy start to a rainy day we hit the road again. Arriving in Swansea mid afternoon, we got the clothes washing going (this seems to be an ongoing theme!) and walked in to town to look around. It’s a lovely town on the water and of particular interest was Morris’ Store which was established in 1838. It is still run by members of the Morris family and sells lots of interesting supplies in addition to the usual grocery items. There is also a “relic” room which displays many interesting items from the past. We spent some time here just browsing before eventually buying ingredients for nachos tonight.
At the time of writing we are in a comfy camp kitchen and watching TV for the first time in about 6 weeks. Just realised we’ve been a bit out of touch with the outside world. Apparently the Commonwealth Games are on!
Taroona Shot Tower
Swansea and on the way