Tasmania January 2009
Posted by Lisa Hill on January 17, 2009
It may not be Europe or Asia, but a holiday in Tasmania is overseas, and it is one of the nicest places to be in an Australian summer if you hate the heat as much as we do. We’ve been to Tassie a few times, most memorably in 1992 when we brought the car over and toured the whole island for a couple of weeks, but although we’ve been to Hobart half a dozen times now we hadn’t really explored its environs.
On our 1992 trip it was uncharacteristically hot, and hit 41 degrees the day we arrived in Richmond. It just wasn’t bearable so we abandoned it altogether, and promised ourselves to come back one day. So this time round, in mild and sunny weather we straight there as soon as we picked up the hire car. Richmond boasts Australia’s oldest bridge and many other fine historic buildings, but we most enjoyed the art galleries.
Tasmania is home to some of Australia’s most creative artists and writers, and everywhere you go there are beautiful art works, unique pieces of jewellery and gorgeous crafts. In Richmond I found a lovely gift for Gloreea (who is keeping an eye on the house fo us), and Tim bought some lovely huon pine cufflinks.
Richmond also hosts a dear little model of old Hobart Town. It is an exact scale model of Hobart as it was in 1820, and it’s very interesting to compare it with the Hobart we know and love today. I bet school kids love it, because there are all sorts of humorous scenes such as a man sliding off a roof and a wife ticking off a drunken husband; there’s also a stagecoach holdup and some convicts trudging up a hill so it shows the darker side of life in those days as well.
After Richmond, we set off for the first of (hopefully) many wineries. With my copy of Halliday’s Wine Companion in hand we found Domaine A at Campania where we sampled some very fine pinot noir and oaked sauvignon blanc. Some of these are winging their way home to Melbourne for us where we shall no doubt enjoy them in company with fine food and friends in the Lower Belvedere!
Late in the afternoon we finally made our way ‘home’ to Gatttonside, a beautiful heritage listed B&B in Sandy Bay. We had a scrumptious dinner at Maldina’s in Salamanca Place, and (having had a 5.45am start to the day) fell into bed early, nodding off with my copy of The Zookeeper’s War barely started…