October in Tasmania
Tasmania is a beautiful part of Australia to visit - the climate is quite mild, and the island is a good size for touring - it's not too commercial or too busy. Tasmanian wildlife is unique, and we were lucky to spend some time watching some famous Tasmanian Devils fighting and scrapping as they fed. For a plant-conscious visitor the Eucalypt forests are extremely beautiful.
We spent 10 days in October touring around Tasmania. We had a wonderful time, although we didn't deliberately visit any gardens. Rural Tasmania had strange planting schemes - Photinias seemed to be almost compulsory, particularly for hedges.
Tasmanian Tree Fern
The forest and bush was so different to New Zealand - the tree ferns, and the abundance of Eucalyptus, for example. The wildlife of Tasmania is amazing - we saw Tasmanian Devils, native hens, small Wallabies, and spotted Quolls at one of our forest hideaways.
Of course I kept a diary of each day's travel and experiences. Re-reading the entries I realise they are quite odd. I am forever raving on about twittering birds, creatures, rural ambience, and my heavy head cold and cough. Then I try to be a serious travel writer, and attempt to describe what I'm seeing.
- Tasmanian Descriptions
- The Tasmanian bush/forest - more pink and purple flowering shrubs than NZ.
- Roadside weeds - daisies, echiums and false valerian.
- Gorse on the eastern flat-lands.
- The Tasmanian mountains - their "tops" have been sliced off.
- Blue fairy wrens - flitting around like Disney tinkerbell fairies.
- Native Tasmanian hens grazing all day, pecking at the grass.
- Rural properties all with unadorned ponds in their fields - very pond-inspiring.
- No hedges, no shelter belts.
Tasmania seems to me to be full of hidden and lost valleys - with a variety of landscapes.
Lake St Clair
Some semi-rural areas have a West Coast New Zealand feel (with old rusting cars, etc.). We see many homes completely surrounded by the Eucalypt forest, in true Australian style. We visit the Great Lakes area - an alpine plateau, full of rocks, stunted plants and stubby trees trying to grow out of crevices. We pass picturesque fishing shacks hidden in the lakeside gum trees. We stay in an old sandstone colonial cottage near a famous colonial bridge. It's easy to blink and imagine oneself in romantic rural England. Then the sage green Eucalypt forests on the hilltops come into focus and confuse the image.
Tasmania was certainly a great and gentle place to visit!