Sunday, November 21, 2010


Bay of Fires

To celebrate the end of classes, six of us decided to travel to Australia’s only island state, Tasmania. We arrived in Hobart on a beautiful sunny day and proceeded to pick up our home for the next 5 days- a campervan. Traveling in our homes has seemed to be a trend for our trips in and around Australia. This van was slightly different than the van we drove in New Zealand. It was almost as big as a motor home and slept six people, a big difference from driving my little bug at home.

We headed off, slowly, into the city of Hobart. It was a very quaint city, no high rises or modern architecture. It was very reminiscent of a New England style town. We grabbed some lunch at a small café and sat down with our maps to plan our route. The manager of the café was even nice enough to tell us some of the must sees of Tasmania. Everyone in Australia is so helpful and friendly. After lunch we drove up to Mount Wellington, which had a beautiful view looking over the city of Hobart then came back to town to pick up a few things for our trip. As we made our way to the campsite, we looked up to the sky to find the most brilliant stars I have ever seen in my life. There were so many and so bright that there was no need for streetlights. We were able to pick out so many constellations, many of which I had never seen before, as well as seeing two shooting stars. As weird as it sounds, the air was so clean and so pure. It was so strange because I never noticed the air around me, but it was so clean and fresh that it made me notice. Great for the trip, but unfortunate for when I go back home.

The next day we got an early start and headed up along the coast to Cole’s Bay. The water was the bluest I had ever seen and as clear as glass. The rocks were a burnt orange color and when paired with the blue water made for an amazing view. We continued north to Wine Glass Bay. In the parking lot, we were greeted by a momma wallaby and her joey. It was so used to human interaction that it even let us pet its back. We then began the walk up to the Wine Glass Bay lookout. We had a spectacular view of the bay and the surrounding mountains. We then continued down to the bay. The sand was white and the water once again a beautiful blue. On the hike back up to the lookout, Samara and I started our list of 100 reasons we should not leave Australia!

The next day we continued north along the coast to the Bay of Fires. Getting here was somewhat misleading. We had been driving for quite a while, and ended up on a narrow dirt road. We thought for sure we were lost. Farmers on the side of the road were staring and you could tell they were chuckling at our huge van on the narrow road. We decided to continue and the road came to a dead end. We got out of the van to find one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen in my life. The sand was a pearl white and the water was a mix of turquoise and blues. There was no one else on the beach and it felt so strange to be completely alone in a setting that seemed to come from a picture book.

Our last full day in Tasmania was spent at Mt. Field National Park. We hiked a trail through a beautiful rainforest setting. It was so green and lush, unlike anything I have seen. There was even a massive waterfall that we hiked to the very top of along a trail. From there we drove down past Hobart to Hastings Caves. We took a guided tour through the massive underground caves filled with different rock formations, stalactites, and stalagmites. The guide even said that some people have had weddings in the part of the cave they called ‘the ballroom’. It was a fantastic trip and once again an unforgettable experience.

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