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It was goodbye to the pretty town of Stanley this morning. We headed east via the Batman Bridge over the Tamar River and the colonial settlement of George Town.

imageimageThe town of Derby attracts mountain bikers galore to the many trails available in the surrounding forests.

To end, a walk around Scamander to get our bearings and meet a few birds.

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Last night after dark we sat on the grass overlooking the tide coming in over the rocks waiting for fairy penguins to arrive from the ocean and scramble up the rise to their burrows. This blurry photo was taken in the light of a torch covered in red cellophane.


This morning we woke to the most magical still day. On the bay, kayakers were enjoying the glassy surface. The following pics were taken on our walk after breakfast and before lunch, with my new camera courtesy of Santa.

The tiny brown spots are crabs. 

The cottage in the centre is ours for a few days. 

The weather was forecast earlier this week to be overcast and rainy, but it came good with enough wind to let the sun shine through. Here are some landscape highlights from coastal scenes to a mid-afternoon walk around the top of an old volcanic plug.

Marrawah at the start of the Takine Drive

 

Arthur River and Edge of the World

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near Kanunnah Bridge upstream on the Arthur River

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We took the chairlift up to The Nut which stands above the town of Stanley. and walked down because the lift closed before our descent.  A new and temporary feature of this blog is “Where’s Bec?”, brought to you via a current family joke. Normal service will resume when she is far enough away again to do me no harm.

 

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We are ensconced in a cottage in Stanley for the next few days. Today included a walk around Deloraine, then on to Railton (town of topiaries) and Sheffield (town of murals). Through dairy and sheep country and along the coast, the weather was mild and overcast for the most part. Best township name of the day was won by Nowhere Else.

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This is our view for the Christmas break.

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This afternoon’s walk with Rebecca Walsh (aka Bec) gave us a small taste of this historic town and the wildlife.

 

 

 

We’re in Tasmania and heading towards the north west to spend Christmas. Today began with a stroll around Hobart’s CBD  in search of a place for breakfast. 

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Then off to New Norfolk to visit the Agrarian Kitchen for more food.

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The restaurant is in the grounds of an old colonial hospital which continued its life as a psychiatric facility (now closed).

Up into the Central Highlands where the temperature dropped considerably.  We caught up with an old acquaintance named Hamish, and ended the day in Deloraine.
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I’m still catching up with some of the Hobart highlights from our Christmas-New Year break.

The Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery recently underwent an extensive redevelopment including the opening up the old Bond Store as a gallery.  This renovated space provides an atmospheric palette for a myriad of stories and objects relating to Tasmania’s natural and social history.

The stories of the first peoples of lutruwita (now known as Tasmania) are told in both the ningina tunapri gallery and the Parrawa, Parrawa! exhibit which includes stories of the 19th century invasion in the form of short dramatised films projected through the darkness onto the walls of the store.

The curators make good use of audio-visual material throughout the gallery including old lantern slides. The one included here points to one of the introduced European agricultural methods, honey bees.

TMAG - Old Bond Store

TMAG - Bond Store storemen graffitiTMAG - bee hive slide

One of the quirky objects is this re-created model of a wombat standing on its hind legs in a bear-like stance. The first taxidermist to work on a wombat lived in England and was unfamiliar with their four-legged stance, thus he stuffed it in more ways than one.

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Wombat taxidermy

The Museum of Old and New Art in Hobart is worth a revisit. Ten months after our first experience, we took the ferry up the Derwent to see the current Red Queen exhibition. What with the holiday season, and the growing popularity of MONA, the self-guide iPods were in high demand and required sharing between two. I chose to go it alone and found myself enjoying the art works without any signage (there is none on the walls) or audio-visual assistance.

MONA lift

The ride down to the start of the galleries, through the sheer sandstone walls, hasn’t lost any of its impact.

Click on The Red Queen link above for a sense of the eclectic offerings in this exhibition.

My favourite piece was Depraved Pursuit of a Possum by UK artist Tessa Farmer, a work of fascinating detail and shadows.

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Today we headed into Hobart from our digs in Bothwell for The Taste Festival, a week long celebration of the food and beverages of Tasmania.

We had the best time. Here’s a taste of Taste. It is not an accident which photographs are enlarged.

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