Yesterday we arrived in Hobart, Tasmania, and spent the rest of the day exploring downtown and shopping around. Tasmania is located at the Southeast corner of Australia, the only state not attached to the mainland. It is the closest you can get to Antarctica while still in Australia! The town of Hobart is located on the central Southern coast, was founded in 1803 as a penal colony, and is the second oldest city after Sydney.
Today, we took a food and scenery tour of Bruny Island. We woke up to hear the first snowfall had hit the top of Mt. Wellington overnight, quite a cold shock after my days in sunny Gold Coast! After catching the ferry from Kettering, we docked in Robert’s Point, and started our day:
Map of Bruny Island with associated tour stop locations
1. Bruny Island Cheese Co.
This artisan cheese producer provided a fantastic cheese tasting of two hard, one soft, and one fresh cheese. They were all delicious, and the outdoor setup was just charming. We also tasted two craft beers that were available at their shop. After nearly 10 years of making cheese in many different countries, the owner set up shop on Bruny Island, and has been quite successful since then.
Window showcase of cheese wheels
Outside of Bruny Island Cheese Co. tasting setup
2. Get Shucked Oysters
Due to its location, Tasmania is known for its quality fish industry, and oysters are also popular. The owner of this company purchased the business at age of 18, and has thrived. Although I am a vegetarian, I decided prior to traveling that if I came across a cultural food containing meat I MIGHT try it. However, this has been the first time I’ve actually followed through. I tried one oyster, and it tasted like a quality one, but I don’t think I would care to try them again. Most of tour group had the same opinion, but a few people enjoyed the extras!
3. Truganini Lookout
Bruny Island is made up of the two islands, north and south, connected by a strip of land called the Neck. We walked up to the lookout, and had a spectacular view of the islands and surrounding waters. It’s the perfect place to see the spectacular white sands, which get their light color from their high silica content.
Panoramic view of Bruny Island
The Neck lookout
This area also contains a colony of little fairy penguins. They are the smallest penguin species in the world, with a 40cm height and 1kg weight maximum. They breed in colonies here, nesting and burrowing in the ground. Like the St. Kilda penguins in Melbourne, they feed during day and come in at night. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see any since we were only visiting during the day!
Penguin burrows (darker holes in ground)
4. White wallabies
You learn something new everyday, and today I learned that wallabies come in white too! Wallabies are typically a brown color, but here on Bruny Island they contain a gene that gives a white color. Since the gene is recessive, they are born either entirely brown or pure white, and at times you will even see a white one in a brown mother’s pouch, or vice versa. We were lucky enough to see two up close (so we know they actually exist and aren’t just ghost wallabies), but not quite quick enough to get a picture!
5. Morning tea
Next we enjoyed a lovely tea at a beachside café off Adventure Bay. The coffee and blueberry muffin was a great little snack to fit into our morning while enjoyed the (finally) beautiful weather.
6. Bruny Island Premium Wines
For lunch, we headed to the island winery, where we tasted two whites and three red wines. I had a mushroom and halloumi (firm white cooked cheese) dish, which was AMAZING. I think it may have been the best dish I’ve have so far in Australia. Definitely a recommend stop on the island.
7. Chocolate Factory Outlet
For desert, we headed to a chocolate producer, where we tasted hazelnut, caramel, and chocolate fudge, and chocolate-covered honeycomb. It was definitely caloric, but a great way to enjoy the holiday! While driving from here, we passed by Satellite Island, which a man inherited from distant family. He built a resort on property, and now you’re able to rent out the entire island, starting at $1200 a night!
Chocolate Factory Outlet
8. Bruny Island House of Whiskey
Our last stop of the day was at the island’s whiskey distillery, where we sampled either whiskey or a gin and tonic. This was a great stop to wrap up the day, and was a stunning property overlooking the water and northern edge of the island.
View off House of Whiskey front deck
Overall, I had a fantastic impression of Bruny Island. The people are lovely, and the scenery is gorgeous. My favorite part is that the buildings look like charming little toy buildings that were dropped throughout the land. It just looks like a peaceful little dream island where people go to relax and escape.
A very worthwhile and enjoyable day!