Looking out at Courts Island from the bottom of Mt Bruny Forest Reserve

Binalong Bay, Tasmania, Australia

Americans are notoriously awful with geography. It’s a 100% certainty that most Americans couldn’t point to Tasmania on a world map…. we suspect a majority couldn’t even say if it’s a real place on Earth, or just a fictional home to a famous cartoon character. We know this because we are those clueless Americans, or at least we were until a couple months ago. But here we are today, standing on it, exploring it, hiking it, swimming in it, and otherwise confirming its existence in every imaginable way. And for the string of lucky coincidences that brought us to this remote island, further south than anywhere else we’ll visit on this voyage, we’ve become very grateful in recent days.

Coming straight from the chaotic streets of New Delhi to the quiet and civilized shores of Tasmania doesn’t involve a difficult adjustment process. There’s no traffic, no beggars, no hustlers, no rickshaws, no potholes, no honking, no fires nor garbage…. about the only thing common is the abundance of roadkill. Instead we’ve got almost every variety of nature in its most pristine form – stunning white beaches, rugged mountains, and endless rolling countryside. The Aussies here are even more friendly and helpful than on the mainland, and the cities are even cleaner. If there’s a more storybook perfect place on Earth, we haven’t found it yet, and doubt we ever will.

So with time, as always, of the essence, we’ve of course been exploring at our usual frantic pace, trying to see everything possible in a fraction of the two or three weeks Tasmania deserves. If not for this, we might have found ourselves bored at times because the small towns are too sleepy for our taste, and even the biggest city Hobart, a Mecca for many yachties, left us struggling to find something fun to do…. Luckily for us, eating fish n’ chips and sleeping are two things we do enjoy from time to time.

With our batteries now fully recharged and our thirst for nature hikes and stunning vistas thoroughly quenched, we’re ready to hop on the ferry back to the mainland and continue our journey west along Australia’s southern coast…. the Great Ocean Road awaits.

3 Comments

  1. Maria Smith.

    I would like to hear your thoughts, at some point, about how your mind and body reconciles/adjusts to the enormous differences visiting
    various parts of the world – for example, paradise like places of Polynesian Islands and chaos and mess of India (as per your description)
    as just reading it myself I find it hard, but you experiencing it and therefore adding another dimension to it – must be mind boggling????

    • Jason Windebank

      Extreme change is something we get used to after so much time traveling, and are perhaps addicted to now. While sailing too, conditions change in seconds, or we can go from chaotic winds in rough seas, pass through a reef, and be swimming in a still paradise a few minutes later. The problem is that we get bored easily when things don’t change – even after a couple days in one place…. probably not a good thing.

  2. Richard Gittings

    Happy New Year guys – too late to wish you aG’day,Australia Day! It’s great to be back on your track again after busy Christmas, New Year, birthday parties and my “op” in Ryl Bnmth hosp, but I’m out, fit & well AND still on 2 legs! Glad you dug yourselves out of Sydney (and B4 OZ day and even the Australian open tennis!…but you cheated going to TAZ by ferry – I’m disappointed – and I do not see why you find “time of the essence”. As long distance sailors and now ,as you say Jason, inveterate travellers,remember:It’s important to travel in hope, arriving is a disappointment (a bad misquote, from Byron I think).
    Almost didn’t recognise you guys with clothes on! If you felt the cold, think of New Yorkers, fellow Canadians and …it,s coming our way to UK and N Europe! Wish you luck along the rocky S coast of OZ, good travelling & “Bon Vent”. R1.

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