Tassie Only Gets Better With Age
Like a fine wine or single malt, Tasmania’s appeal intensifies with time.
Our pint-size isle has had quite the renaissance of late, hushing any naysayers of its sleepy, conservative reputation with a bounty of edible, historic and cultural treasures.
No longer simply appealing to grey nomads, Tassie is one of Australia’s hippest states, seemingly without trying.
You could say Tassie’s transformation all started with millionaire mogul David Walsh and his private art collection, Mona. The Museum of Old and New Art is constantly evolving to delight and shock its guests, from wine tours (the gallery is on a wine estate) to seductive festivals.
Dark Mofo is David’s winter affair in mid June celebrating the night with parties, public artworks, feasts and a cheeky Nude Solstice Swim. The event gets more devilish, devious and delightful each year.
Then there’s David’s grand plan for a Mona expansion – a gallery wing for artist James Turrell’s light works, new restaurants and a 160-room HOtel MOna – HOMO, for short.
Ravenous revellers on the pulse of food trends have long held the capital in high esteem. From the humble, yet renowned Salamanca Markets, new creatives are making waves on the culinary landscape with inspired dining experiences, such as South American restaurant, Frank, using that famous local produce.
Nearby Huon Valley cider makers Willie Smiths have unveiled the first alembic copper still produced in Australia to be used to make Calvados (barrel-aged apple brandy), and visitors can celebrate the fruits of the harvest at the Huon Valley Mid Winter Fest.
Oenophiles haven’t been forgotten either. Thirsty travellers can revel in all things soil to bottle, as well as farm to fork, on a new Hundred Acres food and wine tour at the Ghost Rock Vineyard in Tassie’s North West.
For those that are packing the clubs, new courses on King Island are set to put Tassie on the world golf green. From October 30, Cape Wickham Links and the first nine holes of Ocean Dunes will be in full swing.
The grapevines and greens may be enough nature for some, but intrepid wanderers covet the trails of Tassie’s abundant national parks.
Mona, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…
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Mount Field and Freycinet National Parks are celebrating their centenaries this year. A host of outdoor events and activities will mark the 100-year milestone on August 29.
Tassie is also hot on the trail for those seeking a glimpse at the sky’s natural phenomenon. Forget the Northern Lights, Aurora Australis is the Southern Hemisphere’s answer to this vivid year-round light show. Cockle Creek on Tassie’s southern tip offers prime views.
Then there are Cunard’s history-making voyages. The Queen Mary 2 is setting her sights on the Apple Isle on February 25, 2017 when passengers can dock at historic Port Arthur and happening Hobart.
It’s true that the flavour of a good drop will only mature and develop when left to cellar, but Tassie is more than perfectly palatable for the taking and the eating and the seeing right now.
Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals on travelling to Tasmania.
I thrive on discovering hidden gems and local haunts wherever I travel, from hole-in-the-wall cafes and dive bars, to antique stores and eclectic markets. I feel just as content in a cosy cabin in the wilderness as I do lost in the crowd of a buzzing city.