So a lot of you must be thinking, why Tasmania, why go north, to go south to go north again. Well the truth is it was Jack Turner's fault. He said he was leaving to go New Zealand, I wanted to go see him off but I also wanted to go and see Tasmania as it's the only state of Australia I was yet to visit. So it was a simple, do a crazy journey. Melbourne - Brisbane, Brisbane - Tasmania, Tasmania - Sydney.
Now that that's cleared up, let me tell you about my stay in Tassie. My flight was so much better than the last, this time I flew with Jetstar who had a proper terminal and friendly staff. On the flight, seeing I was struggling with leg room and had the urge to stretch out the Cabin crew manager told me there was a row at the end I could use to stretch out. After a two hour and a half flight I had arrived in Tassie, the airport was really small; I guess that was to be expected though I had gone to see an island which you can reach the top to bottom in two and a half hours by car. My first impressions were great, I liked Tassie a lot, and it reminded me of an old school English town maybe in Yorkshire. While driving to my hostel on the airport shuttle it felt like I had been picked up and placed in one of them little model villages /towns you see, the scenery was breath taking.
I was staying in a hostel called The Pickled Frog, chosen purely because I liked the name. I urge anyone who is visiting Tassie to stay in this hostel; it has been one of the best I have stayed in through Australia. It is clean, friendly staff who are always willing to help with anything and point out cheap places to go to eat and drink, has a $1 pool table, endless amounts of movies and books for guests, free Wi-Fi and as any backpacker would know that is vital and probably most importantly they do the cheapest beers around at $4 all day, not just on a happy hour! It also has a great location only 5 minute walks from the centre of Hobart, Hobart Waterfront and Salamanca Place. So yeah to repeat what I said anyone going to Tassie make sure you stay at The Pickled Frog you will not be disappointed.
So while I was in Tassie to be honest I didn't get up to much, I had grand plans to go to the big Salamanca Saturday market, Mona museum and other various activities but this was thwarted by a couple of issues, firstly the weather wasn't the best the few days I was in town, it absolutely pissed it down, so yeah Tassie is defo like a small town in Yorkshire, but this meant I didn't really want to go out traipsing about markets and museums piss wet through. Also the only real clothes I had were shorts; I didn't plan much for the cold weather. Another thing which halted my activities was the fact I broke a hard-drive, which meant I spent all day downloading things and get the hard-drive back in working order. But, I wasn't just sat in my pants around the hostel all the time, I did manage to go too various drinking establishments around Hobart including the expensive Irish Murphys, had to be done because of the name, when I was on the phone to my friend Braydon he actually came up with a good point that if you share a name with a pub you should be able to get a free beverage there. That would be unlucky for guys with a unique surname like Abernathy but as a Murphy I think I would be able to get my fair share of free Ales. Another popular joint for me was the Shamrock, this was popular to me as it was just a couple of blocks down from The Pickled Frog and they offered $10 bar meals. I had a couple of steaks there, taking my tally to 4 steaks in 7 days! Their pepper sauce was a tad unusual though, it just semt like peppered gravy, and the second steak I had was over cooked but all in all it was a decent place to go for a cheeky beer and some food.
Another one of my adventures also, probably unsurprisingly, involved beer. I decided one day to take myself on the tour of the Cascade brewery. The brewery was located at the end of a 30 minute rivulet walk, meaning I could work off my steak dinner consumption. The walk was nice located next to a river with random art dotted along the way, I say art, it was just metal I beams stuck in various positions. There was also, what I found quite strange a random tribute to the wars between North and South Korea. Now yeah if this was in Korea it would make sense but in the middle of Tasmania, an Australian island which to my understanding had nothing to do with the North and South Korea divide made absolutely no sense at all. Anyways I finally made myself to the brewery and took part in the tour which cost a reasonable $25 especially as you got 3 free beers (only small ones) at the end and discounted food, I had a very nice Stout and Steak Pie, though the meal did lack peas. The tour was ok, the tour guide was a nice guy and informative about the history of the brewery, and I always find the bottling section fascinating with the machinery and stuff. But I just felt it lacked something, maybe seeing more of the brewery. I had previously done a tour of the Bundaberg rum factory in Bundaberg and the XXXX brewery in Brisbane while travelling the East Coast and they just semt to have something extra than this and for the same price. I mean in the XXXX brewery you got 4 beers and a free Foosball table at the end, and Bundaberg offered little tasters along the way. The tour was still good even though the only fact I can remember is that Hops which is used to make beer is a close relative of the cannabis / marajuna plant.
So I think that's all I've got for you on Tassie, I'd defo recommend it as a place to go, but perhaps go in the summer when the weather is better and definitely, definitely stay at The Pickled Frog I can't speak highly enough of the place.
But now it's off to go back to where it all began. Kinda. And fly up to Sydney for my last few days in Australia.
So until next time stay safe and take care