After spending a lovely few weeks in New Zealand, I was fortunate enough to reconnect with childhood friends in Tasmania. Yes, it’s a real place! It’s a good size island on the south side of Australia.

Years ago in Germany, my mother befriended Cheryl and her family, and years later, we found each other on Facebook. Visiting her was a sweet treat.

After spending a few days in Hobart, even randomly meeting up with Seattle native’s Dina and Eric, Cheryl and I visited a local animal sanctuary and the south coast of the island.  Ever heard of the Tasmanian Devil? Not even close to the Looney Toons cartoon. They are super small, have a vicious hiss and males eat their young!

Colorful geese, kangaroo’s and other cute animals greeted us happily. A curated footprint gallery displayed large paintings of animal-created paintings.

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The next day I set off for a 3-day drive on Tasmanian Highway around the island, stopping at waterfalls, stunning vast beaches and 3 national parks.  Thanks to Cheryl’s generosity for handing me the keys to her new Subaru! First on my list: Wineglass Bay in Freycinet National Park. A steady hike up a small path, eventually got me to the top where a look out beautifully captured crescent shaped, Wineglass Beach. The hike included steep steps, but after seeing an elderly couple come down those steeps steps, I couldn’t let my huffing and puffing stop me. The view (and victory) was worth it.

Thanks to Google Maps for its many resourceful tips, naming gas stations, coffee shops, hostels and scenic vistas, I made it to Launceston for a nights rest.

Rising early, to take in Cradle Mountain and make it to Bronte Park the long way around, I entered St. Clair National Park before well before lunch. Clearly I just missed a pile of snow, as it was melting along site the mountain’s lodge. The shuttle driver mentioned that just days ago, I wouldn’t have been able to see the majestic mountain and lake, as access was impossible. Lucky me! As you can see, its a stunning place to visit, have a picnic and hike. More seasoned hikers logged their treks in the lodge register, then endeavoring on a multi-day hike.

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Many stops later, I finally made it to my next bed for the night, resting up in a small village in the middle of no-where. On the hunt for waterfalls and beautiful vistas, I set out early to hike the waterfall trails of Mount Field National Park before returning to Hobart later that day.

During my 5 hour exploration of deep forest trails, I spotted several waterfalls, more steep steps and curious looking organic mass growing on trees and fallen limbs. See for yourself : My Enchanted Forest Walk