After landing in Hobart (and having the benefit of a couple of days to enjoy this beautiful city that was warm, sunny and full of fantastic things to do as usual), we hitched up the Jayco to the brand new Subaru Forester, and got on the road heading to Tassie’s East Coast. Nothing in Tasmania is very far away; to get to Bicheno, Tasmania’s east coast, it’s a 2 ½-hour drive that is every bit as exciting as the destination. Through beautiful farmland and hills, the road eventually comes out at the coast and you are rewarded with some of the most spectacular coastline scenery to be found. Pristine beaches with stark white sand, sparsely dotted with small seaside villages. It really is nature’s paradise.
Fun Times in Bicheno, Tasmania
The drive whets your appetite for the adventures ahead and driving into Bicheno, Tasmania, one of the bigger seaside towns on the map, is no disappointment. Our caravan park, Bicheno East Coast Holiday Park, is literally steps away from the main hub of shops and a small supermarket, making everything easily accessible without a car.
We are joined on our first evening by prizewinners Izzy and Jarrod who entered and won the competition to join us filming on the road! The weather was perfect as we all sat around the Jayco with Tassie wines and local cheeses, getting to know one another and preparing for the adventures ahead.
One of the best ways to get yourself acquainted with this town and the region is to climb up to Whalers Lookout in the middle of town. Here, you are treated to vast town and sea views, revealing aquamarine waters, the iconic red boulders and a quaint village perfectly sized for a relaxing holiday.
One of the iconic sights in Bicheno, Tasmania, is the blowhole and it was certainly putting on a show for us when we got down there. Blowing up water with great power through the red lichen-covered boulders, this is a real sight to behold and gets the adrenaline pumping! It is easy to get a little too close only to have the spray burst forth onto you very unexpectedly, and you certainly have to be careful of film equipment in these situations.
It was time to meet some locals, and a trip out to explore the underwater world with Glass-Bottomed boat owner Maitreya, was a must. This is Tassie’s only glass-bottomed boat and it reveals an unbelievable underwater landscape. Even without venturing more than a few metres from the shore, you already have views of vast kelp forests in which many species of fish and other sea life live. Within minutes, we were visited by schools of mullet, a small shark and a tiny glimpse of a seahorse. The colours are amazing, brilliant lime greens and oranges, and a few more metres out, sea lions were basking in the sun on top of island boulders. Charli was squealing with delight and capturing the entire thing on camera. It is the perfect family activity. Our cameraman Gary got to experience life underwater a little closer than us, braving the 10-degree temperatures in a steamer wetsuit to get underwater footage, and we all knew where we would rather be.
Back on dry land, we thought we would meet a few more locals. These were more of the hairy variety as no visit to Tasmania is complete without an encounter with the devil! At East Coast Natureworld, only around six kilometres out of Bicheno, Tasmania, they rescue and rehabilitate devils and have more than a few ‘friendly’ residents to meet!
It is a really special experience getting up close to such an endangered and special animal. The devils’ only home is in Tasmania and all efforts are being made in the state to preserve and enhance their population. Suzy, the devil keeper at Natureworld, is clearly very passionate about her role and their overall plight and didn’t seem phased at all by either of the two devils in one enclosure latching onto her leg with their ferocious but harmless grunts! They can be pacified in seconds and are happy to lay in her arms peacefully, being stroked like a baby. Bring out the food, however, and war between even mum and daughter breaks out!
No trip to the Tasmanian east coast seems complete without a taste of the local produce. After a trip to nearby Spring Vale wines, we also had to try the seafood and were treated to an extravaganza at Diamond Island Resort in Bicheno, Tasmania. With Tasmanian rock lobster, oysters, scallops and prawns galore, this was a taste of Tassie’s best. It was all topped off with a private viewing of the fairy penguins that return to their property each night after sunset.
If you’ve had the chance to visit Bicheno, Tasmania, as well, we would absolutely love to hear about your experiences in the comments below!
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