Yesterday we went out for a drive, to explore Tasmania’s east coast. We stopped at a couple of places on the way.
A secluded beach just outside Orford – Shelly Beach.
As we stopped for coffee at Swansea, on shore of Great Oyster Bay, overlooking Freycinet National Park, we decided to continue into the park.
Coles Bay is at the beginning of the National Park. It was overcast as we stopped to look at beaches, at the pink granite and the mountains. Luckily the weather cleared during the afternoon.
The rangers at the National Park Visitor Centre told us that fur seals were in the coastal waters and where to see them on the rocks. He also recommended bush walks and the best views.
At Honeymoon Bay the rocks and sand had a pink hue. From here we saw a family of fur seals, basking on the rocks and in the water.
One of the most popular bush walks is to the Wineglass Bay Lookout. We set off on the hour and half round trip, aware of the wildlife, the birds, the beautiful scenery and views as we climbed higher and higher through the bush. The view at the lookout was just stunning.
Freycinet National Park is such a beautiful part of the world. We made a spontaneous decision to stay overnight so we could explore more today. The Freycinet Lodge had cabins available so we checked in, went back to the convenience store at Coles Bay to buy toothpaste.
We made the most of the daylight, stopping at Sleepy Bay. As the sun set behind us, we walked around the lighthouse and lookout at Cape Tourville.
From our cabin balcony we watched fur seals playing in the bay.
I spent an hour at dawn this morning watching the seals again. They arch out of the water like dolphins, they swim with their flippers in the air and at times stop and look out of the water. There were dozens playing around in the early morning.
During breakfast, as well as various gulls, we saw white bellied sea eagles soaring and swooping over the bay, one catching a fish and flying aloft with it’s meal.
To the north of the park we drove to Friendly Beaches, down an unmade road. The Pacific Ocean crashed onto miles and miles of white sand beaches.
Our final beach of this trip was Spiky Beach, south of Swansea.
During out two day road trip, we passed walnut orchards, sheep farms, inland lakes with water birds and black swans.
We saw kookaburras sitting on a wire, sitting on a fence, also sitting in an old gum tree.
Several wallabies showed themselves, one jumped across the road in front of us, one jumped away across a parking area and one just kept on eating the grass as we parked and walked to a beach lookout. I walked past a smaller wallaby during a bush walk, he then jumped aside to partially hid in the undergrowth. There were other small marsupial things in the bush and across the paths.
The bush was alive with bird sounds and we saw parrots, wagtails, scarlet robins amongst others.
We will go back to Freycinet and also visit the other National Parks in Tasmania. We took only photographs and left only our footprints.
Things I have learned
~ I took a lot of photos yesterday, used up my iphone battery. No one at the Lodge had an appropriate charger, so I was offline today. It was actually good to just look and appreciate the scenery, to watch the wildlife and not worry about trying to photograph it.