Wednesday, November 22, 2006

East Coast Escape: Tasmania's Sunshine Side

According to the car plate tagline, Tassie is the Holiday Isle, and many GAL visitors are finding their way under downunder. Yes, it's worth the effort to get here.

When you slide into the fishing village of St. Helens, be sure to pick up provisions before heading 6 more kms to my slice of paradise - Binalong Bay. You won't want to leave there in a hurry, so pick up enough food and grog for a few days.

See Mark at the Juice and Gelato bar (on the corner you take from main street out to BB) for a tasty treat, and while there, buy a copy of his partner Colin's book on matching local food and wines. Dee-licious, if I do say so myself (Ms. Dee-Tours Down-Under).

Binalong Bay is literally the easternmost tip of Tasmania, and about the friendliest place I've ever encountered on all my worldy travels. My recommendation for charming accommodation with a million dollar view is the Bay of Fires Character Cottages, a Rainbow Tourism Accredited property with friendly hosts John & Marion. Book early; there's a dirth of available accommodation and you don't want to miss the best by waiting till you get here to look for a place to lay your head. Besides, the best restaurant in town is at the foot of the hill. Fresh catch of the day and best fish n chips in Australia, bar none. The cold Boags and Cascade beer and Bay of Fires view aren't bad either.

The water today was drop dead goregous, and I managed 15 minutes with wet suit before exiting to aforementioned cold beer. Literally out the front steps of the restaurant and you're in the cleanest, clearest water on the planet. I practically had the whole beach to myself today - and I like it that way. So don't tell anyone except your best travel mates and get on down here now!

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