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After we departed the luscious Tamar Valley we headed in a north westerly direction towards Devonport, that is renowned for being the port city for the ferry service between Melbourne and Tasmania, aptly named the Spirit of Tasmania. We were soon to discover that on our Tassie trip to the North West Coast we were in for some picture-postcard scenery.
The North West Coast of Tasmania is referred to as the ‘Great Nature Trail’ and stretches from Narawntapu National Park to Tarkine. The region is considered to be Tasmania’s food bowl with lush green farmlands dotting the countryside. But it also boasts some very pretty seaside towns along the coastline.
The third largest city in Tasmania, located on the mouth of the Mersey River in North West Tasmania, Devonport enjoys river, ocean and mountain views and is the gateway to some of Tasmania’s best natural places, including stunning Cradle Mountain.
At the mouth of the Mersey River is this wonderful viewing platform that we sauntered out onto to take in panoramic views of Bass Strait, the river mouth, Coles Beach and Mersey Bluff. There is a huge sculpture at the end of the platform guarding the entrance to the Devonport harbour called ‘The Spirit Of The Sea‘ which represents the connections between man, the sea and the land.
A short drive away is Mersey Bluff with the Mersey Bluff Lighthouse and its distinctive vertical red striped day mark. Here we were literally blown away by strong wind gusts.
From the Bluff we were rewarded with amazing views of the wild seas of Bass Strait, Coles Beach and the river. We strolled right around the Bluff past sculptures, Aboriginal rock art to the beautiful sandy beach at Coles Beach.
Near Devonport Port we discovered this gem – The Rectory Cafe built in 1886. This beautiful former mansion creates a vibrant quirky atmosphere and is definitely worth a coffee stop when visiting Devonport.
Located on the Leven River, only 21Kms from Devonport is the seaside town of Ulverstone that serves the vast rural area. We discovered that the town boasts nice little coffee shops, gift shops, art galleries and a full range of convenience shops.
It has lovely swimming beaches, coastal paths and there is good fishing to be had in the river and estuary. We were fortunate enough to be invited to a friend’s house that was up one of the hilly streets behind the town, where we were rewarded with stunning panoramic views of the town and the coastline.
We drove past the Three Sisters Islands, a group of three small islands on the Ulverstone to Penguin coastal road that can be viewed from either of two public lookout bays. The waters around the Three Sisters provide good snorkelling and scuba diving and are accessible by boat or from shore.
We arrived in this cute little coastal village featuring the famous 10 foot penguin on the esplanade and quirky little penguins seemingly everywhere in the streets and shopfronts. It was well worth the hour hunting for penguins!
Penguin derives its name from from a nearby penguin rookery and is one of the prettiest little villages along the North West Coast.
We continued further along the north west coast via magnificent, rich, fertile and undulating farmlands, and to the picturesque and peaceful town of Wynyard that is 68Kms from Devonport.
Located at the mouth of the Inglis River, Wynyard is a popular holiday spot for beach activities, ocean and river fishing, and lazy drives through picturesque landscapes. We drove behind the town and upon Table Cape where there are patchworks of green, gold and brown farmland that make for a beautiful spectacle.
The towns claim to fame is its unique and stunning springtime tulip displays and the Bloomin’ Tulips Festival held in October. Unfortunately we were a month too late to experience the tulips and the festival.
Nearby Table Cape, that presides over the township of Wynyard, was formed by a volcano over 13 million years ago and is a fertile tract of land for growing all sorts of farm produce and spectacular fields of flowers. We drove up to the lookout with commanding views over the town and looked down the steep cliff face with the ocean crashing beneath us. The historic Table Cape Lighthouse is a short distance away which is open to visitors to get an even better view of the Cape and ocean.
Only a short drive of 11Kms from Wynyard down a steep winding road we came to the gorgeous little seaside village of Boat Harbour. Here we were rewarded with a spectacular turquoise bay with crystal clean shallows, pristine sand and rockpools.
We stopped for a coffee at the Surf Club and took in the beauty and tranquility of this little village, whilst the local knitters club were clacking away with their knitting needles at their weekly meeting!
A little further along the coastline we detoured off the main road into Sisters Beach, another quiet little seaside village that is a popular holiday spot perfect for boating, fishing, snorkelling or doing nothing at all. Nearby is the Rocky Cape National Park that is popular for hiking for spectacular coastal vistas and some unique flora and fauna.
Our drive along the North West Coast revealed some of Tasmania’s prettiest cities and towns sitting right on the water’s edge of this scenic region. There were seemingly breathtaking views at every turn or rise of verdant green pastures and rolling hills and then glimpses of rugged coastline, capes and beautiful little beaches in between.
We did continue as far as Stanley on this stretch of coastline, and I will have to forewarn you that this town was even more picturesque and absolutely steeped in history. But this my friends will have to wait for my next instalment of my Tassie series.
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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