Australia's Best Kept Secret: Bruny Island

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If you’ve ever visited Australia, you know that country has no shortage of staggeringly gorgeous, jaw-dropping scenery readily available around every bend in the road. Aside from New Zealand, it’s easily the prettiest country I’ve ever visited. And I’ve done quite a bit of traveling, so I feel pretty confident in saying that.

It’s paradise, really.

But stick around long enough and you will hear all of the locals talk about one specific state as the ultimate Australian destination. In fact, they get a bit starry eyed just talking about it. They will smile dreamily and say “Oh, Tassie, I want to go there someday.”

Tassie, of course, refers to Tasmania, and no self-respecting Aussie would bother saying the full name of anything if there’s a shorter one to be said. (Brisbane becomes “Brissie” and Magnetic Island becomes “Maggie,” McDonald’s becomes “Macca’s” and so on. Australians have this charmingly delightful way of nicknaming everything. At least it’s charming until you have absolutely no idea what they are talking about. “Hammo?” Apparently that’s Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays.)

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I saw more rainbows on Bruny Island in one day than I did in a week in Hawaii. All the occupants of our car nicknamed it “Rainbow Island.”
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The coolest rainbow I’ve ever seen. Look at those trees. I’d never before seen the place where the rainbow actually touches the ground.
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And then our one rainbow became two, although the outer one is faint.

So naturally after everyone and their mother raves about the place, you want to visit, right? Well, let me let you in on another secret. Once you book that trip to Tasmania, go ahead and plan to take it a step further and visit Tasmania’s Bruny Island while you are there. (Who knew you could island hop in Australia? *grin*)

While people on mainland Australia go to Tasmania for holidays, people in Tasmania go to Bruny Island for holidays. It’s easy to see why as it’s simply stunning. You can visit as a day trip from Hobart, although you won’t be able to do everything that the island has to offer in that amount of time. I found myself wishing we had more time to explore in depth during our day trip visit last year.  The vehicle ferry  from Kettering (approx 30 minutes from Hobart) costs around $30 AUD for a return trip but be sure to double check the timetable when you arrive as you don’t want to be left on the island when the last ferry leaves for the night!

Here are some of the cool things you will see on Bruny Island:

The “Neck”

The Neck is an isthmus of land connecting north and south Bruny Island and you can climb a lot of stairs to get some fabulous views like this:

img_6822I promise the climb is totally worth it!

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Partway up all of those stairs
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Another view from the top

If you are driving by here at the right time of night and time of year, you might be lucky enough to see fairy penguins from the viewing stage pictured in the picture above. We weren’t so lucky, but we did stop to look.

South Bruny National Park

This is totally worth the drive. Go here. There is an entrance fee of around $24 AUD per car, but I promise it’s worth it.  I was glad we had timed how long it took us to drive to South Bruny National Park, as we then knew what time we had to leave to make it back to the ferry on time. That estimate was shot out of the water though when we came upon a flock of yellow-tailed black cockatoos in the trees while driving back and our car came to a screeching halt while everyone jumped out to take pictures and marvel at the gorgeous 30+ birds that were making such a loud ruckus.

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Sadly this was the best picture I was able to get without having a zoom lens with me.
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Pictures can’t do justice to the pure natural beauty in this national park and on this island in general

Lots of wildlife

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get any pictures of the one quoll we saw while driving back the ferry at night, but I was excited that we did get to see one. Then we almost ran over this possum that was just sitting in the middle of the road. We did a quick U-turn and got out to look at him. He wasn’t the least bit afraid of us, but eventually did wander off into the darkness. In addition to these we also saw a plethora of birds, and found lots of tadpoles and frog egg sacs in some large puddles. As mentioned above, you also have the chance to see fairy penguins as well as white kangaroos.

img_6988 And of course you will be able to see beautiful nature, pristine beaches, and lots of rainbows. What more could you want out of a quick getaway? You should definitely put Bruny Island on your list of must-see places.

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