Edit Blog Post
Published: April 21st 2017
From atop Mt Amos
So tie me to an anthill, smear my ears with jam and call me Benedict Arnold if you must but I'm going to place my head firmly on the traitor's chopping block. For what my opinion is worth (not much I assume), USA AOK, is the most beautiful on this rock, if through nothing else other than its sheer, raw diversity.
If you prefer to narrow down the criteria a touch then a few other sovereignties come into the reckoning. Alpine? How do you turn you nose up at Canada, Nepal, Norway or New Zealand (South Island).
Perhaps architecture is your poison. From this humble man's opinion, France is top of the pops with my left field challenger (plus this makes me sound as though I've been around), Yemen.
BUT!!! If coastline is your barometer of choice then raise the Southern Cross, place hand on heart and strike up the band for a rousing verse or two of Advance Australia Fair (is that the best we can muster for a national anthem?) because nobody does shoreline better than us. South Africa puts up a fight, especially around Cape Town, but WE are king pins when it comes to
Bay of Fires
ocean meeting land.
One of the jewels in the crown of our 30ish thousand klms is Tasmania's east coast. At a cursory glance there's not a great deal to distinguish it from NSW's own sublime version of littoral but the stretch north of Hobart is also pitted with a few heady luminaries.
Way up north is the Bay of Fires. Something of a misnomer, it's more than just a bay. One address, many beaches. When I say beaches, there are 30 klms of everything a beach should be. Soft, blindingly white, powdery sand that are met by opaque waters in all shades of green and blue. In between each stretch of sand are giant blocks of granite that look as though they should have slapped on some sun blockout. The full artists palette of oranges, aqua and the rest.
Down the other end and just north of Hobart is Maria (be sure to pronounce it Mah-rye-ah) Island. The same 24 carat, high-end beachside aesthetics but with some daunting cliffs on one side and a hefty dose of convict history to round out the mix. There's even an overt wildlife royalty presence including a population of Tasmanian Devils
Bay of Fires
quarantined from the cancer devastating the species back on the Tassie mainland.
My favourite though, is an hour or so north again. Freycinet National Park is a consummate blend of wild bushland, rolling hills and the same sugar white beaches. However, the reason Freycinet occupies such a lofty pedestal is the patron saint of Tasmania's postcard industry ......
We've all seen the photos of Wineglass Bay but it's never the same unless you're there at the game. So don't dare bypass. In fact very few do bypass and it can be elbow to elbow. Don't let that distract you.
From down at sea level, Wineglass Bay is just another majestic beach. It's from above on the surrounding peaks acting sentry which add that extra dimension.
For that overview, most visitors join the peleton and follow the Yellow Brick Road up to the main lookout, a simple half hour plus interest stroll. That's fine and the outlook is ethereal. In reality, it's only the consolation prize. Take a sneak peak up over your left shoulder and that's Mount Amos. The panorama from up there opens up even more to sublime squared. (how do you put that little
One corner of Coles Bay, Freycinet
2 up high next to sublime to indicate squared? I need a few IT lessons).
So break rank and head for the hills Ma. An hour and a half or so up of perversely enjoyable rock scrambling will get you there. (Don't do it in the wet - damned slippery and downright precarious). We were slow and measured in our ascent from bottom to 450 odd vertical metres. This was at times mildly dispiriting as younger gens would clamber past with their tails up. We consoled ourselves that there is no rush anyway as the views behind over Coles Bay also go about the business of being eye-popping.
As you take those final few steps at the apex, lying prostate below is a sigh-inducing panorama that will have you clutching for superlatives - hashtagOMG. (I hope you pick up the sarcasm in that one).
At the risk of banging on about it, the scene looks to have been artistically created somewhere and dropped into place. Sit down, munch on your pre-prepared sandwich and soak in an ambience impeccably turned out in all the shades of travel brochure jingoism, only it's real.
And real is what Tasmania's
East Coast is all about. Temperate (given its distance from the equator) eye candy and a Hall of Famer in Australia's glorious coastal fringe, Earth's most impressive. Who knows, 6 weeks starting next month in The Kimberley for the first time and I may once again wrap myself in green and gold and declare, Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Oy Oy Oy, numero uno on the world's overall nature catwalk. To be continued.
More images @
Tot: 1.316s; Tpl: 0.038s; cc: 35; qc: 155; dbt: 0.0659s; 1; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.7mb