Summer in Tassie is warm balmy days, long lingering evenings, good company and serious fun. It's the season to throw caution to the wind on a coastal drive, dance in public, feast at a festival, and sprawl on a lawn. There are bubbles to be sipped, pink bean bags to snaffle, and no time to waste.
Follow these 10 unburdening summer commandments for a regretless Tassie summer.
1. THOU SHALT JOIN THE MUSIC MIGRATION
Mona Foma (photo courtesy MONA/Remi Chauvin)
Though just must. Just ask David Walsh. Mona Foma is set to cook up a storm this summer with musical joy happening in Escher-esque stairwells underground at Mona through to open-air concerts. According to curator Brian Ritchie, “Mona plus music creates one big pulsing organism.” Then there’s the Falls Festival where one can bring in the New Year beneath the stars at Marion Bay with top Australian bands and DJs.
2. THOU SHALT MIX GOOD FOOD WITH GOOD COMPANY
We know it’s sometimes tricky to all find a table together at the Taste of Tasmania but one must. Gather your best share plates and elbow the others to make room – perhaps outdoors to keep an eye on Sydney to Hobart yachts coming in. Want to know the inside secrets? Join sixth-generation Tasmanian Mary McNeill on a Gourmania food tour.
Festivale, Launceston (photo Rob Burnett)
There’s also Festivale up north for those who enjoy their wine on a picnic rug and the Cradle Coast Tasting Trail for travellers.
3. THOU SHALT HEAD EAST
Spring Beach in Orford, with Maria Island in the distance (photo Lisa Kuilenburg)
There’s beaches without footprints, vineyards, salty oysters, outdoor tubs and architecturally handsome lodgings. Why would one not head east? The Great Eastern Drive takes you on a roadie like no other between Orford and St Helens. Along the way, make sure you stop. There’s a spikey bridge, a secret water hole, local markets, sprawling cool-climate vineyards, a little place called Wineglass Bay and far more to discover.
4. THOU SHALT DANCE IN PUBLIC
Cygnet Folk Festival (photo Steven Pearce)
It doesn’t take long upon arriving at the Cygnet Folk Festival to realise no one cares at all. It doesn’t matter how badly you dance, as long as you’re moving. There might even be young buskers that can’t sing, that have come down from the hillside to join the revelry. That doesn’t matter either. They mix beautifully with the international artists who descend on this Huon Valley town for the festival. Get amongst it – dance yourself silly in public.
5. THOU SHALT SNAFFLE A PINK BEANBAG AND DRINK WINE
Mona’s First Lady, Kirsha Kaechele curates the MoMa Market. That means it’s wild and wonderful. Thou must find a pink beanbag to enjoy the Moorilla wine, art, tunes, fermented food and installations of a summer Sunday. On other days during summer, head for the latest exhibition – including the Origin of Art Exhibition. It’s always a treat to surface from the dark underground back up to the lawns.
6. THOU SHALT EXPLORE
Bay of Fires (photo Alice Hansen)
One must use one’s feet, clothed in hardy boots. There are some 2000 kilometres of walking tracks to tread here in Tasmania. There’s white sandy beaches and classic faves like the Overland Track and Bay of Fires. But there’s also some newbies – like the Three Capes Track and even newer – Wild Pedder. With toasty warm weather there’s no excuse not to bunker down in a highland hut, or camp beneath the stars.
7. THOU SHALT SEEK A HIGHLAND LODGE
Head for a region of a thousand lakes. Former race car driver Marcos Ambrose, along with four other investors, has transformed an Antarctic training lodge into a new boutique alpine escape.
Thousand Lakes Lodge (Photo by Alice Hansen)
Thousand Lakes Lodge sits in the Central Highlands, not far from the Walls of Jerusalem. Thou must walk that way and discover more biblical names in the area. Alternately there are mountain bikes and handcrafted wooden dinghies to venture out in.
8. THOU SHALT HIT THE WATER
Hobart Yachts Charter (photo Jimmy Emms)
We may not be able to walk on water, but we must cruise atop it. There are many ways to do so. Slip into a kayak at Marieville Esplanade for the Hobart City Paddle for a reverse view of the waterfront. Dip your paddle in and sneak past the stately homes of Battery Point. For those not wanting to cruise by paddle power, head to Hobart Yachts. Mark Stranger will take you on a voyage to Bruny Island to lunch in a secret cove, or all the way to the far South West.
9. THOU SHALT HOP ON ONE’S BIKE
North-South Track, kunanyi / Mount Wellington (photo Flow Mountain Bike)
Come summer time there’s no reason not to swing a leg over a mountain bike. Ride Blue Derby a network of trails that surround the town of Derby. Climb Jacob’s Ladder a series of hairpins cascading down a mountain pass and be rewarded with incredible views from the top. Cruise down kunanyi / Mount Wellington and end your descent with a beer at Cascade Brewery. So many two-wheeled options.
10. THOU SHALT ENJOY A DROP
Willie Smiths Apple Shed, Huon Valley (photo Jonathan Wherrett)
We have over 20 distilleries in Tasmania now. We have craft cideries and boutique breweries seemingly popping up around every bend. This means there’s plenty of opportunity to raise a glass in good company. Meet the winemaker, learn about the distilling process, sample directly from the hand of a brewer. Thou must enjoy a tipple in Tassie.