Tasmania 6 Days
The island State of Australia is situated in the Southern Ocean just off the south coast of Victoria.
Tasmania was settled in 1803 to take the overflow of convicts from Britain in the early 1800’s. The island (known then as Van Diemen’s Land) was visited by explorers, pirates and whalers. Its name comes from the name of Abel Janzoon Tasman. He was a Dutchman who, in 1642, was commissioned to make extensive exploratory voyages in the southern seas by Anthony van Dieman, the Governor of Batavia (now Java).
Tasmania is about 250 miles long and at the widest point (the northern coast) it is around the same distance. It is roughly shaped in a heart shape. It contains huge mountain ranges, many of the peaks are over 4,000 feet high. The coastline is rugged with inlets, peninsulas, bays and offshore islands. Tasmania was formed in the last Ice Age, when it broke off from Antarctica and from the mass of land to the north, which is now Australia.
Tasmania is on the 40 degree south latitude and the weather is fickle
we say “you can have all four seasons in one day”. The small island is buffeted by the southern winds (the “Roaring Forties”) which circumnavigate the globe in a westerly stream all year round. These winds are fierce gales in Winter and have no land mass between the southern tip of South Africa and Tasmania. The 40 deg. south was known in early sailing terms as the “roaring forties”.
The summers are mild, top temperature rarely exceeds 35 deg. Celsius. In Winter the inland areas of Tasmania temperatures can drop overnight as low as minus 10 deg. Weather patterns in the State vary due to the mountainous terrain. The east coast of Tasmania has a warm sea stream which flows from the Queensland coast and warms the water and air temperature all down the eastern coast of Australia. The west coast of Tasmania has a much colder, wetter and windy climate due to the prevailing westerly gales.
This tiny island could feed the whole of Australia. It grows fruit and vegetables, grain crops, poultry, dairy and beef herds, fish of many varieties from the sea or from fish farms, pyrethrum and opium poppies for medicinal drugs, and sawn timber for house frames, boats, and craft work, plus wood chips for paper making. Mining has always been important, with exports of gold, silver, lead, zinc, tin, copper and iron ore being won from the ground.
Tasmania (pop. 470,000) is a State of the Commonwealth of Australia, has its own Governor and its own Parliament. It operates on the Westminster system of 2-tiered Parliament, an Upper and Lower House.
The beautiful old sandstone buildings of Hobart, (the capital city) are works of art, and are preserved for tourists to view. They also are used every day and house the many government agencies, the courts, and the Parliament. Government House, Hobart,is a sandstone mansion set on a hill overlooking the Derwent estuary. Hobart Botanical Gardens, established in 1817, are the second oldest Botanical Gardens in Australia. The Theatre Royal in Hobart, modelled after the famous “Globe” Theatre of Strathford-on-Avon, is Australia’s oldest surviving theatre. Hobart is also home to a Royal Tennis court, one of only two in the southern Hemisphere. The University of Tasmania is located in Sandy Bay, a very beautiful suburb of Hobart, and only 10 mins. drive from the centre of the City. Hobart harbour, Sydney harbour and Suva (Fiji) harbour are the three safest and deepest ports in the southern hemisphere.
Tasmania is developing a very vibrant tourist industry. Hobart actually has more sunshine per year than many areas of Queensland (the “Sunshine State”).
Tasmania 6 Days