Hobart, Lake St Clair-Cradle Mountain National Park

Started the morning in the TIC sorting out my plans for the rest of my time in Tassie. The buses dont run every day, so you have to make sure you dont end up stranded anywhere! Went to Salamanca Place and up to Battery Point, quite a historic part of the town. (Although historic only covers 200years!) Then went via the harbour and shops to the Botanical Gardens. They were very beautiful and spent a couple of hours wandering round and relaxing. Back at the hostel, one of ladies in my dorm thought I was Korean. American, Canadian and Australian I get a lot, but this was definately the first Korean.

Next day, I headed off to the Lake St Clair-Cradle Mountain National Park. Didnt fancy the 5-8 day overland trek across it, so instead did some of the shorter walks at either end. At Lake St Clair, I did the Shadow Lake walk. A 4 hour round circuit through 4 or 5 different types of vegetation to Shadow Lake and back. Left in glorious sunshine, was raining within about an hour of my leaving. Saw an Echidna which was really cute. Spent the evening by the beach watching the sunset and looking for Platypuses but didnt see any.

Next day, I took the bus to Cradle Mountain at the other side of the park. Arrived quite late on in the afternoon so planned my route for the next day and rested my feet in preparation! Went to watch a presentation in the evening from a ranger who had spent 14 months on Macquarie Island, close to Antartica.

Up early next day and took the shuttle bus into the park to Ronny Creek. Here I started my walk, initially heading up to Crater Lake. The sun was out with gave beautiful views over the park and of the mountain and the lake. From here, I walked down via Wombat Pool and Lake Lilla to Dove Lake. Did an entire circuit of the Lake before walking the Cradle Mountain Boardwalk back to the Visitors Centre. Once back here, I walked to the Pencil Pine Falls and the Knyvet Falls. Spent about 8 hours walking in total. Saw loads of the wildlife including Echidnas, Wallabies and a snake.

Yesterday, with time to spare before the bus came, I did the King Billy Track and then did the Weindorfers Forest Walk. Both were through forests. Then got the bus to Devonport. With a few hours till I had to check in for the ferry, I got talking to a family who took me to their friends to sit and wait. Went for a walk around the local area with their son, then he drove me to get the ferry. People here are definately more friendly than Londoners! On the ferry over to Melbourne, I bumped into a couple I had met in Cradle Mountain so had some company for the trip.

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