This might be a bit too cheesy, but we’re going to say it anyway: This small-ish, heart-shaped island in the Southern Hemisphere has stolen our hearts. There’s so much to love.
Sure, Tasmania may have started with the sinister-sounding name Van Diemen’s Land. And yes, it was founded as an inescapable penal colony for the most hardened criminals in Britain.
But now, Tasmania is an epic playground for anyone who loves outdoor adventures. There are soft sand beaches for swimming, snorkeling, surfing, and lazing around in the sun — perhaps at the poetically-named Bay of Fires or Wineglass Bay. The island’s network of rivers means lots (and lots) of waterfalls, along with kayaking and rafting. Foodies can enjoy a leisurely drive along the Tamar Valley Wine Route dotted with inviting wineries and an exciting food scene.
But if (when!) we visit Tasmania, it will be for the animals. It’s home to ridiculously cute animals like wombats, wallabies, and, yes, the Tasmanian Devil. If we’re being honest, these adorable creatures might also kill you — or at least cause grave bodily harm. But truly: Cuddling up to a furry, tank-like wombat or seeing a Tasmanian Devil IRL might be worth it.
In this episode, we briefly dip into Tasmania’s dark history, learn about a truly unusual museum, talk about the Roaring Forties, and mourn the loss of the Tasmanian Tiger. Then we recommend five great books that took us there on the page, including true accounts of a rip-roaring sea adventure and the search for the lost Thylacine, a murder mystery set on the craggy coast, a family story set in a lonely lighthouse, and a coming-of-age novel that’s also a magical realism road trip. (show notes / transcript)
Top image courtesy of Ken Cheung/Unsplash.
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