All it took was one foot to land on Tassie’s precious terra firma for Swiss blogger, nature lover and photographer Sandra Lia to fall head over heels in love with it and she’s been tweeting about it ever since. It was her passion from across the globe that piqued my curiosity to find out what she loved most about it.
Visiting Tassie had been on Sandra’s bucket list for 15 years. However as she couldn’t drive, she therefore didn’t fly. Overcoming this obstacle and over a decade later , Sandra finally made her way down under during the summer earlier this year.
“As I got the car, my plan was, to uncover whole Tassie, as possible, take a lot of photo as possible, and hiking. Done!”, she says. She’s a bonafide nature lover and spending quality alone time in the wilderness is her honouring her true north while physically standing in the ‘true south’.
As a solo traveler on a budget she took herself all around the island staying overnight in hostels and stopping off at coffee shops and at a “station in the ‘bush’, where I get a really good hamburger.”
Her three week road trip started in the north and took her through Devonport, Stanley , Arthur River and Corinna in the west then back across the Batman Bridge which spans Kanamaluka/Tamar River, across to Bridport and then south along the east coast through Swansea down to Port Arthur. “I think its too much to write down all the fantastic villages. I visited a lot of museums and met a lot of friendly, helpful people.”
With that said, she couldn’t resist to mention her stop in the Swiss style village of Grindelwald which is short drive from Launceston. While her home country’s Grindelwald is much larger and mountainous, this tiny Tamar Valley version does capture some Swiss elements with buildings featuring wide eaves, flower boxes, window shutters and balconies. It also includes a range of accommodation, a shopping arcade, various retail stores, day spa, golf pro shop, chocolatier, bakery and cafe.
Her highlights of Tasmania? Hands down it’s being in the great, green outdoors. “I like to stay alone in the nature. I would say, Tasmania is the paradise of Australia, ” she says. “For me, Tasmania is like Switzerland. Green, mountains but with ocean, only with a lot less people. Tasmania is the perfect mix between New Zealand, Australia and Switzerland. (pure nature, nice, cute animals).”
For first time travellers to Tassie, she recommends getting a car and driving around for at least 2 weeks. Her first plan was to visit for 8 days but as she found out “8 Days is too short.”
While she wants people from all over the world to visit and enjoy the raw beauty of Tasmania, she’s also a little reluctant to spread the hype and drive people to this triangular gem – ‘don’t become a second Switzerland, please!!!” She says this with good intent. You see, Switzerland is about two thirds the size of Tasmania and has a population of eight and half million people. That’s a lot of humans in amongst a mountainous cluster!
For some reason though, I don’t envisage that happening in Tassie. While Tasmania is currently home to only half a million residents, over a third of the state is national park, reserve or world heritage protected wilderness.
It’s for this very reason why people should come visit.
Getting to Tassie from Switzerland:
First apply for a visitor visa – The base application charge for this visa ranges from AUD$135 to AUD$340. Then, take a Flight from Zürich or Basel via Dubai or Singapore to Melbourne or Sydney, then get a connecting flight to Tasmania or the climb aboard the Spirit of Tasmania ferry from Melbourne.
For travel arrangements on the ground in Tasmania, please fill in a form at tasmania.com to have a Tasmania travel specialist work with you on creating your very on Tasmania escape.
You can find Sandra Lia Infanger here: bloggerin.com, oznz.ch.
And read about her travels here: http://www.oznz.ch/
Photo credit: Sandra Lia Infanger