The Last Instameet of 2016 – #SouthernTroveMeet

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Early on Sunday 4th December, a group of bright-eyed Instagrammers gathered on the Hobart waterfront, excited for the last Instameet of 2016 and equally excited for the announcement of where the first coffee stop would be! There was a bit of allure around this meet, with a few surprises to come. What we did know was that we were about to experience the Southern Trove with Discover Tasmania in #TassieStyle! So we eagerly boarded the bus and strapped ourselves in. Ian, our driver from Experience Tasmania, chauffeured us around all day in luxury and with a generous dose of local humour. Read on for the recap of our action-packed day, and be sure to check out #SouthernTroveMeet on Instagram for all of the amazing images!

Scenic Franklin: Franks Cider Bar & Café, the Wooden Boat Centre and Yukon Sailing Tours
With excitement on the bus (and a lot of anticipation about coffee), we travelled down to Franklin for a wander around the waterfront, a visit to the Wooden Boat Centre and a yummy morning tea (and coffee!) at Franks Cider Bar and Café. We couldn’t have asked for more perfect weather, with the temperature pleasantly climbing to the mid-twenties and not a single gust of wind. This made for idyllic conditions for photographing the Huon River, with perfect reflections mirroring the charming boats docked at the wharf. We wandered down to Yukon Sailing Tours to pose with the parrot and have a stickybeak at the stunning boat. The inside of the Wooden Boat Centre smelt absolutely divine and was a fascinating insight into the specialty craft of wooden boat building. Franks Cider House and Museum put on a great spread for morning tea (shame it was too early for cider but more on that later!), and it was fantastic wandering around the museum (Lady Jane Franklin’s piano was pretty cool!)
For more info: Franks Cider Bar & Café | Wooden Boat Centre | Yukon Sailing Tours

Spectacular views and hang gliding through the forest at the Tahune AirWalk
Coffee ingested, it was back on the bus and Ian our trusty driver drove us along the windy road into the forest to the Tahune AirWalk. On the way, everyone who was interested popped their name in a hat and five lucky folks got their names drawn, winning a go on the hang glider! At the Tahune AirWalk, our host guided us on a short (and very serene) walk through the forest to the walkway (unfortunately we didn’t spot Wolfgang the friendly snake). Suddenly we were walking high up among the tree tops, at one with nature! The views were spectacular down to the Huon River below. The platform does get a bit wobbly (it is supposed to), but it was a bit of a rush and the views made it well worth any jitters! We then went to watch the hang gliding action, with the lucky winners zipping through the tree tops (it was quite tame, no one even screamed). Other thrill seekers had a play on the long swing bridges over the river!
For more info: Tahune Forest AirWalk & Visitor Centre

Fat Pig Farm tour and long table lunch
All that exploring worked up a healthy appetite, so everyone was very excited to arrive at Fat Pig Farm, home of The Gourmet Farmer’s Matthew Evans and his lovely wife Sadie. Our arrival canapes were so tasty we were all eager to sample more! Matthew and Sadie took us on a tour of their beautiful and sustainable mixed-produce Glaziers Bay farm. (Mummy pig Denise and her cute little piglets stole the show, with their curly little tails and excited squealing and grunting!) The property itself is a country paradise, with views across rolling green hills as well as out to the water. We enjoyed a very welcome Franks Cider as we wandered the farm at our leisure, before heading back up to the long table for lunch. Anticipation was high as we watched our food appearing from the open kitchen, and it was just divine! The dishes were wholesome and homely, made with real, fresh food from the farm and seasoned to perfection. We also enjoyed a glass of local Tassie wine (as well as a light milk pudding for dessert), while we gazed out at the lush country views. We got back on the bus a little heavier and a lot happier.
For more info: Fat Pig Farm

A visit (and tastings) at Grandvewe Sheep Cheesery & Distillery
Our afternoon tea stop was the truly ewenique Grandvewe Cheesery at scenic Birchs Bay. We were encouraged to explore the farm, so we all spread out. While the method-Instagrammers immersed themselves with the flock in the front paddock, others wandered into the milking shed to watch ‘The Girls’ offering up the goods (with food given in exchange). Up on the balcony overlooking the Channel, there was an incredible setup of sheep cheeses and other antipasto snacks begging to be devoured! Under the restaurant, we were offered a tour of the distillery, where Grandvewe’s specialty crafted Sheep Whey Vodka is produced and labelled by hand. Whey to go!
For more info: Grandvewe Sheep Cheesery & Distillery

Relaxing on board the Peppermint Bay Cruise from Woodbridge to Hobart
At Woodbridge, we bid a fond farewell to our amazing driver Ian and boarded the boat for the Peppermint Bay Cruise back to Hobart. Sitting back with a glass of bubbles, we took in the spectacular views up the Derwent River, with the Captain pointing out highlights along the way. We were lucky enough to see a White-bellied Sea-Eagle perched majestically in a tree on the waterfront. The cliffs at Taroona were amazing to see from the water, with their interesting rock patterns (molten lava was mentioned as having played a hand…), and we didn’t realise how big they were until we saw a tiny little person walking below them! After all that exploring, touring, gliding, tasting, eating and drinking, we all dispersed upon arrival back to Hobart and headed home to upload our photos – see them all here. Thanks to Tourism Tasmania, and all of the businesses that hosted us, and of course all of our Instagrammers for coming along and sending 2016 out with a bang!
For more info: Peppermint Bay Cruise

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