Photographs from Tasmania – Part III: Tasman Peninsula

The third part in the series featuring photographs from the island of Tasmania.

Tasmanias’s southeast, roughly 90 minutes by car east from Hobart, is where some of the most impressive rugged coastline and isolated forests can be found. Here, a short isthmus called the Eaglehawk Neck gives access to the Tasman Peninsula. Rugged coastlines with some of Tasmania’s highest cliffs, unique geological formations, pristine forests, and astonishing untouched beaches, as well as thought-provoking colonial history, the Tasman Peninsula has a lot to offer to adventurers as well as escapists.

A miniature version of Tasmania itself, the Tasman Peninsula takes remoteness to another level. In fact, it was so remote that for the whole time we spent on the peninsula, according to the GPS, we were out in the sea. It was not even mapped. Water, an absolute scarcity this summer as it was one of the driest since human records, had to be delivered by trucks to our hut. The next decent food store was over an hour away and we, of course, forgot to stock up. Dinner consisted of peculiar tasting Lavendar cake (the only place nearby selling food was a lavender farm) and potato crisps.
While it is obviously impossible to see all of the Tasman Peninsula in a single day, even though many of its more famous landmarks are directly by the main road. The Tessellated Pavement at Pirates Bay beach near Eaglehawk Neck, for example, is a rock surface featuring almost perfectly aligned rectangular and straight rock fractures that hugely resemble man-made pavement, whereas actually it is created by forces of nature: erosion, tectonic movement and the effect of salts. There are countless other unique formations on the peninsula with their own crazy names, such as the Blowhole, Candlestick, Totem Pole or Devil’s Kitchen. At Eaglehawk Bay, divers, fishermen, kayakers and surfers venture off into the blue.

Tasman Peninsula - Eaglehawk Bay

Tasman Peninsula - Tesselated Pavement

Tasman Peninsula - Tesselated Pavement 2

Tasman Peninsula - Pirates Bay Beach

Tasman Peninsula - At Eaglehawk Bay

Tasman Peninsula - Boat Sheds at Eaglehawk Bay

Tasman Peninsula - Tasman Arch

Tasman Peninsula - Tasman trees

Further down south, an unsealed road surrounded by majestic Eucalypt forests leads to a place that will always remain in my memory as one of the most beautiful places I had ever visited on this planet: Fortescue Bay. A small sandy beach, maybe a kilometre or less in length, and the cleanest waters imaginable. A place of absolute tranquility, where time seems to come to a standstill. It was at Fortescue Bay where I felt furthest away from the routine of daily life, and truly detached from any other place in the world. It was really surreal to be in such a remote corner of the earth, and discover such unspoilt beauty.After writing down our names in the walker registration agenda in case we never came back, we ventured on into the dense Tasmanian forest, along the coast to Canoe Bay. Otherwordly insect sounds and bird call accompany the crushing noise of branches under our feet. In the bay, the rusty remains of a ship called the William Pitt are rotting away in shallow water. Further, a man made bridge would lead across the swampy end of the bay. A unique scent combining the odour of decaying wood, damp forest trees, and freshness sea breeze was in the air. Surprisingly enough, there were no snake encounters, at least none we were aware of. On the way back, we would rid of our outer layer of clothes for a failed attmept to cool off in the waters of the Southern Ocean. Way too cold. Meanwhile, in the distance, some other adventurers would strip down to their naked bottoms for a dash into the icy blue. They were obviously braver than us.

Tasman Peninsula - Fortescue Bay

Tasman Peninsula - Rocks at Fortescue Bay

Tasman Peninsula - In the forest 2

Tasman Peninsula - In the forest 3

Tasman Peninsula - In the forest

Tasman Peninsula - Tasman Tree

Tasman Peninsula - View over Fortescue Bay

Fortescue Bay is a ‘bucket list’ place. Idyllic beauty in absolute remoteness, it is one of those magical places that lie hidden away in our beautiful planet. I consider myself lucky to have experienced it.

Tasman Peninsula - At Fortescue Bay

All images taken with a Leica M6, on Kodak Portra film. Developed by MeinFilmLab in Germany.

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