>> Wednesday, February 24, 2010 – Adventure Tasmania
The last time we visited Launceston for the weekend, we stayed in a beautifully maintained Heritage listed, Victorian home called Ashton Gate. It was close to the city centre and more importantly, the Boags brewery.
My husband was a little dubious about staying in B & B style luxury accommodation but after a weekend of being taken care of by Jennifer and John he didn't want to go home!
We had breakfast at Ashton Gate each morning and hit Stillwater and The Jailhouse Grill for dinner.
Stillwater. Set in a beautifully restored 1830s flour mill. The Tuna was to die for.
As much as my husband wanted to spend the whole weekend at the Boag's Brewery, I convinced him to spend a day with me at the Hollybank Treetops Adventure.
A bus picked us up from the B & B and took us to Hollybank reserve, which is only about 15 minutes from Launceston. Hollybank is one of the earliest private plantations in Tasmania consisting of European trees. They were originally planted to obtain wood for the construction of cricket bats (!).
The reserve is so tranquil and beautiful, and there were plenty of families enjoying the grounds. I was almost sorry that we'd left the kids at home. Almost.
We were there for the Canopy Tour. I must confess I've developed a terrible fear of heights (something to do with the Stratosphere in Vegas) so seeing how high the platforms were made my knees knock a little.
The basic concept of the Canopy Tour is that they take tourists up into the forest canopy and you then traverse between treehouse-type platforms along steel cables. The platforms are built around tree trunks in the mid canopy of the forest, approximately 30m high. You're kitted out in a harness with pulleys attached and slide along the cables from one platform to the next.
It's like being on a flying fox, but on a whole new level.
Ged and Tillsy, our tour guides, were very entertaining and quite good at dealing with scaredy cats like me. The first few flights were pretty tame but I screamed like a banshee as I slid down the zipline (much to the amusement of the others in the group, little kids included).
By the last flight, a 370 metre trip over the Pipers River, I was having a ball. I thoroughly enjoyed the adrenalin rush of sliding above the forest. The views from the platforms were stunning.
It's a 3 hour adventure and the most fun I've had! If you're ever in the Launceston area and up for some fun, then make sure you try the Hollybank Treetops Adventure. I definitely earned my bottle of James Boags that day.