One of the best places that I discovered on my recent trip across the ditch with Savouring Australia, is Tasmania. I had heard so many wonderful things before going, so suspected that it might not live up to the hype (you know, when places get over-sold?) well nope - if anything, I liked it more than I expected! Funnily enough it reminded me quite a bit of New Zealand, but then I would pass a beach (white sand gorgeousness) looking nothing like ours, or go for a bush walk and see a walllaby hop by (seriously!) and feel a million miles from home.
The first morning in Hobart I was scheduled to head to the Salamanca Markets, so off I wandered, bright and early. I had anticipated there being a couple of local producers gathered together selling a few fruit and veges with a bit of hot food and coffee, but I could not believe the vast number of tents and stalls – all of them packed with people browsing, tasting, buying and generally making the most of being out and about on a beautiful Hobart morning. The thing that was even more amazing was that this is a weekly event – surely they couldn’t have this many stallholders and punters every weekend? But unbelievably they do! (Is there something like this in Auckland - and if so, where?!). The morning I was there I wandered around for ages, checking out the incredible local produce, with loads of beautiful home grown, organic herbs and vegetables, cheeses and sausages, fish and baked goods. I loved the range of product – everything from second hand vinyl records to handcrafted wooden bowls and utensils, possum fur-lined hats and fabulous pottery (Henry we need to get back that pottery wheel!). The organic wood-fired pizzas were a hit, and the guys making them so sweet, as were the sizzling sausages and of course the essential coffee. The markets had the most incredible community feeling, with stallholders busily promoting each other and 'Tassie' as much as their own produce, shoppers strolling hand in hand and the sound of buskers in the air - how lovely is the dreaded up guy with the guitar? He was so earnest and his singing was amazing :) The only thing missing was my family - I wanted to point out things and enjoy the discovery together - now they just have to put up with my endless photos instead! :)