The Hobart

OFF SEASON: Bits And Pieces

by Stephanie Williams
OFF SEASON: Bits And Pieces

If you could go for a stroll with any native Tasmanian creature, what would you choose? We’d choose a wombat, hands-down. They may not give us a cuddle but they’re super cute and surely less dangerous than most of the other options. At East Coast Nature World ( rescue wombats, Jenny and George, need daily exercise as part of their rehabilitation and enrichment program – they love their humans and will follow you wherever you want to go. This one hour exclusive experience is available every morning at 9:30am, $92 each person for up to six people.

Congrats to the Polmear family, of Tasmanian whisky brand Waubs Harbour, who recently brought home a couple of gold medals from the prestigious World Whiskies Awards. Based in Bicheno, Waubs Harbour won gold for ‘Small Batch Single Malt Whisky, 12 years & Under’ with their Waubs Original drop. Their Founder’s Reserve Whisky won gold in ‘Small Batch Single Malt Whisky, No age statement’ category. The family had a vision – to create a maritime whisky, connected to their Aboriginal heritage, located on the Tasmanian ocean. They now create world class products at the converted old oyster hatchery at the gulch at Bicheno (which used to be called Waubs Harbour, after palawa woman Wauba Debar), so safe to say their vision has come true. Tours and tastings can be booked at

Big Willie will burn for one last time at this year’s final Mid-Winter Fest at Willie Smith’s Apple Shed in the Huon Valley. After 11 years of bringing life, joy and community togetherness to the depths of the Tassie Off Season, the team behind the festival invites revellers to join them for one last big wassail. Expect the usual terrific costumes, traditional Morris dancing, delicious local food and, of course, cider of all varieties plus plenty of things for the kids to do. Friday 12 July (5pm-11pm) and Saturday 13 July (12pm-11pm) at Willie Smith’s Apple Shed in Grove. To find out more about the final festival visit

Meanwhile, Tasmania’s biggest winter festival, Dark Mofo, is taking a bit of a gap year. Despite announcing that the festival is on hiatus for 2024, DarkLab have delivered a decent lineup of events and gigs to coax us out from under the blankie on the couch. ARIA-winning rap artist Genesis Owusu kicks things off on opening weekend at The Odeon, shortly followed by Aoteroa / New Zealand’s Marlon Williams who will be on his first solo Australian tour in a decade. The Winter Feast will feed thousands of revellers over the two weeks. The nudie rudies will get their cold plunge on at the Nude Solstice Swim on 21 June at Long Beach. The annual Mona Gala is on 14 June – usually a secretive invite-only affair, this year you can buy your way in with a limited allocation of tickets available for $400. Mona’s new major exhibition, Namedropping, opens to the public the next day. Through the placement of 200 artworks (some from Mona’s collection, some new commissions and some borrowed) the show will question what status means and how we use it. Finish it all off with the mega dance party that is Night Shift on 21 and 22 June In The Hanging Garden. More info at

Tasmanian tourism operators continue to turn heads and impress, with some recently bringing home a whole collection of bling from the QANTAS Australian Tourism Awards. Winners were spread across accommodation, adventure, experiences and hospitality. Gold medals went to wukulina Walk (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Tourism Experience category), Pennicott Wilderness Journeys (Major Tour and Transport Operators), On Board (New Tourism Business), Air Adventure Golf (Tour & Transport Operators), Launceston’s The Dragonfly Inn (Hosted Accommodation), Grain of the Silos (Tourism Restaurants and Catering Services) and Bangor Vineyard Shed (Tourism Wineries, Distilleries and Breweries). Silver medals went to Ship Inn Stanley (4-4.5 Star Deluxe Accom-modation), Peppers Silo Hotel (Business Event Venues) and The Truffle Farm (Excellence in Food Tourism). The Granary took away bronze for Self- Contained Accommodation. Hearty congratulations to all!

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June 2024

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