So many people ask me “how do you entertain yourself so far away from the city?” At this time of year, there is plenty to do in the country!
Summer is our peak time for tourism in Tasmania, and boy are we experiencing a tourism boom. There are more visitors on the roads than we have ever seen. This means that there is always something fun to do outside of the city.
My favourite thing to do right now is the Farm Gates – buying our food straight from the farmers, fresh and delicious. We live about 30 minutes drive from our nearest supermarket, on the way home however it takes a little longer.
Our first stop just outside of town in CHERRIES! Our area grows some of the most amazing cherries I have seen or tasted. Huge, juicy and oh so moreish! Our drive to town is dominated by hops, and cherries, makes for some beautiful views along the drive and even better when you get to eat them all the way home.
Next stop is the Hayes “men’s shed” not an official Men’s Shed but a gathering of local farmers who sit around the fire place (yes, we still run them through some summer days here), have a cuppa and a chat. They always bring in what they are growing or picking that day, and by that day I mean carrots just pulled from the ground, honey just harvested or Tassie pink eye potatoes fresh from the soil. I’ll possibly say this about every single thing I buy, but you have never tasted fruit and veg till you get it from the farmer who has just harvested it! Can’t get that in the city.
A little further up the road is our next stop (we’ve only travelled about 15kms out of town now), the biggest, juiciest and tastiest peaches, nectarines and plums.
By now the car is pretty full (and bellies are starting to be too), but there is one more stop before we reach home – the Westerway Raspberry Farm. Fresh picked raspberries, strawberries and some REAL black currant cordial.
Each stop is not just about the produce, it’s about the chat with the producers too. Hearing about how their season is going, what is growing well and what they have been up to.
So that occupies a few days a week. How do we entertain ourselves in the evening?
My favourite activity is Friday evening Farm Bar and the Two Metre Tall Brewery. It’s the chance to catch up with many friends from our Valley, taste the unique new concoctions and enjoy our regular favourite ales and ciders. We always buy some of the beer fed beef and throw it on the half drum BBQ, sit back with our drinks and watch the kids playing in the cattle runs and exploring the haunted house (not a tv or game screen in sight). This is our time to unwind, catch up and take stock of our week. For our children it is time to run, expend their energy, enjoy playing with other children and create new games, a time to be a kid.
Life in the country may not have the ‘conveniences’ of the city, but it certainly has the connections and the experiences the city lacks. I love my country dream.