Blackmans Bay

At the end of the last blog we had packed up our camp site in Port Arthur and drove on to our next adventure, house sitting a cat called Ruckus for a couple of weeks in Blackmans Bay. 

Ruckus the cat
But before we leave Port Arthur camp site I must show you this. These guys were our neighbours. As a Doctor Who fan I found this a very interesting little campervan.
Tardis and Dalek stickers and Tardis number plate. It’s bigger on the inside.

Blackmans Bay

Blackmans Bay with Mount Wellington in the distance. Blackmans Bay was named after a James Blackman, a european settler who occupied land there in the 1820s. Apparently he didn’t bring an apostrophe with him. You can see from this picture the town is built on the side of a hill.

Blackmans Bay is a small town based around a beach. It’s in a bay (duh!) so the waters are calm and clear and the sand clean and beautiful. We were in a house high on the hill, Google said it’s a 100m above sea level. We walked down to the beach and around the headland at least once a day. The walk down was a doddle, the walk back up the hill not so. Got easier each time we did it though.

We could see that the beach was used for some ceremonies.
The weather was over 35c on quite a few of the days we were there, plus it was still school holidays. So why wasn’t the beach packed with people and swimmers? Then we found this clue.
Mutant 3 eyed fish ahead I read from this.

Didn’t stop some people though, we did see some kids in the water and a few other dedicated swimming souls each day.

Snorkelling looking for the 3 eyed fish no doubt.
This was as far as Jenni got into the water
And this was as close as I got to getting my feet wet

We were, as usual, really busy with work. We did try and get out each day though. So this blog is really about what we saw walking around Blackmans Bay. The light each day was so very different and therefore the scene changed with each venture out. There was a walking path that took us over the headlands that bracketed the small beach, they offered up some spectacular views.

On one of the days the light was almost liquid
View across to South Arm and Opossum Bay
There was always plenty of activity going on in the water, this is Pennicott Eco Tours showing some lucky tourists the attractions around the cost of this part of Tasmania.
View from the headland walking path
Often we saw kayakers exploring on their own
Beautiful coastline, I can see why it is popular.
We did investigate if we could hire some kayaks but you can’t in Blackmans Bay.
Lots of yachts at the weekends, seemed like it was a race
They lookedlike they were going to sail around Bruny Island which was just off the coast
The red sails make you go faster obviously

Seagull Spa

The seagull spa on the beach

One of the very strange things we noticed was at this feature on the beach. First thing we noticed was how many seagulls congretated at this point every day. The second this we noticed was how every few minutes waves of seagulls would fly in while another wave left. Almost in rotation, like they were taking their turns.

The 10:15am group arriving
They’d swoop in and head straight for this pool of ‘freshwater’ and drink heartily. As each wave of seagulls came in some left to make room for them.
Then they’d go hang out in the shallow, calm waters by the shore and wash themselves for a while, dipping their heads and bodies under the waters a few times. It reminded me of a day spa for seagulls.


Being so close to Maddy and Steve we took some opportunities to meet up with them. We went out for dinner one evening in Bar Wa Izakaya. I can’t praise this place highly enough. We love it here.

Bar Wa Izakaya
Where the best of Tokyo and Hobart meet
Some very true philosophy from a sign in the bar
Collection of old sake bottles
If you ever get to Hobart, look this place up. You will not be dissappointed.

Indian and Fish & Chips

If you are going to open a restaurant to appeal to the widest possible audience go for Indian and Fish & Chips in one restaurant.

Bombay on the Beach in Blackmans Bay has done just that.
It got great reviews. Then when we saw this sign in the window stating their Go Green intentions we booked a table.

The food was ok, a bit bland. It was also apparent they were not really taking the Go Green very seriously as there were dozens of people collecting their take away meals in plastic boxes in plastic bags. The bags did have “Please recycle or reuse me” in large green friendly letters though so thats ok. Did not see one take away meal in anything other than plastic boxes. Plus they had straws in drinks. It was very disappointing.

Pretty soon it was time to leave Ruckus and Blackmans Bay.

Ruckus was obviously gutted to see us go

We will remember this place fondly though. The walks over the headlands kept us fit. Here are some more sights from our time here.

The local primary school made tiles that the council embedded in the path. The tiles went from A to Z with different scenes on them, we tried to guess them as some were obscure. We got them all except this one, that was until I saw the embossed writing on the metal edge of each one giving us a small clue.
Took this pic just for Andy and Jenny. A little piece of Scotland made it to Tasmania.
Fruit tree and blue skies. Not sure what they are, thought they were pears or plums or apples. They were hard a bullets.
Tis the season for the big, purple headed, flowery things. They were everywhere.
Edit: Thanks to Susan Power I now know they are called Agapanthus.
It’s a very fertile place
Tried so hard to get a good pic of just one of the gazillion butterflies that are everywhere. This is as good as I got.
Farewell Blackmans Bay
Till next time, next stop Huonville


For the next 11 nights we are camping in Huonville Camp Site. As we are working during the week we try not to set up our tent on a weekday, or if its wet and windy, as it takes a bit of time out of the working day and its a pain setting up in bad weather. As we were leaving Blackmans Bay on a weekday, and it was forecast rain and wind, we booked into a unique little Airbnb in Huonville for one night and let the storm blow over.

Gypsy Caravan Airbnb in Huonville. Small but beautifully formed.

We stayed in Huonville Camp Site about 2 years ago and wrote about it in a previous blog. It is still one of the most beautiful camp grounds we’ve stayed in.

Huon River at the edge of the camp site

The tiny village of Huonville has soul but, I’ll leave that to the next blog.

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