Tassie Trip – Treasures of the Apple Isle

Preparing for Tassie Trip

My sister Sue and I had a wonderful holiday in Tassie compliments of our generous Auntie Jean who contributed to our air fares and our wonderful hosts, our cousin, Lynne, and her husband, Tich. Sue and I had visited Hobart 20 years ago but had never been to the north of Tasmania where our cousins live in the lovely seaside town of Burnie. They had invited us a couple of years ago. With our dear Auntie Jean now 85 keen to see us since she had relocated from Sydney to Burnie about 3 years ago we finally got our act together and booked our flights in early September last year for the week between Christmas and New Year.

Flight from Sydney to Launceston and Drive to Burnie

It was a very smooth trip to the airport and a smooth flight from Sydney to Launceston. Our other Sydney cousins Kate and her husband Ken and their son Patrick and niece Miranda were all on the same flight. We were there right on time, in fact with the wind behind us we were actually early. Tich who was born in Launceston, a proud Taswegian, was there to greet us and he gave us a running commentary on the history of the places as we drove past. We also caught up on the family situation – our Auntie Jean’s current state of health – less mobility needing a walker to get around and more frail  than when we last saw her and their daughter Nicki’s career teaching multi media etc.

Amelias B&B

DSCN0009 Anne outside Amelia's

Anne outside Amelia’s


Amelia’s Living Room

DSCN0103 Sue in Chinoise room in Amelias

Sue in Chinoise room in Amelias

We were shown to the B&B called Amelias owned by Lynne and Tich which was to be our home for the next 6 days. Lynne and Tich are retired teachers who now run a thriving business with their 3 B&Bs in great demand by tourists. The other 2 B&Bs are called The Duck House and Mrs Philpott’s. We shared this with our Sydney cousins. Sue and I shared a lovely room referred to as the Chinoise room.


Duck House

Duck House

DSCN0094 Lynne in the Duck House B&B

Lynne in the Duck House

Duck House is a quaint little cottage that caters for a smaller family group with a main bedroom and smaller bedroom for children. I thought at first that the Duck House was named after the animal but Lynne told us that its former inhabitant was a prominent citizen of Burnie who was called Mr Duck. We were amused when we saw all the toy ducks in the bath for children and duck shaped slippers in the bedroom. There is also a beautiful stained glass window with exquisite detail of ducks and ornaments of ducks on the mantel piece.

Mrs Philpotts


Mrs Philpotts

Lynne explained that bigger groups stay in Mrs Philpotts since it is more spacious than the Duck House having 3 bedrooms the main bedroom with Queen bed and the 2nd one with double bed and the 3rd with twin single beds. The photos are from Lynne and Tich’s website.

When I told Lynne that two of my colleagues had also had chosen Tasmania for the holidays Lynne responded with the following statistics: “Yes Tassie has exceeded the 1 million tourist mark this year. There are also lots of international tourists too, particularly from Germany, USA, China and of course the usual Brits who we have been getting for many years.”

DSCN0011 Burnie

Beautiful Burnie

DSCN0020 Burnie


Sue and I had a walk along the sea-side and explored the local shopping centre. We discovered there was a little bridge which led from the house to the shopping centre. We discovered some cafes and a workshop along the seashore.

Family Reunion

DSCN0013 Lynne, Jean, Kate & Sue

Lynne, Jean, Kate & Sue

DSCN0014 Lynne, Jean, Kate & Anne

Lynne, Jean, Kate & Anne

We were greeted by Lynne and embraced our Auntie Jean and met Lynne’s and Tich’s daughter Nicki whom we hadn’t seen for many years. The good thing about the B&Bs is that they are close to Lynne and Tich’s home so there is a common garden that is shared, giving easy access from Amelias and Lynne’s and Tich’s home. It was an emotional occasion seeing how Jean’s health had deteriorated since we last saw her. She is still very mentally alert but despite back surgery her mobility is very limited now, needing people to help hoist her up to her walker. She also told us the sad news that she had just found out that she also has macular degeneration.

DSCN0033 Lynne, Jean, Ken, Patrick & Kate

Lynne, Jean, Ken, Patrick & Kate

DSCN0035 Tich, Sue, Jean, Patrick & Kate

Tich, Sue, Jean, Patrick & Kate

I recalled a happier occasion where there was a big family reunion – a surprise party for Auntie Jean’s 70th birthday party at her daughter Kate’s and Ken’s home in Penshurst. Since then our cousin, Rick, the father of Miranda, has suffered a stroke which has also limited his activities.

Post Christmas Celebration

DSCN0030 Sue & Kate al fresco

Sue & Kate al fresco

DSCN0031 Lynne & Ken

Lynne & Ken

The Ferencz’s have a tradition of holding a big celebration every 27th December when friends and family from further afield such as Hobart are free to come and join in the festivities. Since Lynne and Tich were teachers many of their friends who came were also teachers. Lynne and Tich are great cooks so we enjoyed the feast that was offered. It also included fresh vegies and herbs from their own vegie garden. The weather was beautiful about 23 degrees and sunny with the mornings and evenings a little cooler so unlike the Sydney summer we needed a jacket once the sun went down.

Sight Seeing

DSCN0051 Boat Harbour

Boat Harbour

DSCN0070 The Nut

The Nut

On the 28th we did some sight-seeing with Ken at the wheel and Tich as our tour guide as we drove along the coast from Burnie to Stanley. We stopped to admire the pristine beach of Boat Harbour and then on the way to Stanley we meet some Geordie tourists. When we reached our destination we took photos of The Nut which Tich explained was a volcanic rock.

DSCN0065 Sue in front of Joseph Lyon's home

Sue in front of Joseph Lyon’s home

In Stanley we also visited the cottage of the first Tasmanian born Prime Minister of Australia Joseph Lyons.

It is a restored nineteenth century settler’s cottage in which Tasmania’s only Prime Minister, Joe Lyons was born in 1879. Antiques, historical photographs, family trees are on display. Joseph Aloysius Lyons was born in this tiny cottage in Stanley in 1879.


Highfield House

DSCN0082 Highfield House

Highfield House

Highfield House Abbey's Cottages

Highfield House Abbey’s Cottages

DSCN0084 Highfield House

Highfield House

DSCN0083 Highfield House

Highfield House

We managed to make it in time to visit the Highfield Historic Site which was built from 1832 to 1835 for the chief agent of the Van Diemen’s Company. The State Government purchased the house in the early 1980’s when it was in a dilapidated state. Today the house has been restored and invites visitors to look through the beautiful old building and grounds. The construction of the present ‘Highfield’, thought to be designed by Henry Hellyer for Edward Curr as his new home, commenced in May 1832. Later additions to Highfield were designed by John Lee Archer, an important Tasmanian colonial architect, and built during 1844 –1845. Convict barracks, barns, stables, chapel and large ornamental gardens were features of the estate. In mid 1853, the future of Highfield as the home of the chief agent was reassessed and after repair work in 1856,it was privately leased the following year. The property was purchased in 1914 by the Ford Family.

Leven Canyon

DSCN0107 Leven Canyon Reserve

Leven Canyon Reserve

DSCN0112 Anne at Cruickshank Lookout

Anne at Cruickshank Lookout

The next site Tich and Ken took us to was the Leven Canyon Reserve 45 minutes drive from Ulverstone. Places like Leven Canyon Reserve are all that stand between several threatened species of Tasmania’s animals and their disappearance forever. This reserve provides vital habitat and hunting grounds for creatures like the Tasmanian devil, spotted-tailed quoll, wedge-tailed eagle, eastern barred bandicoot and grey goshawk.

 Tich kept telling us to be prepared for a surprise and he didn’t disappoint as we wended our way to Cruickshank’s Lookout where we enjoyed breathtaking Canyon views 275m above the Leven River.
We noticed that we had slowed down and relaxed more in keeping with Tassie life. Everyone knew everyone else. No matter where we went with Tich whether it was just to the local markets in Burnie or sightseeing further afield Tich would meet a former, colleague, student or a parent of one of his former students. Sue and I enjoyed a leisurely breakfast in the lovely sun room in Amelias or in the living room with our cousins.
DSCN0099 Anne at the Distillery in BurnieLynne and Tich excelled themselves with a seafood night they put on for us – with delicious crayfish flesh in lettuce leaves with mango and avocado. Another day we went to the Distillery where the whole family enjoyed a delicious lunch.  Sue and I tucked into a seafood pie which was to die for! Just a skip hope and a jump from Lynne’s and Tich’s place across the road on the Bass Highway Sue and I saw the local arts and crafts at the Makers’ Workshop. We also Makers' Workshopenjoyed another culinary delight with berries and sour cream cheese on toasted sour dough bread. We also bought some souvenirs to take home for gifts for friends and family including jewellery, tea towels, soaps and sauces.
New Years Eve in Burnie
We all contributed to the New Year’s celebrations. I made a Greek salad and Tich baked his popular sour dough bread. Lynne and Kate made a multitude of salads and the men took charge of the berbecue.  Sue and I ate prawns on skewers we had bought at the local seafood shop. We all DSCN0125 Nikki & friends New Years Eve 2013congregated on the front verandah to view the fireworks display from the beach.
Saying our Good Byes
DSCN0126 Sue, Lynne, Tich Kate, Ken & MirandaNew Years Day was the day we were due to leave. Our magic time on the apple isle had come to a close all too soon. After thanking  our wonderfulDSCN0127 Anne, Lynne, Tich Kate, Ken & Miranda hosts, Lynne and Tich, with warm embraces we all climbed into Ken’s hire car for the drive to Launceston with an important stopover on the way to say good-bye to Auntie Jean in her lovely retirement village in Burnie. We reached Launceston airport in good time to have a bite to eat before boarding our plane with the exception of Ken who was driving to Hobart to join his friends  to sail from Hobart to Sydney. It had been exactly 20 years since I had been to Tassie when I stayed in Hobart. I hope it won’t be as long before we visit again!
PS If anyone would like to enjoy the treasures of the apple isle compliments of Lynne and Tich Ferencz see below for

Contact Details

Lynne Ferencz
24 Queen St, Burnie 7320
Tasmania Australia
Telephone (03) 6431 1712

Their beautiful B&BS are in big demand so you need to book ahead.

Leave a comment


  1. Ann Stradley

     /  February 20, 2014

       What great relatives you all have in Tasmania.  Your Musings make it clear that you know & appreciate them for their wonderful kindness and the way they made your trip so special. Be sure to tell Sue that she looks quite fetching in a kimono… .. Happy for you that all went so well.  All the best. Love Ann S & Rex


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