It goes without saying that when you go to Stanley you have to experience the Stanley Nut in some way. Whether it’s climbing it, taking photos of it or experiencing the chairlift. Unfortunately the chairlift wasn’t operating while we were there over the long weekend, so we opted to take lots of photos.
And climb it.
Just before we were about to climb it, Ella let us know she was:
“going to eat some of the nuts as we go up the big hill.’’
Which was followed by a conversation about the fact it’s not actually made of nuts.
When we got to the top, the view was incredible.
I’d say it took our breathe away, but that could also be from the fact we had to carry one child and drag another up the incredibly steep incline.
After watching Julian skid all the way back down (I highly recommend you wear good grip sneakers), we celebrated what was pretty hard going by having the most decadent chocolate brownie and scones and cream at the Touchwood Cafe. Sublime.
Afterwards we took the girls off to the Stanley Seaquarium. Now this is certainly no Melbourne Aquarium and is tailored more to the kids than the adults. Manager Dianne gave us a great opportunity to touch the crabs, see the octopus being fed and learn about seahorses that you just don’t get anywhere else.
The girls just loved it. So if you have young children, it’s well worth the visit. (Check out the Tasmanian Giant Crabs in the gallery).
I even encouraged Ella to listen to the ocean inside the shell, but she kept giving me blank stares. What are you going on about, Mum?
The afternoon was then dedicated to roaming Highfield House, a home originally built in 1835 for Edward Curr, chief agent of the Van Diemens Land Company.
If you’re a history buff you will fall in love with the story and the way the European-influenced home is set up to be able to tour it yourself with the aid of a map is a credit to the managers of the home. It was a fantastic, and very hands-on, experience.
Julian sat down with the girls and played snakes and ladders, but was quickly “spun out” when he swears the spinner moved without anyone touching it. I think he’s been reading too many ghost stories.
Ella was captivated by the chapel and classrom, and the fact there was not a computer in site. How on earth were you meant to do Reading Eggs?
All Ella cared about was dressing up in period costume. She’d been itching to do it all week, even asking:
“When we dress up in old fashioned clothes, does that mean everything will be in black and white?’’
She got her wish. Here’s the O’Briens in the olden days.
The sneakers – and the big smiles – sort of give it away.
We finished the tour with the most gorgeous rainbow. Which was quickly followed by a conversation about wanting to go and find the gold. We settled for some ABC2 on iView at our Stanley Seaview Inn accommodation instead.
More on that here.
Speaking to the people of Stanley, the MasterChef episode filmed at Highfield House on Thursday night certainly helped draw quite a lot of interest to the place – and so it should. It has the finest food this state has to offer, incredible scenery and true country style service. Sure, it can get mighty cold. But it’s well worth a visit.
What did you get up to over the long weekend?
DISCLOSURE: Our trip to Stanley was organised by Cradle Coast Tourism. We were given acommodation and tickets to the Sequarium and Highfield House. We were not paid to write this post. All opinions expressed are our own.