The Evergreen Tour begins

Previous page: We return from MONA

 

We all climb onboard the Evergreen coach

Our coach we would travel Tasmania in Our Evergreen coach

The street in front of Hadley's Hotel is one way. Our driver Brett is able to bring the coach up close to the hotel entrance which is on the right side of the road as you face forward. The luggage can be loaded in from this side of the coach. However it is too dangerous for passengers to climb on board whilst the coach is on the right-hand side of the road. Brett ensures all the luggage is loaded and then he drives the coach around the block and pulls up on the left-hand side of the road. Us passengers walk the few metres to the traffic lights, cross the road and then climb safely on board the coach. It worked well and everyone was kept safe.

 

Seat numbering on the Evergreen buses

Evergreen has a very fair system that ensures everyone has a turn at sitting in various places on the coach.  Each pair of seats is given a number and the numbering is done haphazardly.  We first sat in seats 17 which were on the right side of the bus about half way down. The next day we were to sit in seats 18 which were further down the back of the bus on the left side. The next day again we would be in seats 19 which were, obviously, in some other location on the bus. So, you shifted up one number each day.  So, Ian and I always sat together but we had different passengers around us each day. It encouraged everyone to make friends.

 

We appreciate our tour director and driver

We soon realized we had the most incredible team leading our tour.  John was the tour director and Brett was the driver. They hadn’t worked together before this trip,  but you wouldn’t have known that, had they not revealed it. John was a true gentleman and so kind and thoughtful. Brett was the cheeky one and my goodness was he knowledgeable about Tasmania.  He had an encyclopedia for a brain.  When Brett started commenting we soon realized how much history and geography we would have missed had we been driving a car around Tasmania rather than taking a coach tour.

Inside the Evergreen coach Inside the coach
Mats to keep the coach floors clean The essential mats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brett likes his coach to be very clean. He has two or three mats down at ground level for us to wipe our feet on each time we board the coach. There are certain items we are not allowed to eat or drink on the coach too. All of this was sensible plus it meant less cleaning for Brett at the end of the day. His coach was always immaculate.

 

The owner of MONA

As the coach drove along we spotted MONA up on the hillside. 

You will remember MONA is the Museum of Old and New Art that we visited a couple of days earlier. Brett started to talk about MONA. At that stage I think we were the only passengers on the coach who had been to the museum. We had read earlier that the owner, David Walsh, was a very wealthy man who was, obviously, incredibly generous to have built the museum and given it to the Tasmanian people.  However, Brett filled us in further. David Walsh is a gambling man but he gambles in a very big way.  Brett told us that David had 800 people employed, gambling for him worldwide. He is a very unusual character indeed, read about David Walsh the arts philanthropist and even more interesting is this article from The Australian.  You’ve got to admire the man.

 

We are off to visit Bonorong Park

Our first stop on the tour was the Bonorong Wildlife Park. It is located in a lovely spot high up on a hill. The air was cool and felt crisply clean. The park was very clean too. It seemed to be kept in very good condition and the animals all looked healthy and happy. 

Koala with keeper Koala with keeper at Bonorong
Tasmanian Devil plays a game Tasmanian Devil attached to keeper's socks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We saw kangaroos, parrots, emus, koalas, Tasmanian Devils and kwolls. Sadly we didn’t see any wombats. I’d never seen a wombat before so I was a little disappointed. The Tasmanian Devils were very interesting to learn about. The keeper of their compound was telling us about their different personalities (or, perhaps, degrees of wildness). He said he had sat down on the ground to read a book in one of their enclosures early one evening. He ended up falling asleep.  When he awoke two of the Tasmanian Devils had climbed onto his lap and made themselves very comfortable. However there was a Tasmanian Devil in a separate enclosure nearby who was a very different character. If the keeper had fallen asleep in this other enclosure he would have woken up with his face being torn apart.

There is a little souvenir shop at Bonorong and a place where you can donate to help with the cost of maintaining the place.

 

Next page: Heading to Bicheno

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View from Bonorong Wildlife Park

View seen from the wildlife park