One of my favorite places in the world to visit and revisit is Tasmania. It isn’t just that we lived there for three years many years ago that pulls us back. There is something unique about the island that makes each return a special treat.
It is hard to put your finger on the magical quality it has. In one sense it is just like most other western societies with consumerism and supermarkets, graffiti and all the usual social problems. In that regard it is not that much different from home. Yet, at another level, its separation from the rest of the Australian rat race, its many places of retreat, its huge variety of scenery all within easy driving distance, makes it very appealing. If you are an elderly couple or a thrill seeker there is space and there are places for you.
Because I love European history, it is that aspect of Tasmania that appeals to me
most. The early European settlements, the connections with Convict History, the visual reminders of the past are all present and accessible. The bridges at Richmond and Ross are worth the trip alone.
And then there is the stunning visual beauty from rugged mountains, spectacular waterfalls to the secluded inlets and coves. Being campers we have often stayed in places that would other wise be impossible. There was a night in the Tahune State Forest, another near Hell’s Gates on the west coast that are etched in my memory. And pitching a tent on the Freycinet Peninsula is obligatory.
The aspect of Tasmania that thrills me most is that it refreshes my faith in the creator God. It reminds me that this place wasn’t an accident or a freak offshoot of chance but an glimpse of an intentional God who has a sense of beauty and magnificence. Tassie is a reminder that I need to keep my eyes and heart open for glimpses of God, not just in places, but in people and circumstances. God refreshes our soul through his Word and Spirit but there are times when He does it through what he has made.