On Water / Bruny Boat House

The road draws us through forest, coastal vistas and sprawling paddocks.

Rich pasture and the tickle of the sea hangs in the air. We are taking two nights to recoup at Bruny Island, a place steeped in dense history and salt. The island hugs the flank of South Eastern lutruwita/Tassie, only a skip away from Hobart, yet it feels miles away.

We arrive at Allonah. This small town rests on the inside of the island, home to locals, shacks, the school and pub. Here we have found our final destination, Bruny Boathouse.

As we enter the front door, the thrum of island pace washes over us. In front lies a gently curving beach, and a small mariner, nestled behind Satellite island, which guards the small, coastal community.

On the horizon, the forms of Hartz Mountains and Southern lutruwita (Tasmania) bleed into an atmospheric haze.

By evening, the decibels in our stomach are matching the ocean rollers on the other side of the island.
Fish and chips always taste better by the sea, and Hotel Bruny delivers a golden crunch that you’d happily return for.

Back at the Boathouse, we sink into couches, a welcome gin at our side as the evening begins its sunset concerto.

Like an oil painting, the clouds morph, as layer upon layer of light is added, until the whole belly of the place becomes a marinade of sun-rays.

The sunset rubs itself into the bones of the room, lacing everything with golden light. Seeping into walls, glass, eyes, words. Minutes become a sponge, soaking up the blazing day as she casts her final show.
Then the evening draws a curtain around the island.

The next day Cloudy Bay beckons. Just a 20 minute drive south delivers us to one of Bruny's most picturesque locations.

A slight chill massages the breeze, a subtle hint of the wildness that this coastline can switch on at a moment's notice.

There's a hum and presence about this place. Whitewater and black history combine here. Untamed beauty and turbulence thrive here.

The thrumming belly of water lies restless, ready to thrust rollers at eager surfers and turn the bay into kelp soup.

We brave the breeze and walk to the stillness of Cloudy Corner, at the southern end of the bay.

Here, vertical bush tumbles to white sand, and there’s nothing to speak of what time we are in, except the small bottom-bashers that lay at anchor. Ready to dash out for a chance of a feast.

Time passes differently here. It seems unnatural to attach hours to it, but hours pass anyway.

Black cockatoos cast their broken discord like a net across the coastal banksia. Leaves wriggle and jostle like fish beneath the birds' air-borne squarks as we head North, back to the gull-guarded stillness of Alonnah.

Our final night. The fire pit spits and glows. A dark sunset awakes, bruised with greys and blue, and the faint yellow of a tired sun.

The comfort of the Boathouse welcomes us back to bed as we retire to dream of cockatoos and tomorrow’s cheese at the famous Bruny Island Cheese Co.

Do cockatoos like cheese? Would it make them have weird dreams like it does for us humans? We don't know, but...definitely time for those zzZZzzs.

On our final morning, we de-claim the space that has held us in such comfort the past two days.

It feels too early to leave here, but we are grateful for the time. Grateful to have spent two nights in such a place, grateful for the generosity of Soph, our wonderful host. Grateful for the island herself.

Caffeine lingers as we embark onto the ferry and hug the Channel home.

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