Friday, October 30, 2015

Launceston, Home of the Platypus House

Our last stop in Tasmania was the riverfront northern town of Launceston, home to over 100,000. The town is unremarkable but they have done a nice job of preserving their 19 century architectural heritage.

We began our first day with a hike that included crossing a 90 year old suspension bridge which spanned the ominously named Cataract Canyon. We passed without incident!

We then headed down river to the Platypus House, where researchers are trying to learn more about the little monotreme and it's odd looking relative, the echidna. Beauties they are not but, as monotremes, they share one characteristic found in no other mammal anywhere but Australia. They both lay eggs. Very interesting.

The Tasmainian phase of our trip is winding down. Tomorrow we jet over to Melbourne, on the mainland, and the next phase of our journey.

Random Thoughts
Driving: Americans tend to say "Australians drive on the wrong side of the road." It's true they, like their British brethren, drive on the left.  But rightfully they are quick to point out that is not the "wrong" side of the road. It is the "other" side of the road. It's just a matter of perspective.

Gas Prices: People often ask about prices in Australia. Here is one example. Gas is about A$1.40 a liter. Converting to US dollars and gallons that comes to about $3.80/gallon. Not too different from home.

Coffee: Seattleites think they are the big coffee drinkers. The Aussies can't be far behind. In towns large and small coffee shops are abundant and the coffee is good. Here a "flat white" is coffee with cream. A "long black" is just black coffee. 

No comments:

Post a Comment