On board the Spirit of Tasmania

Bass Strait Travel Blog

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Below decks in parking area

As quietly as we could we hitched our vans to our vehicles and left the sleeping patrons of the Ashley Gardens Caravan Park.  It has cabins to rent if you don't have a van and many bonuses like swimming pool, communal kitchen, BBQs, internet connection.  We marked out the route with Kate to get us to the dock avoiding a toll route and take the lead of the convoy.  John G has a GPS which wasn't programmed to our plan and "Ellie May" is ordering him to turn around and listen to her!

Safely there we are directed to a lane to park and wait.  We are way too early having left at 6 am for an 8 am boarding time.  As per safety rules we hand over our spare gas bottle and fuel containers.  Fuel containers have to be emptied and filled with water and all items can be collected on disembarkation.

Let the games commence in the lounge deck
  The ship is already docked and is discharging all it's passengers and vehicles from it's overnight voyage.  Around 8 am they begin boarding us and a tad nervously I negotiate the car and van through seemingly impossible gateways then up the ramp and into my aisle as directed.  We take out the items we will need for the 9 hours, check that all is secure in the van, then lock up and head up to the passenger decks.

Once there we quickly find the other 5 members of our group and secure a window seat with tables that allowed us to play board and card games.  Not a card player I tried to grasp Up and Down the River but failed miserably, did alright in a game of Scrabble then it was time to unveil Cranium.  Interested fellow passengers cast surreptitious glances our way as Sue seductively portrayed "Paint Stripper" in the charades challenge.

Pulling away from Melbourne Pier
  Some of the gang booked a sitting in the up-market a la carte dining room while Andrew and I tried the cafeteria.  For someone on a low or no carb diet the options were not too great but did us.

The ship was running a little late by the time we reached Devonport but we had booked three sites at Somerset and made a call to let them know we would be in later than planned.  Royale and John H had to divert out to the airport to collect the last member of our group, Lauraine, who was flying in from East Timor.  Disembarkation was smooth, gas bottle and fuel containers collected we drove the 45 mins to our camp. 

I had some packet meals in our pantry and once we were set up, heated them and put them out to share.  Cost in this park was $22 per night for the powered site and we have three nights arranged for here.   

  

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Below decks in parking area
Below decks in parking area
Let the games commence in the loun…
Let the games commence in the lou…
Pulling away from Melbourne Pier
Pulling away from Melbourne Pier
Melbourne skyline
Melbourne skyline
Melbourne as seen from the Spirit …
Melbourne as seen from the Spirit…
embarking, our car and van
embarking, our car and van
Me, Royale and Sue check out the o…
Me, Royale and Sue check out the …
Bass Strait
photo by: clearviews