A trip to Woolies turned into a sightseeing adventure…

Many small islands lie near the shore.

Woolworths grocers, known as “Woolies” are popular in Australia. We went shopping at the Woolies in Trinity Beach during our 3 month stay beginning in June 2015. 

For our first big grocery shopping trip, we decided to forgo a farmers market and meat market for the purpose of getting the staples we’d need during our three month stay in Tasmania.  Anything left after this first six weeks will be taken with us to the Huon Valley for the second six week stay at the other end of the state.

View on the road to Ulverstone to do some shopping.

We realize that many of our readers are perhaps not interested in our grocery and/or food purchases and for that, please be patient with us. For us, with our way of eating it becomes very important and, for many of our readers who have written to us, they’re curious as to food products available in other countries.

With the winding narrow road, I had to take photos while we were moving.

I should mention that even in large market Woolies most vegetables are organic, most meat is grass-fed and chicken is organic and free range. The labels clearly indicate the origin of the products available for sale, including indications for farmed fish, which we do not consume. 

The head of lettuce we bought required a lot of washing and eliminating insects. What does it tell you? No pesticides. It was misshapen and uneven. There again, indicating true organic products. We easily found chemical-free eggs, free range, directly from the Woolies farm. In essence, we could, if we so chose purchase all of our food from this market.

A large house sits at the tip of a peninsula.

However, we plan to visit the upcoming farmers markets, mostly available on weekends, grass fed meat markets and locally caught fish markets while we’re in Tasmania. Doing so becomes a huge part of our enjoyment in an area giving us an opportunity to mingle with locals and hear about and see their farms. 

The beautiful road to Ulverstone.

Planning our meals and shopping for ingredients becomes an integral part of our desire and pleasure in living in rural areas, visiting farms, learning the culture and blending in as much as possible.

Our host and landlord Terry has been so helpful. Not only has he provided this impeccable property for our use over these six weeks, but he delivered three bottles of his homemade purified/distilled water for our use, although tap water is safe to drink in Tasmania.

Although we won’t be able to see sunsets from our location, the morning sun offers a stunning view.

The kitchen and property is so well equipped we avoided the expenditure of many staples we usually buy including many spices, quality olive oil, herbal teas, vinegars and toilet paper.  We created a grocery list with these items in mind and headed along the ocean to drive to the next town of Ulverstone where the Woolies is located.

Ulverstone is at a distance from this spot.

Penguin has a few markets, but they’re small and less well stocked. Also, the smaller local markets have higher prices, making it worth the drive to Ulverstone to the popular supermarket. 

In future visits, we’ll get out and explore this reserve.

Little did we know, the 20 to 25 minute drive was much more interesting than we’d anticipated. Terry suggested we take the coastal route if we were interested in some amazing scenery.  He was so right! With the bright morning sun shining on the sea, the scenic route took our breath away. For that reason alone, we’ll be looking forward to returning to Ulverstone for grocery shopping in the also quaint 7000 population town.

We’re excited to see the trains pass by our view several times a day. 

The temperature here is considerably cooler than we’d anticipated. With no warm clothing in our tiny inventory, we both needed to find something in the way of a sweatshirt or flannel shirts while in Ulverstone. In Australia, sweatshirts are called “jumpers.”

Parking on the main boulevard where literally all the stores are located, we found a few shops, one where we each purchased soft flannel shirts, both men’s sizes, Tom’s an XL, mine, a small for US $20, AU 27. I found a perfect hooded jumper in another nearby store for US $15, AU 20 which I’m wearing now, feeling cozy and warm on the chilly morning.

Historical Furners Hotel in downtown Ulverstone. There are many other small towns we’ll explore while in Penguin.

A visit to the pharmacy, a stop at a dollar type store for a pitcher for our iced tea and a few kitchen supplies including parchment paper, tin foil pans and environmentally friendly laundry soap rounded out our shopping. 

Then, we drove further down the same road to a computer store where we’d hoped to purchase a power cord for one of our laptops which quit working while on the cruise. They didn’t have such a cord available, but suggested we drive to Devonport where surely we’ll be able to make the appropriate purchase. In the next few days, we’ll make the 40 minute trip.

The main street in Ulverstone where all the shops can be found.

Lancaster House, another historical building in Ulverstone.

Back in the car, we drove to Woolies, finding every item on our list. Our total bill including enough groceries for eight days, totaled US $209, AU 280. In most new locations we’ve easily spent 30% more.

Back on the scenic road, again we stopped for photos when possible on the narrow oceanfront road. We can’t wait to make that drive again soon. Today, we’re sharing some of the photos from yesterday’s drive. In time, we’ll continue to share more photos from our two day road trip.

Again today, we continue to wash and hang our clothing after all the germs on the ship. It’s the first time in four months, we’re doing laundry. Tom helps with the hanging and heavy lifting while I sort and fold.

Tom’s busy catching up on all the Vikings games he missed during the 33-night cruise with the poor streaming signal on the ship. He’s catching up on several games he missed using his membership in NFL Game Pass. The WiFi is excellent in this property and he’s watching a game as we speak.

Tom commented that the gauge (the distance between the two rails) is considerably smaller in Australia than in the US.

We’re busy making plans for the upcoming few days/weeks, including an exciting Saturday night social event with our landlords which we’ll share in a future post. Thanks to all of our loyal readers for “traveling along with us.” It’s been delightful sharing our travels with all of YOU.

Happy day!

Photo from one year ago today, December 6, 2015:

What can I say? This was my favorite photo we’d taken in Fiji. It so bespeaks a life in Fiji, the freedom of barnyard animals to roam, to thrive and grow. The fact that we find barnyard animals so worthy of mention only enhances our experiences throughout the world. For more details, please click here.

Comments and responses A trip to Woolies turned into a sightseeing adventure…

  1. Terry Reply

    A wonderful description of your entry into Tasmania travelling via the East Coast to Penguin. Great photos of the beaches with white sands and the forests down to the river edges.The North West Coast is a well kept secret and the locals enjoy sharing it with tourists from all over the world.

  2. Jessica Reply

    Thanks, Terry! How wonderful of you to write here! We appreciate everything you've done for us and feel so "at home" in your lovely Penguin property and quaint and interesting ocean town. We can't wait to see and do more, many of which we may have missed without your knowledgeable suggestions!

    Warmest regards,
    Jess & Tom

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