A surprising visit to a popular local point of interest…Thinking about pesticides..Bees and worms…

It was Saturday (yesterday) when we stopped by, but it wasn’t busy. Very few venues are overly busy in this quiet laid back area.

After the rain settled down and the clouds began to waft away, we were chomping at the bit to get out. Deciding to make it a dual-purpose trip, we included the weekly shopping, albeit a few days earlier than necessary, and to include some sightseeing on the same sunny day.

The sign on the highway to the Huon Valley Visitor Centre and The Honey Pot.

With a plan in mind to visit a few popular spots, afterward, we didn’t hesitate to drive with nowhere in mind after having visited those few venues on our “to do” list. We love the surprises we encounter when driving aimlessly on country roads.

This particular visitor center has many more interesting items than some we visited in the past.

One of the attractions we were anxious to see was the Huon Valley Visitor Centre. Of course, one wouldn’t think a visitors centre wouldn’t be all that interesting, but with this particular centre, regarded as one of the more interesting to visit, we weren’t disappointed.

The center offers these services and more:

Services Offered:

  • Free Information

  • Itinerary planning

  • Booking service for attractions, accommodation, tours, and cruises

  • Local knowledge

  • Maps and brochures

  • National Park Passes

  • Gift Shop with Souvenirs, local crafts, and products

  • Free WiFi

  • Free parking on site

  • Toilets on site

  • Baby Change Facilities on site

After reading reviews at Trip Advisor and discovering this center is listed as #4 of 12 Things to Do in the Huon Valley, we weren’t at all surprised when we entered the property to find a wealth of interesting products, services, and the popular Honey Pot, located at the rear of the shop.

Stuffed wombat, koala, and other popular Australian critters. 

No more than a minute after we entered, a rep approached us, asking if she could assist us. We explained we were interested in browsing and taking some photos if they didn’t mind. Of course, they were delighted to comply.

Hand-carved wood guitar.

Upon entering any facility, we usually ask permission to take photos, and we’re seldom refused, especially in Australia. However, on occasion, due to religious beliefs, we have been asked not to take photos. 

A stuffed Tasmanian Devil and others.

Recently, at Australia Day celebrations in Franklin, a vendor snapped at us when I took a quick shot. At that point, I’d taken one photo of his handmade product display and promptly deleted it. I suppose some makers of specific products fear others will copy their designs. When refused, we politely apologize, accepting their choice, never making a fuss or negative comment.

At first glance, we thought these were baguettes, big and small, when in fact, they were rolling pins. 

After we perused the many interesting items in the shop and collected some free brochures for future outings, we moseyed to the back of the store to the somewhat separate Honey Pot shop where everything “bee” was on display, including an actual live honeycomb as shown below.

An enclosed honeycomb is located in the shop.

Tom asked the salesperson if the devastating loss in the number of bees is as big an issue in Australia as in the US.  She explained that the manufacturers of their products actually ship bees to the US. Who knew?

Surely, with the US as the second-highest user of the world’s pesticides, it’s no wonder the bee population is dwindling.  Hopefully, soon, “they” will accept this reality and make some changes.

Per this chart depicting the world’s use of pesticides, it’s easy to see this is a dire situation:

Top Pesticide Consuming Countries Of The World

Rank Country Annual Pesticide Consumption (millions of kilograms)
1 China 1,806
2 United States 386
3 Argentina 265
4 Thailand 87
5 Brazil 76
6 Italy 63
7 France 62
8 Canada 54
9 Japan 52
10 India 40

A few years ago, the US was the highest user of pesticides, but recently China has topped the list. For more information, please click here. Oh, I could go nuts on this topic, but I won’t since, let’s face it, it’s political more than anything. 

Located in the rear of the Visitor Centre, the Honey Pot is an adorable “honey” themed shop. Of course, neither of us uses honey due to the sugar content, but it was fun to see.

As stated in a post a few days ago, we attempt to avoid making a political stance on our site. It’s not always easy to stay mum on these topics, but not everyone shares similar views. Our goal here is to stay as neutral as possible on these topics. 

However, after shopping at the health food stores and farmers’ markets, nothing pleases me more than to find insects in our produce. This is an obvious sign that few pesticides are used in farming, especially when the insects are near the outer leaves or exterior of the produce.

Bee-inspired products.

Yesterday, after our road trip and excursions (more coming later), I did grocery shopping, purchasing three zucchini packages. Upon returning home, I began to thoroughly wash each of the zucchini along without other purchases. 

Cute bee products for sale.

The ugliest worm was attached to the backside of one of the zucchini. Happily, I washed it off, never hesitating to use my fingers to flick it off. This reminded me of a most outrageous worm I found on a head of lettuce in Madeira in 2014. Here’s the photo I took at the time and the link.

I didn’t grab the camera quickly enough to take the photo when this worm actually picked up its head and looked at me. So I picked it up and placed him/her outside in the grass.

Today, with clouds rolling back in over this area after a sunny start to the day, we’ll soon head back to Geeveston to see the annual event we’ll share in tomorrow’s post.

Have a beautiful day filled with sunshine in your heart.

Photo from one year ago today, February 5, 2016:

Tom, standing outside Taylor Dental Practice in New Plymouth, New Zealand, where he had his problematic molar pulled.  For more details, including the cost, please click here.