Trip Start May 18, 2003
272Trip End Ongoing
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We arrived yesterday on Highway 1 just before sun down and checked into the Launceston City Youth Hostel ($15) on the edge of the city. Almost immediately the proprietor of this independent hostel started the first of many rants during the course of our stay here. He started off by asking Jorgen why he was wearing a jacket with a Japanese flag on it, and his speech went downhill from there as it trailed off on unrelated tangents...
Keen to go shopping and get some supplies for dinner and breakfast we drove into the city centre to try and locate a supermarket (Coles on Charles St). Launceston is a small city (although the second largest in Tasmania) and at 6pm on a Thursday most shops and establishments had already closed for business. Thankfully Coles was still open until 10pm, so we were able to cook up a nice curry with rice back at the hostel kitchen.
The hostel is a little antiquated. The large dorm rooms have old fashioned bunk beds and the showers are operated by a 10c coin (for six minutes of hot water). If it was not for the obnoxious owner I would say it is an okay place to stay for a night, but being off season we were the only backpackers there. A school party had also checked in for tonight so we decided to walk into town and try and watch the European Champions League Football Semi-Final at a hotel somewhere. Dominik, Jorgen & I saw the first half before we had to head back, because the front door is locked at midnight.
This morning we checked out and parked Sheila up near Cataract Gorge and walked around this beautiful tourist spot. There are some picturesque walks along the edge of the gorge, and we took the one leading all the way into the centre of Lonni. From here we walked past the Penny Royal Gunpowder Mill and then along the river front.
Having spent the afternoon wandering around the city streets there seems to be a little more life to Lonni than I first suspected.