GOLFMKV Driving Holiday to Tassie/Targa Tasmania 2011

Justin Fox

Ready to race!
Just thought I'd share an epic trip with you guys who might never make it down to Tasmania, hope you enjoy :)


This is a shot of the group leaving the shell on the m5 towards Melbourne. Chris and Cam are in Chris' red MKVI GTI. Jason's alone in his MKIV GTI and Nath's alone too in his R36 sedan.

Day 1 we got up ridiculously early. Jason met us at the beach and we started our drive out to the Shell/McDonalds at Suttons Forrest. To our surprise the sat nav system in Christina's car was pretty damn accurate and despite the distance and lack of traffic we got there at 6.30AM on the dot.

In this photo Jason's washing his car with multi-coloured car foam (very cool!).

Our sat nav systems forced us onto Sydney Road once we got into Melbourne city, the road was a 40 zone and there was heaps of traffic. Due to the long drive, tired eyes and traffic the boys got a little delirious and much walkie talkie laugther was had (we were all dialed into channel 33). We stopped off to wash our cars before meeting up with the Melbourne Crew.

Some of the Melbourne guys + JDMST/Jtype guys met us at the infamous garage cafe where you're welcome to park your car inside the venue (a cool concept which I wish existed in Sydney).

We had a meal (they serve up Indonesian food) which went down a treat. Despite being tired we were eneergised by meeting some new faces as well as catching up with the old. Cool guys, cool city.

One of the boys brought down his newly finished BMX which was loaded with NOS (new old stock) parts. Gotta love the fusion. Cars, bikes, all in!

We could have spent heaps more time with the Melbourne guys but we had to get going to load our cars up on the Spirit Of Tasmania.

It was a long wait getting the cars on, but it was exciting too and since we had walkie talkies we managed to make time fly faster by cracking silly jokes. It was at this point tht I decided to take 2 travel calm tablets "just in case".

Into the boat we go.

SUGA's final parking spot.

VW represent! Chris and Cam were parked just a few cars behind us.

The travel calm tablets I took absolutely wasted me. We were having a few drinks at the bar and they made me feel even worse. Christina and I both passed out early before anyone else. The boat rocked pretty hard at times in the night, amazing considering how massive the Spirit is.

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

This is what Christina's sat nav had on display in the morning.

The PA system on the boat woke everyone up at 6AM sharp, we all basically woke up and met up at the bar. It was at this point that we found out Nath had to share his tony room with a random guy, and gay jokes ensued.

Epic twisty roads.

Tassie was sunny. Cold in the shade and bitey hot under the sun. Perfect weather so we hit the twisties and Nath led us (yes his R36 is damn fast!) through some of the best roads I've ever driven. Sections of tight twisty roads, fast sweeping sections, you name it, Tassie has it.

View from one lookout.


Another lookout with a glassy lake.

It was at this lookout that I spotted a picture where the guy holding a trout looked (to me) a lot like Cam. Funny thing was that Cam cracked up and thought so too. For the rest of the trip Cam was known as Tassie Cam!

We unfortunately came across a dirt road, but slowing down wasn't so much a problem when there were views like this to be had.

It's the me. Tassie Cam outside was being chased by a huge bumblebee (he was attacked by bee's all week!).

After the twisties we headed into town to check-in. Fish and Chips at the wharf and of-course some local beer to wash it all down.

When we got to our Hotel (Hotel Charles) it turns out Porsche had chosen it to be the hotel of choice for their 60th Anniversary guests. Perfect!

Carerra GT - this thing was parked in the hotel foyer. I've never seen one in real life. Blew my socks off.

I made love to it with my camera, lol, seriously though, it's art.

Our hotel room was small but cozy, the King size bed was extra comfy and it turns out the staff have all bought one as well, so too the Royal Family in England (note to self: must get the brand name off Nath!).

Our hotel carpark later that night. I creamed my pants pretty much.

Damn, so nice.


We had dinner at the Black Cow which came highly recommended. I had the Rib Eye, dry hung, 21 days on the bone. The taste of their grill was epic, so was the cut of meat. As good as Rockpool on a good night.

Creme Brulee.

Nath cracking us up with some dirty stories from his time in the Navy. Yep that's me crying with laughter.

So much belly laughter it hurt!

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

On day 3 we headed to the small town of Sheffield to watch some Targa action. Christina spotted this cute alpaca on the side of the road and had to have a cuddle!

New Polo GTI - it turns out that Lilydale was a lunch stop for all competitors so we spent the day there just checking out all the cars in the competition. Hearing and seeing these cars up close was an awesome experience.

Race spec Porsche roadster.

How nice are these wheels?! I've love some for my Golf.

APR Golf R sporting some crazy retro graphics. Dean (driver) was nice enough to take a time out and chat to the boys.

All caged up inside.

New RAYS VR.G2 wheels on this Audi TT. So much quality JDM performance gear everywhere, even on the European cars.

Rotary powered NB. Had to be heard.

Just Jap 400R.

Donut King R35.

Pressure was on these guys to win once again. Hearing this car launch off the next leg of the race sent a shiver down my spine.

Glenny's factory backed RX8.

We followed some cars after lunch to the start of their next leg. This STI had to be pushed to start.

Tasmania's a pretty place. All you have to do is look up and away to see spectacular views like this.

Not wanting to miss out on all the action Captain Nath took us to some more twisties.

Locals shot this sign up!

Again, beautiful views.

Mr. Wombat. On the way back to the hotels we spotted a huge Tasmanian Devil statue on the side of the road. We thought we'd check it out.

Pretty side on.

Hillarious front on! - There were heaps of Kangaroos. All very friendly.

Spotted Quoll.

The keeper brought out little Maggie, a baby wombat and Christina fell in love.

So did Cam - for the next few days, many more Cam and Maggie jokes ensued.

Random shot of Chris's sexy headlights.

Chris and Cam - later that night we headed to Hallams for quality Tasmanian Seafood.

Jason and Nath.

Suga and I. Every night was similar - great company, great wine and food, random Porsche guys (most of the time wearing their cashmere jumpers around their shoulders for that Porsche look) and much belly laughter!

Mornay FTW.

Again, so full, bursting at the seams!

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

Velo wines run by a guy who was a former cycling Olympian and Tour de France competitor.

Nath wasn't up for checking out the Targa so he headed out for a drive on his own. Turns out some vineyards in the Tamar region were very close to our hotel so we thought we'd check a few of them out before heading out to catch the Targa.

10am wine testing smashed me hard haha. Bought a few wines here to take home.

Moores Hill vineyard was next, recommended by the guy at Velo.

Upon entry we were greeted by an old weimaraner male. Suga went straight for the belly rub...

...which absolutely wasted him and put him into some sort of trance.


Funny guy.

Spotted this painting inside, it turns out it's the painting used on their wine labels.

The late harvest riesling was the pick of the bunch, like sweet nectar, we bought a box!

MX-5 hanging the tail out on the Longford street course.

Cam captured every car on film.

We got the best possible spot facing 2 consecutive corners to watch the Longford street course which saw cars rip it up over a very tight 2km run through town streets. Right at the front but we failed to bring folding seats, or shade (massive sunnie marks on our faces after this day!). It was pretty obvious some guys were out there just to have fun. Beeping horns and waving hands for the spectators and letting the tail hang right out for lots of oohs and aahhhs. As expected, the fast guys were so composed they made the 2 corners look easy, slow and baby butt smooth.


Spotted this Daytona at Chris and Cam's hotel carpark.

Suga parked up next to one of my many dream cars.

Later that night we hit the Pizza Pub.

Much belly laughter was had once more haha.

Christina was pronouncing "Launceston" in a funny Asian accent which cracked us up for the whole trip (lots of "an dennnn"'s over the CB's too haha).

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

More wine tasting on Day 5, this time to Goaty Hill, a winery which was suggested to us the previous day.

Lovely vineyard but I didn't personally like the taste of their wines.

We dropped in to the Tamar Ridge winery next door, a much larger winery with a much more humble wine tasting room but this guy knew his wines and damn the wines were good. We bought boxes full at this place.

One of many painted cows at the Ashgrove Cheese factory.


We bought a whole lot of tasting packs, most of us agreed their wasabi cheese was the winner.

Despite being full on cheese we still made it to etc. cafe for a pie. We spotted this in the car park.

Suga and I at a raspberry farm, which was our next stop.

And our last stop was the House of Anvers chocolate factory. At this stage we were jst too full to enjoy the chocolate on offer haha.

Later that night i was suggested that we try Tasmania's best Chinese Restaurant, which had won awards for the land's best wine list.

Flaming bombe alaska.

Being Chinese. Christina and I had reservations about how good the food was going to be. What made it even trickier was that we settled for the banquet, and as we expected, they served up food aimed primarily at an Australian audience. Using fresh Tasmanian ingredients but cooking them with some traditional Chinese flavours. I could see what they were trying to do but in my books they failed miserably (overcooking the scallops and salmon was a real shame). In any case we had a blast and lots of laughs (as well as great wine!).

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

Day 6 we got up early, checked out of Launceston and headed for Hobart.

Famous Tassie Scallop Pie was consumed on route.

Hobart was obviously a lot different to Launceston. This huge bridge into Hobart really set the vibe.

Nath and his son Chris, how cute is he! - We parked at the wharf and walked over to Salamanca Place where Nath's family was there to greet him.

The historics were on display in the park.

We then checked out the famous Salamanca Place markets which happen every Saturday. So nice to see different things to Sydney markets. Hobart was a lot more multicultural than Launceston, in some ways I instantly missed the cozy small town feel.

Succulents! I'm still itching to start my succulent garden.

Interesting kettle weights.

Later that afternoon Christina and I got a message from Nath to say, that for whatever reason, he had decided to leave our Forum. That instantly got us on a bit of a downer, we were initially pretty confused about it, and in retrospect, the timing of it was pretty rotten as we were having such a great time and we were all still on a holiday together. All good though, people come and go from forums, it's the way it's always been, and always going to be.

Later that night we (minus Nath who was hanging out with his family) had a killer steak at the Astor Grill - the boys thought it was better than the Black Cow in Launceston. I think maybe the cut of meat was better but the taste of the grill was better at the Black Cow for sure. I left my camera at the hotel unfortunately, so no pics!

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

When in Tassie you ride a Tassie bike!

I had been trying my best to only consume local Tasmanian goods but when we decided to have Sushi for lunch I couldn't resist an Asahi.

Sushi overload!

I've got a LOT of photos of Cam pulling offensive faces, they're too rude to post but this one's OK (haha).

Was the first yucky weather day so we headed for the museum. That's Chris' wife Zee who flew in to meet us in Hobart.

Random funny sign.

Not sure why but all the yellow cab co. cabs are orange.

Targa finished up at the Hobart Casino so we headed over to check out the action. Looked and felt just like a JDMST meet!

The Sale of the Century host Glenn Ridge's FD. Either he has good taste in rims, or the guy building his car has good taste!

Brock lives on.

Crazy shapes, immaculate vette.

Check out the bonnet pins, a juxtaposition of old vs. new.

What a beast this thing was, massive wheels too.

My Dad had a mate who was trying to sell him one of these for me to drive. To think that my first car could have been an e-type!


Wide pug looked the goods.

This was once my garage. Still miss my TME EVO every time I see one.

We had breakfast on the table next to two-time World Rally Champion Walter Rohrl every day.

Food at the Casino wasn't looking too good so we hopped in a cab and decided to try some Indian.

Suga and I (before I got absolutely wasted ahahah).

Justin Fox

Ready to race!

The rain came down hard, and it was freezing cold on our last day in Tasmania.

We headed to the Cadbury factory and spotted this in the carpark. Hilarious! I always think of a sirloin steak when I see a Sirion!

I had visions of Willie Wonka's Chocolate factory, but as Nath suggested earlier, the Cadbury Factory is basically a shop and a DVD. Still fun though and we bought a LOT of chocolate to bring home as pressies.

Our beds on the Spirit of Tasmania. We didn't take Travel Calm tablets this time and we both felt and slept a lot better.

Cam on the other hand took 2 and damn he was wasted!

Spotted on the highway home, the very Zoomer that a guy on email I've been conversing with is shipping over by truck, how strange is that?!

I have to admit I was a little worried about a 10 day holiday initially, but damn it was an epic trip. So much fun! I'm feeling a little tired today but I've got so many goodies in the mail to play with. I weighed myself last night thinking I've gained at least 2-3kg's but in truth I've only gained half a kilo. I was missing little Mia a lot, she's sitting with me now, semi on my keyboard as usual, she's acting extra sookey though which is nice. :) I'm just about to launch my email application for the first time in 10 days, it's going to take me all day to catch up I'm sure!

PS: You can view all these pictures in high res here:


Steel Tip
pictures are top notch, and i'm drooling over half the cars you saw.
looks like an amazing road trip to. i definitely jealous. looks like heaps of fun.


Ready to race!
brooklyn, ny
wow that looks like a great vacation. makes me wish there was something like that around my way.