The final leg of our road trip was the island state of Tasmania and I had planned a few days diving during our weeklong stay. I was keen to see the critically endangered Tasmania endemic fish, the spotted handfish (Brachionichthys hirsutus), which is found only in the Derwent estuary around Hobart. Sue Wragge from Underwater Adventures Tasmania was our guide and I definitely want to return to explore more of the area. It was brilliant to find an operator who is passionate about marine life and conservation. She was truly a mine of information and knew exactly where to drop us it to find the rare handfish. I couldn't recommend heading out with Sue enough if you're in the area.
After Hobart we headed south to the Tasman Peninsula for two days of diving. The water was a chilly 15C but we wrapped up warm! Over four dives we saw a giant kelp forest, a pregnant male weedy seadragon (Phyllopteryx taeniolatus), a draughtboard shark (Cephaloscyllium laticeps), the stunning cathedral cave and almost saw some deep-water sponge gardens. The above water scenery was beautiful here too. On the way to one dive we saw a huge pod of common dolphins, an albatross and Australian fur seals!