With the conference over, we rented a car to check out some of the east coast of Tasmania. The first must-do was Maria Island (the Australians pronounce it Muh-RYE-uh, and it definitely sounds more Australian that way!). This island used to have convicts, so there are some buildings, but it has been turned into a nature reserve with all kinds of animals. It is nicknamed Wombat Island, and sure enough, we got our fill of the cute wombats!! We took a ferry over with a couple dozen other folks and hiked around for several hours, seeing wallabies, kangaroos, birds, and plenty of wombats. The tide was too high to see all of the painted cliffs, but we saw a little of them. It was such an incredible opportunity that not many people will get to do, so I felt fortunate to be able to see so many Australian animals in the wild and enjoy a sunny day on an island at the bottom of the world.