With only 20-something permanent residents, Weldborough may be one Tasmanian town you’d quickly dismiss when planning your holiday itinerary. Located about halfway between St Helens and Scottsdale on the Tasman Highway in north east Tasmania, it may make for a convenient stop-over when touring the region. But there’s one very impressive feature of the town that should have you taking particular notice, and that’s the town’s historic hotel.
As regular readers would know, we recently stayed at the Tin Dragon Trail Cottages in Branxholm. We were on a research mission to uncover some of the attractions of the north east, so we could report back to all of you. At the invitation of owners Mark and Felicity Montgomery, we drove the 30kms via Derby to Weldborough and arrived at the home of the Tasmanian MicroBru Experience.
The Weldborough Hotel has been transformed since the Montgomery family came to town. At the 2011 Tasmanian Hospitality Association Awards for Excellence they took out the gong for Tourism Initiative of the Year against some very stiff competition. Known as the place to go to sample beers from every Tasmanian micro-brewer, they also include local ciders and soft drinks for customers. With a raging fire and a welcoming atmosphere, this is certainly the place to enjoy a quiet ale.
The Base: Blue Tier Forest Reserve
A far cry these days from the “bikie pub” it once was, the Weldborough Hotel still attracts a loyal clientele. Mountain-bikers and trail riders who love returning to the Blue Tier Forest Reserve in the north east of Tasmania, make the hotel their home-base for regular weekends of outdoor adventure. After a day’s activity, they return to relax in the bistro with a hot meal and a cold beer.
For regulars and tourists who visit Weldborough, the pub provides a range of budget accommodation. Mark showed us the rooms, which were neat, tidy and had a mixture of configurations to suit couples, families and groups. Shared bathrooms, bunk-houses and a beautiful camping ground at the rear of the property cater for busy times when the town’s population swells to several hundred for special cycling and trail-riding events. During the warmer months, patrons can enjoy the courtyard and a beer garden with gorgeous, shady trees.
MicroBru Experience and Excellent Lunch
Our experience at the Weldborough Hotel included lunch, and the food was simply excellent. We love to see cross-promotion between business owners, and Mark and Felicity are great supporters of local Tasmanian produce. Using meat from a local farm in Pyengana, free-range chicken and local seafood, they have a great supply of fresh food nearby. Coupled with their MicroBru initiative, this is one place we can confidently recommend when you visit the north east and we’ll definitely be returning at every opportunity.