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Monday 30 October 2023

Get away from it all in serious Tasmanian style

So you really want to get away from it all? 

You’d like to be in a quiet vineyard setting with spectacular views and no neighbours, but within an hour of a city. 

And while you want a rustic experience you don’t want to miss out on life’s little luxuries. Quality Smeg appliances, fast wifi, a wine fridge...  

Welcome to the Picker's Hut on the Invercarron vineyard property in the Jordan Valley, north of Hobart, where you’ll struggle to see another property no matter how intensely you scan the horizon. 

There are few better places to breathe in some fresh air, take in the tranquillity and re-charge the batteries. 

The pleasures here are simple ones - but satisfying. A barbecue overlooking the vines, perhaps, a game of chess, or the chance to read a book on the terrace while taking in the meandering Jordan River below. In winter you can toast some marshmallows over the firepit.  

The only sounds will be those of birds, or perhaps the bleating of a sheep or two. 

The Picker's Hut looks and feels modern, but has a fascinating history. 

It was an original hut from the Brighton Army Camp down the road, and was built to house Tasmanian soldiers before they departed to fight in World War Two. 

Those huts were also used to house prisoners of war from 1944-1946, immigrants from Europe in the late 1940s, as shelter for victims of the 1967 bushfires and intermittently for camps for army cadets.

The camp was decommissioned in 1999 and the huts had been sitting idle since then. 

This hut was transported to the Invercarron vineyard in in 2016 and had been used by vineyard workers and fruit pickers before being repurposed in a rather glamorous way. 

Although the external structure has changed, the original foundations and floorboards are the same. 

The Picker's Hut has two bedrooms and is suitable for a maximum of four guests, who have plenty of room to stretch out, perhaps in front of the wood fire on a colder night. 

There is a bath - also with a view - and a shower in the bathroom, as well as a separate toilet. 

The owners - the Jones family, who have farmed in the Jordan Valley for seven generations -  have thought of just about everything from the fully equipped kitchen with a range of cooking utensils and well-stocked pantry to large windows in every room to provide panoramic views. 

There is an excellent house book with details on the hut and nearby destinations. 

Hobart is just 45 minutes away, but you'll need to bring dinner supplies as there are no local restaurants that you can pop out to. 

Day trip options include the Derwent Valley and Coal River Valley wine regions, the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) and the growing town of New Norfolk, home to the popular Agrarian Kitchen eatery and cooking school. 

The Invercarron vineyards contain pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot gris grapes - and visitors are encouraged to take a stroll through the vines.

The rate of $595 per night includes a welcome basket of breakfast provisions including cereals, fresh farm eggs, a loaf of local sourdough bread, butter and condiments, as well as a bottle of estate pinot noir. 

Guests are encouraged to book direct and save. See

The writer was a guest of the Picker's Hut 

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