This great cruise on the luxurious Lady Franklin took most of the day, leaving from Strahan early on a misty morning, we went out through Macquarie Harbour, past the pens of a salmon farm and the two lighthouses that mark its entrance at Hell’s Gate – so called because of the submerged rocks, rough waters and the powerful tides that exist there, making it dangerous and difficult to navigate. Turning around just outside in what is the Great Southern Ocean, the boat proceeded back down the harbour and entered the Gordon River. This is a most beautiful area of cold climate rain forest, an ancient wilderness with unique trees, and is a world heritage area. The still dark water provided endless views and amazing reflections of the shoreline. At one point we were able to go ashore and walk through a section of rainforest to see close-up its lush beauty, where trunks were covered with emerald green mosses, and trees festooned with hanging bunches of moss and lichen, while everything dripped around us. After this experience, we returned to the boat for a delicious lunch and a short trip back up the river, stopping at Sarah Island where we again went ashore to see the remains of the penal colony that was there from 1822 -33, and to learn the history of the island from an amusing and well informed guide. Despite the at times inclement weather, it was a wonderful day, and I would recommend anyone to take this cruise if you visit Strahan.