Our free-camping spot on the shores of Lake Dulverton wasn’t the only pleasant thing about Oatlands. Its heritage construction has been preserved and enhanced by the locals and it’s an extraordinarily beautiful little town to visit!

Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Oatlands' landmark is Callington Mill, a restored windmill that uses wind power to grind grains into flour.

Oatlands playground, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
On the way to the windmill, we're attracted to this small but strange sort of playground.

Oatlands playground, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
An old tree trunk has been carved into something more ... Tolkienesque?

Oatlands playground, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Other carved animals sit on the ground, acting as stepping stones for children who want to move to the more traditional play equipment.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
We peer into a shed with all sorts of interesting machinery and try to work out their uses.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
I love seeing the timber shingles on old buildings. Tasmania doesn't have termites like Australia's mainland, so timber construction lasts a lot longer here.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
A chair and a quarried block sit abandoned under a huge maple tree. With relics like these, we try to imagine what/who brought them to these resting places.

Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
The mill precinct includes restored homes, the granary, the bakery and the stables.

Aisha, Brioni, Calista and Delaney wearing hairnets, December 2012
We suit-up appropriately for our mill tour. We all wore snoods and the girls were asked to put on shoes.

Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Before we go in, Sam the miller pokes his head out to play with the chain and pulley.

Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
We tour the five levels of the windmill but have to leave the camera outside. Flour is explosive, and anything electronic that can cause a spark is forbidden inside.

The mill tour was a fascinating insight into how a windmill works. The Callington Mill is possibly the only working windmill in the Southern Hemisphere, and it’s been a labour of love to restore it to working condition after it spent over a hundred years as a burnt-out shell.

Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
A plexi-glass model provides a clear diagram of the windmill's levels.

Aisha grinding wheat for flour at Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
After having just watched the wind-powered millstones in action, Aisha grinds her own flour with a bit of muscle.

Flour from Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Flour from Callington Mill is sold in the Visitor's Centre and local shops.

Sandstone blocks, Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Chisel marks are clearly visible in the sandstone blocks that were quarried from around the lake we've been staying next to.

Heritage toilet, Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Adjacent to the modern toilet facility, a drop-hole shows what toilets were like 150 years ago.

Garden next to Callington Mill, Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
The garden next to Callington Mill contains a beautifully laid-out formal herb garden.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Delaney climbs up the dry stone sculpture in the Mill's parterre garden. Thankfully, it was erected by master craftsman Geoff Duggan and can withstand small children.

It’s not just the mill precinct that is restored and immaculately maintained. From a stroll around town, it seems that all the locals take pride in their unique heritage and work hard to maintain the beauty of the sandstone buildings and their gardens.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
I catch a glimpse of ceramic jug through the window of a restored house.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Flower gardens bloom on the other side of rock walls.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
These dry walls are everywhere in the town, and their preservation adds to the town's heritage atmosphere.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Much of Oatland's construction happened in the 1830s.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
B&Bs have opened in the heritage buildings, like this one on High Street.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Shops and banks also occupy sandstone buildings almost 200 years old.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Even the driveway of a private residence matches the town's sandstone scenery!

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Relics from previous generations remind us of old technology.

Town scenery at Oatlands, Tasmania, December 2012
Each of the houses could tell us a story, and the council has produced brochures which detail a lot of this fascinating district's personal history.

I think it’s the combination of heritage sandstone and fresh flowers that has made me fall in love with Oatlands. Thankfully it’s conveniently located on the highway between Launceston and Hobart, so we should stop by this town another time. I’d like to wander more of the streets, photograph some of the out-of-the-way sights and read more of the local history. Somehow I’m feeling like we don’t have enough time in Tasmania to do it justice — it’s all so special!