Every female nomad has her own travel style. Mine is deluxe backpacking on a budget; meaning I seek out the most comfortable ways to travel (think high-end hostels and first-class bus seats), as inexpensively as possible. I genuinely prefer the simple pleasures and camaraderie of budget travel, as opposed to indulging in swanky hotels, but I still want those occasional little luxuries that are going to make globetrotting just that bit easier…. Read More
Across unusually choppy waters British Defender, an ex-Royal Navy training yacht, sails parallel to our own speeding vessel; Matador Whitsundays. Once known as the largest ocean racing yacht, Matador’s owners now tip it as ‘the fastest yacht in the Whitsundays of its calibre’. Finn, our Tasmanian skipper, is about to put that title to the test in a spontaneous and undeclared race. He has a hint of competitiveness etched on his boyish… Read More
‘CAUTION’ the sign at the entrance to the Wallaman Falls hiking trail warns, ‘people have died as a result of heart attack or heat exhaustion’. It’s not the kind of information I like to hear before descending 300 metres through thick forest in the Wet Tropics of Queensland. Nevertheless, I remind myself that I’m a healthy twenty-nine-year-old woman with a large bottle of water in my denim backpack, and continue downwards on… Read More
She may be your best friend, girlfriend, daughter, wife, or even your travel-addicted mum. Whoever she is, if she spends more time out of the country than in it, I’m willing to bet she’s a bit of a pain in the ass to buy presents for. Finding the perfect gift for girls who love travel is notoriously difficult. I know this because I am that girl to my family and friends.
Made up of a unique system of marble-red gorges, fairy-tale waterfalls and natural swimming pools, it’s mindblowing that Karijini National Park is unknown to many travellers – even those born in Australia. Situated in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, Karijini National Park is a true paradise for any backpacker who enjoys nature, stunning landscapes and untouched wilderness. It’s without a doubt one of the many hidden gems of the country. The… Read More
This blog post is the first in a weekly series sharing the experiences of a real #vanlifer and the realities of living in a van. Each week, I will be publishing a post with the previous week’s failures and successes. I’ll do this for my entire four-month tour of Australia. Let’s see how my attitude towards van life evolves over that time! Sign up to be notified when a new post goes… Read More
It’s Sunday as my boyfriend and I walk from the bus stop to our guesthouse on Milos island, in Greece, and I feel as though I’ve arrived in a ghost town. Square white houses line a gleaming cobblestone street, but each has shutter windows and doors tightly closed. The houses are evidence that the village of Trypiti has residents, but in the six minutes it takes for me to walk its length,… Read More
Arriving on each of the Greek islands I visited this September, Santorini, Milos, and Paros, I was blown away by just how breathtakingly picturesque each was. I can confirm, those practically-postcard photos you see of Santorini are completely accurate, whilst up and coming Milos has so many hidden beaches and coves you could spend days exploring them. What was meant to be a relaxing 10-days of island hopping in Greece, quickly became… Read More
Isn’t it funny how we world travellers are constantly on the lookout for new places to visit outside of our hometown, yet most of us have yet to explore our own backyard? I recently visited the city I was born and grew up in, Portsmouth in England, having been backpacking abroad for the past two years. Amongst the family reunions and get-togethers, I was determined to really get out and see the… Read More
To independently road trip a country guarantees you a perspective that just isn’t possible by travelling on public transport. For years now, my bucket list has contained the item ‘drive a campervan around Australia’. The dream has always been to do it as cheaply as possible, in a cosy and comfortable self-converted camper. It’s lucky then, that my partner is an engineer because actually, I am the least handy and practically-skilled person… Read More
Backpacker itineraries for Australia are usually filled with the most iconic destinations and landmarks; New South Wales’ Sydney Opera House, Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef, Victoria’s Great Ocean Road. In fact, all of the experiences I was recommended as a first-time backpacker to the country are found on the East Coast. Poor old Western Australia, seen as too remote or not quite spectacular enough to warrant the additional cost of a domestic flight,… Read More
If somebody offered you the chance to bathe in the crater of a volcano, would you take it? Considering volcano craters are usually bubbling with searing hot lava, I imagine not, but I’ve been standing in line to do exactly that for the past twenty minutes.
When a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal on 25th April 2015, it made global headlines. The epicentre of the quake struck at Gorkha, but its effects impacted for miles, causing an avalanche on Mount Everest, destroying thousands of homes, and tearing down religious buildings in Kathmandu that were centuries old. More than 9000 people were killed, and hundreds of thousands made homeless. Following the earthquake, aftershocks took place regularly, including a major… Read More
We’ve all read the stories about wanderlust-ers that have been so keen to get their travel fix that they’ve sold everything they own, giving up material possessions that took years to earn. Some might say these people are crazy/brave/stupid. I don’t. I completely get it, and I’m one of them.
The dream of travel in Australia is intrinsically linked with guaranteed warm temperatures, allowing for endless days spent lounging on beaches, surfing waves, joining sailing trips, and night after night of the infamous Aussie barbecue. It’s no surprise then, that most choose to visit the country in the summer months. The thing is, much of Australia does get pretty cold, yet the country still has plenty to offer year-round.
I recently worked out that I’ve taken sixty-eight plane journeys in my lifetime. Sixty-eight! That is a serious amount of hours spent trapped in a capsule in the sky. You’d think this level of experience on planes would mean I’m completely at ease in the air, when actually, I remain terrified of flying. Yep, you read that right, I have a fear of flying.
You know how some travellers are keen adrenaline-hunters, or mountain hikers, or festivalgoers? Well, I am a water-seeker. My top choice of backpacking activity is almost always to find the best lake, river, ocean, dam, pond, or waterfall nearby. Perhaps it’s because I’m a South Coast English girl at heart, born and raised by the seaside, but there’s something about water that calms me. So, here are nineteen bucket list water spots that I’ve come… Read More
Christmas day is the only time of year I’d prefer to be waking up in my hometown of Portsmouth, than in one of the amazing countries I’ve visited over the years. For me, Christmas is about family, and despite the fact that I’ve chosen to spend the past 15 months away from them, and now live completely on the other side of the world, my family is massively important to me. So, it’s Christmas… Read More
It feels like too often I speak to people worried about travelling because of the supposed “rise of terrorism”, or some other form of personal attack. You can’t blame them. Switch on the news every morning and the first stories you’ll hear are filled with a narrative of more bombings, more murders, and more sexual assaults. After all (and without getting too political), fear sells. This kind of media reporting makes the world out to be… Read More
Western Australia is massively underrated. Often, backpackers coming from overseas sacrifice a visit to WA in place of the trendy East Coast hotspots of Melbourne, Sydney and the Gold Coast. Of course, it’s easy to understand why that happens. Reaching the state from the east requires an additional (and often expensive) flight or a well-planned overland trip in a rented or bought vehicle of some sort.
There really is no way to prepare for the culture shock of arriving in India. I can’t tell you how many backpackers I met early in my travels, that shared with me their experiences, recommendations, horror stories, and general wisdom for backpacking such a unique country.