Brisbane Weekend Trip: Springbrook National Park

When our plans changed from the central-Australia trip to the coastal-Australia route, we immediately thought of a return trip to Springbrook. We went for a few hours back in October, but we knew it deserved more time. Luckily, we were able to score a (great!) camping spot and spend a full twenty-four hours in the…

4 months ago

A Morning at the Wombeyan Caves

On our way out of the Blue Mountains, we opted to visit the Wombeyan Caves. They seem to be a bit of a cousin to the much more famous (and much more expensive) Jenolan Caves. After a thirty-minute-long horrendous, bumpy, unsealed road on the way in, we arrived at the very fun looking campsite and bought our tickets. It was so…

4 months ago

A Month around Hobart

We didn’t spend an exceptional amount of time in Hobart, but I could certainly see myself returning. What a picturesque city! Its population is just 215,000, about half the population of Tasmania. And it’s settled right on the harbor, where ever curve you come around results in this majestic view of homes nestled in the hills, perched…

4 months ago
Volkswagen Campervan camping at Bateman's Bay, NSW, Australia

One Week in a Van

We’ve driven approximately three thousand kilometers since Mom left. After eight days on the road, we’ve had one meal in a restaurant and the rest have been prepared on our camp stoves or over an open flame. We have eaten well. Our diet has included curries and falafel burgers and pasta. The van has four milk crates dedicated to canned foods, jarred foods, and bulk foods. We keep our snack bag up at the front, filled with granola bars and apples and crackers. Water has become…

4 months ago

Building Paths + Painting Fences

We spent a month in Tasmania back in January, the best month to visit Tassie! The middle of summer not only provided great weather – albeit fickle – but also festivals and markets and events to enjoy in Hobart and around. We spent most of the month with hosts via HelpEx, meaning we got to see some of the more rural, unique parts of the area. Work-exchanging in a place like Tasmania is brilliant – being a bit less…

4 months ago

A Few Days in Sydney

So, well, Sydney is awesome. Unless you ask John about traffic. Then Sydney is awful and terrible and the worst ever. So, yes, Sydney’s traffic is intense. But if you ask me, other than traffic, I was pleasantly surprised by the place. We lucked out with our AirBnB – it had a fantastic location right in the heart of Newtown. When I went to the pie shop – it had a PIE shop – and requested a vegan pie, the employee asked, “Which one?” Because…

4 months ago

A Few Days in Melbourne

The day finally arrived! I have been helping plan three family trips since October, and the first family member arrived in Australia last week. My Mom and Aunt Chris were slated for two weeks in April. My dad and sister will spend two weeks with us at the end of May. And John’s family – a total of seven…

4 months ago

A Few Days on the Great Ocean Road

One of the things we knew we had to do when family arrived was go road tripping down Victoria’s Great Ocean Road, touted as one of the coolest road trips in the world. Even though a direct trip would have taken less than ten hours, we saved two nights for the Great Ocean Road because of the sheer number of sites worth seeing along the way. The main attraction is the Twelve Apostles – of which there are not twelve, nor do geologists think there ever were…

4 months ago
Our VW Transporter Campervan parked along the Great Ocean Road

A Month in a Van

John and I just bought a van. A 1998 Volkswagen Transporter with 400,000km on it (roughly 250,000 miles). It’s scary and exciting, and we have no idea what to expect. We’re currently driving from Sydney (where Mom flew out) to Airlie Beach, Queensland (where Dad & Rachel will fly in). Originally, we’d hoped to take the long way around…

4 months ago

A Day at the Shire

Somewhat unexpectedly, I accompanied Mom to New Zealand this week. John stayed behind in Australia. (He was meant to have a fantastic trip from Melbourne to Sydney along the coastal road, popping in for a hike at the Blue Mountains and having a grand ol’ time, but sadly the van’s coolant hose had other ideas for his solo days.) Mom and I, on the other hand, had a fantastic time in Auckland. First on Mom’s list of things to do in New Zealand was…

4 months ago