Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 Travel's in review

What a year 2011 has been. The places have quickly mounted up.

January 2011
Saw us start the year in the South Island of New Zealand. Christchurch, Milford Sound, Doubtful Sound and Wanaka

February 2011
Once again in Auckland, we spent our 4th year wedding anniversary at Waiheke Island

April 2011
Bay of Fires walk in Tasmania, with a day either side in Launceston

May 2011
Back to finish part of a trip we couldn't complete in 2010, White Island, Whakatane, Mt Maunganui and Tauranga

July 2011
Back in Auckland of the Bledisloe Cup at Eden Park

August 2011
The second Bledisloe Cup this time in Brisbane.

September 2011
The Rugby World Cup kicked off in Auckland, ad we enjoyed Samoa vs. Fiji

October 2011
Started with a weekend in Lord Howe Island.

Finished with a Rugby World Cup Quarter Final game in Auckland.

December 2011
Watch for a trip report in 2012

Wishing you all a great new year and many more exciting travel in 2012!

Friday, December 23, 2011

NYE: The last 4

So as we gear up to another New Year, I've been thinking about where we've spent the past 4:

Christchurch, New Zealand
Things would be very different this year, but it was always good to go down to the Square

Las Vegas, USA

Mudge, NSW, Australia
A wine region in Australia, we ate our way into 2009!

Sydney, Australia
Watching the fireworks in Sydney is one of the iconic things to do on NYE. If the weathers good it will not disappoint.

Do you have any exciting plans for ending 2011?

Friday, December 16, 2011

What to pack?

The age old question, we tend to pack light, yet still end up with things we don't use. So for a week or more trip (this is the same list we'll use for 6 weeks) here's what to pack (for 1):

  • 2 x pants
  • 1 x shorts
  • 1 x dress
  • 4 x shirts (usually long sleeve cotton)
  • 7 x socks
  • 7 x undies
  • 1 x pj
  • 1 x sandal
  • 1 x walking shoe
  • 1 x hiking boots (if hiking)
  • 1 x swimsuit
  • 1 x sports towel
  • ipod
  • 2-3 books
  • Medical kit
  • Travel docs
  • Travel diary
  • 2 x pens
What do you make sure you always travel with? And what do you leave at home?

Friday, December 9, 2011

Top 5 To Go To Big Trips

I love lists (haven't you noticed?) and my to travel to list constantly changes with my moods. Currently on my top 5 in no particular order:

1. Russia
The weirdest thing is I want to spend winter in Russia.

2. Turkey
Not only to go the Blue Mosque, but for the food, the culture, the history and to get off the tourist track

3. Japan
RWC 2019 is looking good for us and Japan!

4. Alaska
Is there anyone who doesn't have this on their list?

5. African Safari
Ok so this doesn't narrow it down much. Africa is one huge continent, and really I haven't thought much about what time of year, which part, how long, but it is definitely on my go to list

Friday, December 2, 2011

Wish List: Saffire Lodge, Tasmania

Luxury Lodges seem to be my thing. One of the newest is the Saffire in the Freycinet region in Tasmania, Australia.

With only 20 suites, in three different categories, designed to relax and rejuvenate.

Located in the Freycinet Peninsula in Tasmania in a stunning part of the world, overlooking the Hazards, and with Wineglass Bay in the vicinity.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Wish List: Maria Island Walk

We did the Bay of Fires Walk in Tasmania earlier in 2011, and it was a wonderful experience. Just you and 12 other people on an isolated beach, alone (or relatively in today's world) with nature.

Recently I stumbled across another great walk of Tasmania, the Maria Island Walk. We looked at doing this walk at Easter 2012, but it's so popular that it was already booked out!

On their slogan is "four days that will last a lifetime". The walk covers 34 km, on a small Island off Tasmania. There are different accommodation types for each night, with extraordinary food along the way.

So who's coming with me?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Wish List: Istanbul

I seem to be doing alot of daydreaming lately of wish list locations. I don't know if it's because it's getting close to the end of the year, becuase of our next trip and it's a case of the travel bug, or I'm just a girl who love to dream! But a reoccuring daydream is Istanbul, Turkey. Specifically drinking coffee and eating baklava overlooking the Blue Mosque.

I'd love to rent an apartment for a month, and absorb the sights, culture and food. In a city where east meets west, is a month long enough?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Wish List: Wilson Island

Another one for the wish list....

Wilson Island is a small coral cay that is the Great Barrier Reef, about 72 km off the Queensland coast. Wilson Island is a national park, with nesting green turtles and loggerhead turtles as well as bird life are key attractions.

But the key for me is getting back to nature in relative isolation, with only 12 guests on the Island at any time. As the website states it is truly "Shipwrecked in Style".

You might have noticed I like good food, and fine food on the beach is another major attraction.

So when are we going? It's a tropical island, its not like you need to pack much....

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Top Islands: Been and to go

I'm lucky to have been to a few Islands (living on one of the largest in the world helps), but there are so many more that I haven't made it to yet. So here's my list of Island recommendations and Islands to go.

Rarotonga, Cook Islands

When's the next trip?

Waiheke Island, New Zealand

A short ferry trip from Auckland, a great place to spend the day or the weekend.

Aitutaki, Cook Islands

A stunning location, once again makes you feel like your all alone in the middle of nowhere.

Lord Howe Island, Australia

Also now one of my favourite locations to fly into. It's hard to believe that it's not a much more popular destination.

To Go
Torres Strait Island

Above the most northern tip of Australia, so close but so hard to get to.

Rapanui/Easter Island

Will soon be a "been to", looking forward to it seeing it's been on my wish list so long.


One of the few places in the world where you can swim with the whale sharks, and relatively untouched by mass tourism.


Notice my preference for Pacific Island nations?

Kangaroo Island

Another wish list location, that only recently made it on the ever growing list (and quickly pushing it's way to the top).

Friday, November 4, 2011

Dubbo, NSW, Australia

December 2008

We visited Dubbo as part of a birthday trip in 2008, and it was the first time I had been since my much younger childhood. The main reason to visit Dubbo was the Western Plain Zoo and we were not disappointed.

We spent the day driving around the zoo (if it's not so hot and your more adventurous you can bike around) and then made our way to the Zoofari Lodge to book into our luxury canvas tent before starting one of the many interactive tours with the animals.

There are three main tours, the afternoon, the evening or dusk and then the morning feeding tours.

The animals aren't the only ones well feed, with all meals included in the main house.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

USA Cities Top 5: Been and to go

I've seen a bit of the US, but being such a large, populated country I haven't seen enough of it! Below are my top 5 picks of the cities I have been to and the top 5 that are next on my list.

San Fransisco, CA

I love harbour cities (Sydney and Auckland being among them), and maybe that's the attraction to San Fransisco.

San Antonio, TX

Not a harbour city, but it does have the river walk, great Tex-Mex food and plenty of history.

Washington, DC

I love museums, I love history and I'm interested in politics, so a great place to enjoy all three.


I think New York City speaks for itself.....but if you need a reason, the shopping, the food, the sports and the city.

I don't drink, I don't gamble, but yet I've been to Vegas a number of times.

To go
Seattle, WA

The largest city in the Pacific Northwest, and you guessed it, another harbour city.

New Orleans, LA

Known for it's Jazz, it's history and it's party scene, I'm interested more in the Creole food.

Boston, MA

One of the oldest cities and the largest in New England.

Nashville, TN

I'm not a country and western music fan, but with the nickname of Music City, and based on the river.

Denver, CO

A major city that's close to the great outdoors.