australia

(Untitled thoughts of one who has been away for a year and counting)

Well, what a difference a year makes! A year ago today I had just landed in New Zealand and was scrambling around trying to find away to find my phone, ID, and credit card, having left them behind in the car of the people who had driven me from the airport to my hostel – it was made all the harder by the fact that I had only met these people on the flight itself!

It is strange to think that it has been 12months since I last stepped out on English soil. So much has happened since then, however it is safe to say that (more…)

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Callum’s 2017 Adventures: Phillip Island 1D Tour

‘Take a waddle on the wild side’Phillip Island Penguin Parade

Heh. Every time I see that quote it makes me chuckle. Anyway…

I won’t deny that my decision to take this tour on my 24th birthday was born out of pure nostalgia because, well, it was. And even though Phillip Island is home to more than just the Penguin Parade – it also hosts the Australian Moto GP on its Grand Prix Circuit – it is for the parade that I took this tour. After all, it is something I had seen when I was first brought out to Australia by my dad and step-mum on my 6th birthday, hence the nostalgia making me want to visit once more.

As with the Great Ocean Road and Grampians tour (pt.1 & pt.2), this Phillip Island tour was arranged through Wildlife Tours, although it didn’t require quite as early a start as the last tours! Nevertheless, I still ended up spending the majority of the drive fast asleep.

As the Penguin Parade doesn’t occur until after sunset (more…)

#85 – Drive a Jetski

Jetski’s. Are. Awesome. They really are.

As someone who doesn’t do much driving, hitting the waves on the back of a jetski was a really amazing experience.  I did this up at the Whitsundays in 2015 following an early morning skydive.

The jetski tour was all across the bay, taking us to several little tourist spots. Although you can fit two passengers on a jetski, since I was on my own I was riding by myself. The tour itself lasted for around 2hrs and, as I became more confident, I became more adventurous, taking more risks, including cutting across waves to get some airtime! (more…)

Callum’s 2017 Adventures: Great Ocean Road & Grampians 2D1N Tour pt.1

If you have come looking for an article that will given you an in-depth and detailed travel guide to both the Great Ocean Road and the Grampians National Park then I apologise, because you are sorely mistaken. However, if you have come looking for a little information about possible places/landmarks to visit (and some kick-ass photos to boot) then continue reading about my recent journey, courtesy of Wildlife Tours Australia.

Although I left the UK to travel, I came to Aus on a working holiday visa, so I could to top up my bank account and earn some money to help fund future travel plans. However, working full-time can be quite a bore, so you do need to do things to stop you falling into a rut. Fortunately my job allows me every second weekend off and, since I am living in Melbourne, I decided to use those weekends to try and get myself completing some of recommended activities for the area. One of these happened to be the Great Ocean Road, something that I wasn’t quite able to do on my previous visit back in 2015. As the whole weekend was free, I thought I’d splash out and go for the tour that included a visit to the Grampians as well.

The Great Ocean Road officially starts in Torquay, but if effectively takes you from Melbourne to Adelaide (or vice versa). It is known as one of the worlds greatest scenic drives, which shouldn’t come as a surprise because, well, you spend the entire time with the ocean on one side of you. (more…)

#26 – Visit the Great Barrier Reef, Australia

‘Do we really care so little about the earth on which we live
that we don’t want to protect one of the world’s greatest wonders
from the consequences of our behaviour?’
– Sir David Attenborough

As of the end of 2016, 93% of the reef faced bleaching. I went to visit it in 2015, during my first stint in Australia. Growing up, the Reef is one of those things that you are often told stories about. You are told of its beauty. Its wonder. Almost like it’s some of fantasy wonderland.

My trip was a tour. Part of the tour included the opportunity to either snorkel or scuba dive.  Unfortunately, I was unable to do either due to mitigating circumstances. I did, however, get to see the coral reef via a glass bottomed boat.

Now that, that was cool. Glass bottomed boats are so cool. I’d happily go around in one again, and again, and again. And it makes you feel special, you know? Being able to see something like that, so up close and personal. At least, it was evocative for me anyway.

It breaks my heart to know that the Reef doesn’t have long left, considering that it had been around years before us, and should have outlived us all. It’s its own eco-system after all.

At least I will have my memories from my visit though, of one of Earth’s most beautiful creations. However, if I were you, I’d get there as soon as possible.

To see my complete bucket list, click here

#15 – Bungy Jump

‘Jump and you will find out how
to unfold your wings as you fall’ 
– Ray Bradbury

Ah, bungy jumping. You’re a special one aren’t you? Me and bungy jumping, we have a special thing going on these days. It’s love. It really is. To date I have completed the following bungy jumps:

And the plan is to, at some point, complete these ones too:

  • Last Resort Bridge, Nepal – 160m/524ft
  • Vidraru Dam, Romania – 166m/545ft
  • Kolnbrein Dam, Austria – 169m/555ft
  • Niouc Bridge, Switzerland – 190m/623ft
  • Europabrucke Bridge, Austria – 192m/629ft
  • Sochi 207, Russia – 207m/679ft
  • Bloukrans Bridge, South Africa – 216m/708ft
  • Contra Dam, Switzerland – 219m/720ft
  • Macau Tower, China – 233m/764ft

I would have the Royal Gorge Bridge bungy in Colorado included in this list, but it is no longer open to the public.

But this post is about my first bungy jump. The Cairns Tower Bungy in 2015.

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#14 – Skydive

If at first you don’t succeed,
then skydiving definitely isn’t for you
– Steven Wright

My first Skydive took place in 2015, over Airlie Beach on the East Coast of Australia with Skydive Airlie Beach. Since then I have also performed a Skydive over Lake Wanaka in New Zealand’s South Island.

Skydiving is one of those things that is on nearly every travellers bucket list. Honestly, when you’re backpacking through Australia and New Zealand, it is kind of like a 50/50 split on whether or not the random person you are going to end up sharing a room with in a hostel has skydived or not. And if they haven’t, more often than not they are planning to.

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A Very Aussie Christmas

Christmas 2016 is one I won’t be forgetting any time soon. Not because it was the first Christmas I had featuring the Australian half of my family, and not because it was my first Christmas outside of the UK, but because it was Christmas that took place in the middle of summer.

Rather than piling on the layers and filling myself with Bailey’s & Hot Chocolate, I was jumping in a swimming pool and watching the sunset whilst on the beach. It was odd. It was surreal. It was different.

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(Untitled thoughts of one who is flying away)

It’s 368 days since I landed back in the UK after a 6 week excursion to Australia’s East Coast.

I said then that my goal would be to return within 12months – I never expected to come close to completing the feat however.

I’ve had such a great time back in Milton Keynes though, creating a lot of fantastic memories along the way. I’ve made new friends and re-connected with old ones. More importantly I’ve spent a lot of time with my family.

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Come Fly with Me, Let’s Fly, Let’s Fly Away

In what can only be described as one of my worst kept secrets of all time, I take flight for sunnier skies come the start of next month.

That’s right. I’m leaving!.. again. Although this time it will be for a longer period of time. An indefinite period of time.

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