Category Archives: Oceania

One day in New Zealand I started googling for new adventures. A few months later I started working as a tour leader in Europe. Through this job I’ve had so many cool opportunities that brought me to different places, from Peru to Morocco. Just over a year ago I was in Australia for an apprenticeship at the office. As part of my time there I got to go on a trip to Queensland. We spent 3 days onboard the Boomerang for some sailing through the Whitsundays. We weren’t very lucky. From the moment we entered the boat it started raining. Throughout the 3 days we received a mix of sunshine, showers and winds. But this wouldn’t stop me from having a good time on my first real sailing experience. It turns out sailing is all about doing nothing. At least as a passenger. I’m not very good at doing nothing…

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On my last weekend in Melbourne I got to catch up with a friend. I’d travelled with her during the summer in Europe. Then I was her guide and now the roles were reversed. I let her plan the whole day and it turned out to be a fantastic way to end my time in Melbourne. We started our day with brunch in Elsternwick, at Penta. Wooow! The food was so pretty and colorful, standing out against the grey interior. I saw the some works of art coming from the kitchen and couldn’t choose what to eat. My friend Michelle pointed out the most famous dishes and we decided to share the nutella panna cotta and the waffles with beef cheek and eggs benedict. It was sooo good! Satisfied and with a full tummy we drove towards the Mornington peninsula. We stopped for a coffee along the way and strolled…

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Melbourne is a city with plenty of things to do, but it’s also got many places around it that make a great day or weekend trip. Wilsons Prom is about a 3 hour drive from the city and thus I was reluctant to go out there just for a day. But then again… what if it’s stunning?! I found a company that wasn’t too expensive and signed up for a Monday in a long weekend. Man, I wish I could have gone for the entire weekend! I had to get up at stupid o’clock to get into the city for the pick up point. The organization was terrible and we had to wait for our guide for over half an hour! When she finally showed up, we had a long drive out to the national park. But, it was so worth it! First I climbed up Mt. Oberon, together with…

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A couple of months ago I did a surf camp in Morocco. It was an amazing experience, but also a realisation that I’m not exactly a natural. So what better place to have another practise session than Australia. Unfortunately there are no surf beaches in Melbourne, but in just 2 hours I can get out to Torquay by public transport. Torquay has a fantastic hostel: Bells Beach Backpackers. It’s not too big and has a great atmosphere. There is a big living room with well equipped kitchen and I felt straight at home. From the moment I walked in, I connected with my roommates and in the evenings I ended up playing cards or talking to them until we all fell asleep. Torquay is famous for surfing, with Bells Beach being the top surf spot, where the competitions are held as well. This weekend wasn’t the best weekend for surfing. On…

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Browsing on Bookme, a website with discounted activities, trying to find something to do for the weekend, I came across rap jumping. So on Sunday morning I went into the city to walk off a building. I was greeted by a young guy who told me to wait until everyone had arrived. Once the whole group was complete, we got the introduction, making sure that everyone knew what they’d signed up for. We then took the elevator up and took the last stairs up to the roof. There we got harnessed up and got told about safety. Our harness was put on backwards, because we needed a belay loop in the back. After all, as opposed to abseiling, in rap jumping you descent the building facing forwards. The young guy who had greeted us went down first to show us how it was done. He casually walked down. Well… maybe…

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On Christmas Eve I flew to Brisbane for my overland trip from Brisbane to Cairns. I arrived in a very quiet city, but luckily my hostel had a Christmas dinner going on. On Christmas day I decided to go out to Mount Coot-Tha, just outside of the city, since everything in the city was closed anyway. As it turned out I wasn’t the only person who thought this was a great idea. Although the public bus going up the mountain wasn’t too busy, many people went to the lookout for a view over the city or a lunch in the restaurant. From this point there really was an amazing view towards the city and the surroundings. After a snack and staring out towards the city I found my way to one of the walking trails. The trails are really good, mostly good for walking as well as biking, really wide…

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A new year with new travels. 2019 started on the road for me. This time I was one of the travellers instead of the tour leader. As part of my apprenticeship I got to experience a trip in Australia. My first day of 2019 was actually spent on a train to Cairns. Everyone was pretty tired and I passed the time with some movies. But on the 2nd of January… Cairns had something great in store for me. Australia’s cyclone season seems to have started early and even on the way to Cairns we saw flooded plains from the train. Cairns had been rainy and stormy for days and in the 3 days before we arrived, the boats couldn’t go out to sea or found out the sea was too rough to enter for snorkeling. When we finally got off the train it was humid, but sunny. Dark clouds delivered…

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After spending the week indoors at the office, it’s great to get out on the weekends. It’s especially great when the weather works out too. It wasn’t really warm, but the sun was out and the clouds in the sky showed no sign of showers. I needed to clear my head, so Intook a train out to Brighton Beach and started walking along the Bay Trail. The trail goes on and on around the Port Phillip Bay. I just picked a section that was easy to reach by public transport. You can choose to bike or walk the trail, so I went on foot. For parts of it you walk on a shared bike & foot path, but on foot you can also go down to the water or follow small sandy trails through the vegetation. I wasn’t very far from civilization at all, with a road running very close…

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This weekend I went into the suburb of Abbotsford to visit one of Melbourne’s heritage buildings: the Abbotsford convent. At the moment the former convent is a place where art meets health and where locals come in the weekend for a bite to eat and to relax in the surrounding park. In the 11 buildings of the former Convent of the Good Shepherd you can find pop up shops, restaurants, art spaces, rooms for events and there is even a school in there. During the week, it’s where people work and during the weekend, it’s where people come to enjoy themselves. But this wasn’t always an enjoyable place. The place started as a ‘gentlemen farmlet’, but was soon sold to the Sisters of the Good Shepherd. Started by four women, the convent grew to be one of the biggest Catholic complexes of Australia and housed over 1000 women at its…

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Last March I went on a trip around the top of the South island in New Zealand. I visited the mighty Franz Joseph glacier on a day trip. Geared with crampons we climbed into the helicopter to be flown to the ice mass. Franz Joseph is ever changing. Our guide told us that within about a month the whole route they walk changes. Every day they see the differences. Every day the glacier changes a tiny bit, until a few weeks pass and no inch of it is the same as before. It is ever moving along, changing, melting. As a tiny human, it is hard to comprehend the size and power of it.

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