These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: DECEMBER 2017

Surprise surprise… I’m surprised about this month flying by again. Seriously though… where do the days go? December is always a pretty special time of year, Christmas, family, New Years Eve, thinking about next year and trying not to freak out, plus trying not to over indulge in all that Christmas food… it’s eventful and a lot of hard work! So let’s look back on the crazy month that was December!

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🚐 Western Australia Road Trip

There is honestly nothing like exploring your own back yard. And when your back yard is Australia and freakin huge… there’s a lot to explore! We were lucky enough to journey over to Western Australia for a week to visit our friend Josie in her home town of Manjimup and thought we’d turn this incredible invitation into a little road trip! We got a wicked van, and hopped down the coast. It was absolutely incredible and I’m so glad for all of the memories!

🕺🏻Melbourne Escape

As if one interstate escape wasn’t enough, Mitch and I jetted off to Melbourne for a weekend to see PAUL KELLY, GANG OF YOUTHS, MEG MAC & GRETTA RAY! What an epic concert! It was so nice to getaway (again) and discover another city with Mitch!

 

⛵ Sydney to Hobart Hype!

So my incredibly talented boyfriend is also a sailor. And a pretty good one because he did the Sydney to Hobart! He raced in Black Sheep and I was lucky enough to see him off in Sydney! I got to check out the yacht and get in amongst the hustle and bustle of it all!

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🏠 Home

Christmas means home and home means good food, good people and good times. It was so amazing to catch up with old friends, family and my dogs!

🎶 Tunes

Slow Mover – Angie McMahon. This tune has been on absolute repeat!! Her voice is so different and hypnotising that this is a must for all of those indie Aussie music lovers out there.

Jude – Didirri. Mitch got me onto this song and naturally, every time we get into the car it’s the first song we put on. Another Aussie artist absolutely killing it!

 📗Books

Sad news guys… I didn’t finish any books this month! What have I been doing?! To be fair, I’m half way through The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (not sure I’ll finish it to be honest). But I’ve also been reading a lot of journal articles for my thesis for next year. No excuse I know but that’s what I’ve been reading. Gotta pick up my game next month!

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🎥 Flicks

The Crown – Season 2. Wow this show is actually soooooo good! I binge watched season 2 in about a week and I truly didn’t want it to end. I loved discovering and uncovering more about the royal family (doesn’t everyone) and it was so stunningly put together. Queen Elizabeth was a badass! So maybe that’s why I loved it so much.

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📷 Bloggers and Vloggers

I’ve been indulging in my ‘usual’ YouTubers this past month…. Flying the Nest, Logan Paul, Raya Was Here etc. I’m a huge fan of Tim Kellner however he’s one of Youtube’s ‘quality over quantity’ guys. This month he released the video below ‘Paradise Lost’ and it is incredibly mesmerising, captivating and innovative. His video’s always leave me inspired and challenged and this one is no exception.

📝 Quote

“The woman who does not require validation from anyone is the most feared individual” – Mohadesa Najumi

Ah this quote gets me. So often I seek other people’s approval, agreeability and acceptance. And so often I left confused and worried that I won’t live up to other people’s expectations. It’s so important to listen to yourself, trust your instincts, ask for advice and guidance when necessary but at the end of the day… it’s your life and you gotta own it!

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Well it looks like 2017 is over and 2018 will be off to a flying start very soon…. I absolutely cannot wait!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: DECEMBER 2016

I’m not sure whether it was the fact that I didn’t want 2016 to be over yet, or the fact that I’ve barely touched my laptop in the past few weeks, as to why this post is late. Nonetheless, December was a pretty crazy month. With exams and finals, my family coming to visit, having to say goodbye to some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met and travelling around America, I haven’t had a chance to catch my breath. Oh, and Christmas was in there too. I’m so blessed to have had some of the best experiences in my life in the month of December, so let’s get into serious reflection mode.

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TRAVEL

Lucky me got to do a lot of travel this month! I started the month in New York where I was reunited with my family after 6 months without seeing them. New York was unlike anything else. You can check out my YouTube video here. It was so great seeing my family again, especially to be able to experience a new city like New York with them. A highlight was definitely the day that we walked over the Brooklyn Bridge, plus when Elly and I rode our bikes through Central Park.

And the end of the month was spent in San Francisco, California with my sister. After -20degrees, snow, blizzards and freezing my ass off in Montreal, we were pretty stoked with 12-15 degrees and sunshine! San Francisco is also where we celebrated New Years Eve and despite my sister’s complaint (I had the smart idea of watching the fireworks from the hill near our hostel, however our view of the fireworks were completely blocked by a huge tree), I had a truly lovely New Years Eve. You can check out my San Francisco video here.

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Oh New York

CHRISTMAS

Christmas is always a special day, and what made it even more special and memorable this year was the fact that I got to spend it with my friends and family in Montreal. My two girls, Chloe and Chantelle, came from America to stay with me for a week over Christmas. On Christmas Day, I had a huge party at my house, inviting all of the stray exchange students I knew who would otherwise be spending it with a case of beer and Netflix (OK, that would’ve been me if I didn’t have a party). But OMG I had SO MUCH FUN. We made so much food, there was way too much alcohol and I got to spend Christmas with people I utterly love.

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My little Christmas family

SAYING A BIENTOT

Urgh, the absolute worst thing about travelling and meeting such incredible people is the moment you have to freaking say goodbye. Honestly, it’s the worst feeling, experience, emotion, everything in the world. There were many tears shed, hugs and embracing lasting minutes, parties, drunken hoorahs and truly painful FaceTimes and waving at airports (Eva, Rosa and Marc, I blame you guys for that). As cliché as it sounds, going through such a heart breaking goodbye really makes me realise just how special, genuine and loving these relationships I’ve created are. So as I’ve said a billion times before, it’s not goodbye, it’s see ya later. In the meantime, enjoy a Pabst at Reggies for me.

TUNES

Well the other day I (finally) voted for my top 10 songs for Triple J’s Hottest 100. It was a very stressful time in my life and I’d like to thank each of you being there to support me through these difficult and strenuous times. But I made my decision and you can check it out below. By the way, my number 1 song was Viceroy- Violent Soho.

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FLICKS

 

The Grinch

December and Christmas mean one thing and one thing only… The Grinch. I legitimately watched it three times this month and my god is it quoteable af. I try to channel his sassiness and attitude regularly in my life and damn it feels good.

Barry

I really liked this film. It was sweet and simple, with some very important messages. Without going into the heavy politics of the US President elect Donald Trump, I think it actually made this film better. It’s the knowledge that Obama is leaving the White House and very rosily looking back at his early years as a college student, where it all started.

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YOUTUBERS

Dansvibes makes another appearance, because his Vlogmas was honestly, INCREDIBLE. I watched his vlogs everyday and his presence on camera is so natural, real and personal, how could I not watch?! We met up for an epic coffee crawl in the Plateau (you can watch the video here) and we talked all about YouTube, filmmaking, vlogs and life. Dan – you’re an absolute inspiration and I admire your dedication, enthusiasm and just loveability.

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TUNES

Sleep On The Floor: The Lumineers

This month I found myself watching this video clip over and over and over again. Not only is their entire album truly on point but ahhhh I just love the stories their video clips tell.

September: Earth, Wind & Fire

This song makes me instantly happy! I. Just. Can’t. STOP.

Fumes: EDEN

In all honestly, EDEN’s entire EP is incredible. But this song just hits me right in the feels.

QUOTE

Mmmm… what’s a quote, a sentence, a few words that sums up this month? The quote below really helped me get through the rough times of saying goodbye to Montreal and all the incredible people there. That adventure has come to an end, but it had to to make way for a new one. And I’m freakin excited to see where this adventure takes me.

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So to all of you out there… happy new year and I hope that 2017 takes you on a truly epic adventure.

Did I Achieve My New Years Resolutions for 2016?

For anyone that knows me, I love making lists, writing my goals down and using it as inspiration to work towards achieving them. That’s why I always make New Years Resolutions and set myself goals for the year. And as 2016 sadly comes to an end, and I start trying to make sense of and work out the complications I’ve already got of 2017, it’s led me to wonder what’s in store for me. But I don’t just believe in letting fate happen. I believe in encountering fate, then telling it exactly what you want to do so you can achieve your goals. So, here were my goals and my New Years Resolutions for 2016 and my thoughts and reactions on some of the challenges I set myself.

You can see my original post of 16 Things I Want To Achieve in 2016 HERE

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1. Watch less TV shows, read more books

I’d say this one is somewhat accomplished. I don’t think I necessarily stopped watching TV shows. I just found more time to read and instead of watching TV shows, I made the transition to the wide world of YouTube.

2. Limit my coffee spending.

DID NOT HAPPEN AT ALL… maybe I need to buy a coffee machine?

3. Buy my lunch a max of once a week.

ALSO DID NO HAPPEN! In Australia I was good.

And this is probably the point where I should address that this year was split into two parts… Australia and exchange life. Obviously exchange life isn’t ‘reality’ where I have a job and responsibilities so it therefore impacted my ability to achieve these goals. None the less… I ended up buying food out a lot… oops.

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4. Be a vegetarian. 

I did this in Australia. I quickly discovered that when travelling and staying with friends and family overseas, it’s very difficult to maintain this diet. So I just decided that whilst travelling, I’d ditch the veggo diet. However, the only time I eat meat is when I eat out. I eat vegetarian at home and buy tofu as a source of protein over meat.

5. Ride my bike more often.

Yes in Australia. Yes in France. No in Canada. Sadly I didn’t have access to a bike in Montreal… and to be honest, I think I’d be a bit scared to ride my bike around the streets of Montreal. Drivers here are kinda mental. But I’m soooo looking forward to going home so I can ride my beautiful bike absolutely everywhere.

6. Maintain and improve my French.

Oui, absolutement. After a month of intensive French study in La Rochelle, and 6 months in Quebec, I think I’ve managed to improve my French skills.

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7. TRAVEL! 

This one was kind of cheating because I knew I’d be doing a lot of this on exchange. I’ve been lucky enough to travel around France, Spain, Iceland, Canada (Montreal, Quebec, Toronto, Kingston, Niagara Falls) and the US (DC, Boston, New York – and soon to be California) and I’m so freakin grateful and happy that I had the opportunity to do so much travel during this time.

8. Volunteer.

I did volunteer at the beginning of this year but as soon as I started travelling and moved to Montreal that totally died off. Definitely something that I want to get involved with in 2017.

9. You can’t play hard until you’ve worked harder.

This was all about doing well at uni and I think I managed to do this in Australia and in Montreal. With 2 Distinctions and a HD at UOW for Autumn, and getting the top mark in my mid term for one of my classes at Concordia. I think I’ve deserved those beers.

10. Try something new

I experienced lots of new things, but I don’t think I really tried something new. I guess my intention with this goal was to really put myself out there and try a pole dancing class, learn to play a song on piano, a skill or something just completely out of the ordinary. I did try a lot of new things, but I’m all about pushing myself so I’m going to leave this unachieved and I’ll definitely be carrying this with me into the new year.

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11. Say Yes!

Absolutely smashed this one. There’d be nights where I’d be in bed, winding down for the evening, and then suddenly get a message from a friend inviting me out. It’s really easy to make excuses. In fact I think I realised just how hesitant I can be to making plans. Exchange definitely encouraged me to put myself out there and say yes to opportunities and I’m so grateful for that experience.

12. Be thankful, and show it.

One of the biggest things I learnt this year was just how privileged I am and I never want to take this privilege for granted. I want people to know how much I appreciate their friendship, their kindness and love. Actually, I don’t want them to know it, I want them to feel it. That I’m completely grateful for everything that has happened this year and nothing has passed by unnoticed.

13. Couchsurf.

Maybe next year.

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14. Eat. Sleep. Blog. Repeat. 

Mmmm kind of. Whilst I may not have been blogging as much as I would have liked, I launched my YouTube channel and have been making videos every week. I’ve also written content for Twenty Something Humans and Thought Catalog which has been an incredible experience and something I definitely want to continue into the future.

15. Stop comparing myself/Stop with the negative thoughts.

Everyone has insecurities and has periods where they feel down about themselves. This is something that I’ve wanted to combat this year because being negative is not productive or helpful to anyone, in any situation. So I’ve really been focusing on loving myself and owning my flaws. This has pushed me in a really positive direction and I feel that I’ve grown so much as a person because of it. YAY progress!

16. Own It!

Hells yea I ‘owned it.’ I feel that this carries on from my last point, to love myself, accept myself with my flaws and strengths. I’m really proud of everything that I’ve achieve this year. From improving my French, moving to Canada and putting myself out there to make such amazing friendships and connections with incredible people! I feel like I’ve been able to re-evaluate my values, goals and ambitions to work towards what I really want to achieve and who I want to be in life.

So… do New Years Resolutions work? I achieved 9 of 16 goals so yep – I think that counts as mission accomplished! I’m already thinking about things I want to achieve next year so stay tuned for more!

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These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: NOVEMBER 16

Oh damn it’s all becoming a bit too real. November is over which means only a few more weeks until Christmas, then after that I’ll be packing up my life here in Montreal and travelling around the West coast of America, before heading back home in January. I’m not sure I’m ready for it yet! But before I get ahead of myself…. let’s recap on the amazing month that was November!

Montreal Adventures

This month was the month to really embrace the beauty of Montreal. And with my dear friends, I think I’ve accomplished that. I was lucky enough to have one of my best friends to come and visit for a few nights. You can check out what we got up to below!

A Night Out At Reggies

OK so this isn’t exactly something new (I kinda go to Reggies every week). But this time I happened to bring my camera. Despite the fact that we’re missing my girl EVA (next time) – these photos are of beautiful people that I’m lucky enough to call my friends here in Montreal.

BOSTON

I was lucky enough to go the the States again this month, and this time it was Boston! What an awesome city! I honestly had such an amazing time with amazing people – check out the video to see Boston in it’s full glory.

Flicks

If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of a good documentary. And Netflix has been DELIVERING! The Hunting Ground is a must watch for everyone, particularly university students. It sadly reflects deep seeded issues with the university as an institution and the unequal treatment of men and women.

13th absolutely blew my mind! I think this is compulsory viewing for every single human being. It shines a very ugly light on the American ‘justice’ system whilst highlighting the huge issues of racism, inequality and corrupt institutions that plague America. I was in tears by the end of the film, and after the election of Donald Trump, who’s racist words echo throughout a very powerful section of the film, I’m scared and fearful for those who are already subject to such inequality. #blacklivesmatter

Lovesick

Yep – I’ve done another binge watch of a Netflix series but this one has left me feeling love, loved and…. lovesick. It’s light hearted, classic British romantic humour and it just made me so happy to watch. 10/10 would recommend.

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Tunes

This song! I don’t know how I missed this when it was released but damn this song get’s me so pumped and makes me so happy! It makes me incredibly excited to be back in the sunshine, at the beach with some great friends!

Tom Odell, I will forever love you. I’ve been listening to all of his music lately, but this is just a great cover that I’ve had on repeat for the past few weeks. As someone in the comments described, Matt Healy (the lead singer of the 1975) is like a cigarette and Tom Odell, he’s like a smooth whisky with a vintage cigar.

Bloggers & Vloggers

JacksGap

This channel is INCREDIBLE! It’s soooo inspiring and has definitely given me direction and motivation of where I would want to take my channel, career and life. I love them because they combine creative and quality content with a meaningful message and for that, I absolutley applaud them!

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kayla briët 

This girl is ridiculously talented! I was lucky enough to see her premiere her short film called ‘Smoke That Travels’ and is one of the most incredible films I’ve ever seen. She write and producers her own music, she’s an incredible story teller and again, creates extremely meaningful and important content. I’m incredibly inspired by her and she’s definitely someone the YouTube community should embrace and support.

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Reads

After being lucky enough to see Chris Hadfield speak at Buffer Fest (you can see the video here), I was inspired to read his book. And it’s just as amazing as him! It’s interesting, light hearted, but filled with some very important life lessons that anyone can relate to and learn from. I can’t wait to give it to my brother, who’s fascinated with science and space!

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Quote

This month, as you have already seen, I’ve been very grateful for the friendships I’ve made. I haven’t been worried about travel, boys, school… my main focus has been these friendships. Dedicating quality time, going out and doing something fun and different, and just appreciating every opportunity I have to spend time with them. Maybe it’s because I’m getting a little sentimental because I know I’m leaving soon (let’s not mention it just yet), but it’s such a rare time in my life where I have zero responsibilities and I get to dictate my days. And I guess despite all of the crazy times we’ve had, they’ve stood by me and made my experience here absolutely unforgettable. You know who you are…

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OK so that wraps up November! There’s sooooooo much in store for December that I can’t even really think about it right now, but stay tuned because it’s going to be amazing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: AUGUST 16

So I think I can officially say that August has literally been the craziest month ever! I’ve actually lost track of where I’ve been and what I’ve done – thank god for journal entries and Insta posts… But before I get stuck into it – August has been an absolute whirlwind. Something that I think I’m paying for now (I’m a bit run down and sick at the moment). So it’s always important to take care of yourself so you don’t burn out. OK – without further ado…. I present to you my incredible month of AUGUST!!!!

SPAIN

Believe it or not I started this month in San Sebastian, Spain. It was the first time I’ve ever been and I was lucky enough to be travelling with my Dad at this point. San Sebastian was literally like a fairytale come to life. The most vividly blue water, crowded lively and buzzing tapas bars and the best sangria I’ve ever had! A highlight was probably SURFING! The beach we stayed near is famous for it’s surf so it was pretty cool to rent a board for an hour and paddle out without having to worry about sharks!

You can see my SAN SEBASTIAN VIDEO HERE

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Sangria all day everyday
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Dad and I exploring
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Sunset in San Sebastian

Barcelona

Another incredible city that I’d never been to! Barcelona was an absolute whirlwind! The architecture is unlike anything I’ve ever seen before! I felt like I was walking through a Tim Burton film most of the time!

You can check out my Barcelona video here!

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BARCELONAAAA
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Love a good snapchat filter!
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Endless views of this incredible city

PARIS

After Barcelona we flew to my favourite city of all time… PARIS! There’s not enough words in the world to describe just how much I love this place! We stayed in an AirBnb in Abbesses (click here to see). It was in the best location, right under the Sacre Coeur, with bars, boulangeries, markets and restaurants surrounding us. I felt like an actual Parisienne living there, which is pretty much the dream!

For me- Paris isn’t about the museums, galleries, monuments etc (although they definitely do add to the experience). But it’s the atmosphere. That beautiful immersion in French culture, history and way of life. To me, that’s absolutely magical.

However, it was my Dad’s first time in Paris… so I got to play tour guide (and I think I did a pretty damn good job). We walked absolutely everywhere, ate baguettes with every meal and enjoyed incredible food.

You can see my PARIS VLOG HERE

ICELAND

Round 2 in Iceland and dayum this place knows how to make someone happy! We rented a car (which is an absolute must for Iceland) and drove around the Ring Road and just pulled over whenever we saw something awesome. I’m talking, waterfalls, plane wrecks, more waterfalls and glaciers.

The highlight of Iceland was probably Vestmannaeyjar. It’s an island about 30 minutes from the mainland and is probably one of the most wild places I’ve ever been. The hiking was incredible and the views were literally breathtaking!

You can check out my ICELAND VIDEO HERE

MONTRÉAL

The time finally came where I touched down in Montréal! Woo! It’s so surreal when something has been months in the making and then it finally happens. All that hard work pays off… and then you come to the realisation – shit. I’m in a new city, new country and don’t know anyone… You can read about my first impressions of Montréal here but after being here for a few weeks… this place is AMAZING!!!

My housemate is cool af, I’ve made countless friends, drank waaaaaay too much alcohol and just am all round having a great time.

TUNES

This month it’s been kind of hard to keep on track with new music, but there’s no way in the world I would miss new music from BANKS! OMG finally! I’m absolutely in love and I’m just hanging out for the album to be released!

Just A Gent

I’ve been trying to keep on top of my Like A Versions but when I heard this my mind was blown!!! It’s so sick I really don’t have many more words….

FLICKS

Same as July, I haven’t really had the chance to watch many films… but I’ll get there. Instead, like always I’ve been binge watching Netflix, and this is definitely a huge advantage to being in Canada! The Canadian Netflix is awesome!

I smashed out Season 2 of How to Get Away With Murder in nearly a weekend and OMG if you can start this show without smashing it out in a weekend then I’m very impressed with your self control.

QUOTES

I think this one is extremely relevant to my life at the moment. I guess when you have a lot of spare time and find yourself chilling alone, it’s easy to forget what you’re passionate about. You kind of get caught up in other things. This quote has motivated me to get out there, introduce myself, make mistakes, make a fool of myself, make friends and get in there. When you do the things you love and are truly passionate about, your heart and soul will be absolutely raging… so do it.

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OK – What a month! I can’t believe I somehow made it from Spain to Canada! I’m sooooo looking forward to September. For classes to start and meet even more people and have many more exciting, scary and daring adventures!

 

 

 

Why ROAD TRIPS Will Always Be The Best Type of Travel

I was lucky enough to recently be sent on an epic road trip for work (I know… what a job?!). Whilst we did work really hard during the days, leaving me absolutely exhausted by the end of my trip, it was also a great experience to see some pretty epic places. My little road trip took me to Tamworth, Newcastle, Maitland, Port Stephens (home), Port Macquarie & Coffs Harbour. I was lucky enough to travel with two awesome guys that I also work with, along with eating amazing food at amazing places, belt out some great songs and take some awesome pictures. This little adventure reminded me of why road trips will always be the best type of travel!

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Abdul and I on the first leg of our road trip. Wollongong –> Tamworth.

You get to see all of the sites

You can just see so much more by road! Sure – highways aren’t that exciting, but as soon as you take an exit, you drive through towns you’ve never heard of and see the landscape change as you rack up the kilometres.

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Seeing the sites of the Golden Guitar at Tamworth.

There’s nothing holding you back

Unlike travelling by plane, train or bus, you don’t have to worry about timetables or schedules, worrying about where or when your stop is or making sure you arrive early…. not with a car! It’s as simple as grabbing the keys and hitting the gas!

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Not holding back those yoga skills 

You choose the music, and you choose the decibel you want it at!

By far the best thing about road tripping is the music you choose as the soundtrack to your adventures! Whilst Triple J will get you a long way, it’s one of the commandments of road tripping – ‘thou must provide solid beats.’ There’s nothing better than cruising down the highway and belting out some bangers!

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Attempting to surf in Coffs Harbour. 

You can alternate drivers 

If you love a good nap but don’t want to fall victim to prying, judgemental eyes when you fall asleep in public, then snoozing off in the car is perfect for you! You can put the seat back, cuddle up to a pillow and have the snooze of a lifetime. Or, if you’ve got stuff to do (hello uni work!) you can sit back and get your reading/essay/blogs done!

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Friends you make whilst on the road! Enjoying lunch in Maitland.

Road trips make the ultimate friends

At the end of the day, the people you road trip with become pretty awesome friends! You have to put up with each other’s bad singing, confusing directions, snoring in the car and downing take away coffees on the go – that’s a recipe for some ultimate friendship bonding right there!

Road trips will always inspire spontaneity, motivate you to get up early and just go! I can’t wait to have many more road trip adventures to come.

You can check out the highlights to my road trip here!