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Essence of “yolo”

25 Jul

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ohh..you only live once

Bonjour from Paree! I haven’t posted in aggges due to working 70+ hours a week, months before my holiday, and since leaving in June, have been flat out enjoying this “gap” travel time in Europe.

I don’t even know where to begin.. I have hands down had the time of my life, starting with a 29 day topdeck tour, met friends for life, partied with them as if we’d been best friends forever..and made memories to last me till my nursing home days..so cliche, but so effing true.

here’s a quick snapshot of my favorite memories… I’ll just post photos,and captions..In no particular order..

Bear with the photo quality,all taken with my phone..

Currently in my second month of travel and loving it! This is the best thing I’ve ever done for myself.

xx ciao for now

Overall, one of my favorite memories has  been skydiving over the swiss alps, hung over with a good friend after partying all night with marines,then getting one hour of sleep before getting up…

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a sigh of relief …
(before i puked later)

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getting upto no good

getting upto no good

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meteora

meteora

night out in Switzerland

night out in Switzerland

Dinner on a rooftop in instanbul, blue mosque in the background

Dinner on a rooftop in instanbul, blue mosque in the background

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love valley in cappadoccia

love valley in cappadoccia

hot air ballooning cappadoccia

hot air ballooning cappadoccia

sunset from the Eiffel tower

sunset from the Eiffel tower

billionaire cocktail lounge, monaco

billionaire cocktail lounge, monaco

last night in instanbul

last night in instanbul

gardens in meteora

gardens in meteora

the louvre

the louvre

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louvre panorama

louvre panorama

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nearly getting eaten by a camel

nearly getting eaten by a camel

shooting in Turkey

shooting in Turkey

quad biking in mykonos

quad biking in mykonos

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the basilica cistern ,Istanbul

the basilica cistern ,Istanbul

A trip to remember ( on a budget)

28 Apr

Howdy howdy, long time no post. 🙂

I’ve been so busy working and saving for this long awaited holiday I’ve been fantasizing about since year 10.

So I’ve been earning every penny the hard way- working two jobs… and here I am 5 years after high school, also completed uni and about to embark on this trip.

Since i’d like to be travelling for 5 months i’m considering couch surfing for some of the trip as I really want to stretch what little savings I have- I’ve read and heard mixed things but overall good. I’m interested to see if anyone who stumbles across my blog has tried couch surfing? Where did you do it? and how did you find it?

I can’t wait to meet so many new people!

Some of the places on my hot( and freezing) spot list

ICELAND:

Blue Lagoon

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Credits to : Yoni Brook/The New York Times

Northern Lights in Iceland / or Scandinavia

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Credits to: kpm blog 2011

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Credits to: HotelRanga and Marie Kerr

 TURKEY

Cappadoccia

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Credits unknown

Blue Mosque

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Credits to :allposters.com

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Credits to: Argos in Cappadoccia

 SPAIN

COSTA BRAVA COAST-

Santa Clotide Botannical Gardens- created in 1919

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Credits to: Landlopers.com

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Credits to: Landlopers.com

MALLORCA- es calo des moro Beach

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Credits to: twiga_ Scala Flikr

SCOTLAND

ISLE OF SKYE

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Credits to: holidayspots4u.com

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Credits to: thezoom.com

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allthatisinteresting.com

PORTUGAL

BEACHES

BELEM TOWER

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Credits to: Recommend.com

ITALY

Tuscany- Mineral Baths

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UKRAINE

Tunnel Of Love

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Credits to: Vitalii Sak

A very sprawled and random list- but yes I have an obsession with natural beauty, gardens, hot springs and beaches. Will I see all these places? ha.. I can dream 🙂

Anyone got a spare room for me?

Australia day long weekend

28 Jan

I had a lovely weekend filled with lots of family, wine and food. A perfect weekend.
Got to love  Australia day. 🙂
Saturday was my cousins ninth birthday, where my boyfriend and i walked an hour along a road with no shelter to get to the park because of a slight error in my trip planning,which said the trip  would take seven minutes……i missed the part where i had chosen the driving option.

We got burnt,and by the time we arrived :-)( 3pm) everyone was packed up ready to leave. So we had a bit of rest and recovery,  before we head back home.
It was nice while it lasted though, with a cool breeze and sitting along the river bank, admiring those more fortunate with a boat.

When we got home I was in the mood  for  some drinkin’ so i made a white wine Sangria  which got mum drunk because apparently she didn’t know there was alcohol in it…it clearly tasted like white wine to me and the empty bottle of sav blanc  was sitting right next to the jug…whatevs  mum.
Here’s the Sangria i made

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Today we head to a family friends’ who just had a baby boy,she lived out hunter valley way which was a long drive …but so lovely and relaxing even in this grey,wet depressing weather.
We were welcomed with some more sav  blanc and delicious bbq, where we caught up and indulged to the surroundings of the still, and hazy pastel greens of the countryside.

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Ready for a new week!

massage- my second love

16 Jan

So i’ve heard about Ayurvedic massage, and it looks absolutely luxurious!!!
Why have I never tried it before?  It also looks like it costs a bomb.
I luuurrrve oil massage and always get Either Thai or Oil massages depending on how bad my back feels.

Have a drool ..

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Beach Club co.

7 Jan

At the resort, we could go on day trips to our partner beach clubs for the day- for a beach picnic, some snorkeling, wind surfing and cocktail sippin.

The two were called Entalula and Dibuluan.

The beach club- Entalula

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Picnic

Trying to look relaxed

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aannnd Dibuluan.

Each had their own charms, with Dibuluan having an old bamboo forest trail, and an army of hermit crabs!

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Just a few of the many hermit crabs

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baby hermy- it was amazing; when we stayed still close to the ground we noticed all the little shells were moving; nearly EVERY shell had a hermit crab in it!

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As we signed another waiver, I asked if there were any snakes or tigers in there,just to be sure.. they laughed and assured us all we had to worry about was a recent storm that had damaged the look out point, so we were strictly advised not to go on it. We were guided by a blue rope….which we discovered somewhat vanished part way through once we came across some mangroves.

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The lucky guess path back to the beach club

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The moment of relief, spotting the beach club after wading through some water

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I’ve been daydreaming ever since I got back.. it was a year ago now

The Philippines -Part 5 Secret beach, El Nido

29 Dec

In the Philippines,you can rest assured you will constantly be surprised.
You thought a motorcycle was for one or two people ? Well not here apparently. I’ve witnessed families of five  quite comfortably cruising along a road looking pretty blase about it. Oh, and also the ones on motorbikes  AND mobiles , i was sitting there constantly comparing and whining… this IS SO ILLEGAL IN AUSTRALIA.!
Amazingly enough it seems these sort of places never have as many accidents as drivers do here.
I like to think of it like this; just as ants appear to the human eye as a chaotic, scattered mess of a bunch- it only takes a closer look to realise  they work in perfect harmony as a community. Just as the traffic in Manila looked  somewhat chaotic to me, i felt pretty safe in the end growing accustomed to the last minute  swerves and lane changes, they had they own system, different.
A horn would be used here to show your annoyance  at another  driver, but it seemed  a beep had many uses over there-another communication system. From saying hello to warning others you were overtaking-as you were doing it. When we were suck in traffic the drivers formed some sort  of horn acapella, i couldn’t figure out for the life of me why they were all beeping, i think it was for their own amusement.
Anyway, just as the people of the Philippines had their own charms  and surprises, the landscape of el Nido was full of just as much mystery to keep us in awe for our entire stay.
What seemed like just another a limestone cliff from the outside,later revealed there was so much more than meets the eye.
I felt a rush as a I jumped into the water, a mix of excitement and adrenaline, getting ready to witness this place  i had Google imaged the shit out of since the start of my travel plans.

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How someone discovered secret beach must be one hell  of a story,because i can’t picture why anyone would randomly stop there among the kms of lime stone cliffs and swim underwater in that spot.
The activities guy swum ahead if me,we ducked underwater for a second and resurfaced to crystal crystal clear  waters and warm white sand.
Like a private pool,in this safe little haven we were protected from any rough  seas.
You could picture memaids  bathing here in this magical cove. In a legend where some lucky sailor would end up washed up after his ship had wrecked.
Secret beach.

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Underwater Entrance

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Paradise

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Philippines holiday- Part 4 Matinloc Shrine/ Island – (where I want to get married one day !)

24 Dec

Towards the end of our stay at Miniloc Island we asked the staff if they could  take us somewhere different a because we had seen most of the other local icons/scenery and wanted to make the most of being in that area.
I think my boyfriend had heard or read about Matinloc Island or one of the activities staff mentioned it (can’t remember) but since we had been on the island for the longest out of everyone else (most people stayed 2-4 days) I think they got to know and like us and were very hospitable. 🙂 So Matinloc Island it was. This was probably the longest trip we made out for a day activity, which is why I can understand they wouldn’t want to take other people out who were only spending a day or two there when they would probably rather see things like big lagoon etc.

The staff pointed out islands where turtles bred, and told us  heaps of interesting stories about the area and their lives. One guy told us about how once they saw pigs swimming in a single line; each one with their head on the back of the other while they all trod water, till the one at the front would get tired and swim  to the back of the line!!
Haha this was highly amusing as my boyfriend and I are obsessed with pigs, and we couldn’t imagine ever seeing a pig in the area, let along a conga line of pigs swimming!
We also saw a gigantic Manta Ray on the way, unfortunately I didn’t get a photo of it.

As you may know the Philippines is predominantly a Catholic country, and Matinloc shrine holds a Catholic festival/feast day for Our lady of Matinloc Island in May I think for locals in nearby islands.. (Thats what I recall the guy saying anyway- almost a year ago.)
However it is somewhat run down, and abandoned.  No-one lives or stays there to maintain it its mainly just tourists coming by and I suppose the locals for a feast day.
Boats of tourists come by during the day and have a look around/ snorkel around the area- but don’t worry there was only one other group of tourists when we were there- it’s not one of those places flooded with people because it isn’t well known.

The trip there
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This was our view pulling upto Matinloc Island,

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I know I’ve spoken about the water before in general there and how beautiful it is, but this really was a beautiful place. As corny as it sounds, the sun flickering off the water reminded me of diamonds or glitter shining in the light- it was so so pretty! If i had a dollar for every time I was like wowwww this is sooo beautiful/pretty/amazing over there- I would be a very rich lady.

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See how the water goes from a light blue to a deep ocean blue?- we snorkelled around there and maaan the ocean floor just dropped down into nothingness it scared the crap out of me, I made sure my boyfriend was swimming on the deeper side beside me in case anything scary decided to appear, such as but not limited to hungry sharks.( great gf, yea i know..)

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Matinloc shrine

 

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Sittin on the dock of the bay. Wastin timmmmmmeImage
This was an old abandoned building, I lost the group for a bit so decided to explore it, there was some broken glass on the floor and not much in there- but it had a nice view.
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Here is the said view from in there.

Later on I caught up with the others who were checking out the underground shrine.
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After that, we walked up some rock/ makeshift staircase to one of the best views i’ve ever seen in my life!

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lol this aint passing no safety tests in Australia

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The View

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wow. just wow. I would love to be a bird and just glide over that amazing water.

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Water shot.

After Matinloc we head to secret beach  on the way back to the resort which ill blog about next
xx

Good night.

One more day till Christmas 🙂

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Sunrise after “the end of the world”

23 Dec

Aloha!

sunrise
I had to work late unfortunately, on the night the world was meant to end.
I went out with work mates when we were done and got to my bfs place say 5am, woke him up and decided to take sunrise photos.
Amazing view !! I’m still getting used to my entry level SLR, my bf bought me a macro zoom lens 70-200 mm or something. Which is what I used to take this photo.
I’m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to some things, so I kept snapping and adjusting the settings until I was content with the colours, brightness and could see the sun. I didn’t even have to edit this photo because the colours were already that stunningly dreamy. I love that pinkish haze over the horizon, it makes me feel like im watching the sunset in the Caribbean somewhere 😀

Merry Chrsitmas and Happy New Year everyone!

oxxo

Philippines-Part 3 Lagen Island

17 Dec

Howdy!
I just realised I hadn’t mentioned this earlier, but the resort we stayed at was called Miniloc Island Resort. All are under El Nido resorts- http://www.elnidoresorts.com/
It had a partner resort called Lagen Island, where we could spend the day, to eat their buffet, go on a little hike through the forest, use their pool, go to their bar etc.
It was something refreshing if you got sick of the scenery at your resort (*cough*  which wouldn’t happen) and only a boat ride across the bay. In fact, you could jusssst make out their lights on at night in the distance.
Call me biased in saying I preferred Miniloc better, but yeah we had a beautiful  reef out the front to snorkel with their resident turtle, and the lovely authentic looking bungalows right over the water. 😉

We spent one day at Lagen, and did the walk. We were told to sign a waiver, which made me question if there were any snakes, tigers etc we should know about haha. It was just us two on the walk. Through that still, lush green forest.
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Me with my Gandalf stick to break up any spider webs ahead.

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Do I look big in this butt?

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And finally! The trail out to the beach- where we had to kayak back around to the resort front.

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My Boyfriend had a look at this photo we took, and thought it seemed soooo familiar but couldn’t work out where we had seen it before, we figured it was on the cover of Lonely Planet or something.

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Just casually doing yoga poses on a remote tropical island.

Afterwards, we made out way back canoeing, after a little dip from being so sweaty and hot from that walk. ( yes, unfit)

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Photos of Lagen Island from the front.

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Fascinating camel shaped rock..

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This is the resort pool, ok this is one thing we didn’t have at Miniloc, but hey you can’t have everything- even on paradise. I really adore how the palm leaves look like peacock tails.We were told by staff that Monitor Lizards( Big lizards) often came by and swum in the pool. I was shocked and said “then what?!!- how do you get them out?” He just laughed and said they let them swim because it was their home before we got here- which is true, and I respect that. They are pretty harmless and don’t cause much trouble- unlike the monkeys haha. Naughty bastards.
The wonderful bar man said he would make me any sort of daquiri, provided he had the fruit-so I requested a papaya daiquiri  Not bad, Not bad 😉

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you put the lime in the coconut …

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The massage room. Ahhh.  Sweet Memories…
The massages were amazing at the resort(all resorts have massage places), you could go to their massage tent such as this, or request them to come to your room. At a fraction of the cost for a massage in Sydney you can’t complain, but thats how it all add up when we got the big bill at the end lol. “Just one more cocktail, one more wine, one more massage..”
Even cheapness is only cheap in moderation.

Random memory flashback but I remember this day I had a grain of sand stuck on my eyeball under my top lid- let me tell you this was the most uncomfortable sensations i’ve ever experienced- the resort nurse tried multiple times flushing it with eye wash, I really wanted to cry. It felt like anything I did made it worse. In the end I got it out by opening my eyes in the salt water and moving my eyelid around with my finger. * note to yourself for future*
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I’ll end with a picture of dolphins we came across on a boat ride back from one of the islands, apparently if you stop the boat ( which we had) and clap, the dolphins come closer in. They were curious little friendly fellows and probably loved the attention.
They would pop their heads up every now and then. This made my afternoon as i’ve never seen dolphins that close before 🙂

Good night everyone

oxxo

Make It Count!!!

11 Dec

Love this