Byron Bay

Rainbows and blue skies 

13th & 14th February 2018

Byron bay is known for its beaches, independent shops and relaxed environment. We were only there for 2 days so had to cram in what we wanted to do. It would have been nice to stay maybe one more night to take in the sights more but we did experience the beautiful sites of the Cape Byron trail. 

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As you can see from the pictures it was absolutely stunning and the water was the nicest we had been in so far. Byron has a bit of a reputation for being a hippie town and the shops definitely reflected that, there were lots of independent shops selling local artists work and it was nice to see the support and the real sense of community that Byron had.

We were there during the most romantic day of the year, valentines day and in true team triangle fashion we went for a lovely Dominoes!

Time in Byron was short but sweet, a place I would like to go back to like most places we have visited. We made the decision to move on to Sydney and we were really looking forward to heading to the big city!

All aboard the greyhound…

Speak soon,

Hannah x

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Gold Coast

Surfers paradise & Movie World

10th, 11th & 12th February 2018

Going to new places can be scary and it was something we hadn’t done after being in our Cairns bubble for a while but it was finally time to head somewhere new and explore.

I fell in love with the Gold Coast straight away. As soon as we were driving in on the good old greyhound I could just sense that I was going to enjoy our time here. We arrived at the hostel and were blown away, It was so nice! After staying in only Nomads up till this point, it was a breath of fresh air to be somewhere that was newly furbished and modern. Spoiler alert, this turned out to be our favourite hostel so shout out to BUNK surfers paradise, keep doing you. We spent the afternoon napping and doing a bit of exploring, aggy and tired we needed to just spend some time coming round before we did anything too adventurous.

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The next day we were up ready for a beach day which was only a 10 minute walk away. Living up to it’s name the surf at the beach was insane! We nearly drowned a few times but it was SO FUN. Funnily enough just after we left for the next place they closed the beach for about a week due to strong tides.

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The thing about Aus is that no matter how mcuh this pale Brit put suncream on, the Aus sunshine always won. 2 very burnt bum cheeks later it was time to head into the city to do some shopping, which conveniently, was just off the beach. I think that was my main reason for loving surfers as much as I did, you had the big sky rise buildings, shops in the City and the beach all in 100 metres of each other. 

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I won’t lie to you, another reason I enjoyed surfers was because of my whirlwind date with a certain boy nicknamed J-lo. I won’t be going into detail as I know my dad reads this (hi Stu), but lets just say it was the sweeping off my feet I needed. 

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Monday came around and it was time for an adrenaline filled day at Warner Brothers Movie World. This was honestly one of the best theme parks I’ve ever been to, including Disney. The wait times for rides where minimal and with opportunities to bump into characters and have your picture taken or watch the parades, there was always something to look at and engage with. 

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An evening in the Hard Rock Cafe was a treat to us and it was nice to treat ourselves to something other than cheesy pasta. The next morning we were off again heading to Byron so we spent the evening packing and getting some rest. 

Yep you guessed it… it was greyhound time again, off to go “find ourselves” in Byron Bay…

Speak Soon,

Hannah x

Australia Zoo

One of the best days of my life…

9th February 2018

Up early to catch the bus to the zoo, we eagerly anticipated the day ahead. I am normally a little apprehensive about going to the zoo, especially those outside of the UK as I fear the treatment of animals is not as regulated. Australia zoo however is the legacy of the crocodile hunter Steve Irwin. The zoo span’s 100 acres and has an animal hospital just next door that helps thousands of animals a year. 

Here are just a few pictures from our day at the zoo:

 

One thing that really stands out at the zoo, is how happy the animals are. You can tell the keepers really care for the animals and that they have a really special bond. There is a ‘Kangaroo park’ that you can walk through and pet the kangaroos. This was a really special moment and I am so lucky to have witnessed a mother caring for her baby joey. 

The zoo is so hands on with the animals and offers a whole range of ‘animal encounters’, one of which I was lucky enough to be able to book. It is no secret that giraffes are my favourite animal and when I saw that there was opportunity to feed them I couldn’t miss out. This was honestly one of the best moments of my life. I am so glad I got picture evidence of it so that I can remember this for ever. 

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Overall, the zoo was a great experience, one I will definitely never forget and I feel extremely lucky.

It was time to get on the greyhound again this time we were off to somewhere new! Gold coast, surfers paradise here we come… 

Speak soon,

Hannah x

East Coast Part 2

When they greyhound becomes home…

7th & 8th February 2018

After the gruelling 17 hour bus to Airlie we arrived to glorious sunshine and we were ready to chill. We went back to our favourite cafe (Sidewalk Cafe) for breakfast and a smoothie and started to come to terms with the exciting fact that we had left Cairns, this time for good. We were so tired but we still managed to go for a wonder around the shops and decided to go for a lay down bye the sea. We arrived in Airlie in the morning and were leaving that evening so we took the time that we had to chill out and take in some fresh sea air. 

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As the evening came the sky gave us a beautiful goodbye view and we boarded the Greyhound ready for a long slug of a 17 hour journey. 

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In between this journey one of the stops was our favourite service stations where the ‘Winking Matilda’ kangaroo mascot from the 1982 Commonwealth games. We have passed through this stop so many times on our travels it was nice to see her again one last time! 

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Thursday morning was when we finally arrived in Noosa after the 17 hour journey turned into 18!! We were all just absolutely shattered so we checked into the hostel and took a quick chill/nap.

That evening we headed to a place called Betty’s Burgers and Concrete Co, which was hands down one of the best burgers I’ve ever had. We had such a lovely evening walking around Noosa Heads and we even bumped into some old friends who had left Cairns just before us. so we had a drink with them and headed to bed. 

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We wanted to get an early night because we were heading to Australia Zoo the next day! Brace yourselves for the animal pics…

Speak soon,

Hannah x

Cairns Part 2

Work work work work work work…

28th October 2017 – 7th February 2018

We arrived in Cairns ready to start work but it was’t until the 14th November when we actually started. This is because of issues outside of our control and we were messed around A LOT by Nomads.

When work finally began our job roles were housekeeping and bus driving. We were also lucky enough to get jobs at the local tavern, The Cock N Bull. Both jobs were very active and meant we were on our feet all day, a drastic contrast to the rest of our travels so far. We didn’t mind this one bit, we were just excited to be earning some money! 

I don’t want to dwell on what happened in cairns though, as I don’t look at it with fond memories. When you’re working 2 jobs up to 50 hours a week it can start to bring you down. Instead I just want to note some of the fun things we did when our friend from home, Jared came for 3 weeks over Christmas and what we did on our days off.

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Christmas in Cairns, fun BBQ on the esplanade thanks to chef Jared. 

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Some pictures of what we got up to with Jared.

 

The beauty that is Fitzroy Island.

7th February was when we had finally had enough and decided it was time to go back down the east coast for some more adventures. We decided to take the Greyhound again and stop off at Airlie and Noosa.

1am bus journey to Airlie was first… 10 hours on a bus is nothing right? 

Speak soon,

Hannah x

MalloFit

#GetMovingWithMallo

Being unemployed in Brisbane meant that I had a lot of time outside of applying for jobs for working on my fitness. After pretty much a month off and bad eating I could feel my body changing. 

Instagram is probably my most used social media app on my phone so I thought why try to start to take some pictures of workouts to help motivate myself and maybe a few others along the way. 

Turns out it was something that I really enjoyed and MalloFit was born. I post as often as I can whether it be pictures/videos of what I’ve just done or my view whilst doing it.

 

You can find the link to the page here: https://www.instagram.com/mallo_fit/ why not give it a follow? 

Speak soon,

Hannah x

Brisbane

How to outstay your welcome…

3rd – 27th October 2017

Where do I start with Brisbane? What a place. The place we thought held all the answers to our job needs. As it turned out we just ended up spending 3 weeks wasting time, energy and most importantly, money. 

“It’s a city, they’ll be loads of jobs” we thought. Everyone had told us we’d find it easy getting a job because we had retail experience but no matter how many resumes we handed out or shop managers we asked to hire us, they just weren’t looking for back packers. 

We all printed out 50 copies of our resumes and handed out all 50 of them all over the city and got nothing back. That’s 150 resumes. 0 replies. 

Websites such as Seek, Indeed and Gumtree are the sites that advertise the most jobs so we would spend our days sat in the bar applying for job after job I couldn’t even tell you how many, only to hear nothing back.

After a while desperation set in and we decided to apply for a job as ‘fundraisers’ for a charity. Yes you’ve guessed it, we applied to be one of those people who stop you when you’re out doing your shopping and don’t want to be stopped. Off to the group interview we went and surprisingly we were all successful. We were told they were only hiring 10 and interviewing 50 so we were pretty chuffed with them odds. It was the boost we needed. 

Next it was up to us to learn the speech we would have to repeat at the training day to prove we were ready for ‘the field’. Cringe as it was, we made it through the day and were told where we would have to go the next day. Thankfully me and Jess were put at the same station and it was only a mile away but Alex’s was a train ride away. With it being our first day we only had to do half a day, me and Jess were in the morning but Alex was in the afternoon. 

Up early and not looking forward to it, Jess and myself set off ready to give it our best shot. We were designated an area and we had to stop as many people as we could and try to get them to sign up. I won’t sugar coat it, I didn’t even get through the first line of my speech. It was horrible, the most soul destroying job I have ever done. Anyone who knows me will tell you, I am a really sociable person and I don’t have issues talking to new people so constantly being rejected and being ignored was really tough. After about 2 hours of trying to get people to stop we got a 15 minute break in which me and Jess rang Alex and told her how it was going. Alex was an absolute star and talked us down and told us not to do it if we didn’t want to and that we could quit. She also told us that she had decided not to go that afternoon and we didn’t blame her one bit.

When the morning was finally over Jess had made the decision that she was going to call it quits. Why I didn’t do the same, I’ll never know but I thought I’d give it one more shot. I lasted one full day and that was it I couldn’t do it any longer. 

With us all once again jobless and out of ideas we decided to contact the people we met in Cairns to see if they could help us out. After calling on a few favours we had word that if we got ourselves to Cairns we had jobs as housekeepers in Nomads where we started our trip. This was the good news we had been waiting for even though it felt like a little step backwards. We were really lucky that Juicy had a relocation offer on a big condo van so it meant we only had to pay $1 a day to get it up to Cairns. Of course there were plenty of hidden charges but it was still cheaper than flying or getting the greyhound. 

This meant our time in Brisbane was over. I have only really moaned about the lack of jobs here but overall we did really like Brisbane as a city it just wasn’t meant to be. We were regulars at musical bingo on a Tuesday night and trivia Wednesdays were always a win (even if we did cheat)! I’ll insert some pictures below of what we got up to:

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Anyway, back up to Cairns we go…

Speak soon,

Hannah x

When The Plan Doesn’t Go To Plan

Moral of the story: trust your gut...

1st & 2nd October 2017

Travelling down the east coast was something I’ll never forget. From the people we met to the memories we made it was the best start to my working holiday. 

BUT 

And that is a very big but, it doesn’t always go to plan. 

We knew we couldn’t be ladies of leisure for the whole year and we definitely are not afraid of a bit of hard graft! It was just getting someone to employ us to do the hard graft that was the problem! 

Jess had heard of this website called work away, a site where you can organise homestays or cultural exchange. The idea is you can stay with a family and in exchange you work a few hours a day for them doing things such as; assisting with family life or working on their land. We had found a hostel in Hervey Bay which agreed to take all 3 of us in exchange for a few hours  work a day in the hostel. The plan was we were going to stay in the hostel for the month of October while we looked for jobs in Brisbane, chilled after a month on the move and potentially got a job in Hervey Bay to tide us over for food costs. Sounds great right?

Well, we arrived in Hervey Bay and from the get go, we knew it wasn’t for us. This is in absolutely no way the hostels fault! In fact, they were so lovely about the whole thing. Don’t worry though this isn’t one of them travelling horror stories! It’s just that Hervey Bay is very much a holiday/ weekend away spot and don’t get me wrong I love a small village or town but this was just too small.  There were limited shops/cafes – non of which were hiring – and the hostel was very quiet. It was a hostel people tended to stay in before their Fraser Island trip which we had just finished. 

We made the decision almost immediately after getting in our room that we weren’t going to stay there and a walk around the town just confirmed our initial thoughts. I think it’s important that you listen to your gut and my gut was telling me to get out. 

Cut to the next day and after a lot of group discussion and a chat with a random lad from Preston (shout out to you, your the real MVP), we planned how we were going to tell the hostel that we weren’t going to stay. We may have exaggerated the truth in that we said we had jobs lined up in Brisbane but we were just hopeful that Brisbane had the answers.

So there you have it, after two nights we were back on the good old Greyhound CV’s in hand heading to Brisbane to get a job… stay tuned to see how that worked out!

Speak Soon,

Hannah x

Fraser Island

4×4 driving on sand…

28th, 29th& 30th September 2017

Fraser Island is the world’s largest sand island spreading 120km, with panoramic view points where you can take in the beauty of the island and witness stunning sites like Lake McKenzie, Lake Wabby and the Maheno shipwreck. 

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We were on the Nomads tour which was a guided 4×4 driving experience with a lead car driven by our tour guide Tim and 3 other cars that were driven by people on the tour. You were put into groups for your car and it was up to you to decide who was driving when. I was part of car 4, the absolute dream team. 

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The dream team was made up of: Alex, Jess and myself, Costas, Kike, Luca, Lorenzo and Lisa, covering all nationalities from British, Greek, Spanish, Italian and Dutch. 

We were on the island for 2 nights and 3 days, staying in the hostel resort on the island. It had an entrance to the beach where we would spend the evening (with Dingo sticks, just in case). We saw so many different things and the trip was so jam packed, a little too jam packed for me as I would have of liked to spend more at some of the sites like Lake McKenzie and Lake Wabby, but such is the nature of the tour. 

My favourite spot was Lake McKenzie, a perched lake, meaning it is filled by rainwater only. The blue and green colours of the lake are breathtaking and to swim in it is something else. It was so refreshing and clear, something I will remember for a long, long time. The sand is white silica and is so soft to walk on, like nothing I’ve experienced before. 

Whilst driving along the sand (an experience in itself) we spotted wild Dingo’s roaming and a group of dolphins swimming. When at the look out points we even saw a whale!

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Lake Wabby was another stand out moment for me not only for the reward of the beautiful water but because of the 2km forest walk to get to it! It was during this walk where I encountered my first slice of death with an Australian animal. Okay, I might be being a little dramatic with the whole death thing but I did look one of the most deadliest snakes in the eye and froze and screamed and had to shout the girls to coach me through walking around it without aggravating it or dying lol @ me and my life. 

Similarly to the Whitsundays, a lot of the time I didn’t take my phone to the sites because I didn’t want to damage it or loose it so the pictures I have a limited but as always the memories made will last forever and car 4 will always hold a special place in my heart.

That concludes the east coast part of my trip and what a trip it was! I absolutely loved every part of it, I tapped into a part of me I’ve never seen in myself before, I always knew I was a confident person, so the meeting new people part of traveling never scared me, but I never new I could fully immerse myself into letting go and trying new things such as, snorkelling, sliding down waterfalls, driving a 4×4 on sand, driving a scooter and being out in the wild, 10 points to me and my pals for throwing ourselves into our travels.

I’ll be back soon to fill in the details of what’s been going on from October to now.

Speak soon,

Hannah x 

The Town of 1770, Agnes Waters

Sons of Anarchy, hit me up…

24th, 25th & 26th September 2017

Prior to coming out here, I hadn’t heard of Agnes Waters but we were advised by Dan (the guy who helped book our trip) that everyone who had done the Scooteroo tour, said it was the best thing about their trip so we though we would give it a go and here’s how it went!

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The trip starts with a welcome from the team, you get your jacket and helmet and have  opportunity to take pictures on the ‘show bike’, the photos came out fab and I want them all framed when I get home.

Next you are taken over to the ‘test track’ which is just a circle track that you have to ride around until the team agree you are ready to go on the road. 

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Out on the road was a LOT easier than the track, but I understand it is important you can master the track first. We saw some beautiful sites whilst riding, watched the sunset over the harbour and walked through a slice of a beautiful local forest. 

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As you can see from the pictures I was definitely feeling myself on that bike but it was fun while it lasted I don’t think I want one full time (so you can stop panicking mum). 

I want to be honest about my travels, so I want to state that although the pictures are fab and overall I did have a good day, it was ruined slightly due to issues out of our control. The company, due to its increased popularity was being filmed by ‘Good Morning Australia’ and because of this we spent the majority of the day waiting around for them and consequently we missed a lot of the stops that the tour promises. If I have the chance and we are passing through Agnes Waters again I think I would do the tour to experience it fully, but for $80 it didn’t live up to our expectations on that day. 

The hostel we stayed at felt very middle of nowhere and the rooms were in cabins. It was very nice for the 2 nights we stayed there and the hostel was nice but its not somewhere I could stay for longer than 2 nights because there is nothing in walking distance and little to do outside of playing pool and the Scooteroo tour so for now, I think i’ll put my bike career on hold.

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Next stop, Noosa for a trip to Fraser Island…

Speak soon,

Hannah x