Earlier this week, torrential downpours in New Zealand’s South Island caused widespread flooding, landslips and the closure of all major north/south routes after the Rangitata river burst its banks.

With the South Island quite literally cut in half, a number of evacuated residents and thousands of motorists were stranded and homeless; some for three days with no idea of when or if the roads might reopen. That included us.

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

Having lived through the Christchurch earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 where most of the city was flattened and 185 people lost their lives, this was not my first rodeo. In relative…

At a little over seven million square kilometres (that’s 11 times bigger than Texas), Australia is a BIG country. Huge numbers of tourists (just over nine million in the past 12 months) visit Australia every year and find that there are ridiculously long distances to cover between the places they want to see.
These tourists rent cars or vans or campervans and they set off to see as much of the country as they can manage in the holiday time they have available.

Sydney to Brisbane. Melbourne to Adelaide. Perth to Broome. There are countless options for road trips and…

I have two kids. Their names are Oliver (he’s 10) and Zoe (she’s 7). They are (obviously) the coolest kids in the world.

Earlier this year, we decided to take both kids out of school for a term and take them backpacking around Central America and the USA for four months.

Hand on heart, it was the best four months of my life. We learnt so much about the world, about each other and about ourselves. We had amazing adventures every day.

There were fights. And tears. And a whole lot of laughter.

Travelling with kids. It’s just… different.

If you’ve ever considered travelling with kids…

We live in a golden age, where it’s never been easier to find travel inspiration. Everywhere you look, there are photos of the world’s most amazing places, ready and waiting for you to add them to that ever-expanding bucket list.

There is a small problem with this, though: some of those photos are bulls**t. Instagram filters; Photoshopping; blown-out contrast and saturation settings: all of these make it far too easy to create photos that are absolutely unreal. Because they’re not actually real.

Rainbow Mountain

An easy day-trip from Cusco in Peru, Vinicunca (or the “Rainbow Mountain”) is a fairly recently discovered natural…

Australia. It’s big; it’s beautiful; it’s like nowhere else on Earth. Hardly surprising, really, that it’s on so many people’s bucket list. And yet, it seems that a whole lot of people never quite make it there because it’s so expensive.

That’s what they say, right? Australia’s great, but it’s pricey. Food, transport, accommodation — if you haven’t got a decent-sized savings account, then you’d better look at somewhere else for your next holiday.

Beach views at Byron Bay, Australia
Beach views at Byron Bay, Australia
Byron Bay: Million Dollar Views?

No, No, No.

I realise that I’m going against public opinion here, but I honestly believe that you can do Australia for cheap. As in, really cheap.

The general…

We all know that there are dangerous people in the world. News headlines make us painfully aware of how many terrible things happen to people and how dangerous the world can be. Travel in particular can be scary, with stories of tourists targeted in foreign countries, tales of theft, blackmail, kidnapping, murder…
It’s easy to look at the world outside our own country and see a whole lot of differences and a whole lot of danger. We’re told to “keep ourselves safe” while travelling and taught to regard strangers with a wary eye.

I can’t deny that some people have…

A little over a year ago, I quit my job, sold my home and gave away 99% of my possessions so that I could travel the world. It was the most exciting thing I’ve ever done.

To me, quitting a great job was very scary (No more income! A large gap in my employment history! Burning bridges right, left & centre! Throwing away a fabulous career!) but I’ve come to realise that for most people, that isn’t the scary part. …

Nikki Almond

Full-time traveller, part-time writer, enthusiastic reader. Blogger at www.inspiredfolly.com

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