Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Great Ocean Road; Take Two.

The first time I did Great Ocean Road was in the summer time - it rained ALL DAY. We set off early, saw the sites, all wrapped up and having a typically British moan about the whole affair. We had a great day all the same but, in bad weather, struggled to appreciate the lovely costal stretch for how lovely is really is.

My parents are currently visiting me for a few weeks (although this is sadly coming to an end now) and at the top of my dads to do list was 'drive the Great Ocean Road'. So, we did. 

We decided to do it over two days would be the perfect amount of time so we could stay somewhere overnight and take the journey slowly to fully admire the spectacular views and beaches.
We hired a car from Budget and, having used them for a third time over here, left hassle free, making our way to towards Geelong, with our first stop off being Torquay. The weather was beautiful and the roadtrip was underway.

From the city to Torquay took around an hour and we were advised to stop off at the Information Centre to grab a map and some 'must stop off' points along the way. We grabbed a few leaflets and went in search of a ocean view coffee shop.

We came across The Pond - not quite ocean view but it had the kind of atmosphere I love in a little cafe. We planned a few stop offs, enjoyed a lovely drink and one of the best homemade brownies I have ever eaten (munched too quickly to snap!) - like a fudge but deliciously soft and chocolatey.

From Torquay our next stop off was Point Addis - a beautiful beach hosting great snorkelling and often plenty of wildlife (roos and echidnas) but a little too warm for them to poke their noses out today.

Another spot rife with kangaroos is the Anglesea Golf Course. A beautiful course itself and home to 1000 roos. Drive up, park your car at the club house and peer through the fence (no sneaking on the green!)

 Next stop - Aireys Inlet Lighthouse aka. the lighthouse from Going Round the Twist. A must for any die hard fans and anybody else. It's a beautiful, well kept lighthouse with a little cliff walk with incredible views. I love lighthouses, they are very pretty.

From there, head towards Lorne for Erskine Falls,Teddy's lookout and the lovely Wye River. We decided to make our way through in search of Kennett River (just off Grey River Road) but unforauntely didn't spot the turn off.

Apollo Bay was our nights stopover and the next place worthy of a break on Great Ocean Road. With lovely views, plenty of restaurants (go to The Apollo Seafood Cafe - incredible scallops!), it is definitely a good half way point for an overnighter or simply a little lunch break. I made a reservation for us at The Great Ocean View which was ideal, clean and a good location, a little off the main front with a lovely view of the ocean from our balcony (in the upper rooms). 

Up early the next morning, we were met with a whole heap for rain. Obviously it was disappointing but we did expect it at this time of year. We kept to our plans, up early for breakfast then onto The 12 Apostles (well, technically 9 and a half now, the years haven't been kind to them...)

The rain was soon forgotten about when this was plated up and served to me...

Anybody that knows me/reads my blog/follows me on Instagram will know of my love for breakfast. The BEST meal of the day and one worth daily appreciation. Even the little teapots allowed me to leave with a little spring in my step - adorable!

From here we hopped in the car and made our way to The 12 Apostles. It rained on and off the whole way there but by the time we arrived, despite the cold ocean breeze, the sun was shining and made for some fabulous views...

My parents, and myself included, were in awe of the beauty of the view. We stayed a while but the cold got a little too much. We decided to head back to the car and make our way to the ferry at Queenscliff across to Sorrento.

We spent the night in Balnarring on the Mornington Peninsular - if you drive through here/go nearby, you MUST go to Le Bouchon, a tiny little French place hosting the most exsquisite cuisine. 

A lovely, lovely few days!


My Interview with Go! Girl Guides.

My lovely friend Gemma at Go! Girl Guides has recently interviewed me for GGG's weekly feature Girls That Go! GGG decided on the awesome idea of publishing travel guides, specifically aimed at women, encouraging them to go off, travel and explore the world. What they do is brilliant and I'm loving making my way through their published pieces.

Girls That Go! is a regular feature of theirs; basically female travellers are interviewed, those that have thought 'screw it' to the conventional 9-5, so you can see what they've been up to and maybe even feel a little inspired to do that kind of thing yourself.

I'm thrilled to have been interviewed and really excited by the work they publish!

Check out my interview here and thanks again GGG, keep up the good work!


Saturday, 26 April 2014

52 Lists // Week 17 - Weekends

1. Morning cuddle 
2. Go out for a lovely breakfast/brunch
3. A long walk in the sunshine 
4. A nice simple, homemade lunch
5. Baking 
6. Snuggle up mid-late afternoon on the sofa with a cup of tea and a film
7. Drinks in the evening or have friends round for dinner
8. Sunday roast 


Sunday, 20 April 2014

Happy Easter

I have had a beautiful Easter weekend. I spent it with my parents and family friends in the place I currently call home, the Mornington Peninsular - if you are ever in Melbourne, or Victoria in general, you must head here - it is absolutely stunning.

I started the day with a perfect early morning walk around along the beach and through Mount Eliza. And a full English, of course.

We came back to an Easter egg hunt and decided to head to Sorrento for the afternoon for a coffee, lunch and a walk along the beach (I'm moving to Millionaires day).

We ended up walking much further than anticipated (to Portsea!) but it was beautiful.

I have found my happy place and the perfect spot...

One day I will live by the sea.

Happy Easter to you all, I hope your day is filled with family, fun and, most importantly, chocolate.

Fun now over, tomorrow I am another year older...


52 Lists // Week 16 - Grateful

1. Family, my lovely boyfriend and friends
2. My upbringing 
3. My education 
4. My health
5. Travel - the world is such a beautiful place and travel is now so much easier
6. Literature, old and new 


Monday, 14 April 2014

52 Lists // Week 15 - Kick Starts

Long walks on a beautiful day where you feel completely at peace with things

Singing very loudly in the car

Late afternoon on the beach - the temperature has dropped a little, the sun is dipping and it's a perfect time to listen to the sound of the ways hitting the shore

The sense of triumph after a successful culinary experiment

Exploring new places

A good breakfast; nothing is more satisfying

Friendly people - you know those conversations you have with random strangers you will probably never meet again but you feel like you've just had one of those really inspiring chats; I love that

Smiling and laughing uncontrollably

Weekend mornings when you wake up early and lay in bed reading with a cup of tea close by

Post-workout feeling 

Seeing somebody you haven't for a while


Friday, 11 April 2014

Blogging and Travel

I love blogging; it's a huge part of my life and has been a big comfort in helping me rebuild the little pieces of me that got a little lost over the past few years.

Now, when it comes to blogging while travelling, not just blogging ABOUT travel, it isn't as simple as it may seem. I have found it difficult to blog properly using only an iPad mini to compose my posts - yes, I have my keyboard and it's compact but I don't feel happy with my finished posts because of layout, inability to properly edit pictures and various other little quirks that using the Blogger app for iPad doesn't allow you to do.

Another issue - you don't always have time, pure and simple. The constant moving around, inaccessibility of reliable wifi (Aussie backpackers will know what I mean!) and plain old laziness distract a blogger very easily. When you've spent a day trekking around temples, you don't always get back to your dorm feeling enthused about composing a helpful, informative post. Just as when working a 40 hour week as a barista with early mornings and the commuting time on top of that, you kind of just want to get home, put your pyjamas on and watch repeats of Gossip Girl. I know this is lazy and you may be thinking 'but you blog, you enjoy it, why are you making it sound like a chore?' and all I can answer is 'sometimes you just lose your blogger mojo and need inspiration to write'. And it isn't that I'm lacking inspiration; everyday I am met with inspiration. I am currently driving the Great Ocean Road, staying in Apollo Bay overlooking the beautiful coastline but I want to fully appreciate this - not spend the whole time seeing it through a camera lens.

When I visited Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, I was adamant I wanted to see the sun rise over it. We arrived with hundreds of other tourists, all with their cameras glued to their hands. Of course, I took photographs, I'm a tourist - but I took a few, then put the camera down and took in what I was seeing. And as I did that, I looked around me and saw the beauty of where I was, the silence of everybody around me, watching something truly spectacular - and that's kind of how I feel about blogging while travelling, and blogging about travel for that matter.

I want to try and convey a true picture about the places I've visited but the experience and beauty cannot always be captured in a single post with a few pictures and simple recommendations - like with Angkor Wat, you needed to feel and witness that for yourself.

I cannot use technological difficulties as an excuse for not blogging as often or sharing my stories with you - but I can simply say, I am living my experiences rather than using them purely as blogging material. I will tell you about the beautiful things I see, the places I would recommend you stay and the hidden little gems that aren't always on the radar but I want you to see and feel these things for yourself.

The world is such a beautiful place and the strength of a picture or words being able to inspire a person, to help them to feel or envision a moment, a place or an experience astounds me. 

If I could put into words my experience I would; I have seen the most amazing things, met the greatest people and truly discovered things that have shaped the person I am becoming. There are no words, just memories that will stay with me for the rest of my life.


Monday, 7 April 2014

52 Lists // Week 14 - Before I Die

1. Walk the Sydney Harbour Bridge
2. Go to Morocco
3. Write my own book
4. Travel South America
5. Use my English degree within my career
6. See the Northern Lights
7. Dive with sharks in Fiji
8. Speak a language fluenty
9. Go back to Africa and volunteer
10. Have my very own little deli/tearoom 

I have SO many things I want to do in life. If you go on my 'bucket list' tab at the top of Unorganised Chaos you can see the whole list.