Travel Hit List – 3 Destinations to visit in 2016 and why you should go now!

It’s a long weekend here in Australia (woo hoo!) and with three sun filled, glorious days ahead of us, It’s the perfect time to kick back on the beach, catch up with friends, dream a little and plan your 2016 travel adventure.

To get your ideas flowing I thought I’d highlight a few travel destinations that you should visit in 2016.

From countries that you MUST get to before they are changed forever, to cities where you’ll find our Aussie dollar stretching that little bit further. Inspiration to travel is everywhere!

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72hrs in Dubai – A photo journal

As an Aussie, the reality is we are far far away from anywhere when it comes to travel, and you know you’re getting old when you can’t fathom taking that long haul flight from Sydney to the UK (around 24hrs + transit time all up) without a stopover.

Where once you just wanted to get there and make the most of your destination, you’re now trying to plot and plan your itinerary to avoid (at all costs) spending any longer than 13hrs on the plane in one stint.

The good news for Australian travelers (and visitors) is that there are some pretty cool places to break the journey, and my current fave is Dubai. Not only is it the perfect stopover point in terms of time spent on the aircraft, but with so much to see and do, it will actually become a part of the trip and not just somewhere to lay your head.

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Music … My favourite travel accessory!

Have you ever found yourself in a moment where you’ve heard a song and it’s instantly transported you back to a specific time, place or event?

I had one of these moments the other day, and upon hearing the song it sent me zooming back, to a day in 2001 when I was sat perched on a bench, at the back of a Greek Island ferry. All of a sudden I was sun drenched, brown as a berry, and a slightly naive 21 year old again, out exploring the big wide world of ours.

What was the song? Nelly, ‘ride wit me’. You know the one (Hey, must be the money!)’.

‘eeeeeeeeek’ tragic i know and definitely NOT one of my finest musical moments (I do pride myself on having a decent taste in music), but it DID get me thinking about how music is basically a time machine to past experiences and while you can’t be on holidays all the time, you can attempt to re-live some of those epic moments at the push of a button.

And that’s why MUSIC is my ultimate and must have travel accessory.

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5 tips to beat Jetlag (seriously!)

world mapJet Lag. It’s a painful reality for most long-haul travellers, and for us Aussies it’s seemingly unavoidable since the majority of our international destinations are on average over 14hrs in travel time, with often multiple time zones to cross before we reach our destinations. (Yawn! Why haven’t they invented teleportation yet?)

Over the years I’ve definitely had my fair share of Jet lag. I remember sleeping through a whole afternoon and evening in Paris, after laying down for a ‘nap’, only to wake up the next morning. Needless to say, upon realising I’d slept for about 15hrs and missed my 1st night in Paris (1 of only 3), I was gutted! Rookie error or what?

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5 tips to staying fit & healthy when travelling!

You don’t HAVE to get the Heathrow Injection!

Posting about staying fit and healthy over the Easter long weekend seems crazy, considering I am about to inhale a hot cross bun and a small army of Cadbury mini eggs, but I always get asked about staying healthy while travelling, so I’ve taken some time to think about it and I thought I’d post it for everyone to read.

Living an active, healthy life is important to me and I try to continue that philosophy while I’m travelling too. We’ve all heard the stories about those travellers who gain 20kg’s upon setting foot in Heathrow Airport (also known as the ‘Heathrow Injection’), and I know of plenty of people who work out HARD prior to a big trip, knowing that they’ll likely gain a few kg’s, but I believe that you can travel for weeks, months and even years on end and not pile on the pounds, as long as you make the right choices.

Don’t worry, I’m not talking about long gym workouts every single day, or skipping local ‘must have’ favourites (like gelato in Florence for instance), so check out my personal Top 5 tips for staying healthy whilst travelling!

 1. Choose active adventures

This is probably the simplest ways of staying healthy whilst you’re away. Not only will active adventures help you keep off any extra unwanted weight, they’ll allow you to make the most of your holiday by experiencing things you may not get to experience in your day to day life!

There are some amazing trips and destinations all over the world that are designed for active people, and that specialise in certain NICHE areas. Activities like skiing, snowboarding, surfing, hiking and biking are just the tip of the iceberg. Even simple walking tours in your favourite city could be an option or signing up for an overseas Yoga retreat (or sunrise class at your Vietnamese beach resort)….. It all encourages you to keep moving, and will ensure that you stay physical and healthy on a trip overseas.

Just a handful of companies that offer ‘active travel’ itineraries include:

http://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/the-intrepid-experience/trip-themes

http://www.gadventures.com.au/travel-styles/active/

http://www.peregrineadventures.com/browse/activity

Personally I ensure that every trip has some kind of active component and as the above examples show, It can be as complex as a hike to Mt Everest Base Camp or as simple as adding a city tour by bicycle one day, and a Kayak around the lagoon the next. So, as much as we all love a chilled out beach holiday every now and then, I urge you to choose an active holiday every once in a while… or at least make some time every day to get moving!!

 2. Pack your own healthy snacks for the journey 

snacks

Have you eaten that sugar loaded plane food lately or been stuck in transit with nothing but McDonald’s or 7 Eleven for company? Don’t get caught out! Pack healthy snacks that you know will satisfy you during those long flights or car journeys and avoid the convenience of salty, fatty snack foods and soft drinks.

On a recent short trip I toasted a couple of bags of natural almonds and walnuts in sea salt, and baked a few batches of almond meal cookies, that I took with me on my travels. Not only were they the perfect go to snack when I needed a little something to get me through, but it was relatively small in size, and didn’t take up too much room in my luggage.

There are so many yummy, healthy and natural snacks you can make yourself, so get inspired!! Check out this awesome selection of recipes that ‘Girl Meets Nourishment’ has put together, and get preparing!

http://girlmeetsnourishment.com/real-food-travel-snacks/

Trust me, plan ahead, and don’t get caught out. That’s when reaching for a bag of crisps is going to be the only option.

3.  Fresh is best!

We all know fresh is best, so I urge you to seek out the local delicacies based on the environment that you are in, and try to eat what items or products would be most readily available to the restaurateur or chefs in that location.

For example, when in areas that are on the ocean (like Thailand, Indonesia, the Caribbean etc..) seek out fresh, local seafood or the ‘catch of the day’. Chat to the chef’s and find out when the catch was brought in or if they’ve had it frozen. If you’re in the middle of the country, and you’ve got yummy veggies or delicious organic Beef to feast upon, go for it! Use your surroundings as a guide to what you eat.

An awesome example of this was a great Café in Rarotonga that I stumbled across called the Moorings Fish Café. They prepare the menu daily based on what seafood they were able to catch that morning on their daily fishing run. They only had so much and they’d shut up shop when they sold out, so nothing went in the freezer, and It was all prepared fresh daily. Loved it!

If you can, another great idea is to immerse yourself in the cuisine and do a cooking class on your travels. Not only is it a great day out, but you’ll learn a skill and see exactly what’s going into your food!

Keep it simple… Think logically about where you are, and what would be the freshest, most available products and stick to those. If there is a local delicacy, try it! Chances are it’s something they prepare daily and will rarely cause you any real harm.

4. Self-catering accommodation can save the day

I know that most of us won’t want to cook whilst on holidays, but trust me if you have accommodation that has a kitchenette or even just a microwave it can save the day if you’re struggling to find something healthy and decent to eat.

On my recent trip to The Cook Islands it was hard to find anything open after 2pm that wasn’t a fast food place, so a pot of water to boil some eggs and a cuppa served its purpose to fill myself (and my always hungry boyfriend) up, until it was time to hit the restaurant for dinner.

Most destinations are catering more and more to clients looking for that balance between self-cater, and restaurant variety. Even luxury properties are offering self-contained ‘villa’ style accommodation, which personal chefs (the works!) so there is truly something for everyone.

  1. SLEEP!

hammock life

Sleep is the most UNDERRATED health benefit in the world, and ensuring that you get enough sleep whilst you travel is vital.

I know jet lag and time zones can make it tricky, but try adapting to any time zones as quickly as you can, and ensuring that you are still getting your 7-9hrs a sleep a nite.

Not only will it ensure that you are fresh and ready to get the most out of the experiences the following day, but there are commonly known links between sleep and your immune system, so this is one of the BEST ways to protect against picking up any nasty travel flu’s, as the LAST thing you want whilst travelling is a cold. So hit the sack!

 

I guess to wrap all of this up, my final thought would be enjoy everything in moderation!

As I mentioned right at the start of this post, I’m all for getting out and enjoying your indulgences whilst you’re away, after all FOOD is a huge part of your overall travel experience and can sometimes be the BEST part of a city or cultural experience, but remember to enjoy all things in moderation.

There is nothing wrong with eating a slice of steaming hot, spicy, cheesy, New York style pizza (or 2) whilst in New York, just don’t have it everyday for breakfast, lunch and dinner! Balance your meals (like you would at home) and ensure that you are also drinking loads of water. This combined with an activity or two every day and you’ll escape the dreaded holiday weight gain, and there will be no need to safety pin your shorts back together when you’ve busted out of them!

What are the travel health tips you live by? I’d love to hear all about what you guys do to stay fit and healthy on the road!!!

Thanks for reading!

Kate xxx

25 travel tips that I live by !

passport

‘When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money’ [Susan Heller]

As someone who has been working in travel now for over 13yrs (eeeek) and who has done her fair share of personal travel, I get asked for all kinds of travel related advice on a daily basis.

There is easy stuff like ‘What forms of currency do i take?’ or ‘Can you offer any crafty packing tips?’.

Then there are the more serious queries regarding visas, passports and security questions.

Then there are the questions from inexperienced travelers like ‘Do i need a passport to fly to New Zealand? (um.. yes. It’s another country)…. And then there is just the plain weird, and kind of sad… ‘Are there any airlines that still allow smoking? If not, i guess I’ll never see my family again’. (Yep, a client couldn’t fathom flying 10hrs without having a smoke, and would therefore never see her UK family again)   😦

All of these questions highlight to me that there really is a lot to know about packing your bags and heading off overseas. It also shows me that yes, I do actually know what I’m talking about when it comes to travel and that there are so many smart travel ideas out there that I wished I knew before I took my 1st trip.

I could write a list as long as all the cities I’ve been to, but I’ll limit it to 25 travel tips that I personally live by and that may help you out. The last 5 are my personal tips (and philosophy) to live by, so here goes:

PLANNING AND PREPARATION

Pic courtesy of tenontours.
Pic courtesy of tenontours.

1. Enlist the help of a professional!

Travel agents aren’t a thing of the past and we aren’t here to rip you off. If you take the time to find a great agent, build a relationship and explain your travel needs, they will have your best interests in mind, they’ll do the hard work for you, and create the perfect holiday or vacation for you.

Yes, some of you may love to sit online for 7hrs a day researching your next holiday, checking every hotel and all the reviews, then price match every travel site you come across…  and If this is you, then go for it! But most of us are time poor and want actual credible advice, so a good travel agent will be able to be your one stop shop. They’ll recommend the best destination or hotel for YOU, sort you out with essentials like travel insurance AND they will be able to get you great value, If you let them.

We use professionals for everything else we do (especially when you’re spending the kind of money a big trip can sometimes cost) so why wouldn’t you use a professional to plan the holiday of a lifetime?

2. Book in advance.

It DOES save you money. In Australia there is really no such thing as standby seats or last minute specials on airfares. The earlier you book, the more you save, as there are multiple prices for each class of seat on an aircraft. As the plane fills up the price goes up! There are also some amazing early-bird deals on tours, hotels and packages if you are able to book and often pay in advance.

3. Don’t believe every on-line review you read.

With online reviews being a travel ‘tool’ that people rely on, hotels, restaurants and sightseeing companies go to great lengths to ensure that their business has positive reviews… and raking highly on review sites is their number #1 focus.

There are companies out there who specialise in writing fake reviews. Businesses & hotels give freebies to people to post a positive review and employees are encouraged to post their own positive reviews (hmmm). Last year Trip advisor changed their slogan from “Reviews you can trust” to “Reviews from our community” for their reviews section, after an investigation of allegations that millions of Trip Advisor reviews may be fake.

So beware. Talk to friends and family (or your travel stylist) about your destination, where they have stayed, eaten and visited.

4.Check your documents.

Don’t forget about passport validity & visas. You’ll be surprised how many people show up to an airport with an expired passport or without a visa. You need at least 6 months validity on your passport to leave Australia, and there are more and more countries who have some form of Visa requirement, so check it out!

PACKING

peru 2

5. The lighter the better!

I’ve done the world trips with big bags, surfboards and snowboards and It’s a pain in the ass, and airlines aren’t as kind as they used to be. They charge for everything and I’m talking exorbitant excess baggage fees. If you are traveling with sporting goods, don’t assume the airlines will take it free, as most will not. Do your research or enlist the help of a professional (Note 3rd shameless plug 😉 )

6. Layer layer layer.

Layers are the best way to stay warm and then get cool again. Have you been in a position where it’s freezing outside, but then you sweat your butt off once you step inside a store, restaurant or museum? Wear clothes that you can peel on and off easily to keep your temperature perfect.

7. Take a scarf or shawl

They come in super handy. Remember Europe is a little more conservative than Australia, and throwing a scarf over your outfit will instantly dress it up. A scarf or shawl is also handy for any countries where you should dress more conservatively, like the middle east or when visiting religious monuments.

8. DO dress to the local customs.

Just because it’s hot outside and YOU don’t care that you are wearing short shorts on the streets in Egypt or India, the locals care and you will be stared at and judged. You may also be limited in terms of the places you visit, so do your research and respect their customs. That’s what travel is all about.

9. Take a change of clothes in your carry-on luggage.

Trust me… If you’ve ever had a bag go missing, or a drink spilled on you inflight, you’ll thank me.

ON ROUTE!

Pic courtesy of www.travellingpanties.com
Pic courtesy of http://www.travelingpanties.com

10. Dress warmly & comfortably on flights.

Just because it may be hot outside, doesn’t meant the flight is the same. It normally get’s cool on the plane, especially on overnight flights, and if you’re flying low cost airlines.. they won’t give you blankets (for free anyway). Pack a jumper or shawl to keep you warm. Oh, and consider the weather at your destination… what will it be like at the other end? Be prepared.

11. Allow plenty of travel time.

Give yourself plenty of time to arrive at the airport and for transits, as security is a lot tighter these days, and there is almost nothing more stressful than almost missing your flight.

12. Inflight essentials.

An empty water bottle, your own healthy snacks and an eye mask will make any flight WAY more enjoyable. Staying hydrated, not eating the processed sugar loaded plane food (if you can avoid it) and getting as much sleep as you can is key to avoiding jet lag.

13. Avoid Jet lag.

Force yourself to adapt to the time zone at your destination. If you arrive in the morning after a long flight, drink loads of water, get outside & do your best to stay awake until a more normal bed time. It will help you to adjust to the time zone more quickly.

MONEY MATTERS

globe_money

14. Varying forms of currency.

Ensure you have at access to at least 3 different forms of currency. Some cash, a Debit/Travel money card and a Credit card. You don’t want your debit card to be eaten by an ATM and find that there are no currency exchange offices in site. Don’t get caught, and be prepared and take different forms.

Oh, and don’t forget to notify your bank that you’ll be overseas. They’ll freeze your cards if they suspect suspicious activity, and an international transaction is often flagged.

15.Stash your cash.

As lame as it sounds… DO be that traveler that stashes money and an extra debit/credit card in your socks at the bottom of your bag. When you travel a lot it’s easy to become blaze about things like theft and loss of luggage, but trust me, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

16. Blend in.

DON’T be that traveler who wears a money belt that is plainly visible to everyone and anyone. If you wear one, keep it completely concealed. Don’t fish around in it with it out for all to see. You make yourself more of a target than anyone else who may be carrying a normal purse or a backpack.

17. Pre purchase your foreign currency.

Buying currency at the airport is a rip-off. Exchange cash once you get to your destination or order it in advance. I normally order mine through Travelex.com.au, when I’m organising my Travel Money cards. They have great rates, and when you get the travel cards they give you multiple cards (in case one get’s lost or stolen) and you can transfer your own money onto them super easily.

TRAVEL APS (For your smart phone) 

Pic - Mobile App Testing
Pic – Mobile App Testing

18. Trip Advisor ‘City Guides’

Super handy when you’re in a random city, so download the map for where you are going. It lists loads of info like hotels, restaurants, activities etc.. and it works offline so if you find yourself lost, you can use the maps (which uses the GPS in your phone) to help navigate you to where you need to be.

They also have some cool suggested walking itineraries around the city, so perfect if you’re happy to explore on your own.

19. Stay in touch.

WhatsApp, Viber or Skype are perfect aps to download, as they’ll allow you to text, call or video message friends and family whilst you’re away. It’s free when you’re hooked up to WIFI or a 3G network.

20.  Talk the talk.

Google translate is awesome if you’re in a foreign country, as it allows you to type a phrase and it will translate it for you Or you can use the speaking function. There are over 50 languages, and will be sure to help you out of any tricky situation when a language barrier is involved.

Finally, here are my TOP 5 MYTRAVELUST travel tips!

peru 1

21.Get Lost! 

Put down the maps, wander around and explore. Without a guide & Without a map. Follow your nose and do what YOU want to do  and not what a guide book tells you to do.

Cities with a good metro system are perfect for getting lost, as you can’t ever really get THAT lost. All you need to do is find the closest metro station and boom… you are found again 🙂

22. Talk to strangers (but trust your instincts).

Travel is the best way to make new friends, meet new and interesting people and experience how other cultures live their day to day lives.

Put yourself out there, step outside your comfort zone and interact with people. Accept random dinner invites, or go on a day trip with some new buddies… but trust your instincts. If it feels weird, dangerous or awkward then it probably is, so don’t put yourself into a situation that you wouldn’t be able to get out of.

23. Keep a travel journal – and use it.

Trust me, It may seem like a pain at the time, but it’s the most amazing thing to re-read once you’ve returned home or even years later. In the digital age it could even be an online travel journal. Some great online ones include:

www.mytripjournal.com/traveljournal  

http://www.travelpod.com/

I prefer the good pen to paper, but the choice is yours.

24. Put the camera down (even just for a moment).  

There is a fine line between having great snaps of your trip, and living the whole trip from behind the camera. Take a moment to step out from behind the camera lens and experience that moment, in the moment, without worrying about capturing it for later. Yeah, you may want great photos (don’t we all) but what’s the point of trying to capture it & only experiencing things through a lens in the first place?

25. Don’t stress!

Shit happens and on most trips i can almost guarantee that something won’t go to plan… but everything works out in the end.

Sometimes the most tricky situations end up be the funniest moments of the trip! They help to bring you closer to your traveling companions and they’ll certainly be the stories that you will share with people when you get home. Traveling is the BEST thing you could ever invest your time and money into, so go with the flow, and make sure you enjoy every minute.

~

There you have it! Some of my fave travel tips.

Some I’m sure you’ve heard before, but maybe there are some new ones in there that you can take note of, so i hope they were helpful.

I’ll do a follow up with more of my tips down the track, but If there are any specific tips or destinations you’d like advice on, feel free to contact me.

Please also SHARE with us any tips you’ve picked up on your adventures. I’d love to hear your ideas as some of these can mean the difference between a great experience, and a miserable one so do let us know!

Kate xx

Embrace your inner child….Let go, laugh and see the world differently.

One of the most popular posts on https://www.facebook.com/mytravelust this week was this photo…..It’s of me doing a cartwheel on the beach up at ‘Seal Rocks’… a camping spot in Myall Lakes National Park, about 3hrs from Sydney.

The caption to the post was ‘If we could all see the world through the eyes of a child, we would see magic in everything!’ and i was urging my gorgeous clients and followers to try and embrace their inner child more…. By letting go, having a laugh, making time for play, getting active and to embrace the innocence of a child. To open your eyes to the world with innocence, wonder and fascination.

I’m not sure what brought it to mind. Maybe it was seeing how much fun my friends kids we’re having on the trampoline at a 3yr old birthday party, or maybe it was saying goodbye to a beautiful soul, taken too soon, but it got me thinking about how seeing and experiencing the world through the eyes of a child would be a pretty magical thing.

Can you remember what it was like experiencing something for the 1st time as a kid? I don’t know about you, but there was ALWAYS something exciting to see, do, touch, feel, eat, drink etc… You had no preconceived ideas, expectations or ideals of how things should be. There was no discrimination or judgement of others, and you made new friends everywhere you went. There were no real rules about how we should behave (or if you did play up a bit, you we’re a kid, so it was expected and you’d soon be forgiven). You weren’t self conscious, you were brave and you were willing to try new things (as long as Mum or Dad held your hand). I loved being a kid and I love the idea of embracing these qualities in life as an adult.

Yes, i understand that there are more consequences for our actions as an adult, but so many of these traits can be embraced and I believe that if we all took the time to act like kids more often, we’d all be happier and we truly would see the magic in everything!

So, where in the world would be the BEST places to let your inner child run free?

Here are 3 of my FAVE holiday ideas that would feed the inner child within us all!

1. CALIFORNIA

Is there really any other destination that could be #1?

Come on… I don’t care how tough you are, EVERY kid either wants to or has wanted to go to Disneyland, and even as an adult, there is something about walking through those gates, to the ‘happiest place on earth’, that gets under your skin. You can’t help be amazed by Disneyland and being a big kid makes it all the better!

Wide eyed you look around in wonder at the parade of characters passing you by, you take a spin in the tea cups (which spin a lot faster that you might think), you run from ride to ride to make sure you don’t miss anything, and yes.. you take the ‘Its a small world’ boat ride, and sing along (for the 1st couple of rounds anyway, then it gets annoying and stuck in your head for the rest of the day).

After eating your weight in hot dogs and fairy floss, purchase your Mickey Mouse ears and ride the famous Ferris wheel, you stand there in awe as the fireworks display caps off a magical day. As you wander back to your hotel, you start to think that yes, maybe Disneyland really IS the happiest place on earth.

Disneyland aside, California also has loads of other attractions where you can take that inner child out to play. Universal Studios, Magic Mountain, Knotts Berry Farm, Hollywood, Legoland, San Diego Sea World and San Diego Zoo to name a few. From brushing shoulders with your favorite movies stars, to riding the fastest most vertical roller coasters in the world… I know that when I’m at a theme park, any day to day ‘adult’ stresses are easily forgotten.

So, take the time to have a laugh, eat too much sugar, scream your head off and enjoy the ride (pun intended).

2. Any SKI RESORT in the world!

snow 1

A snow holiday has got to be on your list for an escape, that would transport you back to that moment in time when you were fearless, carefree and in awe of mother nature.

Whether you’re a man, woman or child, there is no denying the beauty of watching a perfectly formed snowflake glide down onto your hand, and I can assure you that no matter where you are, when you see the snow falling outside your window, it will ALWAYS have you yelling out to whoever is in ear shot… ‘It’s SNOWING!’

Ski resorts these days offer a plethora of activities that will bring out the big kid in everyone. Tube parks, Terrain parks, Ski and Boarder cross courses, Ice skating, Snow shoeing, Ski and snowboard camps & lessons for people of every age and experience level… the list goes on!

Some of my faves? Whistler Blackcomb, Canada is hard to beat, as it’s North Americas largest resort and offers so much terrain and a hugggeeeee range of activities including most of the above mentioned non skiing attractions. Hakuba, Japanis still emerging as a world class ski village, with 7 mountains to explore and the fluffiest white POW you’ll ever ride… plus the vending machines that dispense beer are of course a child like (yet adult version) novelty. Vail, Colorado – USA is another awesome resort, with an awesome village vibe, great terrain and another HUGE range of non skiing activities like ten pin bowling, movie theaters, snow snowmobiling and more. In Europe, it’s hard to pass on 3 Vallees ski area. It’s the largest ski area in the world, and is made up of 8 separate ski resorts and 600km of interconnected terrain. WOW!

Want to be a big kid? Rug up, take a walk in the snow, let go, fall back and make a snow angel. Throw a cheeky snowball at your best mate and race each other down the mountain. Take a chance, make that turn, do that jump or slide that rail..The ski fields will bring out the big kid in everyone.

3. AFRICA

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When chatting to friends and clients Africa is on almost everyone’s bucket list, and having been there a couple of times, there is no other place that has opened my eyes more to the people, the culture and of course the animals. I mean, who doesn’t want to see the Lion King come to life?

To explore this fascinating continent like a child just embrace that quality of wide eyed wonder and anticipation, that is so often lost as an adult….

Imagine you’re on a safari in Kruger National Park and you are in an open topped vehicle with a ranger by your side. You know there are lions in the park, as your guide has pointed out their tracks and you’ve seen where they spent the night and where they made their last kill, but where are they? The truck crawls along at a snails pace, quietly, slowly in the hope of rounding a corner and finding a lioness with her cubs. As adults it’s easy to lose hope, get disheartened, bored, impatient even. You’ve seen safari’s on documentaries and you expect to see what you’ve paid to see and it can sometimes take hours to see anything of particular note. On the flip side I’ve watched kids on Safari and they don’t have that.They remain focused & patient and they are excited to see what awaits around that corner. They have no preconceived ideas of what they are supposed to see and EVERYTHING amazes them. Be it 10 minutes or 2 hours they are ready for it, often the first to spot the king of jungle when he finally wanders sleepily across the very road you are traveling, blissfully unaware that we are waiting for him. Amazing!

Africa is SO diverse that apart from the safari’s and the anticipation of seeing your favorite African animal in the flesh, you can be cage diving with great white sharks one day, and dancing with the Masai Mara the next.

There are SO many options when it comes to seeing Africa. From fully guided tours and safaris, to self drive itineraries you can do it your way… but by stepping out of your comfort zone, embracing the culture, throwing out judgements of yourself and others, and trying new things…you will discover more of yourself and what you are capable of. Kids do this well… so take a leaf from their book and be silly, participate in those dances, try that strange local delicacy and have a good laugh at yourself.

I hope you choose to take note of some of my insights into travel and how to see the world we live in differently. There is a lot to be said for seeing things the way a child would see it, or acting the way a child would act, so for your next trip why not choose something that will help you embrace that, and let go a little!

Life is too serious to be serious all the time, and if we are true to ourselves….Dance if we want to dance, sing if we want to sing, and scream if we want to scream, i think life and travel would be a lot more real and a lot more fun, and we’d have friends all over the world.

What child like qualities would you want to embrace when traveling? What destinations do you think would be perfect to let go, have a laugh and be a big kid? Share with us, as I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Kate xx