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Memories of Bora Bora

It was ten years ago but I still remember it like it was yesterday. When I sat down to plan my round-the-world trip in 2008, a trip which quite literally changed my life, I took out a world map and circled the places I wanted to visit. One place I certainly didn’t want to miss […]

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History brought to life

“A theme park?”, I asked my guide as we strolled around Melbourne. Cartoon characters and wild, adrenaline-inducing rides immediately sprang to mind. “Well, no”, she replied, “it’s more like an open-air museum. If you’re interested in history, you’ll love it there”. It was the first of several times that day that a local recommended a […]

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road-trip-grampians-photo

Road tripping in Victoria

Victoria is one of Australia’s smallest states but what it lacks in size (relatively-speaking – Australia is after all a massive country!), it makes up for in diversity: from craggy mountains to resplendent vineyards, expansive gumtree forests, spectacular coastal cliffs, stunning nature parks, colourful gardens and vibrant cities. To complement this, there’s a great variety […]

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degraves-street-melbourne-photo

Discovering Melbourne’s hidden secrets

Melbourne is Australia’s second-largest city and capital of the state of Victoria. The second you arrive in Melbourne, you’ll immediately be swept off your feet by its infectious energy; at times brazen, often funky but always omnipresent. You can’t miss it! On my previous visit in 2008, I remarked: Melbourne is a city with aspirations […]

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My first ever solo road trip! Part Two

This is the second of a two-part series about my solo road trip around Victoria, Australia. Read Part One (if you haven’t already). Mingling with the local wildlife I left Daylesford Springs for the 45-minute drive to Ballarat, a town famous as the ‘Gateway to Victoria’s Goldfields’. It was a lovely drive past verdant, undulating […]

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On my solo road trip - me and my car. :-)

My first ever solo road trip! Part One

It hadn’t occurred to me before but it wasn’t until I was about to leave for Australia that I realised I was about to embark on my first solo road trip EVER! I’ve done many road trips before but never alone. I looked forward to lots of ‘me-time’ in the car but who was going […]

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the-lyall-melbourne-photo

A home away from home in Melbourne

“Good morning Mr. Jenkins! Your suite is ready.” I almost danced around with joy when I heard those magic words. It was 10am and I’d just arrived at The Lyall after a gruelling 30+ hour journey from Amsterdam to Melbourne and all I wanted to do was sleep. I looked around as the receptionist completed […]

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melbourne-australia-photo

Experiencing Melbourne and beyond

My next trip takes me to Victoria, Australia. In fact, I’m already here… in Melbourne! I arrived yesterday after a 34-hour journey that took me from Amsterdam via London and Dubai and through to Melbourne with Royal Brunei Airlines. I arrived surprisingly fresh – there’s something to be said about booze-free flights! And my J-Pillow […]

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Auckland skyline from Devonport (image courtesy of Abaconda)

My velvet escape travel tip: Auckland

“My velvet escape travel tip” is a guest series about what the name ‘Velvet Escape’ evokes and what that would be in the hometown of the guest writer. With this series, I hope to uncover travel tips from places around the world to help visitors have a truly local experience. Today’s guest post is by […]

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mcleod-river-bottlebrush-photo

A personal source of inspiration

This time three years ago, I was roaming around South America, having the time of my life on my first solo round-the-world trip. After ten years of focusing on my career, this trip certainly opened my eyes to the world outside my comfy ‘bubble’. I learned to value the relationships I have with my family […]

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