Last year I posted about our 2012 travel goals for the year. So what did we get right? What changed? Did we meet our goals?
2012 Travel Goal #1 – Australia
- Great Barrier Reef – I really want to spend some time snorkelling in this area!
- Uluru – If possible we would like to spend some time camping in the Outback and learning about traditional Australian aboriginal culture.
- Coober Pedy – A town in the outback which lives completely underground! It’s just too wacky, we have to go!
- Perth – Everyone I have met raves about this lovely west coast city, so we decided we have to see it for ourselves.
Great Barrier Reef – (yes!) Well I sort of snorkelled the Great Barrier Reef! Although I didn’t have the stomach to go on a longer boat journey to the reef from Cairns, I did spend some time snorkelling the outer reef around the Whitsunday Islands. Visibility wasn’t the best, but I still did get to see loads of colourful fish.
Uluru –(yes!) I definitely met this goal! I went to Alice Springs via the Ghan train, and spent three days camping around Uluru and seeing the main sights out there. Posts coming about that soon!
Coober Pedy – (No) This one didn’t happen. Since I was taking the train, I was not able to stop and get over to Coober Pedy. I could have ventured up from Adelaide, but just didn’t have the time to fit it into what was an already jam packed trip.
Perth – (Yes!) I did get to spend some time in Perth. Not only was the city great, but I loved exploring the near by regions like the Swan Valley for food and wine, and Fremantle for beer and culture.
In my 2012 Goal post my Australian Resolution was to learn more about local Aboriginal culture. Although I tried to do that in every place I visited, my definite highlight was going on a tour with a local Aboriginal woman to explore Litchfield National park – the area in which she grew up.
2012 Travel Goal #2 – Pacific Islands
Travel to pacific islands isn’t cheap, even on this side of the world! But we feel like visiting a few of these tropical paradise islands is too good of an oppurtunity to give up. I really want to spend some time on Tonga and Samao, and I would also love to visit Vanuatu, but these details will be decided by the bank account as well as by flight routes.
Pacific Islands – (Yes!) I may not have made it to Vanuatu, but I did definitely go to Tonga and Samoa. I also went to Fiji, as it was conveniently situation on the flight route. Samoa was absolutely amazing, and a lot more budget friendly than I originally thought. I didn’t have the best experience on Fiji – getting caught in a tropical cyclone will do that to you, so it probably deserves a re visit some time in the future. Tonga was also quite a bit different than expected. I thought it would be more similar to Samoa, but actually it was entirely unique. Posts about Tonga are coming in the new year.
In my 2012 Goals post, my Pacific Islands Resolution was to experience the “real” side of the islands. I definitely achieved this in Samoa. I couchsurfed in Apia and Vaisala, and even enjoyed a umu meal prepared for me by a local Peace Corp Volunteer which we shared with the head of the villages family.
2012 Travel Goal #3 – Asia
The start of the great Asian adventure! When we leave Australia we want to spend several months travelling through Asia. We plan to start in Papua New Guinea, and from there move north. Bu the end of the year we should have completed our visit to Papua New Guinea as well as part of our Indonesian adventure!
uuummmmmmm….. so yeah…. that totally never happened. A lot of unexpected things came up during my time in Australia. I decided that one year wasn’t enough to spend in Australia (meeting a wonderful man here definitely influenced that decision), so I decided to stay.
I ended up marrying before mentioned wonderful man, who has recently started doing some of the photography for OurOyster.com. On top of all that, we are also expecting a baby! (yup…. didn’t see that one coming!). In the New Year I will start writing about my experiences with Australian immigration. One consequence of marrying an Australian is that while they process my spouse visa, I am not allowed to leave the country! Grrrr! That really quashed any Asian travel plans right away!