Tortoise on the Move

May 6, 2015

Real Time Roundup: Western Australia

Denham
Fremantle

Fremantle

On May 6th, I flew to Perth to kick off two weeks in Western Australia. After my amazing tour experience in the Northern Territory, I decided to book an 8-day round trip tour between Perth and Exmouth. That journey began on May 11 after four days of exploring Perth and Fremantle. Throughout the trip, I posted (sort of) regular updates when I had cell service. As always, thank you for joining me on this adventure and I hope you enjoy following along! Additional posts and galleries coming soon!

Read more ››

April 17, 2015

The Next Chapter: Post Gap-Year Plans

IMG_5529
Granite Bay

Granite Bay, Noosa National Park

Today, I was sitting on Sunshine Beach reading Mindy Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?. I laughed at the all-too-real irony of reading a book whose title perfectly captures the essence of FOMO (that’s “fear of missing out” for my parents, grandparents, extended family, and everyone over the age of thirty), since the realization that your friends are, in fact, hanging out without you is all but guaranteed when you move halfway around the world for a year. Aside from the assault on my bank account, the real price of travel has been missing my friends.

Read more ››

Posted in: Blog
January 3, 2015

Celebrating Christmas and the New Year in Sydney

New Years Eve

Happy New Year everyone! I’ve just arrived in Adelaide for ten days in South Australia – I’m currently camped out at a coffee shop because my Barossa host family is evacuating their horses due to the bushfires. It’s also apparently 40o C outside so I’m opting for the air-conditioned airport. While I wait, I figured I’d catch up on a bit of writing. I didn’t write much during the holidays, but I wanted to recap a few of the places I visited while I stayed with my Canberra host family in Sydney.

Read more ››

October 12, 2014

Tasmania: 4 Days on the Apple Isle’s East Coast

Bicheno Blowhole

Fun fact: Tasmanians can also be called Taswegians.

Itinerary at a Glance:

Day 1: Hobart (Mount Wellington and MONA) and Port Arthur (ghost tour)

Day 2: Tasman Peninsula (Fossil Bay Lookout, Tasman Arch, Devils Kitchen) and Freycinet National Park (Wineglass Bay and Sleepy Bay)

Day 3: Bay of Fires and Launceston

Day 4: Launceston (Cataract Gorge, City Park, Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery) and Low Head (lighthouse)

Sleepy Bay, Freycinet National Park

Sleepy Bay, Freycinet National Park

Read more ››

July 17, 2014

Canberra Museums

Roll of Honor, Australian War Memorial
Entrance to the National Museum galleries

Entrance to the National Museum galleries

“The past is never fully gone. It is absorbed into the present and the future. It stays to shape what we are and what we do.” – Sir William Deane

As the capital city of Australia, Canberra is chock full of museums. I’m planning to update this post with my personal takeaways and highlights as I visit these wonderful establishments over the next few months. Since I’m visiting many of the museums with my Aussie kids, I’ll also recap some child-friendly features as well.

Read more ››

July 5, 2014

Canberra Bucket List

Outdoor ice skating in central Canberra... in July!

While I was a Canberra resident for six months, I made a quick bucket list of the major sights and sounds around the city. While I visited a few of these with my host family’s kids, I was also able to go to a few on my own time. I didn’t get to all of them during my time in Canberra, but for the ones I did check off, I’ve linked to relevant blog posts. BONUS: Most of the “National” locations are FREE, similar to Washington DC.

Read more ››

Posted in: Blog
June 10, 2014

Peru

Colca Canyon, outside of Arequipa
Plaza de Armas, Arequipa

Plaza de Armas, Arequipa

Peru was my first venture into travel planning on my own. After being awarded a travel fellowship from the Archaeology department, I set out to plan a two-week long trip to Peru with the objective of comparing museums in the modern cultural landscape. As it works out, I enjoy going to museums anyway so it wasn’t too strenuous to write my report when I came back to the US. I traveled with one of my friends who I had known from club swimming growing up. Over the course of the trip, we visited nine cities (including Machu Picchu), starting in Lima before making our way south to Arequipa and then heading to Cusco and the Sacred Valley. We spent Peruvian Independence Day (July 28th) in Ica. Between most cities, we took Cruz del Sur bus service. I was nervous about bus travel, but I purchased the tickets and chose our seats before we even went to Peru and all of our ventures on the buses were without issue. Along the way, I grew increasingly tired of colonial architecture and Spanish churches and more interested in ancient ruins (if you’re a big fan of churches, to each his own), which might have been a result of our route or a happy coincidence of taking the route we did. Happily sipping pisco sours along the way, I learned a lot about traveling on my first self-planned international trip. It was the beginning of a new chapter of travel for me, and that was one of the most exciting aspects of the venture.

Read more ››