I created the “Travellers’ Tales” section earlier this year to give my readers and other travellers an opportunity to talk about their travels. Today I would like to introduce you to Vicki Garside, a travel blogger based in Melbourne, Australia. She blogs at Make Time To See The World .
I would love to hear about your holidays too. Go to “Travellers’ Tales” , fill in the quick questionnaire and email it to me with your blog links.
Read about Vicki’s travels here,
1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hi! I’m Vicki and I’m originally a law graduate from the UK. When I finished my degree I went and worked in a mid-tier law firm in the north of England. It was a job, but I wasn’t happy. On a whim, I saw a pop-up box on my computer screen that said ‘Would You Like To Work at Walt Disney World?’ I clicked yes. It could have been a scam – and I don’t normally click those boxes – but it turned out to be an amazing opportunity that would change my life. I went to work in WDW Florida on a 6-month contract and when I finished, the US Government allowed me 31 days to travel before I had to leave the country. I took an organised tour across the country from LA to New York and it was then I realised the travel bug had bit me. I went home, but I hadn’t finished exploring and took a seasonal role as a hotel manager in the French Alps and because of this I spent the next 4 years living and working at different ski resorts in Europe. In 2012, I moved to Australia and went back to working in a law office (it pays a lot better than hospitality work!) and now I travel between 6-10 weeks per year – and I am about to be admitted as a lawyer on 21 June 2016. It’s been a long road – but I wouldn’t change a second of it!
2. What is your earliest travel memory?
I was very lucky growing up in the UK that my parents were able to take me to different places in Europe and even a couple of trips to the States – to Disney, of course – and my earliest memory is actually of being in a rented house in Kissimmee that had a pool in the backyard with my dad and granddad drinking Budweiser (and hating it!)
3. Where was your last holiday?
My last holiday was to Bali in Indonesia – it is somewhere that had never really interested me, but my partner (who’s an Aussie) said it was an Aussie tradition and I had to stop saying I wasn’t interested when I hadn’t been there.
4. What was the best thing you did there?
I’m usually a very budget-conscious backpacker but I had my first luxury travel experience whilst we were in Bali where we spent a day at the Four Seasons, lounging around their infinity pool whilst drinking cocktails and having delicious 5* food delivered to our daybed! It was awesome – and all for less than $100!
5. What was your best holiday ever? Why?
I’ve loved all of my trips but I think I enjoyed my Europe Tour the best – 12 cities in 25 days: it was an epic whirlwind of an adventure!
6. What is your favourite travel destination?
I really love South East Asia, but if I had to narrow it down to a specific town in a single country it would be Luang Prabang in Laos. A small city in Northern Laos, it is a UNESCO Heritage site and lies where the Meekong and Nam Song rivers converge. The French influence from colonisation can be seen in the architecture and street food – a local delicacy is a baguette – and mixed with influences from nearby Thailand and Vietnam, make for a beautiful mix of Asian and European culture – all the while retaining its small town charm.
7. What must one do there?
There is so much to do there, but my top 3 would be – a visit to the Kwang Si Falls (Image at the top) – which lie around 30 minutes from the centre and has some of the most beautiful turquoise coloured water I have ever seen; go to the cooking school at Tamarind Laos and cruise up the Meekong to Buddha Cave.
8. Who is your favourite travel companion/s?
My partner, Gavin, is my favourite travel companion. It so nice to share all these amazing experiences with someone I love, and we have created memories together that will last a lifetime.
9. Name one item you must have when travelling.
If vanity prevailed I’d say my sunglasses – because no one looks bad in a pair of sunglasses! But practically, I’d say I always travel with a pashmina/scarf – perfect for an extra layer on the plane, or a cover-all for visiting temples and religious sites.
10. Your best travel advice?
Do your research before you go. Get estimates of what things should cost so you have an idea and are less likely to be ripped off. Also, if you have an idea of everything you want to see and do in the area, it will help in planning your days to get the most from your trip.
11. The one place you want to visit before you die?
Tough question – but probably Cuba – and hopefully before it is changed to much by the lifting of US travel restrictions.
12. Your favourite place in South Africa?
I am just about to go to Africa on a 5 week overland tour starting in Zimbabwe and travelling through Botswana, Namibia and down to Cape Town in SA before taking the Garden Route across to Johannesburg. I am VERY excited!!
Thank you, Vicki , for sharing your fascinating travels with us!
Visit Vicki’s blog at MakeTimeToSeeTheWorld .
I would love to hear about your holidays too. Go to Travellers’ Tales, fill in the quick questionnaire and email it to me with your blog links.