Australia

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Australia, Oz, the land down under, our home country is one of beauty and with a lifestyle that just can’t be matched. To many travelers, it’s on the bucket list but also at the top of the too hard list. Come on people, don’t you know what you’re missing out on? From America, the flight is a little long, clocking in at up to 22 hours from the eastern-most point, but more commonly you can be there in 18 hours (or what’s also known as about nine movies and three meals). It’s basically having a snooze in an undersized armchair, so honestly, get over it because the reward outweighs the pain of travel.

As a country, Australia is a land of extremes. Extremely fresh, tasty food, extremely chill, yet welcoming people and extremely dangerous wildlife – almost everything can bite, sting, poison or maim you. It is also extremely large. Somewhere along the line, the cartographers got things very, very wrong. Most visitors assume that it’s a smallish island. That’s what they were taught in middle school geography. It is in fact almost as large as the United States. In the same state you can experience jungles, alps and deserts. Distances are massive between capital cities, usually taking up to 15 hours to drive. Whatever the experience and no matter where they come from, no one who visits Australia leaves disappointed. Below you will find some of our favorite experiences with a little local “know-how”.

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Buderim Ginger Factory

As a ginger, Buderim Ginger Factory is Jess’s spiritual home. It’s home to some great-tasting food and offers a chance to chill in its quiet rainforest grounds. Heading north towards the Sunshine Coast from Brisbane, you will pass through Buderim, a small, sleepy, hinterland town. Just off the highway, in a semi-industrial area is the Buderim Ginger Factory. As a...

Review: Shutter and Brew, Brisbane

Looking more like a spot you’d find in the hipster epicenter of Williamsburg than a quaint café in a leafy suburb of Wavell Heights, Shutter and Brew serves up its sweet early morning eats 7 days a week. Good breakfast options in Brisbane used to be restricted to a meat pie and iced coffee from a convenience store or a McMuffin from McDonalds. Thankfully there has...

Riding the CityCat, Brisbane

Brisbane is a beautiful river city and one of the best ways to see it for cheap is to ride one of its CityCat catamarans. The CityCat ferry service is an iconic part of the city, transporting tens of thousands to work every day. They run upstream and down, servicing as far down as Hamilton (close to the Brisbane Airport) and as far up as the University of Queensland...

Doomben Markets

Every city has its marketplace and Doomben Markets is the epicenter for Brisbane’s artisan foods, crafts and farm-fresh produce. There’s definitely been a global shift back to honest-to-goodness, organic, farm-to-table shopping. We’ve seen it in New York, Prague, Barbados, Philly, Finland and Sweden. Prior to leaving our home in Brisbane, this movement was just...

Sydney Opera House, Australia

As Australians, seeing the Sydney Opera House in person always brings an instant hit of patriotism (and possibly a little tear – though we’ll tell you it’s just a bit of dust). The last time we were in Sydney was when we were going through the process of getting our US Green Cards at the United States embassy. Flying into Sydney, the plane...

South Bank, Brisbane, Australia

Southbank is Brisbane proper’s one and only attraction. Well, at least the only one that receives airtime on incoming flights. What used to form the site of World Expo ’88 was redeveloped into a urban oasis in the city, sporting beaches, green space and even a small rainforest walk, it is a tourists delight to soak up the sun and outdoors when in the CBD. As the name...