Things To Remember For Your Trip Down Under


There’s no better feeling than seeing the world, and I mean with your own two eyes and not through a computer screen. For one reason or another, a place that is on most people’s bucket list is Australia. Perhaps it’s the warm weather, the magnificent beaches, the wine or the food, but whatever the reason, if you are planning to travel to Australia anytime soon, there are a few things that you have to remember.

Skip The Hotel

If you don’t know already, things in Australia cost a lot more than they do back home. This is likely to be because workers in Australia are paid a lot more per hour than they would in most other countries. Unfortunately, this means that you’ll need to take a lot of money with you on your trip. To cut costs a little, skip the hotel, and book a room or apartment using Airbnb instead. This means that you can also save on food, as you can cook your own meals, instead of eating out.

Rent A Car

If you’re planning to visit Perth, the capital of Western Australia, then you will likely need to rent a car during your stay. This is because Perth is incredibly spread out, so it takes a while to get anywhere. Public transport is great, with some bus and train systems even offering free rides, but is also often overcrowded, which won’t make for fun mornings if it’s really warm. Click vehicle hire Perth if you need to hire a car for your trip.

Book Travel Insurance

You should take out travel insurance whenever you leave the country, just in case anything happens, but when travelling to somewhere like Australia, it’s absolutely essential. For starters, you’re travelling a much longer distance, which means there’s a much higher chance for your airline to lose one of your suitcases. There are also a lot more dangers in Australia, especially if you intend to do any adventure sports, like scuba diving.

The Climate’s Opposite

A lot of people think that Australia is hot all year round, when there are four seasons a year, just like most other places. In fact, the seasons are opposite to those in the Northern Hemisphere, with summer being from December to February, and winter being from June to August. You can even get snow, as long as you visit the southern mountain regions. If you are visiting Australia throughout the summer, you have to remember to keep in the shade as much as possible and be sure to slap on sunscreen. You can burn to a crisp in under thirty minutes if you’re not careful, so be careful.

There is a lot to see and do in Australia, but if you want to make the most out of your trip, and stay safe, then be sure to remember the advice above. In particular, be sure to be safe with the sun, and book your travel insurance. Other than that, have lot’s of fun and take plenty of pictures to remember your time away.   


Making the Most of a Cotswolds Trip

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The Cotswolds is one of those places you can’t help but love. Stunning landscapes, exciting attractions, great food and historical monuments – it has everything you could want from a holiday destination and more! In fact, there’s so much to do in the area, that it could be difficult narrowing your itinerary down! Let me help you with that by telling you about some things you absolutely MUST do and see when you’re in the area…

Cotswolds Wildlife Park

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If you’re an animal lover, you simply must take the time to visit the Cotswolds Wildlife Park, which is probably the biggest and best family attraction in the area. While you’re there, you’ll get to see lions, giraffes, monkey and even penguins – you’ll be in animal heaven!

The Wood Norton

If you’re a fully paid-up member of the foodie club, then you’re really going to want to stop off at Evesham around dinner time. Why? Because that’s where you’ll find The Wood Norton – a luxury local hotel with an even more luxurious restaurant. Try the 7-course tasting menu, and you won’t be disappointed by the fine award-winning food on offer. Oh, it’s all locally sourced too!

Cheltenham Racecourse

Cheltenham is one of the biggest and best racecourses in the country, so if you like a little flutter, you won’t want to pass up the opportunity to put on your glad rags for a day at the races. Who knows, you might even win big and have an even better time than you imagined!

The Slaughters

Despite its rather macabre name, The Slaughters, which is made up of Upper and Lower Slaughter is a beautiful place with some of the most spectacular views in the country. If you love looking at landscapes, and you like to stay active, it’s a great place to spend some time walking.

Westonbirt Arboretum

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If you’re looking for a romantic place to spend some time with your beau, look no further than this stunning arboretum, which is populated with more than 600 acres of trees from all around the world. It really is one of the most stunning tree gardens you’re ever likely to see, and the perfect spot to steal a kiss or two from the one you love!

The Birthplace of William Shakespeare

Whether you’re a fan of his work or not, you can’t deny Shakespeare’s talent nor his lasting influence on modern culture, which means that a visit to the home where he was born and grew up is a must if you’re in the Stratford area. You might also want to visit the theatre and see one of his finest, too!

The Model Village

If you have the time, take a trip to the quaint little village of Bourton-on-the-Water, where no matter how old you might be, you will be delighted by The Model Village – a one-ninth scale replica of the village which is it’s home. The detail that has been put into its creation, right down to the tiniest flowers, will really blow you away.

If the Cotswolds wasn’t already on your ‘To Visit’ list, add it right now!

Accommodations, travel tips

Choosing the Right Form of Accommodation for Each of Your Trips

Every holiday or trip away from home is unique. You’ll be heading to different places and travelling for different purposes. In short, you’ll expect something different from each place that you visit. So you can’t expect one form of accommodation to cater to all of your needs regardless of the situation. It only makes sense that you should consider where you’re going to stay during each of your journeys before setting off and ensuring that you choose the option that best suits your needs at that given time. Here are a few different types of accommodation to consider next time you’re away from home.


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Hotels are perhaps the most commonly used form of accommodation when people go on their travels. It’s not surprising. They’re comfortable, luxurious, and offer you pretty much anything and everything that you could possibly wish for as part of your vacation. They are ideal for those who want rest, relaxation and recuperation. If the weather is fine, you can take advantages of common features such as pools and sun loungers. Many also offer spas where you can receive massages, facials, and other treatments. Perhaps the best part? Large buffets or other forms of catering that keep your appetite satiated day and night. They may be relatively expensive, but they are great for a treat.


Hostels are like budget versions of hotels. You may lack privacy, as you will likely have to share your room or dorm with other weary travellers, but you will have somewhere to rest your head for the night. This doesn’t sound ideal, but their low price makes up for what facilities and luxuries they lack. Hostels are the ideal form of accommodation for backpacking. You can save the money that you do have for food and activities, without having to resort to sleeping on the streets or forking out for lavish hotels. So, if you merely need somewhere to sleep, this is the option for you. You can simply get your head down, the set off on your new adventures the following day. Job done!


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Corporate Housing

Many people will not have heard of this option before, but corporate housing is great for business trips or extended leisure trips where you want a home away from home. Decorated and furnished apartments are let out for short periods of time. They are often located in large cities, so provide the perfect option for those who are considering a city break. While you explore by day, you can rest safe in the knowledge that you have a comfortable home to return to at night with all the amenities and home comforts you could wish for.


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If you’re seeking an experience a little further out from the city and the wilderness calls, camping could be the best option for you. What do you camp in? A tent. However, things nowadays are a little more complicated when it comes to purchasing the right tent for your needs. Different styles are designed for different purposes, and prices can vary from low to extremely expensive. So work out how long you’re going to be out in the elements for and how severe weather conditions are likely to be. For even the shortest of trips, you’re going to want something that is watertight and water resistant. If you are going to be camping for a while, you will want something a little larger to avoid feeling cooped up or claustrophobic. At the same time, you want everything to be as lightweight as possible, as you’re going to have to carry it to and from your designated campsite. Tents, however, aren’t just for those looking to venture into the woods. They are also a must-have for festival-goers who are planning on seeing all of their favourite bands over an extended weekend.

Log Cabin

If you fancy heading out of the city and into the countryside, but fancy a little more comfort than the humble tent can provide, you may want to consider a more permanent fixture. A log cabin, to be precise. These give you a taste of the rural at the same time as guaranteeing your warmth and security. They are rustic, homely, and a great way for you to escape from the rush and hubbub of the inner city without having just a thin layer of material between you and the elements.

These are just a few different forms of accommodation that you might experience on your travels. Remember that there’s so much more out there than the standard hotel room. Broaden your experience and be adventurous!

photography, seasonal

Fall Foto Fun

I’ve been enjoying the fall colors and associated activities over the past few weeks! Before the constant rain started, I decided to take my last mud-free opportunity of the year to hike Table Rock and see the foilage from above.

I went to the pumpkin patch twice this year. On my second trip, I decided to get a blue pumpkin, which I never had before. The following days were all pumpkin-themed. I roasted the seeds from my pumpkin, baked cookies and cheesecake brownies from canned pumpkin, and carved the pumpkin in a park under the colorful leaves of a tree.

Last week was the first Friday of the month, which called for an evening trip to Ashland for the First Friday Art Walk. After that I headed down the street to Southern Oregon University, where I joined a haunted tour. But the most incredible thing I saw happened before all that: I parked my car at Lithia Park, and saw these trees between the duck pond and Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

If you want to see more of my pics, be sure to follow me on Instagram. I’m @jessicalippe.

destinations, seasonal, travel tips

6 Things To Do In Finland This Winter


Finland is the ultimate festive wonderland if you are looking for a place to get yourself ready for Christmas. During the winter months, Finland is covered in thick snow and has plenty of amazing places to visit, from national parks, to Santa’s home, to bustling cities filled with festive smells and sights.

So the question is, what to do in Finland in winter? Well, here are some great ideas for you…

1.Santa Claus Village

This village is underneath the Arctic Circle, and takes you away from the real world and into Santa’s. You’ll find yourself in the midst of everything festive as you bake with Mrs Claus, meet the man himself and even attend elf school. If you weren’t feeling festive before, you will be now.

2. Kemi

If you love the snow, then a visit to the village of Kemi will be just the thing for you. You’ll be able to make towering snowmen, have fun in the snow with your skis, or even go sledding with the kids. It’s like the ultimate snowy wonderland for you and your family.

3. Lapland

Santa lives in Lapland, and you will find no shortage of the festive spirit visiting the northernmost region of the country. Reindeer roam wild in the forests, and you will be able to ride and feed them too. At Santa’s grotto, you will be able to experience a magical sleigh ride and plenty of festive fun.

4. The Festival of St Lucia

For those of you who haven’t heard of this festival: it occurs every December 13th and celebrates the life of St Lucia. St Lucia was a Christian girl who became a martyr in 304. The festival celebrates her life with a girl wearing a crown of candles. Everyone parade through the streets and eats great food to celebrate the life of this young saint.

5. Christmas Markets, Helsinki

The Christmas markets are one of the most festive places to be in December. They happen all over Europe, but in Finland the most impressive is in the capital, Helsinki. In this city, an ice skating rink is open to the public throughout the winter, and snow covers the entire landscape. You’ll be able to walk around and smell various cheeses, meats and sweets cooking on the street; as well as warm your cockles with a mug of mulled wine. Walk around and do some Christmas shopping as you enjoy the full immersive festive experience.

6. Turku

If it is an old-fashioned, quirky village experience you are after, then Turku is the best place to visit at this time of the year. Turku is not only the former capital of Finland, but it is also the oldest city in the entire country. As you walk through the cobbled streets and thin alleyways, you’ll be able to visit tonnes of independent shop owners selling unique pieces and wears. The whole city becomes blanketed in snow during the colder months, so you’ll be able to fully experience walking through a winter wonderland. 

travel tips

 The Reasons You Need to Travel Asia Right Now

Any avid traveler knows that the hardest thing to do is decide where to go. There are so many places to visit and what seems like so little time to do it in. Your two options are usually to take extended trips to get in a lot in one go, or to make shorter trips to take things in more slowly. If you decide on a big trip, it’s often something you do by continent – South America, or Europe, or Asia. But these big tours can also be broken down into great smaller journeys. Asia offers opportunities for both months traveling around and staying in one place. If you’re not sure whether Asia is right for you, here are some great reasons to go.

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It’s Often Cheap

For young travelers, being able to do it affordably is a must. Most don’t have a lot of money to spend, and even if they do, they want to use it wisely. There are some fantastic destinations across Asia where a little money will get you far. Of course, some places are more expensive than others. You might end up spending a lot more in a big city in Japan than in Thailand or India. But you can seek out the affordable places if you’re on a budget or plan your spending wisely in the slightly more expensive places.

There’s So Much to See and Do

Asia is hugely diverse – partly because it’s huge. Even within one country, such as India or Malaysia, you’ll discover different cultures, religions, ethnicities, and more. No matter what you like to do on your travels, you’ll find it somewhere in Asia. If you love nature, you might enjoy Indonesia. If you want to spend your time on the beach or partying, Thailand is often a top destination. If the city life is for you, try one of Japan’s bustling metropolises. You’ll find oodles of culture and new things to discover wherever you go.

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Staying Long-term Can Be Possible

Often when you’re traveling, you’ll think “I wish I could stay”. The good news is that in many Asian countries, you often can. One good way to do this is to join a program to teach English, which you can find everywhere from China to Eurasian countries like Georgia. In some places, staying long-term can be a bit harder. Immigration Solutions in Singapore help out people who want to gain permanent residency in the country. It’s now more difficult than it used to be, so some people need help. But whether you want to stay a few months or forever in your new favorite Asian country, the options are there.

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It’s Practically a Traveler’s Rite of Passage

If you would describe yourself as a backpacker, you can’t miss out on traveling in Asia. More specifically, Southeast Asia is usually the destination of choice for enthusiastic backpackers. But you don’t want to miss out on other places, from Russia to Mongolia. There’s so much to see and so many bragging rights to be had.

Don’t miss out on an Asian adventure if you love to travel. You might even love it so much that you decide to live there.


 16 Places to See Before You Die

Traveling is a brilliant thing. It lets you see the world, meet new people, have new experiences, learn about responsibility, nature, money, politics and culture and can genuinely shape you as a person. Everyone should travel at least a little in their lives.

But, we all do it in different ways. Some of us try to see vast amounts of the world in one go on a giant expedition. Other people go on the odd city break and family weeks away with their kids. Some even wait until retirement and travel the world in their own time, with a little more money behind them, knowing they have no commitments tying them down at home and feeling like they’ve earned this one great adventure.

We also have different places on our travel bucket lists. Some of us want to visit sites of great romance, others have an urge to visit the sites of great battles, and some just want to go to Disneyland. It’s all cool. But, whenever you travel, whoever you do it with, and whatever your personal to-do list includes, there are some amazing places on earth that absolutely everyone should see before they die. Those places that take your breath away, put your life into perspective and inspire you. The sights and scenes that no computer screen or postcard could ever do justice. The places you cannot merely just hear or read about. Here is a look at 16 of these destinations.

Venice, Italy


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If you are after a romantic city break, there’s none better than Venice. Spend time exploring the city’s canals by gondola, check out the renaissance architecture such as St. Mark’s Basilica and eat authentic Italian cuisine in its home. It’s also thought that Venice could be completely under water within a century if the Mediterranean Sea continues to rise. So, you’ll be experiencing something that future generations will never get a chance to see.

The Great Barrier Reef, Australia


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The great barrier reef is a popular feature on any list of must-see places. If you’ve got a keen interest in nature, swimming the Great Barrier Reef is an absolute must. The diversity of sea life, with over 1600 different species of fish, as well as other underwater life and nature, is truly breathtaking.

Salar De Uyuni, Bolivia


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Salar De Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat at 10582 square kilometres. In the right weather conditions, it’s basically transformed into a giant mirror, reflected the skyline and giving a somewhat ethereal imagery.  A vision you won’t see anywhere else on earth.

Zhangye Danxia Landform, China

Also known as The Rainbow Mountains, the colourful rock formations of the Zhangye Danxia Landform in China are truly a once in a lifetime experience. The mountain sides appear to be stripes of different colours, pushed together, almost like a drawing. This is a result of red sandstone and mineral deposits collecting over 24 million years.

The Grand Canyon, Arizona


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The Grand Canyon is so well known, it’s often one of the first places people think of when writing their travel bucket lists. The best word to describe the Canyon is immense. It’s layered rock displays millions of years of geological history, and it has a wonderful way of putting your own problems and worries into perspective.

Bamboo Forest, Japan


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The Bamboo Forest is a popular tourist attraction in Arashiyama, Kyoto. Walking through the forest, you are surrounded by tall bamboo. Depending on the season of your visit, the bamboo displays varying colours including reds, yellows and oranges.

Reed Flute Cave, China

Also known as The Palace of Natural Arts, the Reed Flute Cave is named for the colourful and divergent reeds growing around its entrance. The cave itself is a water-eroded natural limestone cave. The rock formations inside have taken on many different shapes and colours, and the cave contains original ink inscriptions dating back to the 8th century.

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia


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This national park is a forest reserve in central Croatia. If you are looking for peace and quiet and a chance to get back to nature while exploring the gorgeous scenery, this is it. The park is home to 16 lakes, joined together by waterfalls which extend into a limestone canyon. There are also hiking trails around the water to make exploring easy.

The Great Blue Hole, Belize

The Great Blue Hole of Belize is the most massive sinkhole in the world. If you are a keen diver, like the Great Barrier Reef this is a place you simply have to dive. Explore sea life and nature you won’t get to see anywhere else on earth.

Yellowstone National Park, USA

The many National Parks in the USA are all home to their own communities, histories and culture. They offer visitors the chance to learn about their history and formation as well as any nature they may find. Yellowstone national park spreads from Wyoming into both Idaho and Montana. It’s home to canyons, rivers, forest, hot springs and geysers and hundreds of different animal species. A must for anyone that likes a bit of adventure on their break.

Taj Mahal, India


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The Taj Mahal is well known for its beauty and grace. Even if you’ve got no interest in religion, you’ll more than likely find yourself feeling more spiritual during your trip. It’s a building renowned as a symbol of love and passion and can change your outlook on the world in general.

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Angkor Wat is the biggest religious monument in the world. A group of temple buildings, well maintained and preserved Angkor Wat is something of an architectural masterpiece. It’s the perfect blend of a huge, overpowering structure, and beautiful tiny details and will take your breath away again and again as you notice more of the finer details once you start to explore.

While you are allowed to explore the whole site, Angkor Wat is a sacred site, so you will be required to dress modestly, with your arms and legs covered for the duration of your visit.

Pamukkale, Turkey


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Pamukkale is a town filled with hot, mineral-rich waters, which flow down a white hillside. It almost looks like something from a fantasy film. People believe that the soothing waters have healing properties. But, whether or not this is true, it’s great for your skin and a truly relaxing experience.

Lencois Maranhenses, Brazil


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Lencois Maranhenses is a sight to behold, unlike anything else on earth. The huge expanses of desert surround fresh rainwater lagoons. Seeing it first hand can be shocking like your eyes can’t quite accept what they see as the gorgeous white sands lead into still blue waters. Definitely worth a trip.

The Northern Lights, Iceland

Seeing the Northern lights is a once in a lifetime experience. But, unfortunately, they can be hard to predict. The best time to visit Iceland if you are hoping to see the northern lights is when the nights are darkest, between September and April. But even within those months, weather plays an important part. Staying away from the city lights out in the country can also increase your chances.

Uluwatu Temple, Bali

Bali itself is a must-visit destination with its long sandy beaches, relaxing hideaways, volcanic mountains, coral reefs and wine paddies. Uluwatu Temple is a sea temple dedicated to Sang Hyang Wasa. The perfect place to visit to meditate and unwind. With so much to see, bali holiday packages can offer the best way to get around and make the most of your trip.

Remember, you’ve got your whole life to see them all. It’s never too late, or too early. So, write yourself a list and get going. 

Ed note: I’ve seen 2.5 out of 16! (I can’t fully count the Grand Canyon because I don’t remember that trip as a toddler.) Tell me how many of these you’ve seen in the comments! 


Destinations So Perfect You’ll Want To Move There

It’s one thing having a lovely holiday that you know you will never forget. It’s quite another, however, to end up living there. There are specific locations which are just so beautiful that it is hard to tear yourself away from them and go home. And while it’s not always an immediate decision, from time to time you might just end up actually buying somewhere and moving there. Alternatively, you could end up getting hold of a second home or holiday home which you can visit for the holidays. But what kind of destinations tend to lend themselves to such moves?



French Riviera

If you have never been to the French Riviera, you are in for a real treat. With some of the most stunning views anywhere in Europe, it’s not hard to see why this is such a perennially popular destination for so many people. But for a certain few who visit, it can also end up being the ideal place to move to. The truth is that you could do much worse than buy a luxury accommodation in the French Riviera. Not only will you be able to spend your days surrounded by natural beauty and bathed in sun, but you will also probably be pleasantly surprised at some of the prices of the accommodation too. This is a must-consider for anyone who wants that real dream holiday home feel for a lower price tag than you would expect.


It’s not only one of the most popular US destinations, but one of the most regularly visited groups of islands in the world. Hawaii offers a classic beach getaway feel, no matter which corner of which of its many islands you might end up on. With a great combination of continual party vibes and some of the most glorious weather anywhere on Earth, this is the ultimate spot on the globe for the laid-back traveller. If you decide you want to make that your way of life – like so many before you have done – then you can do so by just getting hold of a Hawaii property. There is indeed no shortage of these, and if you don’t mind moving in from the beach a little you can find one for less money than you have assumed. The culture might well make it one of the best places you can possibly live.




This next one is not somewhere that people often think of for moving home, but the truth is that it is one of the single most extraordinary destinations in the world. It is incredible as a tourist, and even better as a citizen. With some of the best happiness rates in the world, a strong economy and hugely polite people everywhere, this is a great place to settle if you are looking to get away from the rat race a little. It also happens to have a deliriously cheap cost of living. Just make sure that you are ready to wrap up warm for the foreseeable future.