travel

MELBOURNE SURVIVAL KIT

I get asked by a lot of friends what to pack when visiting Melbourne – I assume it’s in anticipation of our well known temperamental weather and not just because they don’t know how to pack. So in an effort to answer all their questions in one hit here’s my Melbourne Survival Kit.

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CHEAP TRAVELS: 24 HOURS IN SYDNEY

Today’s post comes courtesy of Georgia.  She lives in Sydney, I live in Melbourne so we decided to do a swapsie to show each other around our city (read my 24 Hours in Melbourne here).
Her blog Inner City Stinge follows Georgia’s pursuit of a champagne lifestyle on a VB budget. When she’s not eating, she’s probably still eating… 
I’ve made Sydney my home for the past two and a half years, but it can be an expensive city to live in, especially with rent where it is these days.
So how’s a girl supposed to have a little fun around here without wads of cash to blow? Well I’ve written up the perfect 24 hours in Sydney based on my favourite places to hang out and take visitors.
Expect to be jumping on and off public transit all day, so pick up a day pass first thing to save time and money.
Well, look no further. If you’ve found yourself in Sydney for the weekend and can’t afford to stay at the Shangri-la or dine at Tetsuyas, there’s still a tonne of fabulous things to do without blowing your budget.
Sydney

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SUNNY SIEM REAP

I spent most of my Cambodia holiday in Siem Reap volunteering at Feeding Dreams Cambodia, a community school that provides free English lessons, community support and school meals to over 700 children from Siem Reap’s slums. It was a fantastic experience and I left with many new friends, hugs and best of all a sponsor family.
Feeding Dreams are currently building a bigger school and vocational training centre and are desperately seeking donations to help them finish the project. You can read more about the new school here. They’re doing some amazing work and making a real difference in the community.

Aside from helping with the kids with their ABC’s we still had plenty of time after school hours to explore the town.
Angkor Wat at sunrise is a must visit. Not only is it significantly cooler at dawn but the sun rising over the temple is breath-taking. We spent most of a day exploring Angkor Wat and its surrounding temples but you can spend as long or as little as you like. There are hundreds of temples in the national park but most visitors do a small or big loop of the main temples (we did the big loop in an exhausting day).

Another worthwhile day trip out of town is to Phnom Kulen, a sacred mountain to the Khmer people. We climbed up to see a 16th century statue of Buddha and then spent most of the afternoon cooling off in a waterfall. A word of warning – the little fish that nibble dead skin off your feet call the waterfall home. It’s a little creepy at first but you’ll leave with beautifully polished feet.

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SORRY I’M LATE, I’VE BEEN IN CAMBODIA

I know it’s been a long time between posts, a real long time. I spent the last month volunteering in Cambodia and since I returned last week I’ve been catching up on bills, work, life etc. But regular posts are back as of…. now.

While I adapt to Melbourne’s significantly colder weather (Cambodia’s daily 40 deg + 80% humidity = all the sweats) here’s some pics of Phnom Penh where I started my sweaty-but-fantastic trip.

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WHAT A GREAT OCEAN ROAD

If you’re in Melbourne for longer than a weekend you really shouldn’t miss venturing out to the Great Ocean Road.

It’s a 2-3 hour drive from the CBD to reach the road’s most famous sites –  Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge and London Bridge.

We chose a gorgeously warm and sunny autumn day to head down the coast. There are countless tours that will take you along the Great Ocean Road but it’s easy enough to hire a car, grab a map and do it yourself.

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