Solo Travel Junkie https://solotraveljunkie.com Bizarre travel plans of a solo female traveller Fri, 08 Jan 2021 15:06:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.18 An interview with Leisa Bright of the Wildlife Hospital https://solotraveljunkie.com/an-interview-with-leisa-bright-of-the-wildlife-hospital/ Sat, 23 Sep 2017 19:21:30 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=486 Learn how you can contribute help save the Koalas in Queensland Volunteering with the Australian Wildlife has been the most rewarding experience of my travels around Australia this year. The insight and the knowledge I gained about the threats koalas are undergoing in Australia was simply amazing, let alone the extraordinary personal experience of getting […]

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Learn how you can contribute help save the Koalas in Queensland

Volunteering with the Australian Wildlife has been the most rewarding experience of my Save the Koalas in Australiatravels around Australia this year. The insight and the knowledge I gained about the threats koalas are undergoing in Australia was simply amazing, let alone the extraordinary personal experience of getting close to Australian native animals.

The Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah has been doing an impressive job rescuing, treating and saving thousands and thousands of australian endangered animals, each year.

This year the Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah has been working at full capacity with 90 koalas patients all the time, and as every year there have been great koalas survival stories, and of course some sad ones too. To help save the koalas is only possible thanks to costant contribution of hundreds of volunteers who are offering their help on a regular basis, along with the generosity of donators without which the hospital could not keep up this unmatched performance.

Behind the scenes of the Wildlife Hospital there is also the work of a great team of Wildlife Warriors made of medical and organizational staff. During my stay I had the pleasure to meet and work together with Leisa Bright, the volunteer coordinator and Kylie, who assists Leisa coordinating the work of volunteers.

Here below you can read my interview with Leisa Bright.

Interview with Leisa Bright at the Wildlife Hospital

Q.: For how long have you been involved in volunteering with the australian wildlife? KoalaFeeding7

A.: I spent 4 years volunteering and 2 1/2 working as a volunteer coordinator at the Wildlife Hospital.

Q.: Can you tell us what is your work as a volunteer coordinator about?

A.: I am responsible for the interviews, recruiting volunteers, the training, introducing volunteers in
the day-to-day work, like teaching how to feed koalas, leafing in and out from the koalas
enclosures, I am also looking after difficult koalas who need to be fed with bottles.

Q.: How do you usually look for volunteers ?

A.: usually with talks in the community in the surrounding area of Beerwah. This is the most common way of informing the locals about the Wildlife Warriors. Moreover we use the website of the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, there is an application form that readers can fill in and send to us by mail.

Q.: How is the response to this way of recruiting volunteers?

A.: Well, average 50% of all sent out forms do not come back. We use the form to filter out people, so as to get people who are really interested ind volunteering and also in line with the volunteer work expectations.

Q.: Who are the volunteers and what is the work they do?

A.: 95 % of all volunteers are locals who join us on a regular basis, we had 4 international students and some international travellers. 90% of work is done outside with the maintenance of the banks. Recently a nurse night shift was introduced from 2.30-10.30 so we are having some people helping out the nurses on this shift too.

Q.: Are Koalas endangered? What can you tell us about it?

A.: In this area of Brisbane,including the Sunshine coast and the Gold Coast koalas are endangered and are expected to extinct within 10 years from now.

Q.: To what extent are people aware of this threat? How do locals react to this situation?

A.: People tend to care more about their land, their house and their dog, they are not counscious about the protection of the natural habitat for koalas.

Q.: Who are in your opinion more receptive to the wildlife conservation ?

A.: definitely the younger generation is more aware and conscious about this situation compared to the previous generation. The younger generation is willing to listen and learn about the threats the australian wildlife is exposed to and are prepared to spend a few months learning how to deal with it and how they can help solve this problem.

Q.: What are the viable ways of supporting the habitat of koalas?

A.: there are many ways, the main effective ways are the following:

  1. actively preserve the natural environment while retaining the bushland
  2. avoid the clearing of vast bushland areas,
  3. do more planting to create tunnels/corridors that enable koalas to move around from one habitat to the next and cross roads safely,
  4. drive carefully especially at night,
  5. keep the dogs locked up so as to avoid dog attacking koalas
  6. increase people awareness and response, with donation, adoptation or joining the Wildlife Warriors Volunteer Project.

Q.: Why do you think someone could benefit from a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Experience?

A.: First of all because of education at all levels, with locals and international people, whilst volunteering people get some skills, they enrich their life with this experience, they get an insight about Koalas threats and dangers and they learn what they can do to help save endangered australian animals.

How to Become a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer

I am sure many of you know about the Australia Zoo in Beerwah, Queensland, but you might not know about about the Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors Project which was established by Steve Irwin and his wife Terri. This Australian Wildlife Volunteering Project was created with the aim to involve people in the protection and care of injured, sick, orphaned, threatened wildlife from the individual animals to the entire species.

Wildlifehospital

A few Facts about the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital

  • Located at Beerwah, near the Australia zoo,in Queensland (north of Brisbane)
  • Opened in 2004, inspired by the memory of Lyn Irwin (Steve Irwin’s mother)
  • Started in 2004 in an old avocado packing shed
  • Only treat australian native wildlife
  • Has a capacity of treating up to 10,000 patients every year
  • From 2004 up to now has received almost 30,000 animals with 38% increase every year
  • The new Wildlife Hospital opened in 2008 on Steve Irwin’s day 15th November
  • Receive nearly 100 wildlife emergency calls every day
  • Up to 30 species are admitted every day
  • About 70% of all patients have been injured by car accidents or pet attacks

The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in pictures

The Wildlife Hospital is daily involved with the care of sick and injured Australian native animals. In the picture below you see a vet assisting a koala patient which was submitted to the emergency room of the hospital. Every day 100 of Australian animals receive medical treatment and care. Thanks to the work of this Wildlife Hospital like many Australian animals can survive and brought back to their wild habitat.

Wildlifehospital3

This turtle in the picture below has just been treated and hopefully can be released to its natural habitat soon.

WildlifeHospital4

How to contribute to the Wildlife Warriors Project

Being a free community service with no government funding, the Wildlife Hospital relies on the generosity of donators and on the work of volunteers . Currently approximately 95 volunteers help out on a regular basis. The majority of volunteers are residents, but an increasing number of international students as well as travellers (like me) join the Wildlife Warriors Volunteering Project every year.

KoalaIUC

Because small changes in everyday lives make a huge difference” everyone can support the Wildlife Warriors Project with their contribution.

I am proud of having been involved in this great Australian Wildlife Volunteering Project and am keen of telling you about my Wildlife Warrior Volunteer experience at the Australia Zoo, Wildlife Hospital Beerwah.

You can do it by becoming a Wildlife Warrior at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah.

Remember that

Small changes in everyday lives make a BIG difference….

As the Wildlife Warrior Motto says

Save one koala, save the species!

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How To Plan A Solo Adventure in Australia https://solotraveljunkie.com/how-to-plan-your-trip-to-australia/ Tue, 25 Jul 2017 16:20:42 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=408 You already know how to plan a trip to Australia, and we covered a few important steps of the trip preparation, to recap them, find here below my Australia trip planning: Searching and booking the flight to Australia. Choosing the right travel destinations. Outlining the travel itinerary across Australia. Choosing cost-effective transportation around Australia, Booking […]

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You already know how to plan a trip to Australia, and we covered a few important steps of the trip preparation, to recap them, find here below my Australia trip planning:

  1. Searching and booking the flight to Australia.
  2. Choosing the right travel destinations.
  3. Outlining the travel itinerary across Australia.
  4. Choosing cost-effective transportation around Australia,
  5. Booking domestic flights, car rental etc.
  6. Researching and booking your accommodation in Australia.

Now it’s time for you to step forward and make all arrangements for your trip to Australia.

Let’s have a look at the second row of things to sort out before travelling to Australia.

All Steps for Planning a Trip to Australia

  • Passport and Australia Travel Visa Issues
    As you know you need a valid passport to enter as a tourist Australia. Check your passport’s expiry Australia Travel Tips date and make sure it is valid for at least 6 months after your planned departure. You will also need travel or a tourist visa to enter Australia unless you are from New Zeland, everyone needs one.The best way to get a tourist visa is to apply for a Travel Visa also called ETA. If you are from Europe, you can apply for the e-visitors visa, a free visa granted to all European citizens.You can apply for ETA Visa to Australia or your e-visitors at least a couple of weeks before leaving, and all applications are usually processed within 48hours. Save a copy of your Australia Visa with a copy of your passport on a USB flash drive.
  • International Driving License for hiring a car in Australia
    If you plan to hire a can in Australia, you need an international driving license, unless you have an English driving license. You need to apply for it at your local car registration office. Do not forget to bring your own local driving license too.Here are some great tips for driving in Australia.
  • How to pay in Australia – Cash or Credit Cards
    Credit and debit australianmoneycards are the best way to pay in Australia. Visa and Mastercard are the most common credit cards. A prepaid credit card can save you money on exchange commissions. You’d better check out with your own bank before going to Australila.For your daily cash, the best tip is to withdraw money from the ATMs, you can use either credit card or prepaid cards, but beware that commissions on credit cards can be expensive. On this post, you can read about currency exchange tips and also check out with your local bank how they will charge your card when using it in Australia.
  • Australia Travel Insurance
    When it comes to Travel Insurance, this is probably the less exciting aspect of the whole trip preparation. Don’t worry, I’ve got it covered it here. I have been using different travel insurance types and have a bit of experience with it. The first thing you need to check is1) whether your health insurance covers you in Australia. Most local health insurances don’t.

    What you want to have covered
    ? Major issues are Health Insurance and MedEvac Insurance.
    Flight Cancellation. Thefts of personal belongings. Personal liability.For a deeper insight into choosing the right travel insurance, I’ve put together a detailed page with all things about travel insurance for Australia.
  • Packing for Australia – what kind of luggage
    If you have not made up your mind yet with what kind of baggage you will choose for Australia check out this post with great packing trips and how to choose between a backpack and suitcase for your travel in Australia.If you have made up your decision, check out this useful packing tips for Australia.

To learn more about how to get your Australia Trip organized, check out these other pages:

Packing Tips for Australia

Baggage Allowances Australia

What to Wear in Australia

Your Australia Itinerary Guide Book

Australia Travel Tips

 

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How to help save endangered Koalas in Australia https://solotraveljunkie.com/help-the-koalas-australian-animals/ Fri, 23 Jun 2017 16:07:59 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=417 My work at the Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah was coordinated by Kylie, a volunteer coordinator assistant to Leisa Bright, whom I interviewed when I was there. During my 5 days of volunteer work with endangered koalas I could learn so much from Kylie and her team of volunteers. In total a team of 95 wildlife […]

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My work at the Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah was coordinated by Kylie, a volunteer coordinator Wildlifehospitalbeerwahassistant to Leisa Bright, whom I interviewed when I was there. During my 5 days of volunteer work with endangered koalas I could learn so much from Kylie and her team of volunteers. In total a team of 95 wildlife volunteers, motly locals, who came in every day and helped with the care of sick and injured australian animals.

On this page I want to share with you what I have learnt from my wildlife volunteer experience. You will read bout the threats Koalas are undergoing and what can be done to help save them. You will read about the ways of protecting koalas from accidents and injuries as well as supporting the conservation of their natural habitat.

8 Koalas Facts

  1. Koalas from Queensland are different from southern Koalas, in Victoria and South Australia. Northern Koalas are grey short haired and only eat special types of Gum Trees Leaves.
  2. Koalas from southern australia have thick brown hair, here below you can see two koala spictures on the left hand side a koala from Queensland and on the right hand side a koala from the Great Ocean Road, so that you can see the difference.
  3. Southern and Northern Koalas are not allowed to breeding together, since they are different.
    Koalasleeping KOALA_GOR
  4. Some Koalas only eat Blue Gum Tree Leaves or from specific Gums, Koalas also eat Malaleuca or Casuarina Gum Trees when they are sick.
    Bluegumpreferred2
  5. Koalas from Queensland are endangered because of many threats such as:
    car accidents
    dog attacks
    habitat changes
    diseases like chlamydia, conjunctivitis, cystitis and more diseases
  6. In 8-10 years it is estimated that the number of Koalas will drop dramatically, this will lead to the koala extinction. 47% of koalas died between 2002-2008 in the Beerwah area.
  7. At present 43,000 koalas are estimated to be in Australia.
    KoalaFlyBoy
  8. The Koala is a faunal emblem and can be regarded as a flagship species, i.e. if we can save the habitat for koalas, we can automatically save the habitat for the rest of many more australian animals and insects.

How to save endangered Koalas

At the Wildlife Hospital I met Kylie, a volunteer coordinator and Vanda, the first volunteer of the Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah. Let’s see what Kylie and Vanda suggest for help saving endangered koalas.

Kylie has been working at the Wildlife Hospital for over a year as a volunteer coordinator. She works together with 95 Wildlifehospitalleafing3volunteers and in cooperation with the medical staff, nursers and vets. When I asked Kylie what’s the most challenging part of working as a wildlife volunteer she says: “once koalas are rescued and treated they have to be brought back to the same place where they have come from, this is what the law says, this means that after a while the same koala is coming back again injured by a car or by a dog attack”. And when I asked her, what is the most rewarding aspect of her work as a volunteer at the Wildlife Hospital, she replied: “seeing the animals recovering and being released to the wild”.

Vanda is a veteran volunteer who has been working as a koala rescuer for over 20 years, since Koalafeeding12004 is being working as a regular volunteer at the Wildlife Hospital. Vanda furthermore belongs to several environmental organizations with the goal of increasing awareness about the koalas. Apparently only 10% of Australians are involved with wildlife conservation. To my question: what is the main reason for this poor response, she says: “This is due to lack of education and lack of information, many people simply do not know anything about the dangers koalas are exposed to“.

Vanda highlights again what can be done to help save the koalas, here a list of effective ways:

  • retain bushland, no more clearing of forests to preserve the natural habitat for koalas
  • do more planting to build tunnels for koalas to move and prevent being injured
  • reduce speed at night near koalas areas to prevent car accidents
  • restrain dogs and cats to attack koalas
  • increase people’s awareness and response to the koalas conservation by donating or by joining the wildlife adoptation program.

If you want to learn more about the Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Program you can read my interview with Leisa Bright who heads the volunteers coordination at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, in Beerwah north of Brisbane.

Remember that

Small changes in everyday lives make a huge difference!

As the Wildlife Warrior Motto says


“Save one koala, save the species”

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Wildlife Volunteer Australia https://solotraveljunkie.com/wildlife-volunteer-work-australia/ Mon, 08 May 2017 16:13:16 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=415 My Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Experience in Australia As I mentioned before I was keen to do some volunteer work in Australia. I could imagine myself working in an australian organic farm or as a jillaroo in a cattle station in the rugged and dusty australian outback. To be honest I never got round to doing […]

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My Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Experience in Australia

As I mentioned before I was keen to do some volunteer work in Australia. I could imagine myself working in an australian organic farm or as a jillaroo in a cattle station in the rugged and dusty australian outback. To be honest I never got round to doing some solid research to find out about all viable volunteer projects and went off to Australia with no clear ideas nor fix plans.

MichelaRainForestKoalas

 

How I found out about the Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Project

As it most of times happens, you do not need to look for something, the law of attraction makes things happen for you! And this is how I found out about the Wildlife Warriors Project, through someone who had joined this volunteer project a few months earlier. Someone I met during the first weeks of my last travels in Australia. Word of mouth is probably the best way to come across good volunteer projects. Listening to others’ volunteer experience is a great way of getting the information about the project so as to assess whether the project can be something for yourself. The best thing is obviously try it out personally and make it real. By listening to this girl’ inspiring story I soon fell in love with the idea of being involved with the australian wildlife protection and did not think much about it. I simply followed my feeling that said, yes I want to “become a Wildflife Warrior”

Koalahand

How to become a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer

As the terms says you will be a “Real Warrior”, a “Wildlife Warrior“, who actively contribute in the daily care of injured and sick australian wild animals. At this point don’t be easily mislead, you will not be cuddling sick animals or taking photographs all the time….surprisingly 50% of people applying for a volunteer post as a Wildlife Warrior has this expectation….The work that expects you is solid work helping out in the daily life of wild animal patients.

What do you do as a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer

The daily volunteer work I was involved was mostly focused on cleaning koalas enclosures and paste-feeding koala patients. Koalas represent the largest number of patients at the wildlife hospital in Beerwah and the bulk of work with the maintenance of the enclosures is done by regular volunteers. Everyone helps out according to his or her personal abilities and skills, however you must be prepared to take up some routine tasks as well as be confronted with occasional tasks according to the needs or emergencies that crop up in the daily life of the wildlife hospital.

MichelaCleaning

Memories from my Wildlife Warrior Volunteer Experience

The 5 days spent volunteering at the Wildlife Hospital are filled with many beautiful memories. The list could be endless. At this stage I want to share with you some of the highlights of my Wildlife Warrior experience. Cleaning the enclosures of sick and injured koalas. Every day each single enclosure is cleaned from top to bottom thoroughly. A daily routine work wich included scrubbing and washing the floor and the brunches from the dirt, as well as filling the pots with fresh water, leafing in and out, etc.

Koalacleaning2

Feeding Koalas was, among other things, the most exciting experience. You need to learn some basic skill of how to do it properly but it is not difficult at all. However feeding koalas is not as eay as it may sound, koalas, like human beings, have their own character, moods and approach, some koalas are keen on their daily paste, some others simply hate it. So as a novice warrior I only had to feed the “good ones” and I had the honour of feeding the koala patient Warren for a few days, as you can see from the pictures below, I really enjoyed it and Warrend did it too ๐Ÿ™‚

Koalafeeding2

On a couple of days I also had the chance of looking after turtles, helped out with the cleaning of the pools and feeding them. In the picture below I am placing a turtle patient back into its pool, after receiving medical treatment from a nurse.

Turtlefeeding

Leafing In Leafing Out, you might be wondering what is this? As you know Koalas only eat Gum Tree Leaves but only a certain type of leaves. And they truly are avid eaters, they eat and sleep all day long. One of your task as a volunteer is to make sure that each enclosure is filled with fresh gum tree branches for koalas to grab and eat. Take a look at the pictures so that you can get an idea of how leafing in and out is done.

Michelaleafing

During the cleaning process you have to remove the old leaves and replace them with fresh gum tree leaves. You must develop the feel for it, what has to be removed and what can be left inside. Moreover some of them prefer eating only a certain type of gum tree leaves, so at the beginning it was very confusing, but after a couple of days you get used to it and you do it naturally. If you ask me, I still cannot distinguish a blue gum leaf from a casuarina gum leaf ๐Ÿ™‚ But do not worry experienced volunteers and the lovely wildlife hospital staff help out with that, pulling out the right bunches of fresh gum tree leaves for you to fill the pots in each koala enclosure! ๐Ÿ™‚

Wildlifehospitalleafingnew

Loaded trolley with fresh gum tree leaves for the Koalas Patients

Wildlifehospitalleafing5


Watching animal patients’ in the I.C.U and in the emergency rooms

The ICU is the intensive centre unit of the Wildlife Hospital and sick and diseased animals receive intensive medical treatment until their conditions get better to be moved to either outside animal enclosures or to be released. Every day we could go for a short tour and watch animals being treated by a vet or a nurse, it is amazing to see huge birds lying on the first aid bed, it is so unusual for ordinary people like me. One day I remember seeing a dead kangaroo probably hit by a car lying down wrapped into a blue towel and one other day we could witness vets dissecting a dead whale. It was very touching to see all this.

KoalaICU

Sharing thoughts and stories with other Wildlife Warriors Volunteers and Employees. This is also something I really loved. The people I met were fantastic loving and caring people.The volunteers work is coordinated by lovely employees of the Wildlife Hospital. Kylie was the volunteer coordinator who looked after me. Since most of regular volunteers come in on a regular day I could meet quite a few of them during my 5 days volunteering, I met Vanda who has an interesting story to tell. It was so inspiring to listen to their stories and exchange thoughts on australian wildlife issues. Moreover during my stay there were some international vet students working on volunteer projects, so that was an occasion for me to get to know them too. Here you can read more about the Wildlife Hospital Team.

What I have learnt as a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer

Although I spent only a short time volunteering at the Wildlife Hospital, during my 5 days as a Wildlife Warrior I could gathered so much knowledge about the australian wildlife and especially about

  • things that can be done to protect and save endangered australian animals
  • the threats and risks Koalas in Queensland are currently undergoing
  • how to help save koalas in Queensland and preserve their natural habitat
  • the importance of education about the australian wildlife
  • ways of arising people’s awareness about the australian wildlife issues
  • the important role of volunteer work in the australian wildlife protection
  • spreading the love about volunteer work with the australian wildlife conservation
The time spent volunteering at the hospital has been an amazing and personally a highly rewarding experience. Not only I could learn so much about koalas and the australian wildlife, but also coud I realize how important it is to be actively involved with it. Although my contribution only was a tiny part of the whole work the wildlife hospital organization does, being able to help out in the daily maintance of the banks and with the koalascare was a very rewarding experience.

Volunteering as A Wildlife Warrior is truly is a fantastic opportunity to get close to endangered australian animals, learn about the threats they are going through, how you can be actively contributing in the australian wildlife conservation. If you really love the australian native animals your work as a volunteer is really important to help save them!

Here you can learn ways of help save endangered koalas.

Remember that

…Small changes in everyday lives make a BIG difference…

As the Wildlife Warrior Motto says

“Save one, save the species”

Australia is a great country for volunteering. It offers the opportunity to residents as well as to foreign travellers and students to get involved in environmental and social projects, thus become part of the australian community by doing volunteer work. Before getting into details, let’s have a look at what volunteering means.

All about volunteer work in Australia

Volunteer work by definition is something that you personally choose to do and in no way is related to paid work. Volunteer work is no replacement for paid work either. It is something you choose to do out of your wish to experience new challenges and be confronted with the local environmental and social conditions of the country you live in or travel to.

Volunteer work only can take place within non profit organizations which are involved in projects with the goal of being a benefit of the whole community and of the volunteers too.

Why volunteering in Australia

Volunteering in Australia is a great opportunity not only to learn about the environmental, social, needs of the country, but also a way of being part of the related activities of the community and thus contributing to the conservation of the australian land, the australian wildlife, the australian culture as well as promoting equality, dignity, human and animal rights.

There are many individual benefits you can gain and here below I can list some:

  • personal development
  • acquiring knowledge and new skills
  • helping the community
  • exploring new environments
  • contributing with ideas and abilities
  • meeting new people
  • doing small things that makes a huge difference
  • having fun

Who choose to volunteer in Australia

Australia has a large offer of volunteer work. Did you know that over 5millions of Australians volunteer each year thus contributing to the community with their work ? Over 45% of them are aged 35-44 years, however the younger people between 18-24 represent the biggest growth area in volunteering. The most active volunteers are from Queensland and ACT. On top of this statistics you can add the increasing number of international volunteers, i.e. foreign students and travellers coming to Australia every year to join a volunteer project.

Where to volunteer in Australia

There is a large number of non profit organizations in Australia where you can research and apply for volunteer work. The type of organizations range from:

  • sport, recreation
  • education
  • training
  • land conservation
  • wildlife conservation
  • community services
  • welfare
  • religios groups

Here is a link to the Organizations Profiles from GoVolunteer as part of an initiative of Volunteering Australia where you can check out for more detailed information and see what volunteering projects are currently available.

What type of volunteer work

I have always wanted to experience some volunteer work in Australia. During my last trip in Australia, I have been lucky to do this amazing Volunteer Work with Wildlife in Queensland.

How to Become a Wildlife Warrior Volunteer

I am sure many of you know about the Australia Zoo in Beerwah, Queensland, but you might not know about about the Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors Project which was established by Steve Irwin and his wife Terri. This Australian Wildlife Volunteering Project was created with the aim to involve people in the protection and care of injured, sick, orphaned, threatened wildlife from the individual animals to the entire species.

Wildlifehospital

A few Facts about the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital

  • Located at Beerwah, near the Australia zoo,in Queensland (north of Brisbane)
  • Opened in 2004, inspired by the memory of Lyn Irwin (Steve Irwin’s mother)
  • Started in 2004 in an old avocado packing shed
  • Only treat australian native wildlife
  • Has a capacity of treating up to 10,000 patients every year
  • From 2004 up to now has received almost 30,000 animals with 38% increase every year
  • The new Wildlife Hospital opened in 2008 on Steve Irwin’s day 15th November
  • Receive nearly 100 wildlife emergency calls every day
  • Up to 30 species are admitted every day
  • About 70% of all patients have been injured by car accidents or pet attacks

A few pictures of the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital

The Wildlife Hospital is daily involved with the care of sick and injured australian native animals. In the picture below you see a vet assisting a koala patient which was submitted to the emergency room of the hospital. Every day 100 of australian animals receive medical treatment and care. Thanks to the work of this Wildlife Hospital like many australian animals can survive and brought back to their wild habitat.

Wildlifehospital3

This turtle in the picture below has just been treated and hopefully can be released to its natural habitat soon.

WildlifeHospital4

How to contribute to the Wildlife Warriors Project

Being a free community service with no government funding, the Wildlife Hospital relies on the generosity of donators and on the work of volunteers . Currently approximately 95 volunteers help out on a regular basis. The majority of volunteers are residents, but an increasing number of international students as well as travellers (like me) join the Wildlife Warriors Volunteering Project every year.

KoalaIUC

Because small changes in everyday lives make a huge difference” everyone can support the Wildlife Warriors Project with their contribution.

I am proud of having been involved in this great Australian Wildlife Volunteering Project and am keen of telling you about my Wildlife Warrior Volunteer experience at the Australia Zoo, Wildlife Hospital Beerwah.

You can do it by becoming a Wildlife Warrior at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital in Beerwah.

As the Wildlife Hospital Warriors’ motto says

“SAVE ONE, SAVE THE SPECIES”

 

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Best Time to visit Australia https://solotraveljunkie.com/best-time-to-travel-in-australia/ Sat, 18 Mar 2017 16:07:19 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=411 The weather zones and best time to travel in Australia I have made a simple list for each australian state, to give you basic information about how the Australian weather zones look like in the different australian seasons. This list gives you an overview of the australia climate zones at a glance thus allows better […]

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The weather zones and best time to travel in Australia

I have made a simple list for each australian state, to give you basic information about how the australia_weatherAustralian weather zones look like in the different australian seasons. This list gives you an overview of the australia climate zones at a glance thus allows better planning a trip to Australia.

Check this information out so as to identify when is the most appropriate time of the year for visiting a specific australia destination:

  • New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania
    spring time: October, November
    Summer time: December, January, February
    Autumn time: March, April, Mai
    Winter Time: June, July, August
  • Victoria coastal area and Tasmania
    The ideal time for visiting the Great Ocean Road and Tasmania is the summer (December-February). I would not recommend Tasmania between March-October, because of the cold and rainy weather
  • Queensland
    Queensland has pleasant weather almost the all year through. In winter time (June-August) temperature drop a little.
  • North tropical Queensland
    Almost tropical weather all year through with rain season in the upper north during some months, generally from October-February. For visiting the Great Barrier Reef the ideal period is July-August.
  • Western Australia, south
    In Western Australia the weather is almost permanently pleasant with summer heat peaks from December-February. In northern Western Australia temperatures are tropical,
    and during the wet season from Nov-Feb it is hot and steamy
  • Western Australia, north
    Tropical weather with rainy season (November-April) and dry seasons (May-October).
    Recommended time for visiting Broome, Kimberley area is the dry season but careful this time of the year is the busiest time, therefore if you wish some peaceful holiday youโ€™d better pick an off beaten time of the year.
  • Northern Territory, Top End
    Tropical weather with rainy season from (End October-End May). Better time for visiting is the dry season, but rainy season also has its charming effects, such as lush vegetation, beautiful colours and stunning sunsets scenarios.

The Australian wet season usually starts in November and last until March-April but it does vary depending on region and also the atmospherical condition. It does not mean that it rains all the time, but sometimes it hits the extremes i.e. either it rains heavily for an entire week with no stop or it can be pleasent and sunny for longer period with just little bit of drizzle rain now and then.

But even if you know by heart all Australia’s climate zones, It is very difficult if not impossible to know how how long the wet season will last every year, so what to do ?

The best thing is to check out the daily Australia’s weather conditions and get an update from the rainfall forecast in Australia

This can help you planning your trip day by day and eventually amend in time your itinerary according to the australian local weather conditions. Beware that by heavy rainfalls roads may be also closed ! In this case you will not be able to access your destination area either by car nor by any other tranportatin means and you will have to reschedule your visit or change your plan and
or head to some other places.

for more information about what is the best time for visiting Australia

 

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Solo Travel Stories and Memories https://solotraveljunkie.com/solo-travel-stories-and-memories/ Sat, 28 Jan 2017 16:20:44 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=420 Travel Memories of the Great Ocean Road Drive and Coorong NP So how did you spend Christmas this year ? When I used to live in Germany Christmas to me meant first of all “going home” and enjoying a family gathering. Also this year as usual I had a peaceful Christmas time at home with […]

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Travel Memories of the Great Ocean Road Drive and Coorong NP

So how did you spend Christmas this year ?MichelacoorongNP When I used to live in Germany Christmas to me meant first of all “going home” and enjoying a family gathering. Also this year as usual I had a peaceful Christmas time at home with my family.

I also spent some time contemplating what happened during the year and by doing something I particularly like: browsing through old photo albums.

By looking at the photographs I took during my travels my memories of my first solo trip in Australia came back filled with melancholic feelings, 7 years have already passed by! since then I was lucky to spend a few months again in 2008. I did not want to cram too much in this short post, therefore I have decided to split my australian travel memories into a few posts, picking a nice selection that can highlight the places and the experiences I most liked in my OZ travel.

For this first part of my travel memories of my Trips in Australia I have picked one of my fave road trips: the GOR.

Travel Memories of the Great Ocean Road Trip

It was April 2004. After the first 20 days travelling completely on my own, I decided to join a small group of people on a 3 1/2 day tour from Melbourne to Adelaide along the GOR. The Great Ocean Road is estimated to be one of the most beautiful coastal drives in the world. And it honestly is amazing. Not only for the stunning views over the 7 visible apostels in the sea, the golden rock formations, the breathtaking cliffs and endless horizont, the popular surf beaches and so on. The most amazing thing is the diversity of the landscape you get to see here. There are a couple of national parks that ought to be seen, these are: the Otway National Park and the Port Campbell National Park. In the Otway National Park you can immerse yourself in a little fragment of rainforest which survived millions of years !

mikirainforestGOR

I would recommend spending one night in a lovely place like Apollo Bay, or Lorne, or futher south in Port Campbell. If you are on a tight schedule and want to see the Great Ocean Road on one day, then make sure you leave early in the morning. The ride is about 300km one way.

MichelaGOR

If you have time and want to reach Adelaide you can drive for approx further 600 km. On the way to Adelaide you can make a stop for a visit to the Coorong National Park, a beautiful marine and coastal national park. Beware of insects and flies! Bring with you a strong insect repellent spray, I did not have any with me on that trip and the day after I woke up and thought I had chicken pox ๐Ÿ™‚

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If you want to learn more about check out the coastal drive along the Great Ocean Road.

Travel Memories of the Australian Animals on Kangaroo Islands

One of the reasons why I love OZ and keep going back toLittle Penguins on Kangaroo Island Australia is the Australian nature and the Australian wildlife. This is the second post about the travel memories of my first Trips in Australia.

If you love animals and birds, then South Australia and especially the Kangaroo Island will spoil you with its awesome native australian wildlife. On the island you will spot lots of koalas on trees, sea lions at Seal Bay. Koalas and otther species have been introduced to the Kangaroo Island to ensure the survival of these species.

More animals to be found around this real “treasury island” are: echidnas, tamar wallabies, goannas, possums, platypuses. Birdlife lovers can enjoy the little penguins at the island marine centre in Kingscote, or in Penneshaw, see pelicans at the Pelican Lagoon at American River and spot black cockatoos, black swans, emus, galahs and many more birds.

 

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If you want to visit Kangaroo Island you should stay there at least for 1 night. From Adelaide the car ride takes about 100km to reach the coast where in Cape Jervis you take the ferry to KI. The ferry is operated by Kangaroo Island Sealink, and takes about 1 hour to Pennneshaw.

My travel tip from my personal experience: take the afternoon ferry. In the late evening join a penguin night tour at the Penneshaw Penguin Centre. Stay overnight in Penneshaw and visit the island on the following day. You can either hire a car and drive around yourself or you can join one of the myriad of Kangaroo Island tours: from daily tours to 1-3 days tour. Your choice!

kangarooislands

The picture you see above is a shot of the Remarkable Rocks on Kangaroo Island. These natural rock formations shaped by the weather are to be seen on the east of Cape du Coudeic in the southern part of the Flinders Chase National Park (one of the most impressive national parks in South Australia). These rocks are large granite boulders naturally sculpted into terrific shapes. Indeed a very inspiring place for taking photographs and for painting too!

And if you have not got enough of watching wildlife on Kangaroo Island you can return to the mainland and head to the Adelaide Hills where you can find some awesome wildflife parks like the Cleland Wildlife Park.

Here below some more pictures I took during my first australian trip in 2004.

kangaroofamily

Get close to kangaroos and give them a stroke

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you can also have your photo taken with a koala: if you do so, be careful no to stroke them on the head, they do not like it and they may scratch you.

michelakoala

If you are interested in Australian Animals you may want to read this posts too.

Travel memories of my trips in the Australian Outback

Michelauluru1Australia’s outback and its stunning landmarks make of the 5. continent such a desired travel destination to suit all travel tastes and lifestyles. The Australian Outback belongs to my best memories of my trips in Australia. What most attracts me of the Australian Outback is

  • its bright colours, its strong light, its thin and pure air, its rough contour, its empty space its spirit, its seclusion.
  • its contrasts, the bright red soil and the deep blue of the sky, the endless horizont, the long walks over sandy and rocky dunes, the immense and the greatness of solitude.
  • its australian culture and its people. Being a multicultural person, I love Australia for its cultural background, the colourful mixed origin of its population, its aboriginal culture and its profound freedom values.

During my first solo trip around Australia in 2004 I had planned a week in the Red Centre of Australia. But as huge as this area is, I had to make a choice. Since I was travelling by bus I decided to make a stop at Cober Pedy, and from there I headed north to Alice Springs, to then turn south east to reach the Yulara Resort and visit Uluru and Kata Tjuta.

ulurubasewalk1

Eventually on my second trip to the Australian Red Centre I spent some more time in Alice Springs and the Western Mc Donnel Ranges. Kings Canyon and some more parts are still missing, but are very high on my list ๐Ÿ˜‰ Here below you can view some pictures of these beautiful natural spectacular.

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This outback area shows a stunning beauty and there is indeed so much to see and do, from a variety of outdoor activities like hiking, bushwalking, camping, swimming to cultural and aboriginal guided tours to self guided tours. You need at least 5-6 days to fully enjoy the red centre and savour the beauty and peacefulness of the australian outback.

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What you need is time, good weather and tranquility. These places cannot be visited among loud crowds of people getting off and on the huge buses, trying to make here and there a pic and so on. I personally would never go to the Red Centre in July-August, these two months are simply crazy, packed with thousands of people.

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Yes the true blue of the sky is real !! Stunning isn’t it ? The tree branches you see in the pic are of a “ghost gum tree“! What’s a ghost gum tree ? It’s a gum tree whit a white trunk, the bark naturally peels off to make the trunk stands out in the blue sky as a real ghost!

ghostgum1

If you can travel to Uluru off season, and avoid public holidays, then you will be rewarded with some fo the most thrilling experience ever. The Best Time to visit Uluru is March-April or Sept-October.

April is in my opinion definitely the best month to to to the Red Center. You need 2 days for Uluru-Kata Tjuta, 2 days for Alice Springs and a couple of days to visit Kings Canyon and the West or East Mc Donnel Ranges. One week is just the ideal time to visit the stunning australian outback landscape.

If you are interested in reading more about the Australian Outback you may want to read my The Red Centre Guide

Travel Memories of Sydney and its beautiful surrounds

Sydney is a truly fascinating city and is also my tarongazoo_webfavorite city in Australia. Sydney was the first place I visited when I travelled to OZ on my first trip in 2004. Before leaving back to Europe I also had the opportunity to spend some more time there. I really enjoyed Sydney’s distinctive flair, what I like of Sydney is its gorgeous natural setting, the great walks, its beaches and its surrounds.

I remember arriving over a weekend, jetlagged, wandering off the beautiful parks and The Rocks Markets, filling my lungs with fresh air, trying to adjust quickly to the southern hemisphere and bring my system into shape after a heavy long flight journey….this is part 4 of travel memories from my trips in Australia.

What can you do and see in Sydney?

There are a lot of things to do in Sydney, really to suit all tastes and interests! Sydney is a place you can enjoy all year round, in each season and with any weather conditions. On my second trip in 2008 I had booked 10 days but the weather was not on my side, it rained for most of the time, nonetheless it was not so bad at all, I had the chance to discover great places in the the city and had much fun. Sydney is that kind of city I can recommend to anyone who is on a tight time frame. You can manage to see much and the variety of places and things you can do ist just impressive. For sure you will not get bored in Sydney. At this stage I will not give you any list of things to do in Sydney, for this you can check out this other page with my Sydney Travel Guide.

What about Sydney and its surrounds?

As said before, you can really focus your holiday on Sydney and its Surrounds. The variety of things you can do and see is huge. Either travelling solo or with friends or family, Sydney’s area is the ideal starting place for any type of travel in Australia.

Here below just a few of my favorite things I keep doing whenever I am in Sydney, it’s just a small part of the endless list of things you can do in Sydney. Have a look and see if this can be a good tip for you:

  • The Spit-to Manly-Walk – this is a 10km beautiful bushwalk along the shoreline of Sydney Harbour. Along your way you come to a couple of lookouts with wonderful views over Middle Harbour and the city of Sydney. It’s ideal if you look for some excercise or just love walking like I do. Here you have a couple of pics to get an idea.

lizardsydney2

Can you spot the lizard on the tree trunk ?

spitbridgewalksydney2

  • The Cogee-Bronte-Bondi-Walk – this is another great coastal walk, which you can do daytime. You can reach Bronte or Cogee by bus fromt Sydney city centre and from there walk along the path, stop at a few lookouts and relish the view and the tiny little bays. The Bronte-Bondi is a short nice walk. Bondi is the highlight of Sydney, is a nice place but preatty busy especially over weekends.
  • The Sydney Northern Beaches – this is another part of the town worth visiting. You need a whole day to see them, starting from Manly you can stop at all the spectacular beaches, up to Whale and Palm beach. Definitely worth your time! If you wish to read more about the Sydney Beaches click on the link.
  • The Blue Mountains – to fully enjoy them you need to spend at least 1 night there. But if you ar on a tight time, make sure you leave early in the morning, there are daily trains which leave from the Sydney Central Station. Once you are there you will immerse yourself in one of the most beautiful national parks in Australia. Plenty of walking trail for any level of hiking expertise.

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Can you see the kookuburra on the blue gum branch ?

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  • The Royal National Park – another great national park, south of Sydney. You can reach Cronulla by train too and spend the whole day day, take the ferry and cross over to Bundeena and start walking through the national park. There some good aboriginal self guided walks. You can, stay overnight and do some camping too!
  • The South East Coast with Wollolong and Jervish Bay – if you hire a car, you can take advantage and see some more beautiful coastal scenery and stop at Wollolong and reach Jervish Bay. If you are there at the right season you can spot dolphins and do some wonderful kayaking too. Curious about the south east costal drive from Sydney, click on the link.

So this is just a short list of my favorite things to do in Sydney. In the city centre there are a few things you should not miss out, like visiting the Opera house (inside) and if you are not afraid of heights, then the Harbour Bridge Climb can be a breathtaking experience! Unfourtunately nothing for me, cause I am so afraid of heights!

Want to see Sydney from the air ?

Take a virtual scenic flight over Sydney

Chek out 6 places to explore Sydney

Fun things to do in Sydney

Tales from my Tasmania Travel Memories

Tasmania is where I started my second trip in Australia in 2008giantgumtree21. Tasmania is a destination of its own! If you plan a trip to Tasmania you need first of all time and also to pick the right time of the year: the summer months, to fully enjoy this beautiful and diverse island. The winter in Tasmania is freaking cold. Here you can read about my travel memories of my trip in Tasmania

I had booked my flight from Europe to Melbourne for middle of January, so as to be able to fly into Hobart a few days afterwards and spend there 10 days. December-February is the best period of the year to visit Tasmania; the weather is lovely with warm, sunny days, but it is obviously also the busiest time, so make sure you make your bookings for your Tasmania holiday a good time ahead.

You can reach the only australian state island either with the ferry to Tasmania which departs from Melbourne. Or if you prefer you can take a 40minutes flight Melbourne Hobart, the capital of this remote land at the very edge of the world! A combination of both: Hobart flight on one way and the Tasmania Ferry on the other an be also a good idea.

I spent 10 days in Tasmania and split my time in 3 days on my own, eventually I decided to join a 5day tasmania tour and finally stayed 2 more days in Hobart on my own. Although I was overall happy with the tour, I am not really a tour person and sometimes found it pretty limiting, especially with the time available for visiting places. Tasmania is easy to get about, I would travel around by car, which is probably the best option if you have a travel companion. if you instead want to travel tasmania solo, then I would use the tasmanian public transportation, which offers a good bus network across the island or maybe look for a travel companion to share the car drive.

What I have seen in my Tasmania Trip

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Tasmania has truly the most diverse landscape you can imagine of. The only thing you will not see in Tasmania is the Outback! It is the only australian state with no outback areas! Tasmania is a true paradise for hikers and nature lovers. Many people fly from all over the world to join Tasmania tours and spend some hiking escape weeks in the the tasmanian pristine wilderness areas! The diversity and the beauty of Tasmania enviroment is simply stunning.

If you travel from oversea to visit Tasmania, consider at least 1 week to be able to see some of the island. And if you come over here and want to do some hiking you definitely cannot skip the awesome 80km Overland Track. Bear in mind that this hiking track will take 6 days of your time.

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What I have seen in Tasmania

Among the top things to do in Tasmania the Wilderness Area with the Mt. Field National Park, the Cradle Mountain National Park and the Franklin Gordon Wild River National Park along with the eastern coast, Bay of Fires and the Frecynet National Park rank high in the list, however the western coast is also magnificient and definitely less touristy. The historic Port Arthur and Hobart with Salamanca Markets are also two main Tasmania tourist attractions. If you have some time to spend in Hobart do no miss out on the beautiful Mt. Wellington hike. From the top ot the mount wellington you can enjoy a gorgeous view over the tasmanian capital. A must do thing on a clear sunny day.

Travel memories of the Tasmanian devil

Tasmania is known for its unique wildlife and among all nature creatures you will be able to spot Wombats, Echidnas, the Tasmanian Devil, lots of beautiful birds all over the places. The photos below with the 4 tasmanian devils was taken in one wildlife sanctuary in the north east of Tasmania.

corvo1 tasmaniandevils1

Travel memories of “Priscilla Princess of the Paddock”

On the way from Launceston to the eastern coast we stopped at a gorgeous farm where you can get taste a delicious fresh bio-homemade-icecream in the most unique flavors (local fruits and veg ). This is really a must stop if you are travelling by car….public transportation do not take you there…but you can ask any tourist information office and they will know. Next to the lovely icecream the biggest attraction of this place is Priscilla Princess!

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Who is Priscilla ?....you can see it from the pics below! He he……she is lovely and she luves bier! From the shop you can get a bottle of the special “pig bier” ….a mix drink (bier+lemonade) and feed Priscilla! She will love it!!!

priscillaluvesabier1

I hope my travel memories of Tasmania can inspire you to plan a trip to Tasmania soon. Let me have your feedback about your experience. Click here to go to Tasmania Travel Guide

Want to learn more about myTravel Memories of my Travels around and across Australia? Check out the links below.

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Having it all at fifty plus https://solotraveljunkie.com/having-it-all-at-fifty-plus/ Sat, 24 Dec 2016 15:57:47 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=413 What does it mean being Fifty Plus? Life begins at fifty or fifty plus! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I have contributed to the “Having it all at Fifty Plus ebook” and as a co-author I’m happy today to offer you my free chapter of the book (keep reading). You also find a list of the other co-authors quotes […]

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What does it mean being Fifty Plus?

Life begins at fifty or fifty plus! ๐Ÿ˜‰michela-fantinel-book-author

I have contributed to the “Having it all at Fifty Plus ebook” and as a co-author I’m happy today to offer you my free chapter of the book (keep reading). You also find a list of the other co-authors quotes and a note from the editor.

Here is a short excerpt of my chapter:

“…There is nothing that cannot be changed in life. No matter what your age is, your status, your sex, your physical and mental conditions are. Change can be embraced at any time in life. Being fifty is probably the best catalyst that can help you to step forward in the right direction see things from a different perspective.
Reflecting over what you have achieved in life gives you the necessary strength to go down a path, to pursue a dream, a project, a life-changing goal. And who knows where this path is going to lead us. When you decide what you want to do, think of all the decisions, steps and actions, they are an investment in your future. The investment you make today in yourself, will dictate how healthy, happy and successful your older life will be.”

Michela Fantinel, Co-Author

To get the free chapter keep reading.

A note from the Editor of Having it all at Fifty Plus

having-it-all-at-fifty-plus-ebook

“As we go through the different phases of life our new perspective can bring about not only thought-provoking changes mentally but also physical ones too. To many of us this is frequently known of as a mid-life crisis. Often this crisis manifests itself as the fear of the unknown. An irrational yet almost tangible fear that holds us back from reaching those dizzy heights of our full potential. Having It All At Fifty Plus has been written by contributors from all over the world, and from many different backgrounds.

This book will give you an insight into their individual journey’s and some of the challenges they have had to overcome. For some a change in mind-set is all that’s needed as reaching fifty should be a time to celebrate. Itโ€™s a time to remember that there are so many that have not made it this far. Some of us use this time as โ€˜me time.โ€™ Now the family has grown it may be the perfect time to start the business we have always dreamt about. For others it’s travelling and enriching our lives by experiencing other cultures.

On the more physical side, how do you cope with the changes that the menopause forces upon us? How do we cope with the changes in our strength and physical agility? Having It All At Fifty Plus answers many of these questions while, at the same time, providing valuable gems of inspiration that proves that the fifties is truly the โ€˜I canโ€™ generation. If you are looking for creative ideas on how to welcome being fifty plus then Having It All At Fifty Plus is essential reading. By taking action and always being ready to learn more about ourselves the transition to this next phase in our life can be the best one yet.”

Jacqueline
Jacqueline Rose, Lovely Silks Publishing

Sharing Some Quotes From The Book Contributors

Looking back I can honestly say that I would not have guessed that my future would look like this today.?Janet McNeill โ€“ Fifty Years Young and Loving It!

 

โ€œWe must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.โ€ ?Emily Herrick โ€“ What About Where That Guy Lives?

 

For me, โ€˜having it allโ€™ is not a static state. It is more about having the confidence, skills and resources to embark on new projects as ideas and opportunities arise.?Merryn Snare โ€“ The Conservative Entrepreneur

 

The past no longer affects the decisions I make today. I am freer than I have ever been. I put myself first and live guilt-?free without all the fuss and drama that once filled my life. – Leann Middlemass โ€“ Unravelling Relationships

 

And, now, at the ripe old age of almost 61 I honestly do feel I am just starting my life in many ways.? Lannah Sawers-Diggins โ€“ The Outback

 

I know that I will only fail if I quit. I absolutely love what I do and truly believe that I have it all in my 50s. It is a wonderful stage of life if you embrace it.?Anne McKeown – Mind Over Matter Does Matter In Mid-Life

 

If itโ€™s the fear of the unknown, make that part of the challenge. Martine Robins โ€“ What Does Having It All Really Mean?

 

You are interesting, you are complex so, let your outfit reflect that by taking references from other aesthetics. Jacynth Bassett – Refusing To Be Invisible

Visit the Site Rocky Travel

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Australia Travel Planning Tips for the solo traveller https://solotraveljunkie.com/australia-trip-solo-traveller/ Sun, 15 Feb 2015 15:45:47 +0000 https://solotraveljunkie.com/?p=402 I have been planning my third trip to Australia recently and at this point want to share the major steps of my trip preparation with you. This time it is has been slightly different from the previous trips since I will be travelling with a friend for the first weeks of my Australian travel adventure, […]

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I have been planning my third trip to Australia recently and at this point want to share the major steps of my trip preparation with you. This time it is has been slightly different from the previous trips since I will be travelling with a friend for the first weeks of my Australian travel adventure, so there were feedback and arrangements about all aspects and details of the trip… a bit unusual for me… since I am used to travelling on my own, for most of the time.

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But apart from this aspect, the trip prologue and the trip planning blueprint is exactly the same to plan a trip to Australia.

So how does my travel planning blueprint looks like for my third trip to Australia?

My Travel Blueprint for Australia

  • How I booked my flight to Australia….first time flying with Emirates
    Once we outlined the time frame for our flight to Australia we started the research online….this time I have been pretty lucky with the flight schedule and the flight booking to Australia. I managed to get an EMIRATES flight to Australia booked, and for the first time, I also managed to get a stopover night at the connection airport in Dubai. This is excellent news: in fact, it’s not easy at all to find a good value flight to Australia along with a stopover night at the connection airport. I travelled twice via Singapore and I could not get it. And for the first time I will be leaving from home too, directly from Venice airport to Dubai and from Dubai off to Melbourne, ah ah, that’s great news indeed.
  • Emirates is offering great flight deals to Australia leaving from Europe with excellent flight connections. I am flying Emirates for the first time too, and since I have heard that Emirates is among the most reputable worldwide airlines for service and comfort onboard, I can’t wait to fly and try it out myself. I can highly recommend to check out the Emirates Website and search for flight deals there.
  • What Travel Destination am I going to see this time. It will be a bit of dรฉjร  vu trip
    This time I will have the honour to show Australia to a friend who is returning for the first time to Australia after a long time! So my travel plan for the first weeks will be a sort of “dรฉjร  vu trip” for me, re-visiting the iconic destinations and major attractions in Australia. Come back here to see the updates of my day-by-day travel route. Some among the iconic Australian destinations that we will be visiting are the GOR, Ayers Rock and Kings Canyon, The Top End, and major cities like Melbourne, Adelaide, Darwin and more.
  • How will I get around Australia?
    On my previous trips I loved using Australian public transportation, I covered my entire itinerary by bus and by train. This time I will take advantage of having a wonderful travel companion, so for the first time, I will be hiring a car for some driving routes. Searching and booking the car has been very easy, and I did it online through oodles.
  • My Tip: book ahead of time, 2WD car hire and especially 4WD car hire can be very expensive especially in the Red Centre and in some other Australian attraction areas if you wait till the last minute. The sooner you book the better.With this great car rental comparison site, we had the advantage of having all our car bookings made with a few clicks, a good time ahead and we did not have to pay upfront. We paid when we picked up our booked cars.This is a checklist for you to go through when booking your car in Australia:
    • Weekends opening hours for pick up and drop off be careful in the red centre over weekends you can hire your car only from airports, cities like Alice Springs are usually closed on Saturdays and Sundays. So check it out and before making your reservation and book your connection flight accordingly
    • Different drop off from pick up location can be turned into an expensive extra may turn out to be very expensive if you pick up your car in one place and want to drop it off somewhere else. The best thing is to drive in a loop, i.e. same pick up and drop off location. The Ayers Rock drop off can cost you 300,00AUD alone if you
      have picked up your car somewhere else. The good thing is to check it out with the car rental company once you have your booking processed.
    • Check out whether you are allowed to drive a 2WD or if you need a 4WD. You can only use a 2WD on all sealed road, and 4WD are for gravel roads, even if you are driving on a short unsealed road you are not allowed to use a 2WD. This is a rule for car rentals. If you own your car then you can do whatever you like, i.e. can drive on unsealed roads with a 2WD car too, if you wish to do so.
  • Where will I be staying during my trip to Australia
    Yes, you have guessed. as usual, I will be staying in my fave Australian hostels, for most of the time. As for the bookings it is easily made online. Since I am a fan of YHA, I booked in most places directly from their website: www.yha.com.au and for other destinations, I checked it out through the hostelbookers.com website. If you book with YHA make sure you have your own YHA membership card to save 3-5dolllars on each night. And bear in mind that you have to pay in advance the full stay. But you also are entitled to cancel your reservation and get a full refund if you cancel 48hours prior your arrival date.

For more tips on how to travel solo in Australia check out this page here.

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