International Hobbit Day with Pure New Zealand

Helloooo friends and strangers!


Below you'll find a gallery of photos from my not so recent trip back to the north island of New Zealand. Jarrad and myself were very kindly invited to visit Hobbiton to celebrate International Hobbit Day (How did I not know this existed before now?!?!) by the kindest people at Pure New Zealand I won't lie... there were tears when Jarrad told me we were invited.  You've probably all seen my last Hobbiton photos and would know that I'm a mega Lord of The Rings nerd.

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My dreams came true as we got to tour the little village before sitting down for an enormous banquet breakfast in The Green Dragon Inn. Later in the day there were food stalls and markets and maypole dancing. We had a huge buffet dinner that night under a big colourful marquee with the cutest little folk band playing while we watched a special effects makeup artist transform a couple of the guests into the most realistic goblins I've ever seen (not that I've seen many goblins to compare them too haha). It was a night to remember... and I'll be saying my little prayers every night that I'll get to experience it all again some day.

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Photos by Jarrad Seng

Top Spots in Tropical North Queensland

Thanks to the awesome team at JUCY rentals and Tourism Tropical North Queensland, I was given the opportunity to go back to one of my favourite locations in Australia, this time driving up the coast in the funkiest Camper Van I've ever driven in! ( ....also the only camper van I've driven in, but it's still really freakin' cool!)
 
Look, if I'm being perfectly honest I'm maybe a little bit of a princess in terms of you know, comfort and convenience. I probably wouldn't be jumping with joy if I was told I had to camp in a tent or sleep on the beach or be anywhere where there's dirt and bugs and stuff.
However, staying in a caravan park and sleeping on top of a JUCY Champ Camper was one of the most fun-filled nights I've ever had! The Camper is super comfortable and literally has everything you might need including a pop up dining table and a little kitchen type set up at the back. I had the best nights sleep and I would be more than happy to camp in one again.     

So now I wanted to share with you all, my top favourite spots in the Tropical North Queensland area in the hope of inspiring you to grab one of these awesome JUCY vans and see what you've perhaps been missing out on!

First stop, Kuranda Original Rainforest Markets. I absolutely lOVE markets. I cannot drive past one without stopping for a poke around. This market sure delivered the goods. It's super hippie and filled with a lot of tie-dye things and handmade crafts. I bought so many little gifts for my friends back home including this super cute little painted hanging pot made from a coconut shell!

Emerald Creek falls was also a spot well worth a visit. We had to walk a little while to get there from our parking spot so by the time we got to the water fall we were all hot and sweaty and so desperate to take a dip in the lovely cool water. If I'm ever going to take a hike in the heat of summer I would only do it if there was a prize like this at the end. 

The Curtain Fig Tree was one of the most fascinating things I've seen in nature. I just couldn't draw my eyes from it! Estimated to be over 500 years old and around 50 metres tall, the tree was created when a single seed begin to grow in the "armpit" of another tree. The seed sprouted and the roots began to grow towards the forest floor. over hundreds of years, it grew so large that it started to strangle the tree that it was living on top of causing the host tree to break and fall against a neighbouring tree at a 45degree angle. The roots continued to grow downwards creating the craziest looking curtain effect. Nature is seriously weird.

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One of my favourite things to do when I'm on holiday and exploring a new place is to scope out some trendy little cafes. If you're in the area, do not miss out on breakfast at Petals and Pinecones. This was the most beautifully decorated coffee shop with a whimsical, vintage vibe. The menu was unlike anything I've seen anywhere else. Charcoal shooters? Unicorn milkshakes? It was so magical and I felt like an overly excited child when my breakfast came out in front of me all decorated in fairy floss and sprinkles.

Finally, Paronella Park is also worth an honourable mention. This park has it's own very interesting history and is filled with 5 acres of beautiful rainforest garden. The main attraction of this stunning place is the ruins of a great spanish castle... Yep, castle ruins in the middle of the rainforest! I would very much liked to have spent an entire day exploring what the park had to offer, but after a quick picnic by the waterfall and some photos in the bamboo forest we then head off to our next destination. I want to mention as well, that when walking past the cafe before leaving, the smell of whatever was cooking in the kitchens is still engrained in my memory. I don't know what it was, but I want to go back here just to eat whatever they were serving!!

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Below are a few photos taken on this trip featuring a few of the wonderful new friends I made while over there. Katie, Kelsey & Cam and Evie & Emmie were so much fun to road trip with and are also very talented at what they do. Give them a follow on Instagram to check out some of their work! I want to give a special thanks also to our wonderful host Katy from JUCY who made the trip so enjoyable but also kept us on schedule. Thanks!

Enjoy the photos my lovelies
xxx

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Thanks once again to JUCY and Tropical North Queensland for helping me make this road trip possible. Find out more by following the links and follow them on social media @JUCYworld @tropicalnorthqueensland

A Frozen Wonderland in Iceland

I definitely levelled up on the adventure scale on this recent trip to Iceland. This place is by far the coldest and scariest place I've ever visited but at the same time, the most breathtakingly beautiful. Being in this big frozen country with it's huge snow capped mountains and rugged, rocky terrain made me feel just like a hobbit on a journey to Mordor. I half expected to see a dragon atop every mountain we came across!

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I owe a big thankyou to 66North for keeping me warm (as was possible!) and dry during my time spent here with the thickest jacket I've ever owned. Thank goodness it was also waterproof so we could trek mountains in the snow and climb through waterfalls without freezing into an iceblock.

Also I’d love to give a shout out to The Gatherers Grove for the beautiful blanket you’ll see in some of my photos. I used it to death over in Iceland to rug up and keep warm during long road trips around the island but it’s also the perfect size to use as a picnic blanket and I love to keep it in the back of my car now that I’m home, for those spontaneous afternoons in the park. Follow the link to check out some of their other beautiful products.

xx

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Indonesia: Paradise in Bali

I can’t think of a better place to escape than beautiful Bali. It’s a conveniently short flight being just over 3 hours from Perth and ridiculously affordable to stay! Jarrad and I went for a short trip over new years with the aim of squeezing as much into our 4 days as possible.

We spent a lot of our time exploring Ubud, eating at cute little organic cafes with beautiful views overlooking the rice terraces, discovering hidden waterfalls and making friends with the wildlife in Monkey Forrest. We did an overnighter at Gili Triwnagan, riding our bikes around the island and swimming in the warm ocean. 

Check out the photos below to see what we got up to

xx

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Photo credits to Jarrad Seng