At the end of October I finally took the plunge and left England all by myself on an exciting/ nerve wracking adventure to the other side of the world without a return flight.
Travelling to Australia has been a dream of mine for years and I knew it was something I was going to do once finishing university. Myself and one of my best friends had plans to do the trip together in September, after I finished my 3 month internship but unfortunately it didn’t work out due to her work commitments which meant my only other option was to go alone.
Throughout my time at my internship I was extremely skeptical to actually book my ticket knowing that I’d be 23 hours from home if I hated the whole thing. Having not done any solo travelling before I decided my best option would be to book onto a tour which I highly recommend if you find yourself in the same position! To be honest, although it would have been absolutely amazing to have gone with my friend from home, going alone really makes you step outside your comfort zone to talk to more people and make new friends. Not to mention, it’s a huge achievement to do the flight and everything by yourself. It really gives you a whole new level of confidence!
I highly recommend the travel company Gap 360 who were absolutely amazing and had the best rates by a mile compared to other competitors. They were so good at answering all my a million-and-one silly questions before I finally booked onto the tour, and they sorted everything for me including travel insurance. Although Gap 360 were who I booked through, the tour is actually run by Ultimate Travel, again another amazing company who I can’t recommend enough! The whole trip was super organised with the best itinerary ever. I did the 3 week East Coast tour but they also offer a 5 and 6 week one.
The tour I opted for was so full on which I loved. Waking up everyday to a new exciting activity or place was the fast paced adventure that attracted me to the shorter trip. If you’re after something slightly more chill, the 5/6 week one allows you to stay at places for a bit longer so it doesn’t feel as rushed. However, the 21 day trip was the perfect length for me and I have no regrets choosing that one.
We started at Sydney and from there did Byron Bay, the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Hervey Bay, Fraser Island, Airlie Beach, Whitsundays and finally Cairns which I’ll be individually writing about on my blog, with everything I got up to at each destination in the upcoming weeks.
Stepping out of my comfort zone like this has meant I’ve made the most amazing new friends, made stunning memories and also visited so many beautiful places.
If you’re doing a tour, I recommend not booking a return flight because it means you have the freedom to do whatever you want after it’s finished – which I imagine for most is to continue the adventure because by that point you’ve realised travelling is not quite as scary as you first thought! I ended up in Singapore with one of my new pals from the group which was amazing and so unexpected.
As I write this now in freezing cold Blighty, after returning Friday evening, I can honestly say I have had the best 4 weeks and have made the most lovely memories and friendships. I’ve surfed, skydived, snorkelled, jet-boated and so much more in such a short amount of time! For anyone slightly considering doing something like this… just bloody book it, that’s the hardest part!