Sunday, May 31, 2015

Upcoming Travel Plans

We've been making lots of travel plans lately, which is just the way I like it! We are coming up on one year since we moved to Melbourne, and the current plan is to return to the states in August 2016, so we are conscious of the fact that our time is limited. We plan to have some visitors this summer (December-February) so we are trying to fit in a few trips before they arrive. We have scored a few good airfare deals on Tiger lately, so if you can handle potentially (probably) hating your life on the day of travel, then you should check out some of their sales! 

Anyway, here's where I'm headed:


Minneapolis- I'm flying home to Minnesota on Tuesday! It's been about 6 months since I was last home and I'll be able to hit a few big family activities on this trip including my mom's birthday and my sister's high school graduation. Unfortunately, Peter has some work commitments next week and isn't able to come home with me, so that means I'm stuck traveling for 24 hours by myself- super thrilling. I'm only staying for 6 days, so it will be a short trip, but I'm really excited to see family and friends!


Canberra- The capital city of Australia. Apparently Sydney and Melbourne fought over which should be the country's capital so they decided on a location in the middle of nowhere somewhere between the two. Canberra has a reputation for being super underwhelming and isn't exactly a tourist destination. Why am I going? Sylvie's passport expires this year and she needs to renew it at the Belgian Embassy, so what better excuse for a road trip! We plan to hit a few destinations along the way including Lakes Entrance and a couple national parks.


Brisbane- In August we fly to Brisbane for 5 days to explore a few areas along the coast. I'm not going to lie, the main motivation for this trip (at least for me) is to hold a koala at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. This place is apparently the gold standard for koala holding. Australia has really strict rules regarding handling of koalas and I believe Queensland is the only state that allows you to fully hold one. You can pet them here in Victoria but that doesn't cut it for me. Aside from the koala thing, we plan to take a day trip to Moreton Island and then road trip either north to Noosa or south to Gold Coast and Byron Bay. Currently taking suggestions for this trip, so let me know if you have any experience with any of these places!


New Zealand- We are so excited for this trip! We will be heading to the South Island for 9 days and are considering the whole camper van thing. Also taking opinions on this, because Peter is really into it and I'm really just the type of person who prefers hotels. Anyway, we plan to whale watch, visit the Marlborough wine region and then head down the west coast to the mountains. Peter is also interested in seeing some Lord of the Rings filming locations. Fun fact: there are 20 day guided LOTR tours- that's an actual thing that people do. And they're not cheap. Anyway, I've heard you could spend weeks on the South Island alone, so currently trying to narrow down must-see places since we aren't going to be able to hit everything.

So if you've got any advice for any of these trips, leave it in the comments! 


  1. Yay!!! Can't wait to see ya'll (Peter too even though I've never met him). Bring the selfie stick!

  2. Me too!! And of course-selfie stick necessary.

  3. Sounds like a smorgasbord of travel!
    Despite its underwhelming reputation, Canberra does have some gems. Check out: the Australian War Memorial (my favourite), the Bus Stop Markets, a tour of Parliament House, Science Questacon and the National Gallery!

    1. Thanks for the tips! It'll be fun to check it out along with some scenic spots along the way!

  4. Wow! You are such a globetrotter! Haha! Well, these travel plans are too good to pass up. So, good thing that you have a good travel deals to help you reach your travel goals. I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun in these places. How is the plan going so far? Good luck and all the best to you, Laura!

    Garrett Newman @ Branson Regal

  5. Trip of a lifetime! I've heard that it's heart-stoppingly beautiful out there.

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Welcome! I started Laura and Peter Down Under in July 2014 when my husband and I moved from the States to Melbourne, Australia for his job. I blog about expat life, our travels, food, and whatever else comes to mind. Follow along on our adventures Down Under!



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