I have never stayed in a hostel like Sydney Harbour's YHA "The Rocks".
As a solo female backpacker in my early 20s on my first trip through Europe, hostels were an invaluable component of my budget travel strategy. I was studying in England and I would use learning breaks before my trip to read and re-read Let’s Go Europe’s hostel reviews. This was back in the dark ages, before there were online booking sites or many travel blogs, so I accepted Let’s Go’s information as the gospel truth. They never once steered me wrong and, despite having a minuscule budget, I always had a clean, safe, friendly place to stay.
Sydney CAN be a budget travel destination!
Sydney is one of the most vibrant, beautiful, and cosmopolitan cities I've ever seen but, as I detailed in my last post, it is also the most expensive . This could have spelled disaster for my basic budget, but I was determined to soak up the city without breaking the bank. It took a bit of research but I discovered are plenty of deals down under. Here are five free Sydney experiences that I loved.
Sydney is exquisite... and expensive!
Our amazing, around the world trip originally began with a dream of saving enough frequent flyer points to go to Australia. We were originally aiming for Hawaii but as our points collecting skills improved, we focused on an entirely new destination. Bit by bit our trip evolved but we never lost sight of our main goal - Australia!
Have a layover in Singapore? Here's what you can do.
Singapore is one of many layovers on our round the world trip. We have just under 24 hours here - and we're not the only ones. Singapore is one of the most popular layovers in the world. With its compact layout and an airport that serves as a hub for endless international destinations, Singapore offers short term visitors a lot of city in just a little time.
This Bangkok dinner cruise was definitely memorable, to say the least.
What do you get when you combine a karaoke session that includes Country Roads and Gangnam Style, a buffet laden with spaghetti bolognese, and a little bit of line dancing to Achy Breaky Heart? Why, a night out in Bangkok on the Chao Phraya River, of course! We were happy to partner once again with Viator for their Bangkok Dinner Cruise on the Chao Phraya River tour.
We never thought Bangkok would be a rest and relaxation destination.
Our round the world, points based trip officially includes one main stop (Sydney) and two stopovers of our choice (we picked Brussels and Bangkok) and endless layovers and side trips. Considering that Bangkok is one of our official stopovers, it's about time we finally made it back to see the city! Our first stop here hardly counts, as we essentially did nothing more than transfer from one airport to another and spend the night in a hotel. Now that we're here for a few days, we're looking forward to seeing the city by foot, bike, and boat and (of course!) stuffing ourselves with pad Thai.
Yangon is a city of gold and an amazing travel destination.
Most travelers to Myanmar make Yangon their first stop, not their last, but we've been bucking the norm for a lot of our trip. With more and moretransportation options opening up in other cities, we were able to make the most of our limited time and not double back on our tracks. Yangon has plenty to offer visitors and, while you could easily spend a week or more exploring the city at a leisurely pace, it is compact enough to see a lot of the major sites in two days, which is exactly what we plan to do!
Snorkeling and Exploring Sydney with EcoTreasures
If you're looking for an amazing day trip from Sydney, you couldn't ask for a more beautiful destination than Manly Beach. We're talking gorgeous blue waters, endless white beaches, and amazing views - plus a great food scene! But I must confess, my first glimpse of Manly Beach was not an encouraging sight.
On the day of my visit, the high winds and rough waters were pretty intimidating. I bet they were heaven for the crowd of seasoned surfers but as someone who was there for a snorkeling experience, I have to say I was feeling pretty nervous. I was concerned about getting in over my head (literally and otherwise) but I put on a brave face and continued on down the path. For I wasn't in the Manly area for an ordinary visit. I was scheduled to meet up with Damien from EcoTreasures for a guided nature walk and snorkel session at nearby Shelly Beach.
"Warmly welcome and take care of tourist" - this is the train ride of a lifetime! Read all about our experience on the overnight train from Bagan to Yangon in Myanmar.
Less than 12 hours after enjoying the BEST travel experience of our lives, we were off to catch the overnight train from Bagan to Yangon. An overnight train seemed to an efficient and economical way to get across the country without losing a precious day of sightseeing to transit and we were excited to try something new.
Our expectations for the train were very modest. We had done considerable research, learning a lot from The Man in Seat 61 and Lesley Leep Phoography We had watched Anthony Bourdain’s Burmese train trip on the Parts Unknown series and had taken to heart a passage from Lonely Planet, in which a local resident advises that the train is “not as bad as you think, not as good as you hope”.
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