Cultural icons: Australians and our Vegemite spread

Ah, Vegemite. I've mentioned Vegemite before, here and here, but this is the first time I've devoted an entire post to this quintessential Australian spread. This sticky black stuff (which is definitely not sweet, contrary to the expectations of many foreigners) is an Aussie favourite spread on … [Read more...]

T-shirt travel: Seasonal Hunter Valley Gardens

It's okay, I'm well aware that it's now nowhere near Christmas time. Actually, I'm quite grateful for that. But that won't stop me parading a Christmas/travel T-shirt. You might recall a couple of Christmases ago that I holidayed in the Hunter Valley region of New South Wales and one of the … [Read more...]

Picture pirouette: Happy Australia Day!

Today - January 26 - is Australia Day, our national day and a public holiday, although one not without controversy. It commemorates the arrival of the British First Fleet in what became Sydney in 1788. Whether or not this is the most appropriate date to choose to celebrate the nation of Australia is … [Read more...]

Soccer fans, plan your Down Under trip for 2022

Growing up, I never knew too much about soccer (or football, as I've finally started to call it). But how things change, because now I have this postcard pinned up in front of my desk! It's from the Australian FIFA World Cup bid website: Australia is bidding to host either the 2018 or 2022 World … [Read more...]

Defending Melbourne’s “ugly” Federation Square

I know that a lot of modern travel writing has been reduced to Top 10 lists (they buzz around the internet fast, apparently) and I probably should ignore them. But I just read a top ten of the world's ugliest buildings and feel obliged to step in to defend one of them.According to this list (put … [Read more...]

T-shirt travel: Into Australia’s red centre

  I'm no compulsive collector of anything when I travel, but as I go about my daily life back home I have noticed recently that I have more than a couple of T-shirts I've bought on various trips. Often they've been bought less as souvenirs and more out of desperation for clean clothes on a … [Read more...]

Picture pirouette: The roof of a Western Australian cave

Isn't this picture mysterious? It's one of those fun surprises I got from letting my camera take a slow exposure picture while lying on the ground looking up - the camera, that is, I was just sitting next to it pushing buttons. What you can see are stalactites in one of the caves in the south-west … [Read more...]

Picture pirouette: Yellow blooms in the Hunter Valley Gardens

During our recent New South Wales trip, the lovely Meredith showed us the Hunter Valley Gardens. And that's where this shot was taken. This bright, sunny yellow seems like a good omen for the new year and the first picture pirouette, so I hope you enjoy it too. … [Read more...]

Experiencing the Anzac tradition

When my alarm rang at 4.30am (on this, a day off from work) I didn't really feel like getting out of bed. But along with thousands of other presumably like-minded people, I decided in comparison to the sacrifices Australian soldiers have made, one morning without sleep was a small … [Read more...]