Today marked the launch of my travel themed radio show, Wanderlust Wednesdays. I was so nervous but it actually went really well! I am hoping to get my hands on the recording soon to share with everyone but for now here is a brief rundown of the show.
If you want to listen along click here for a link to the show’s Spotify playlist.
Len -Steal my Sunshine
Hello and welcome to the first ever Wanderlust Wednesday, your weekly dose of escapism, I’m Kaitlin and I will be your host.
Today on the show we are going to be talking about the first country I solo travelled to: Australia. It didn’t seem to kick off the show with anything else. So throughout the show, I’ll be talking about the different places I went and throwing a little advice out for people considering visiting the land down under.
Men at Work – Down Under
So before we get into the show I want to mention that last Sunday our city played host to Simply Health’s Great South Run. Which I actually took part in.
It was a brilliant day and the atmosphere was electric. I’ll be honest and say I hadn’t really trained enough but the incredible live music which was everything from Scottish pipe bands to steel drums and everything in between – definitely kept me going.
But the thing that surprised me the most was the new perspective it gave me on the city and all its landmarks. I’ve always said walking around a destination is the best way to explore, but I think running is actually a pretty good way too, despite all the exercise.
Anyway, I just wanted to say a huge Congratulations to all involved but especially, to the amazing Claire Lomas who – despite being paralysed from the chest down – completed the run in a mechanical suit over the course of 24 hours. So far she has raised nearly twenty thousand pounds for The Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/clairelomasgsr
The La La La’s – There She Goes
Closer to home: The UK City of culture Judging panel, were in shortlisted city Swansea this week, ahead of the December announcement of our new Cultural capital for the year 2021
Travel search engine KAYAK.com have just launched their annual Holiday Travel Hacker Guide which lists the top ten places to spend New Years Eve, the most wallet-friendly international destinations and their top tips on when to book over the festive period, check it out at kayak.com/holidaytravelhacker
Last week Journeys festival International returned to the city for ten days of creative events which celebrated exceptionally talented refugee and asylum seeker artists. To see what went on head to Journeysfestival.com and click Portsmouth.
Jack Johnson – Upside Down
So, Two Novembers ago I had just finished a year of full-time work, scrimping and saving in order to afford my dream of travelling to Australia.
It was such a surreal feeling, to have actually reached my savings goal and to be actually doing it, saying goodbye to loved ones and flying to the other side of the world where I literally knew two people.
It was more than a bit emotional, but it was nothing I couldn’t fix with some bubbles from Fortnum and Masons Champagne bar. Yeah, I didn’t really get that whole backpacker budget thing straight away. Even when I got to Sydney, I was taking myself out for a wine, eating out and going out-out a lot with the people I met in my first hostel.
I burnt through my first thousand dollars so quickly that I knew I had to get out of Sydney ASAP. So, I ended up buying a train ticket seven hours out of Sydney to the middle of nowhere, to a place called Griffith to do some Farming.
Bronze Radio – Further On
So off I went to the hot-as-hell middle of nowhere. I hadn’t even seen the Australian backpacker murder horror film wolf creek but I still spent most of the journey sure I was headed to some backwards town where they murder tourists and everyone is in on it. Needless to say, that was not the case.
Griffith was just a really normal and slightly boring dusty town crammed with backpackers looking for work. Which for the first few agonising days there wasn’t any. I eventually got a job trimming saplings on an almond farm. It was not as cute as it sounds. You got dropped off at six am, already sweating, at the end of a long row of plants. You got paid by the plant, 10 cents a plant, and there were a THOUSAND plants in a row. On a good day, you could just about do one row. It was NOT fun but it did give me a whole new perspective on where our food comes from. And I soon got a cushty job packing cherries into boxes for a lot more money in a nice air-conditioned warehouse.
So it wasn’t all bad.
By this point, it was almost Christmas, and there’s only thing to do in Australia on Christmas.
The Drums – Let’s Go Surfing
The Beach Boys – Surfing USA
Okay, so I didn’t actually go surfing on Christmas day as the waves were mental but I did stay at Surfside Hostel on Bondi beach which still totally counts.
It was such a fun few days. I made friends with a huge group of British backpackers. On Christmas eve we went on a boat tour of Sydney harbour and saw the huge fireworks display. Christmas day didn’t really feel like Christmas day it felt more like a weird themed party on a very busy beach. But it was amazing, definitely one for the bucket list.
But of course, I did get a little homesick and talking to family reminded me what I was missing.
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros – Home
After Christmas, I got involved with my first hang gliding competition. If you don’t know what that is, google it… After it I made a decision which changed my whole trip. I’d originally planned to just cruise the east coast, maybe get a job in Byron bay or something. But my trip had already been so far from what I’d expected that it only took seeing a picture of someone I met with a quokka to make me spontaneously book a flight to Perth on the west coast. Only when you get to Australia do you really realise how truly massive and diverse it is, I wanted to see all I could while I was there.
Mike Dignam – Great Escape
Every show I am going to be selecting a Destination of the week for the show and reading an excerpt on it from Lonely Planet’s coffee table edition of The Travel Book: A Journey Through Every Country in the World.
For those who’ve just tuned in, this week we are talking Australia.
And Here is what Lonely Planet have to say about this sunburnt country.
The Andrews Sisters (Jojo Effect Remix) – Rum and Coca-Cola
Now moving on to a very exciting new segment: STA Travel’s Deals of the week.
I’m currently in talks with the STA Travel shop in Portsmouth and, this time next week, I will be bringing you deals put together exclusively for this show: Wanderlust Wednesdays! So watch this space.
- This week they are offering campervan hire in Australia from just £25 a day.
- There’s also five percent off bookings with Camper company THL.
When I got to Perth I ended up going on a road trip with people I met and it was just the best time. Driving through Australia is one of the best ways to experience it. I also did a tour along the great ocean road from Adelaide to Melbourne. Which had some of best natural attractions I saw on my trip.
One thing that isn’t on-sale but that I have to mention if you are thinking of doing a working holiday in Aus is the Sydney starter pack. It includes 3, 4 or 7 nights accommodation in a great city centre hostel and while you are there they sort you out with a bank account, pension, Australian sim card, healthcare cover, a tax number they basically take all the stress out of getting ready to work on the other side of the world. When I did it I made some amazing friends right away and I went on to travel with them and we meet up right throughout my 6 months. If I were you I’d go for the 7 nights for £195 and have a stress free start to the best time of your life.
- Oh and you can also get an exclusive £50 off any trip if you book an appointment and book your trip in the Portsmouth Branch of STA TRAVEL Call- 023 9217 6954
Bob Marley and the Wailers – Three Little Birds
And now it’s time for the thing that can make or break any trip, the weather.
In Portsmouth, it will be largely fine and dry with highs of 14 degrees.
However the hottest places on earth today include:
Our country of the week Australia which is dominating the top ten highest world temperatures today with up to 44.7 degrees.
And the coldest place on earth today is Antarctica with a very chilly minus 55.9 degrees
The place that received the most rain in the last 24 hours is the Philippines, Virac received 297 millimetres.
After making my way up the east coast I decided to fly inland to Alice Springs. Going to Alice Springs was like going to a completely different country. But I didn’t stay long, I headed straight out on a trip out to see the mind-blowing rock formations of the Uluru and Katajuta national park. Uluru is so important to Aboriginal culture, and visiting it made it clear why. Although unfortunately when I was there the climb had been reopened. For a long time people with a death wish and a disregard for how sacred the rock is have been climbing up one side of Uluru. Although today an exciting announcement has been made that by October 2019 the climb will be closed forever!
Which is great as the best view is definitely of it not from it, plus 36 people have died through falling off the rock so yeah, a long time coming I think.
Mumford and Sons – The Cave
So that’s all we’ve got time for this week, I’m Kaitlin McKenzie and thank you for bearing with me with what has been our very first Wanderlust Wednesday.
Next week’s theme will be Thailand. We will have guest Eleanor O’Donnell in the studio talking about her recent visit.
If you have any questions you want answering on the show or have any song suggestions that remind you of travelling, email me at email@example.com or you can tweet me at @weetraveller.
Up next is Lunch with Taylor hosted by Taylor Budd.
I’ll catch you next Wednesday morning at 11 and leave you now with
George Ezra – Blind man in Amsterdam