Want to work in Italy without a visa, stay with locals, and have food, transport, and accommodation taken care of? No Problem! Here’s how to do it easily, and legally.
Coming from Australia where vegan options are scarce, I figured things would be more or less the same in the land of bacon, poutine, and maple fudge. How wrong I was.
If you find yourself in Australia, a trip up the east coast is a must. It’s one of those once-in-a-lifetime bucket-list trips that even gets locals on-board, but many don’t make it all the way up to Port Douglas, and I can tell you right now, they’re missing out.
I was really excited at the prospect of entering Tallinn, so I don’t want to be a wet blanket and rain on my own parade or anything, but if I’m being really honest, I’d have to say navigating the Estonian public transport system at 7am after a 16-hour bus ride from Poland was not something I enjoyed doing. And I enjoy most challenges.
When I told my 12-year-old cousin that I stayed in hostel dorms throughout my time in Iceland, she immediately (and very seriously) exclaimed: ‘Aren’t you worried you’ll get stabbed?!’
Couchsurfing gave me the opportunity to do things I never would have done otherwise, but when I shared my stories, what struck me was the amount of women were keen to try it, but hadn’t signed-up out of fear.
Throughout my four-weeks in Iceland, I met a wide range of people who were there alone to ‘find’ themselves, and I’m fairly sure they didn’t mean waking up Mr. Bean-style and finding themselves on the sidewalk.
When I left for Europe, the only travel app I had was Appy Hour – the app that tells you where and when the best happy hour deals are on in Reykjavik. By the time I got home, I had a whole pile of apps given to me by other travellers – apps I’m not sure how I lived without.
I may have journeyed through Europe for four or five-months, met a heap of new people, stayed in dorms, and made lots of friends while travelling alone, but don’t be fooled – I am not an outgoing person.
I woke up this morning bright-eyed and confident I would make it to Melnik – the tiniest town in Bulgaria. Upon boarding the first bus to Sandanski, I promptly noticed that no one spoke English.
We got off the plane in the dark, caught the SkyTrain to the city, and walked up three staircases to the American Backpackers Hostel, just as someone was being kicked out because management found his needle stash under the bed. Hello, Vancouver.
When I left for India, I had all these images in my mind of people sitting on top of trains, hanging out of buses, and piling in to cars – navigating that as a tourist sounded like a nightmare I wasn’t prepared to face, so it was a huge surprise to get there and realise that getting around India is actually pretty easy.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly where I contracted dengue, but I’m fairly sure it was somewhere in Vietnam, and I am so, so glad I wasn’t alone when…