On the Southern Scenic Route – part 1: roadtrip in the Catlins

It’s no secret that New Zealand is a paradise for roadtrip lovers. There is a dozen of themed highways, and multiple scenic routes across the main two islands of the country. One of my favourite drive is the Southern Scenic Route, a 610km coastal road on the south tip of the South Island, that stretches between Dunedin and Queenstown and goes through spectacular landscapes – cliffs, waterfalls, fjords and lakes.

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Vancouver’s Hot Chocolate Festival

I love hot chocolate. I’ve never been a coffee person, but I could drink hot chocolate everyday. In fact, a few years ago, I said I would travel around the globe in search of the perfect cup of hot chocolate. I even imagined writing a book about it. Now, although I’ve drunk a fair amount of hot chocolate in airports, hotels, train stations and cafés around the world, I’ve given up the idea of writing a book – but that doesn’t mean I’ve given up hot chocolate.

Last year, while on a trip to Vancouver, I discovered the Hot Chocolate Festival. I didn’t know there was such a thing, but I knew I was bound to love it. Surely, I was destined to go to Vancouver that February 2018.Read More »

Looking back at 2018: month-by-month recap

Christmas has come and gone, and now it’s time to get ready for the New Year. I haven’t written much on this blog since its creation – I still have two years of travel stories to tell, but I wanted to write something a bit different for the beginning of 2019.

Recently I’ve seen someone make a month-by-month recap of their year, and I got inspired. I think it’s a wonderful way to put things in perspective and see what was achieved in just 12 months. At first I thought I wouldn’t have much to say (2018 has been relatively low on adventures), but now after writing it I think it wasn’t too bad.Read More »

A minimalistic Christmas off-the-grid in New Zealand

With Christmas coming up, many of us will be busy shopping, meal-prepping and decorating. Shops will be constantly overcrowded, traffic will get worse than ever, and we’ll eat more food than should be allowed. Ahh, the joys of Christmas.

Like most people, I love Christmas. I love winter and I love the whole holiday spirit. I’ve always ignored the fact that it has turned into an excuse for mass consumption, and also that it’s a religious celebration (and I’m a non-Christian). But religion aside, Christmas has been celebrated for thousands of years and is now a popular tradition in many countries, mine included.

To me, Christmas has always just meant we could put fairy lights all over the house, bake cookies on the weekend, have a family gathering, eat a delicious meal, exchange presents… in the end, isn’t it about celebrating what’s essential in life?Read More »

Discovering Doubtless Bay

December 2016 was the first Christmas I ever spent away from my family. I spent Christmas and New Year’s on a farm in Wellsford, north of Auckland, in New Zealand, with the most amazing people (and a great farmers’ market – read more about it here). It was my favourite wwoof place and it has changed me forever. Travel-wise, nothing too exciting happened – it was more a life experience, and although I truly enjoyed weeding lettuces in the sun and playing guitar all afternoon, the travel itch – or rambling itch – was soon creeping on me. I was in NZ and wasn’t even exploring it! So I consulted my best travel adviser (the internet) to decide where to go next. I already had a rough idea: going north, way up north, to beautiful… Northland.Read More »