What are your resolutions for 2017? Do you even keep resolutions? I’ve heard of people swapping them out for goals or “affirmations” – but I’m a traditionalist. I like making resolutions, even if I don’t end up achieving all I hoped for. Life sometimes gets in the way and that’s totally okay.
My main resolution of 2016 was to give up plastic. If you’ve read my end of year report, you’ll see the results were varied. It was a big thing to take on, as it turns out! Whilst I want to continue implementing what I learned over the last twelve months and go further with it in the future, I would also like a new project. One that I can preferably write about on this blog.
I’ve found the answer in the form of backyard travel.
A year of exploring my own backyard
I travelled to 21 countries last year. That’s an awful lot of places covered in a very short space of time. And although I had quite a good year in the end, when I look back on it, I feel a wave of exhaustion wash over me and that’s not entirely fun. I mean, I slept for around 14 hours coming into 2017. I think that alone speaks for itself.
Contrary to last year, I want to take a big step back on travelling and enjoy living in Australia for the first time in almost three years. And while there are places quite nearby that I would be quite eager to travel to (like finally setting foot on South East Asia), I want to spend the majority of this year exploring Australia – my own backyard.
All 7,692,000 square kilometres of it.
I jest. But, I do want to see as much of Australia as is humanly possible, over a year of part-time travel.
What will this entail?
Apart from what I’ve already done in the last couple of months (which I’m counting) I couldn’t be entirely sure. Surprises are fun, so it’s kinda nice to keep things loose.
In exciting news, I’m moving to Melbourne later on this month, realising an eight year old dream at long last (it was easier to move to London than a ten hour drive south, it would seem). This opens up the potential of exploring two different states – as I’ll be living in Victoria, but will still have strong ties (family, friends, dogs, etc) in my home state of New South Wales.
One destination that is definitely on the cards is Tasmania, which is quite possibly my favourite state in Australia. I’ve been to Hobart and Launceston (and the small village of Lower Crackpot, teehee). I’d love to catch the boat from Port Melbourne to Devonport and go driving around the island. What a great trip that would be.
There are so many other places I’d love to visit in my country. Port Douglas, the Daintrees, Cape York, Broken Hill, Katherine, Perth. It’d be grand to return to Darwin and the Blue Mountains. I’d love to see the Great Barrier Reef again, especially when Australia’s government are so intent on destroying it.
Apart from physically travelling to destinations around Oz, I want to get to know the country a bit better. I want to camp, glamp, road trip, bush walk, bird-watch, kayak. Visit places of historical importance. Read more books by Australian authors. Watch Australian films. Listen to Australian music. Collect Australian paraphernalia (which is fortunately in vogue right now).
In short, I want to celebrate my country, for however long I’m on its shores, this time around.
Keen to join in?
As well as blogging about the Land Down Under, I’ll be posting about it on social media, because internet. I think I’ve sort of got the hang of using Facebook for a blog, so please give the page a like and follow for updates.
Let’s all get involved! Feel free to stick up photos of your own backyard over the year – whether that be where you’re living as an expat, or your own native country. If you’re in Oz – use the hashtag #MyBackyardOz, or the generic #ExploreYourOwnBackyard. Feel free to tag me in it, on Twitter or Instagram.
And as a side note, I won’t be blogging solely about Australia over the course of the year – my editorial calendar is teeming with a range of posts, about the destinations I visited last year, plastic-free travel, books and the like. I look forward to sharing them with you over the next twelve months.
Are you a fan of backyard travel?
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