If you’ve read any of our recent blog posts then you’ll have noticed us lamenting about our time in Australia coming to an end.
After spending 21 months down under, we are finally going to be heading off in search of a new adventure.
We are both sad to leave, we’ve loved our time in Australia and we’ve barely scratched the surface when it comes to exploring this massive chunk of land.
But, our feet are itching and our visas are on the brink of expiring so it’s time to head off for pastures new.
This winter will see us hop through 4 countries and 3 continents as well as spend Christmas on separate hemispheres.
So, without further ado, here’s our travel plans for winter 2016/17!
Australia, South Africa, UK
December marks our final couple of weeks in Australia. At the end of November we will be packing in our jobs, packing our bags and spending around 10 days roadtripping up the East Coast to Cairns.
Despite this being our first taste of adventure this winter (or summer here in Oz) this is the part we have the least planned out.
As it stands, we would ideally hire a campervan for the journey as good ol’ Martin (our faithful Holden Commodore) would most likely keel over as soon as we pulled out of the drive… We would then spend the trip sunning ourselves on beaches, diving the Great Barrier Reef and exploring the famous Daintree Rainforest.
When we finish our jaunt up the coast we will fly from Cairns back to Brisbane where we will both board separate flights.
After nearly 2 years of living in each other’s pockets we will be spending the holiday season on different continents.
Ryan is jetting off to the UK to settle into his much-missed family festivities whilst I will be heading to Cape Town, South Africa where my family awaits.
The plan for South Africa is loose. We will be spending a few days in Cape Town before hiring a car and driving the Garden Route, arriving at my Aunty and Uncle’s house in Knysna just in time for Christmas.
South Africa has been on my wishlist since I began travelling and I can’t wait to fill up the Instagram feed with beautiful beaches, vineyards and safari encounter snaps!
After 3 weeks in South Africa, I will be flying back to the UK to reunite with Ryan.
UK, Iceland, Canada
We are spending a few weeks recuperating from the festive period at home. This gives us a chance to acclimatise back to winter in the northern hemisphere and spend some much-needed time with family and friends.
At the end of January, we will be on the move again. A very exciting move, all the way to beautiful Canada!
Back in July, we impulsively decided to apply for the Canadian version of the Australian working holiday visa, the IEC (International Experience Canada). You first apply to be selected ‘lottery-style’ for the chance to apply for the visa itself. We didn’t expect to get invited, especially not together. There’s plenty of horror stories online about couples rarely being accepted at the same time.
Our original plan had been to move to New Zealand for a couple of years, a plan which we had been very happy with. But, if there was any chance of moving to Canada and experience a whole other part of the world, we were going to take it.
To our surprise, we were both accepted after just a couple of weeks! It turned out that our timing couldn’t have been better. Applications for 2017 entry had closed just days after we applied.
We hurriedly gathered together our paperwork, submitted our application and were both approved the following day.
The decision to apply on a whim had just changed the course of our next two years of travel instantly.
We will go into the visa situation in more detail in a later post, I know it sounds very confusing (Canada doesn’t make it easy!).
So, in late January we will be flying to Toronto where we plan to base ourselves for the rest of winter, providing we can find work and enjoy the city.
However, not content with flying direct to our new home, we are stopping for a few days in Iceland! It’s a country we have both heard rave reviews about and can’t wait to explore it ourselves. Winter may not be an ideal time for a stopover, but apparently it’s a great time to see the Northern Lights which would be a great introduction to a country we will be passing through often between Canada and the UK.
It’s such a relief that our next base will be closer to home than Australia. Flights are so much cheaper and are a lot more manageable. This means that we can schedule more time in the UK as well as receiving plenty of visits in Canada.