Why Kina Grannis Inspires Me

Why Kina Grannis Inspires Me

In a futile attempt to mimic those cool BuzzFeed articles, I’m sharing reasons why Kina Grannis inspires me: 1. She is the most humble, down-to-earth artist to ever grace the planet. It’s pretty easy to see through an artist nowadays – especially through videos and interviews. Thus, it’s so refreshing when an artist is truly … Continue reading

A Photographic Tribute to Wanaka

A Photographic Tribute to Wanaka

Press play and read on: If all had gone as planned, I would still be living in Wanaka, New Zealand right now – nestled in the winter wonderland of South Island. But in May, I re-routed, re-evaluated, and embarked on a new journey because my heart knew that I would be happier in Australia. I … Continue reading

Confessions of a Solo Female Traveler

Confessions of a Solo Female Traveler

Inspiration for this post: Celina & Liz (by God, this is probably my most favorite blog post in all of history). Travel. It’s regarded as one of the most incredible things in the world because – well, for lack of better words – it encompasses the world (literally). So why is it that society frowns down … Continue reading

Trekking Through Tekapo

Trekking Through Tekapo

Press play and read on: (Rewinding to April) Lake Tekapo was a quiet, peaceful town that we stopped in while en route to Queenstown. Very similar to Lake Wanaka, except far more isolated (although it’s usually a common tourist stop along State Highway 8). The lake itself was the most smooth, serene and still one around. … Continue reading

Christchurch Uncovered

Christchurch Uncovered

Press play and read on: (Rewinding to April) Christchurch – once known as the most English and populous city of South Island – was my first taste of the other half of New Zealand. Unfortunately, it proved to be quite an emotional start to my vacation. I had heard many stories about how devastating the … Continue reading

The Great (Long) Ocean Road

The Great (Long) Ocean Road

Thanks to Julia and Vishal, I saw The Great Ocean Road in my second week of Melbourne (a month ago now). Despite the little bits of rain in the morning, we still had a great view of The Twelve Apostles. Great company, great conversations – and all thanks to a random friendship in a hostel. … Continue reading

Winter Musings

Winter Musings

Press play and read on: (Winter. A suitable song for this post, being that: (1) Melbourne is getting a freezing winter right now; (2) It’s my favorite track off Kina Grannis’ new album; (3) I bought my front-row ticket to Kina’s concert today. Rejoice.) Nearly eight months ago, I convinced myself that travel was my ultimate … Continue reading

The Jurassic Park Beachfront Experience: Punakaiki

The Jurassic Park Beachfront Experience: Punakaiki

Punakaiki: I can only describe it as being the Jurassic Park of New Zealand. En route, we came across some of the following spectacles: As we made five-hour long trek (thankfully split up between stops here and there) from Greymouth along the east coast highway, our first glimpses of Punakaiki paralleled the scene where the … Continue reading

Ice, Ice Baby: Franz Josef Glacier

Ice, Ice Baby: Franz Josef Glacier

Press play and read on: (Rewinding to April) I adrenaline-junkied my way through eight activities on my recent vacation. One stood out as being the hardest: Ice hiking. When we began gearing up with our trousers, thick ski jackets, helmets, boots, and crampons, I knew this wasn’t something to be taken lightly. One of the … Continue reading

Melbourne, Month 1: A Photo Montage

Melbourne, Month 1: A Photo Montage

Winter has officially started in Australia. Here’s a glimpse into some of my adventures in this new beautiful country I’m calling “home” (for now)… The verdict? I still have a love affair with Melbourne. P.S. Recap of my spontaneous roadtrip to The Great Ocean Road and The Twelve Apostles coming soon.

A Truly ‘Remarkable’ Flight

A Truly ‘Remarkable’ Flight

Press play and read on: I’ve never flown in a helicopter before – and on my South Island trip, I managed to fly in not one, but TWO helicopters. The first was a spontaneous helicopter flight with Glacier Southern Lakes Helicopters, in which we soared high above Mount Larkin (The Remarkables), a mountain range and … Continue reading

Pray For I.V.

Pray For I.V.

Originally posted on philippelazaro.com:
A prayer for my home, Isla Vista, in the wake of an unthinkable tragedy. Isla Vista is my home. This is a strong statement from somebody who has lived quite nomadically. There’s no other place on Earth where I’ve felt such a sense of belonging as the square mile right next to…

Goodness Glide-cious

Goodness Glide-cious

Press play and read on: (Rewinding to April) Allow me to vent for a bit while I write this piece. The day I went paragliding was actually intended for something more grandiose: it was the day that I, along with four others, was supposed to fly to Milford Sound (quite possibly known as the Eighth … Continue reading

The River Anduin Via Shotover Jet

The River Anduin Via Shotover Jet

Press play and read on: (Rewinding to April) Queenstown is also known for the Shotover Jets that run on the Shotover River (same one we canyon swung over). For a 20-30 min. ride, it surprisingly ended up being one of my favorite activities (especially since it didn’t involving throwing myself off anything or any heights). … Continue reading

Swing, Swing, Swing

Swing, Swing, Swing

(Rewinding to April) The Shotover Canyon Swing in Queenstown (the world’s highest cliff jump) was one of the most hyped-up activities that travelers told me about prior to visiting South Island. I also was told that it was more enjoyable and worthwhile money-wise than the bungee. I wasn’t disappointed. We ended up jumping (and then … Continue reading

Rewinding: South Island Saunterings

Rewinding: South Island Saunterings

(Recapping the past few weeks of my solo travels in South Island – hitting up the east coast places I didn’t get to on my recent tour) Press play and read on: PICTON My last day in Wellington marked my first time ever boarding a ferry as large as a baseball stadium. Okay, that’s a … Continue reading

The Hawaii of Australia: Cairns

The Hawaii of Australia: Cairns

Press play and read on: After a spectacular run in Melbourne, I tried not to get my hopes up for Cairns. I heard earlier that it was similar to Hawaii – very paradise-like, but not as crowded. Definitely on par. The flight even yielded stunning views of the area – so similar to Hawaii with its … Continue reading

(My) Truth About Traveling

(My) Truth About Traveling

Press play and read on: My past month has been something like this:2 weeks of a tour in the South Island1 week in Australia (GLORIOUS, AMAZING, FREEING… need I go on?! Why else do you think I’m moving there)1 week back in Wellington 1 week of backpacking through South Island solo (more on that later…)1 week in Wanaka … Continue reading

Forever: Inked, Elvish, Wellington. Boom.

Forever: Inked, Elvish, Wellington. Boom.

Press play and read on. I was only 11 when I watched The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. Ever since then, my love for J.R.R. Tolkien and all things Hobbity has grown 748,000-fold. I never thought I would muster up the courage to get a tattoo, nor desire one, until I solidified my move … Continue reading

To Australia I Go…

To Australia I Go…

Did I just book a one-way ticket to Melbourne, AUS for next week?! Why yes, yes I did. I leave New Zealand (and the remaining six months of my working holiday visa) in less than 7 days… departing from the infamous Auckland International Airport that first welcomed me to the country as a timid, emotionally disheveled … Continue reading

My Love Affair with Melbourne

My Love Affair with Melbourne

Three full days and four nights: my time in Melbourne was cut far too short, much like a brief love affair. If you don’t believe me about Melbourne’s amaze factor, watch this. Yes, I am in LOVE with Melbourne, Australia. I can’t stop raving about the city (although I shouldn’t be advertising this to Kiwis). … Continue reading

Fly, You Fools: Making Gandalf Proud

Fly, You Fools: Making Gandalf Proud

Press play and read on. “And 3, 2, 1… seeee yaaa….” *imagine a calm and nonchalant Kiwi tone* “Go?!” *1 second hesitation before jumping* And that was how I flew in the air like a bird, for a whole two seconds before I was dunked into the turquoise waters of the Kawarau River in Queenstown. Bungee … Continue reading

How Australia Stole My Heart Unexpectedly

How Australia Stole My Heart Unexpectedly

Press play and read on. Maybe it’s because I let the opinions of others influence me. Maybe it’s because I never thought about living in Australia. Maybe it’s because I didn’t have clear-cut expectations. Or maybe it’s because I’ve been slightly very much cut off from most of the world since moving to New Zealand … Continue reading

Wading in Wellington Waters

Wading in Wellington Waters

The sun is shining, not a cloud in the bluest of skies on a perfect day in Wellington. Glancing from my flat to the water sparkling right next to it, I decide to go for a swim. After all, it’s my last Monday here. “My body will just get used to the frigid waters and … Continue reading

Under the Sea: The Great Barrier Reef

Under the Sea: The Great Barrier Reef

Press play and read on. Two days ago, I dove The Great Barrier Reef, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. I saved the best for last on my vacation (and am choosing to write about this first since it was the most incredible experience). It was probably one of the key reasons I … Continue reading

Life Begins at the End of Your Comfort Zone

Life Begins at the End of Your Comfort Zone

19 days of vacation (from a vacation). 10.5 days of the Adrenalin (Kiwi spelling) Junkie tour with Haka Tours. 12 days in New Zealand, 8 days in Australia. 2,4500+ iPhone photos. 1,000+ GoPro photos & videos. 580+ Canon Powershot photos. 6 airports. 3 activities cancelled due to inclement weather. First time exploring Nelson, NZ and Brisbane, AUS … Continue reading