Right after classes had officially ended, and before exams started, Madison (another IES Abroad Student) and I decided to plan a trip to Australia.
Our trip got off to a bit of a rocky start. I was absolutely exhausted because I had NOT planned properly with how long a few of my assignments would take, and I ended up staying up the whole night before we left. I would most definitely not recommend leaving three essays to be completed within 36 hours. Anyway, we decided to just take a bus to the airport, because they usually run every fifteen minutes. However, we ended up hopping on the wrong bus (why the purple-colored bus was running the red line instead of the purple line I will never know) and had to make a few changes. No big deal.
Buuuut, when we got to the airport (with just an hour and a half left before our international flight), we realized that we completely forgot to get travel visas for Australia. In our defense, the people we spoke to about traveling there were all kiwis who didn't need a visa. That took another forty-five minutes to sort out, as well as Madison having to pay more fees to check her bag because it was over the weight and size limit for a carry-on.
Finally, we got on the plane (with milkshakes from McDonalds) and flew across the Pacific Ocean to Sydney. We spent less than a day there, shopping in the city for a little while, then walking through the Royal Botanic Gardens, before ending our night in a park near our hostel. By the way, if you ever go to Sydney I would definitely recommend Jackaroo Hostel - it's right in the central business district, and less than a half an hour walk from virtually everywhere.
The next morning was an early one, and we got on a 6:05 am flight to Cairns, where we spent the rest of the day walking around the Esplanade, hanging out with our fellow hostel-stayers (another great hostel - Mad Monkey), and watching thousands of bats fly out of the caves behind the town right at twilight. The next few days in Cairns were a blur of snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef (WOW!), touring through the Daintree Rainforest, and searching for crocodiles on the Daintree River. Our last day there was spent swimming in the esplanade, shopping, and learning how to play a didgeridoo by a very nice man at the Universal Joint.
Our last four days in Sydney saw us visiting the Opera house almost every night, and heading to Bondi Beach, the Australian Museum, Taronga Zoo, and Manley Beach. We had a lot of fun visiting the land down under, and I hope you enjoy the video I've put together with some of our favorite memories!
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Tessa Vande Creek
<p style="margin-bottom:12.0pt">Hi there! My name is Tessa, and I am junior at the University of Rochester double majoring in Film and Media Studies and Business. I was born and raised in Middletown, New Jersey and have traveled halfway around the world to study, backpack, and film my way through New Zealand. I'm so excited to share what I see with you. Get ready for a wild ride!<span style="text-autospace:none"><span style="font-size:16.0pt"><span style="font-family:"Times",serif"> </span></span></span></p>