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Yamba NSW

Is Yamba Still the Best Town in Australia?

When I first moved to Newcastle I was not impressed. It struck me as dull and suburban, especially in contrast to London, where I’d most recently lived. Newy lacked the backpacker vibe I’d loved in Coffs, and if I wanted to get to the beach from my in-laws’ place, I had to drive. Like, in […]

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Coffs harbour NSW

Return to Coffs Harbour

I first arrived in Coffs on an overnight bus from Sydney, unaware that the town would play a pivotal role in my life. I planned to stay for weeks but stayed for months, extending my flight back to the US because I wasn’t ready to leave. It’s where I learned how to be a backpacker […]

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What I Learned from Housesitting for the First Time

There was a moment in the middle of our housesit, after the dogs got into the rat poison, one of the cows escaped, and a mouse fell victim to an unbaited trap in the kitchen, when I wondered if we’d taken on too much. What I’d initially pictured when we signed up to Aussie House […]

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Bowraville NSW

The Bounties of Bowraville

Bowraville will always stand out to me for the Coach House Inn, where you can (and should) eat the biggest, best veggie burger that ever existed. I know. That’s a bold claim, and I’ll defend it till the day I die. Or find a better veggie burger, whichever comes first. Jared and I stopped for […]

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Pub with no beer

A Surprise Twist to The Pub With No Beer

“There it is,” I shouted. “Good job,” Jared said. “You found it.” The pub with no beer is a historical landmark in Australia, made famous by a 1957 Slim Dusty song. ‘A Pub With No Beer’ was the first Australian single to go gold, and at that stage it was the best-selling record by an […]

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Crystal Falls Dorrigo

Dorrigo Rainforest: Better Than Fern Gully

Dorrigo National Park is the first rainforest I ever visited. I expected something out of Fern Gully, with dripping vines, giant flowers, and squawking birds the likes of which I’d never seen anywhere else. Except maybe on a box of Froot Loops. Dorrigo is more understated than the rainforest of my imagination. The only squawking […]

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