2020 didn’t go to plan.
As champagne bottles popped and fizzed across the country to ring in the new year, a raging inferno blazed in our backyard, destroying millions of hectares of bushland and with it thousands of homes. Then, just as the blackened apocalyptic skies passed, a global pandemic hit, changing forever the world we once knew.
COVID-19 has led to inconceivable tragedy, but for me, like many others, it brought about a more frivolous loss. 2020 was the year I planned to leave behind the nine-to-five and jet across the globe. I’d take a shoebox studio in Paris and write by day in a corner cafe; spend a few languid months under the Tuscan sun; maybe try my luck in The Big Apple, ice-skating in Central Park under Christmas lights.
Needless to say, those dreams have been parked. Instead, with Australia’s borders closed and international travel set for a seismic shift, I’m turning my attention to the bucket of wanderlust that awaits in our own backyard. Australia (and the potential trans-Tasman travel bubble) accounts for 5 per cent of this glorious lonely planet, a wonderland of red earth, pink skies and cerulean blue seas.
And it’s not just the stuff of outback adventures. We have luxurious stays, world-class food and fresh opportunities for conscious travel. Road-trip to bushfire-ravaged regions with an empty esky and full heart; tread lightly on the earth at exquisite eco retreats; and explore the nation’s rich Indigenous history via sacred sites.
Now is the time to get to know and appreciate this place we call home – before we’re all stamping our passports once more.
Lonely Continent was born from a desire to edit and elevate Australian travel content. Here you’ll find itineraries curated by stylish locals, hidden gems and holiday havens to add to your bucket list, inspiration-rich stories from the country’s best journalists, plus all the latest local travel updates.
Here’s to new adventures. Even if they weren’t what you originally planned.
Kathryn Madden is a journalist for marie claire by day and the editor of this platform by night. But Lonely Continent is not a one-woman show, built instead on recommendations and contributions from savvy and stylish Australians.