I joke that the reason I became a travel writer was to escape the Victorian industrial town of my birth. Eventually, many years and circuitous turns later – including stints as a grape picker in France, a dancer in a Bolivian folkloric dance troupe and a volunteer in Peru, plus a two years working in Mozambique — I eventually became a full-time travel writer.
Currently, I divide my time between Australia, Washington DC and Mexico. I have contributed to over 30 Lonely Planet guidebooks and trade titles and have been published in the Sydney Morning Herald, Sun-Herald, West Australian, Get Lost Magazine and online at lonelyplanet.com and BBC Travel, as well asLonely Planet magazine and Daily Telegraph (UK).
I’m a member of the Australian Society of Travel Writers (ASTW) and the National Press Club in Washington DC.
While I love the odd bit of luxury, I am equally happy experiencing the less ‘pointy’ end of trips. My “Explorer Quotient[TM]” (think Myers Briggs score of travel types devised by the Canadian Tourism Commission) defines me as an ‘Authentic Experiencer’ – someone who looks for ‘authentic, tangible engagement with destinations’.
I think they’ve nailed it. An intrepid traveller, I regularly head off solo and write about any countries, though am a repeat visitor to South Africa, Bolivia, Mexico, Canada, Portugal, Greece and my home country, Australia.
Recent highlights include walking along Costa Vicentina on Portugal’s west coast, with donkey in tow, hiking in the Chimanimani National Park in Zimbabwe and flying over Mount Elias Mountain Range in Canada, part of the world’s largest non-polar ice-field.
Highlights aside, it’s simple really: I love being curious. Connecting with people. Participating in their everyday lives. Talking with them. Eating with them. Dancing with them. Learning from them. And capturing my experiences in words.
- Finalist ASTW Award 2010 for Best International Story under 1000 words
- Winner ASTW Award 2011 Best Australian Story over 1000 words