An Afternoon in Lincoln Park, Chicago

Continuing on with my series of posts that I never posted. I have one from my trip to the USA in October 2016. I got to visit Chicago, rural Illinois and Miami.

While I was in Chicago for one day, I not only wanted to see the city, but I also wanted to have a look at the inner suburbs, as I feel like these are usually where "real life" happens. I basically just Googled which neighborhoods were cool, and made a random pick. This is how I ended up in Lincoln Park.

I wandered around, looking in the cute shops and just enjoying the architecture and the Halloween decorations on the doorsteps.
The architecture in Lincoln Park, a suburb of Chicago, was lovely!
Lincoln Park

Sport pumpkins

Gorgeous fall decorations in Lincoln Park Chicago
This doorstep <3











Dotonbori - Osaka

Continuing on from my long lost draft blog posts I never published, we have Osaka!

about a year and a half ago, we had one of our best trips in Japan, when we went to Kyoto and Koya-san over a week in November. It was a gorgeous time of year with the autumn colours! We spent the first night of our trip in Osaka, before catching the train to Koya-san early the next morning.

Because we were only there for one night, we chose a hotel in the Dotonbori area, which is definitely a must if you want to be right in the nightlife and action of Osaka. We basically walked out of our hotel, straight into a busy shopping arcade!

Enjoy the photo highlights below:



Side streets

PUPPIES!

I can't resist a UFO catcher.







Can't go to Osaka and not see the Glico Man!

Family selfie lols

Fugu

So many lights
If you want to look back over the rest of the posts from this trip, feel free:


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The perfect way to spend one night in Osaka is in Dotonbori. The liveliest and most fun area of Osaka, whether travelling alone or with family, you will never get bored!

Autumn in Melbourne


Autumn/Fall colours in Melbourne are glorious!
Those colours!
We've finally moved into our new apartment and we are seriously in love! It's more spacious and pretty than our rental, and we're right in the heart of Brunswick East so we can walk out our door to hundreds of amazing restaurants and bars, but our complex is really quiet. It's like a little oasis ion a busy area.

It also means we've got new parks to explore! Melbourne is in full autumn glory at the moment! I mean look at the colours!

<3





University of Melbourne campus in Autumn
University of Melbourne


Shuri Castle, Naha Okinawa

I just discovered some hidden drafts of blog posts I meant to finish writing or publish when I was still living in Okinawa. 

This one was my second visit to Shuri Castle in Naha, and much better weather than the first time I visited!. I can't believe how small little G looks in these pictures, and I can't believe we've almost been back in Australia for a year!

Enjoy the photos, while I have pangs of missing the simpler and warmer life in Okinawa, while i'm freezing here in Melbourne.


Shuri Castle in Okinawa is a must visit, especially on a sunny day!





The gorgeous red stripes on Shuri Castel. It looks so different to Castles on mainland Japan
Love the red stripes outside the red castle!




Some snacks at the Teahouse




He's so little here!
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Shuri Castle is a must-visit in Okinawa. It is a very different looking castle than what you will see on mainland Japan and the grounds are gorgeous with views over Naha.

Secluded camping near Melbourne

This past weekend, we finally got our act together, the weather forecast was perfect, and we headed off for a camping trip. Of course, we only decided we were definitely going to go camping a few days before, and I totally forgot it was a public holiday, meaning all the usual and popular camping sites around Melbourne were fully booked! I was starting to despair because we had promised the little man we would go, but eventually stumbled across Youcamp, which had places available. This is not a sponsored post, but I wanted to give a shout out to Youcamp anyway. It's kind of like AirBnB for camping,in that people can advertise their land for people to camp on!

We wanted somewhere not too far from Melbourne, because we were only going for one night, and we found a couple of options. We settled on Seven Hills Tallarook because it was pet friendly and seemed to have a decent amount of good reviews.

Having no idea what to expect, we drove out there on Saturday morning, were met by our hosts when we arrived (after driving a few kilometres down gravel roads), and they recommended a hilltop campsite for us and then drove us to our site (while we followed in our car). Our campsite was lovely, on top of a hill with some great views, a picnic table and plenty of shade under a huge tree. These camp sites were all without any facilities, so beware you need to either bring your own portable toilet (or hire one from the hosts) or do as we did, and squat.

Being in the middle of nowhere on a farm, and with no other campers around, was lovely. Also, the stargazing was incredible! We saw one kangaroo at sunset, but didn't spot any other animals while we were there. When we woke up the next morning though there were a ton of fresh poops around, so we must have had a lot of visitors while we were sleeping! It was a totally different experience than our camping adventures in Okinawa, and looking over the dry landscape really made me think of how different Australia is!

If you really want to get away for the weekend, cheaply and not too far from Melbourne, and you don't mind roughing it a bit, I definitely recommend having a look on Yourcamp and seeing what is around. 

Seven Hills Tallarook
This is Australia
Camping at seven hills Tallarook
Our trusty tent, all the way from Okinawa

Perfect climbing tree

Camping in Australia, you might get a visit from some of the local wildlife
Spot our sunset visitor

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