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Saturday Showcase – Bitten By The Travel Bug

Last weeks Saturday Showcase saw the Bevster (or Beverley from Pack Your Passport as she’s more commonly known!) nominate Nicole for a good old emailing interview grilling – she’s been on my twitter feed for a while now so it was nice to properly catch up with her…

So Nicole – introduce yourself, who are you and where are you from?!

G’day! My names Nicole from Bitten by the Travel Bug. I’m a 21 year old University student from RADelaide (better known as Adelaide, Australia) who is currently plotting her next big escape in December!

You’ll usually find me on a plane flying between Adelaide and Melbourne – aka: flying between my hometown and University!

Tell us a bit more about your blog – how did it start and what kind of stuff do you banter about?

One night I was sitting in my room at College searching the Internet for information about working at American Summer camps and all I got were summer camp companies or people leaving testimonials about how “It was super duper great! I want to go back every year!”

What I was really searching for was something honest which told me “Yes, it’s great BUT…” (or I would probably have settled with a “NO! Run away!!!!”)

I’ve always enjoyed writing; I already take a million photos when I travel and I’ve been experimenting with video – why not create a travel blog?! And so with that, Bitten by the Travel Bug was born.

I’m still working on what my ‘niche’ is. At the moment I’m bantering about American Summer Camps, Australia (particularly Adelaide and Melbourne), and ‘Stingy’ September!

Time for your shameless plug – out of all your lovely blog posts what’s your fave an why?!

Oooh, toughie! I love my photo essay on The Coney Island Mermaid Parade the best!

It was the second day I was in New York travelling solo for the first time and I, despite a few bumps, managed to navigate my way to Coney Island. The parade symbolises the opening of the beach for the summer season, as well as being a gay & lesbian parade/family parade – kind of cool how they cater to everyone!

I spent the day getting sun burnt, watching the brilliant parade, chatting up cops (shh…) and got to eat my first American-sized McDonalds meal (not something I’m totally proud of!) All in all it was a great introduction to my 4-month visit to the US!

Tell us where about’s are you based at the moment – and give us a random fact!

Adelaide. Capital of South Australia. Population hovering below 2million.Home to the Tour DownUnder, Adelaide Fringe Festival and a great set of steel balls in the middle of our main shopping strip (yes, Adelaide is truly the city with balls!)

Random Adelaide fact: Despite being given the nickname ‘the City of Churches,’ Brisbane, Queensland has more churches than Adelaide. Don’t quote me on this but I’ve been told Adelaide was given the name ‘City of Churches’ because we were home to the most multi-denominational places of worship.

Oh, and the Y-Genration members know Adelaide as RADelaide, home of RADeladasaurus, our own personal dinosaur mascot!

What’s most treasured passport stamp – and indeed the one your most itching to get?

26th Dec 1991. Departed AUSTRALIA.

I wasn’t even 2-year-old and my parents had bundled me up on my first long-haul flight to Hong Kong.. and then twice more to Hong Kong and once to Singapore before my sister was born when I was five. My family loved visiting Hong Kong because it was a proper holiday – to a new ‘exotic’ location with a different language we didn’t understand, but Dad liked that people spoke English so the language barrier wasn’t too great.

From a young age I learnt that you could find Italian food, American-style fast food and Aussie Outback themed restaurants even amongst steamer baskets of dim sum, peking ducks hanging from windows and the freshest seafood I had ever seen (I was only two!) It was also on this trip that I tasted my first sip of red wine… and learnt that it puts me to sleep pretty quickly!

You have a pretty extensive and epic bucket list on the go – is that driving you to travel and experience more things?

The Travel Bug-ket List actually began because my desk and notebooks were cluttered with lists of places I wanted to visit which seemed to grow each time I talked to a friend, read articles or watched National Geographic!

My family have always taken very westernised holidays – Hong Kong, Singapore, America – and I haven’t really broken that mould yet but my Bug-ket list inspires me to break that mould and have the adventures I really crave.

I do love my cookie-cutter family holidays but I also want to do and see things my family and friends think are nuts – visit North Korea, swim with Great White Sharks or cycle on the worlds most dangerous road in La Paz, Bolivia.

Which item are you most stoked about ticking off – and what’s the top of the list to do next?

I only created the Travel Bug-ket list a few months ago, collaborating all my lists and after reading so many inspiring Bucket Lists. This means I’ve only ticked three items off. The most exciting item to date would defiantly be visiting Jamie Oliver’s restaurant ‘Fifteen’ on my last day in London. I’m so lucky that Dylan from the Travelling Editor is a passionate foodie and wanted to do this as well!

The item I most want to tick off would be working with Giant Panda conservation in China. Pandas are my favourite animals and I would like to know that I could, in some way, help protect these beautiful (and cute!) animals. But alas, my Panda dreams won’t be coming into fruition next – I’m off to spend New Years Eve in Times Square!

Out of all your lovely travel snaps I want you to pic the one you love the most – where’s it taken and why do you like it so much?

If I could pack my bags and move to another city tomorrow it would be New York so it’s kind of not surprising to me that my favourite picture is from there.

I was walking through the city during a New York ‘heat wave’ (New Yorkers should try living through an Aussie heatwave if they think 32degrees is hot!) and the sun had just began to set.

It was just this burning globe of light between the buildings and although it isn’t the best picture I’ve taken it’s just the memories associated with it that make it the best. It was the end to a hard but perfect summer. It was the end of spending every night for the past week ending up in Times Square at 3am spinning around in circles much to the Polices amusement, but it was the beginning to a wicked night of partying with my friends in the Big Apple!

Now you get to nominate the next blogger – who are you passing the torch too and why?

Ooh, I feel like I’m at the Olympics! I pass the torch on to…. Lynda from Live Travel Blog! She is the first Aussie travel blogger I met IN Australia, she’s a Disney fanatic and she has heaps of travel stories to share!

If you want to follow Nicoles antics and some fabulous photo essays head over to her twitter feed [@NicoleTravelBug] “like” her Facebook page or of course simply head over to www.bittenbythetravelbug.com