I’m trying not to feel too sad about the fact I have to leave Australia, possibly forever. I considered making a list of all the things I’m NOT going to miss about Oz but that would be a pretty short blog post. Instead, here are my 14 favourite things about Australia that I’ll miss most!
I’ve been lucky enough to spend the majority of my time in Australia living next to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Western Australia and Queensland have my favourites and I’ll only cope with the loss of lazy days on white sand by seeking out the best beaches of South East Asia.
I’ve grown so used to earning 20-32 AUD hourly working in hospitality that I expect it’s ruined me for wherever else I end up working. Australian wages are amazing and more than make up for the higher cost of living. I can only imagine how many thousands of dollars I’d have saved if there weren’t so many amazing bars and restaurants here…
To be honest, the past few months in Margaret River have been up and down weather-wise. I still dream of the days in Bowen, Queensland where I saw rain ONCE in 6 months and didn’t need to check the weather report. It was safe to assume that it would be beach-worthy weather daily. On the whole though, the weather everywhere in Australia has been incredible and I’m not looking forward to winters that can’t be spent at the beach.
4. Cycling in Margaret River
I’m so happy I brought my favourite bike to Margaret River after my last visit to the UK. There are endless cycling trails and off-road routes to explore through vineyards and forests. It’s the best place I’ve ever had the chance to cycle through!
Xiru is the cutest Border Collie cross puppy in the world and he belongs to my housemates. After living here for six months, I have no idea what I’m going to do without daily puppy love. He even knows me by name! All Tim has to do is say ‘find Imogen’ and he’ll fetch me from wherever I am in the house. Man, I’m even going to miss waking up to him jumping on my face!
If I thought I liked wine before I came to Australia, I love it even more now! Working in places where people are crazy passionate about their wines and having the chance to try out countless types has definitely helped.
Australians are completely obsessed with avocado. They put it on everything and I’m certainly not complaining. That said, avocados are insanely expensive here and I’m looking forward to living somewhere I can actually afford to eat them as much as I like (i.e. for every single meal of the damn day.)
It still feels weird to me to be in a place where there are wild animals almost as tall as me just hopping around everywhere. Coming from a place where we don’t have to think long and hard about driving at night because there’s zero chance that something the size of a human is going to jump out into the road and come flying through your windscreen, it’s pretty incredible to see kangaroos out and about on the daily.
9. Colourful birds
Australia has the most colourful common birds! Lorikeets, parrots and cockatoos are way prettier than pigeons. I love the pink and grey galahs that hang out by our house. Magpies, however, can f*ck right off.
10. Iced coffee
I was so used to the (frankly disappointing) iced lattes I ordered daily from Starbucks so when I had my first iced coffee in Australia, I was shocked- in a good way! Iced coffees are meant to be huge and full of ice cream, preferably with chocolate syrup! Sure, you get more of a sugar high than a caffeine rush but it’s worth it.
11. Australia Day
What’s not to love about a day that’s full of BBQ food, Triple J’s Top 100 and far too much beer with friends?!
Western Australia will forever be the place I learned to love whisky! Starting in Perth, I was lucky enough to have a manager who believed in a hands-on approach to learning about alcohol. Then, when Tim and I moved to Margaret River, I was introduced to Limeburners’ single malts, some of the best whiskies produced in Australia. I’d been missing out on a whole load of good booze for years!
13. Cottesloe, Perth
Tim and I had zero semblance of a routine while we were living in Perth so my favourite days were the rare ones we both had off work because we often ended up doing the same thing- we’d get the train to Cottesloe and walk up this road lined by trees and imagine living in one of the beautiful houses there. Then we’d go to this lovely cafe on the seafront for bacon and avocado on toast, followed by a walk along the beach talking about what life would be like if we had the chance to live in Australia permanently. I miss Cottesloe!
14. Temper Temper Chocolate
Our house in Margaret River is a minute walk away from Temper Temper, a gourmet chocolate shop and cafe with free wifi and free chocolate samples. I’m not sure if I’ll ever get so lucky (or fat) again. This place is heaven- there are dozens of varieties and we’ve attempted to try them all! My favourite is the milk chocolate with honeycomb while Tim loves the white chocolate with orange oil.