Emer from Emer There & Everywhere is one gutsy girl. Packing up her London life to book a one-way ticket to Asia is a huge jump. And as you’ll read below it’s one she’s never looked back on. I don’t blame her. It’s every wanderlust (actually probably every persons) ultimate dream. I love reading about people who have followed their itchy travel feet and gone in search of a long term adventure. Although technically I’ve done the same I always feel a bit of a cop out as the English culture isn’t really that dissimilar to the Aussie culture, but for Emer going from Cork to London to then Asia must have been a huge culture shock. Reading her posts and looking at her photos on Instagram she’s embraced it all and seen so many sights and experienced things that many of us only dream of. This is what life is all about. Taking risks, doing what you need to do, having fun and seeing the world.
I’ve been following Emer’s adventures for some time now and one of the posts I loved of hers is this one. Two reasons why- 1) there is an AMAZING photo of the sun setting by Red Mountain Winery. Looking at this picture I feel completely transported to sitting on the hill drinking wine watching the sun set over the beautiful landscape. The atmosphere of that moment oozes out of the screen and 2) Inle lake sounds like a great place to explore. I’ve never heard of it before and is now one place I’ll be putting on my list.
She is now down in my neck of the woods at the moment, in New Zealand and I am loving her pictures on Instagram. New Zealand is a truly spectacular country and with Emer’s style of writing, it’s going to make for awesome reading when she uploads her posts. Reading her posts really feels like you are listening to a friend tell you their stories of their travels and once you know Emer is Irish just try not reading it in your head in an Irish accent. Here blog is a great find and I’m so glad I get to share it with you all.
So here is Emer from Emer There & Everywhere.
I’m originally from Cork, Ireland. I’ve always loved travel, but up until this year, I mostly travelled in relatively short bursts, as I’ve been living and working in London for the past 8 years. Having saved up a bit of money over the years, last year I decided maybe it was time to look at buying a flat in London because it just seemed like the next step. Only when I got to the point of viewing places did I realise that instead of feeling excited about the whole thing, I just felt worn out and stressed. Then I worked out that maybe the answer to not feeling 100% settled where I was in life was to make a change, not dig in deeper. So, I quit my job, packed my bags and booked a one-way ticket to Singapore. Nearly 5 months later I am in New Zealand with just my backpack and I haven’t looked back!
What do you enjoy most about travelling?
I love the variety. I like always having something new to do and see, people to meet, places to go. It’s a great way of getting out of your routine and doing something different.
Why do you think travelling is important?
I think travelling is something wonderful and fun you can do for yourself, which is important for everyone to do from time to time. Aside from that, I think travelling helps us to learn a bit more about the world we live in. Travel gives you a chance to see things and meet people you never would otherwise, and maybe even view and understand the world in a different way.
What is your favourite photograph from your travels.
Bagan. There are so many moments I’ll never forget about this particular trip, but seeing the sunrise and the balloons over the temples of Bagan was very special. I’d been fascinated by Myanmar for a long time, and it was wonderful to be able to go there. There is something about Bagan in particular that makes me feel calm and awestruck all at once, and this photo reminds me of that feeling.
Which is your favourite type of travel/holiday- sun, snow, sea, city, mountains, country?
Oh, that really depends… I absolutely love the mountains – give me a map and point me in the direction of a hiking trail and I am happy. But for me, you just can’t beat being near the sea. Whether it’s sunbathing on white sands with the waves lapping on the shore, scuba diving on a coral reef, or strolling along a windy seafront, the ocean just does it for me.
Who do you usually travel with?
I mostly travel alone! Sometimes I travel with family or friends, but I love the freedom and flexibility that solo travel gives you. I first took a trip on my own about 5 years ago before starting a new job. I had a few weeks off, really wanted a holiday and none of my friends were free, so I just took off to Hungary, Croatia and Barcelona and had the best time. Since then I’ve taken several short trips alone, but this current trip is the longest. I’ve been travelling for just over 4 months. I’m rarely on my own for long though; I’ve met lots of great people along the way and made some friends for life.
If you were to give one piece of travel advice what would it be?
Try to do as much as you can on your own steam. Tour companies make their money by taking a commission and passing on extra costs to you for organising something you can often do yourself. Also, for every agency or tour operator involved, the provider of the service gets less of the overall fee. So if you book a hike and a homestay with a tribal family from an agency, through your hostel, with pickup from a bus company, that’s three parties getting a cut before you even speak to your host family.
Sometimes there is no choice – e.g. If you want to climb a glacier or go diving on the Great Barrier Reef, you probably need a tour company to get you there. But, usually, there is a simpler and cheaper way for you to do it on your own, and generally, you’ll be rewarded with a more memorable, enjoyable and authentic experience.
Tell us the funniest story or a mishap from one of your adventures?
I’ve been fortunate enough to have avoided any major mishaps or misadventures so far, thankfully. Although, I did manage to drop my phone down a toilet in a hostel in Cairns recently. I was flying to NZ that day so didn’t have much time to dry it out. I was staying with a friend in Auckland, and when I arrived she offered me a bag of rice to stick the phone into dry it out. As I attempted to do this, I managed to spill most of the bag of rice all over her kitchen counter and floor. What a dream house guest!
Where is your favourite place that you’ve been to?
That’s a really hard one. Just to pick somewhere NOT from this particular trip, I’m going to say Barcelona. It’s a city I’ve been to a few times, and I’ve always had a great time. It’s got beautiful architecture, great food, the sunshine, wine, a beach, hiking and fabulous music festivals. What more could you want?!
Where was one place that didn’t live up to the hype?
I feel like your time in each place is what you make of it, and I try not to listen to the hype and just go and enjoy my time as best I can.
However, I will say that the one place that is totally different in photos compared to reality is Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Every time you see a photo of Angkor Wat at sunrise and think what a serene and wonderful moment that must be, know that there are about 500 other people surrounding the photographer, jostling for the perfect shot.
Tell us one place/experience on your bucket list?
Not really one place, but I’d like to spend some time travelling in South and Central America. I’ve only been to Argentina, so there’s a lot more to see! I don’t think I’ll get there on this trip, but I look forward to planning it when I get back…
What is the one thing you wouldn’t travel without.
A decent pair of running/walking shoes. I walk a lot when I’m travelling, and I try to get out for a run from time to time too. I find it’s a great way of keeping fit for free while travelling. Oh and a face cream with a high SPF.
What can readers find on your blog?
It’s a personal account of my travels so far, with plenty of pictures and tips along the way. As a solo traveller, I think a lot of the posts will probably resonate most with people travelling alone, or thinking about it, but hopefully here’s something for anyone with a bit of wanderlust.
To find more from Emer please check the links below