Today on World Travellers it’s the turn of a fellow Northern Irish globetrotter. Like myself, Abbi grew up in the six county Province, but has since been on a mega adventure exploring the planet. Abbi is an expert at travel within New Zealand, I “caught up” with her in between trips to South Korea, Wales, Northern Ireland and Australia (amongst other places) to get the lowdown on her worldly wanderings.
Who are you?
I’m Abbi, a 26 year old with a spirit of adventure and a passion to see as much of the world as possible.
Where are you from?
I was born in Northern Ireland, and lived most of my life in Coleraine, County Londonderry; on the north coast of Northern Ireland.
Where have you been?
My travels started when I was 17, and I took my first solo long haul flight to Philadelphia, USA to meet with a friend. I was hooked on travel after this point. Since then I’ve been to 19 different countries. I have explored a lot of Europe through church missions trips, and my own holidays. In 2012 I moved to New Zealand to live and work, this allowed me to explore more of Australia, Fiji and most recently South Korea.
Where are you now?
Currently, I am sat in the departure lounge at Incheon International airport in South Korea, having just flown back from London, following a three week trip for a friend’s wedding. I am due to fly onto New Zealand in a few hours time.
What are the top 3 places you have visited?
This is difficult as there are so many, but at this stage on all of my travels I’d pick 1.Lake Tekapo, New Zealand, 2. Yasawa Islands, Fiji and 3.Seoul, South Korea. Other countries worth a mention are Greece, Italy and Belgium.
What is the best travel experience you’ve had?
There are so many in a number of different countries, so I’ll do one from my top four.
1. Watching local Fijian men in a local fish drive in Fiji – this is done annual to provide for the village. It was so inspiring to see what they could do with natural resources and people power.
2.Bungy jumping in New Zealand, this is definitely on the list for most people who come to New Zealand
3. Also swimming with dolphins in Akaroa, New Zealand.
4.Cuddling a Koala bear in Australia. Quite typical tourist things, but none of which I’d do if I were at home.
What is the worst travel experience you’ve had?
Again there are a few:
1. Taking three days to travel from England to Northern Ireland, having to sleep on an airport bench until 5am.
2. Getting terribly lost in Seoul on my first night as I failed to print directions, I wandered around for an hour in sweltering heat with a heavy rucksack.
3. Arriving at a hostel in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand. A key was not provided for us, we had to squat in an open dorm room, got 3 hours sleep, had no food with us and almost missed a coach tour to Northland the next morning.
What is the scariest travel experience you’ve had?
Quite recently, I missed the last metro from Seoul station to the area I was staying in. I walked up to the street to try and flag a taxi and was met by hundreds of armed policemen with guns, wrestling a few people to the ground. It was just one of those moments that you said, I shouldn’t be here and I need to leave as quickly and safely as possible. It took me 10 minutes to flag down a decent English speaking taxi driver. I could have easily been driven anywhere, but I got back safely.
What is the most random job you’ve had on your travels?
I’ve never done any random jobs as yet; only worked as an Occupational Therapist. I am open to doing random jobs in random locations.
How do you fund your travels?
Working and saving as much as possible.
What are 3 tips you would give a new traveller before they set off on their adventure?
1. Be prepared to be as flexible as possible. Set out with a rough plan, but be aware that not everything will work out
2. Always leave travel plans and copies of important documents with a family member or friend
3. Always carry a spare change of clothes in your hand (carry on) luggage. I’ve done a few long haul flights and It has been amazing to have a shower in a transit lounge and change into fresh clothes. This is always a good idea if your luggage gets lost. This happened to me in Romania and it took 3 days to get back to me.
What are your future travel plans?
None currently booked, but planning on being in Australia at Christmas to tour around the South and Tasmania. The rest of the world is on my list. Countries I’d really love to see are Indonesia, India and South America.
Abbi Morrison is a Coleraine girl with an appetite for travel. Having left behind the green fields of Northern Ireland a long time ago, she loves life on the road. Abbi shares her passionate tales on her travel blog Life in a Rucksack and you can stay up to date with her on Facebook, and the links below. She is currently based in New Zealand.
Thanks to Abbi from Life in a Rucksack for being the latest in my series of World Travellers! If you travel the world and run a travel blog or are a travel writer, please get in touch, you can be featured (there’s a HUGE waiting list at present), either e-mail jonny (at) dontstopliving (dot) net or head to my contacts page and get connected! You can also subscribe to Don’t Stop Living by filling in the form below! Safe travels!