Travel

Kata Tjuta and Hiking the Valley of the Winds

03/11/2018

Another great site to visit while you are in the Red Centre – is Kata Tjuta (also known as the Olgas). A group of large, ancient rock formations, about 30 kilometres away (roughly a 40 minute drive) west of Uluru, and is also a sacred place to Aboriginal people. The name Kata Tjuta translates into “many heads”, and it is no surprise as it is made up of 36 domes spread over an area of more than 20 kilometres!

Kata Tjuta is a sacred site for men in the Anangu Aboriginal culture(Anangu women do not go to Kata Tjuta)  and many of the legends surrounding this place are kept secret. This also spiked our interest, so we wanted to go there and do one of the allowed hikes that are open to public. The amazing rock formations can be seen from the side of the road as well, from is a viewing area on your way there.

Valley of the Winds Walk

As I mentioned, there are two walks that you can choose from – A Walpa Gorge walk, or the Valley of The Winds walk (which could also be done either as a full circle, or  only some parts of the walk). But I highly recommend doing the full circle – it is more demanding, but if you are prepared (early start, lots of water, a hat and a sunscreen), you should be ok. This is a great way to see the beauty of the region, and afterwards you will feel a big sense of accomplishment!

We arrived there at around 9 o’clock in the morning and it already felt warm (and there is a warning that if the temperatures exceed 36 degrees Celsius, the walk is closed after 11 AM just to be safe), but we also got to experience the true meaning of this valley! In some parts of it – mostly in the beginning – there were fierce gusts of wind, so getting too hot wasn’t a problem anymore. Keeping my hair in a proper condition, though – was 😀

So we did the full loop, with some stops along the path, mostly gazing at that read colour of the rock formations and the contrasting green trees and bushes. We also stopped at the Karu lookout for that insta shot – *worth it*!

    

I don’t think I have seen this much red colour in my life in nature – that’s where the name for Red Centre comes from, I guess!

A short stop for a photo and water break, and later on – down into the valley.

 

Almost done! See those thin lines on the mountain? It’s where the rain water flows, forming waterfalls – and it is said to be a spectacular sight. We didn’t manage to see this as the weather was sunny all the time. You know, I love my sun, so no complaints here 😉 But I would love to see mother nature doing all kinds of wonders in a place like this – so hopefully we will visit again one day!

Oh, and there’s Uluru, on our way back from Kata Tjuta…

Love, V.

♥️

Travel

Exploring Uluru – A 10km Walk in The Red Centre

02/11/2018

A trip to Uluru requires a bit more exploring – so I am happy we had two nights and two days planned there. As much as we enjoyed the sunsets and sunrises, we also wanted to be a bit more active – to do a hike or a walk of some kind. Good thing you can do just that at Uluru! It is known that you can still* climb this rock, but aboriginal traditional owners ask you not to do this as this place is sacred and of great importance to them. I always try to be respectful  when it comes to things like these, so I was very happy that the climb was closed due to high winds (…because I have an adventure junkie with me, who would have liked to see the views from above).

But we chose a second best option – to do a base walk around Uluru. It is nearly 10 km in total, and could be done in about 3,5 hours. Without being in a rush, stopping at points of interest and taking it easy – I think we did just that (or maybe a little less). It seemed much longer, though – because it was midday, with the sun high up in the sky, which made it a bit harder. So here’s a tip for you, guys – plan your trip accordingly – try to start a walk or a hike as early as possible (morning, preferably) and carry enough of water with you!

So we walked along the way, stopped at some points of interest – some of them asks you to not take any photographs (which I respected) – and basically soaked up the beauty of this place. It was demanding, but truly worth it. So if you are something like us – I think you would enjoy this experience also. After this, we were tired – but in a good way – and ready for another sunset session!

There’s a little bat hiding in the middle hole. Can you spot it? Oh hey there, little fella! Fun fact: Did you know that what we see today are just the tips of huge rock slabs that continue below the ground for up to six kilometers!**

I hope this will help you when deciding on what to do at Uluru – and you would take all aspects into consideration. Let’s be mindful travelers! This world has so much beauty to offer – we just have to be respectful about it.

(*In November 2017 the land-mark decision was made by the Traditional Owners of this land and the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Board to close the climb for good. Effective 26 October 2019, marking the 34th anniversary of the Uluru hand-back, the climb will be closed. https://www.ayersrockresort.com.au/ )

**Information from  https://northernterritory.com/

Love, V.

♥️

Travel

Off the Bucket List – the Beautiful Uluru!

31/10/2018

What keeps you going on these darker, colder autumn evenings? For me, it’s our amazing memories from all the travels that we had! And at the moment, I have some notifications popping up in my Facebook feed (oh, what a time to be alive, haha!) about our trip to Australia/around the world  last year. I started writing some posts back in March, but I had to hold back on that. As of now, I feel that I want to share everything – of course it takes some time to fully roll into this blogging life – and the first words are the hardest to write when you open a new “Post” page, but bare with me 😉

My last post about our Australian experience was about a hike to Kings Canyon – a place of interest just before you come to Uluru. The same morning, after doing the hike, we headed to – oh yes, you guessed it – the red centre, to see this beautiful, weird, massive monolith that attracts so many people from all over the world.

So this time, last year

…we were preparing to watch one of the most beautiful sunsets of our life. After securing a spot at a campground, we immediately went to  one of the viewing spots (I think we had a good 1,5 hours left until sunset – but there were people waiting already!). So we parked our car and joined the audience 🙂 Every moment was worth the wait. As the sun was setting down, the formation started changing colours – from burnt orange, to brownish ochre, to intense red  – a true feast for the eyes! And cameras, of course – we were snapping some pictures, I am not gonna lie, but we also had plenty of time to enjoy the view.

It is very difficult to express how I felt exactly in that moment – but I remember being very calm and happy – this was my serenity. My run away from everything – my place.

I can honestly say that this memory is imprinted into my mind for life – it happened a year ago – but I still see it in full colours. I think my better half agrees with me on this one 😉 Hopefully, you will agree with me too, after seeing these views…

How beautiful is this? Or maybe I am a sunset nerd, who knows 😀 I believe there are many of us, haha – we should definitely start a club, or something, so raise your hand, if you wanna join! #SunsetLovers

Talk to you very soon ;)*

p.s. have you been to Australia? Would you like to visit? Tell me everything – I want to know!

Love, V.

♥️

Life

Weekend in Pics

28/10/2018

And here we are – yet another Sunday evening. Is it just me, or the time is flying? It definitely looks like that 🙂 Anyway, we finally got to enjoy the real autumn weather – with all the crispiness in the air, lots of sunshine and leaves falling from trees (you know, the last ones, that were still hanging 😀 ). And what did we do? We went OUT of the house, of course.

Saturday was spent walking. Lots and lots of walking which I really love. Like 22 000 steps of walking! We were pooped out afterwards, but I am not complaining. It’s a good feeling to come back home after an active day outside, make yourself a nice dinner and have a glass of wine (or two). 😉 Oh, and cozy up with a blanket and some romantic comedy.

Today we decided to just drive around and visit other places – a bit further from home. It was like a little roundtrip and location hunting for photography – basically for fun, for ourselves – because I needed to take a mental break from everything else. When I think about the tasks that are still waiting for me and all the deadlines, I tend to overthink and eventually burn out. But as I mentioned in previous blogs, I am trying to let go of it and do other things that actually help.

We wanted to take pictures on Hardanger bridge, and maybe fly a drone there, but it was so windy and cold, that we were like ”eeem, nope”. Instead, we drove to Voss – a very cozy town, and just spent our time there. Walks, tea, and sunshine. I call it a success!

Night night, talk to ya next time ;)*

Forrest makes me calm.

Sunday shenanigans   

Love, V.

♥️

Travel

USA road trip with friends! – travel video

21/10/2018

Hey! I told you I like to write posts in the evening, haha. My weekend was very long and a bit tiring(work), but still – I wanted to post something today. There was a different blog post in plans, but it definitely can wait, because I have something special  – a travel video from our recent trip to USA (thanks to Martynas – one of our travel companions – for making it-it is his point of view, and all I can say is – we have to step up 😀 )! We went there in August and, well, we had a really good time. A freakin‘ good time! Road tripping along the coast of California, stuffing our faces with In-N-Out burgers, enjoying the views, exploring, waking up early (sorry, guys…but not really :D), hiking and much more… Did I mention we had a good time? But enough of me talking, just check out the video – I promise you, it is worth it 😉

Have a great Sunday evening, talk to you soon ✨

Our travel gang 👫👫: @martynasstonys, @bangabalnaite, @giedriusgedrimas, @viktorija.ge

Love, V.

♥️