Hello! Welcome to the Curvaceous Traveller!
As the main writer for this website, let me tell you my story.
(I will be opening this site up to guest writers later on, and so by then, this will be a different kind of page…)
Who am I?
My name is Tara. (Pronounced ‘Tahra’, not Tera.) I am an Aussie ‘girl’ who moved to America in my 20s and moved home again to Australia in my 40s.
I am now at the end of that decade in age, but somehow I don’t feel that old. Maybe it’s because I travel full time? I have been travelling full time since March 2017 and, let me tell you, that’s a long bloody time living out of a suitcase! But, I’ve always wanted to travel so I really can’t complain. I can’t remember ever NOT wanting to travel. While life has thrown me some curveballs, the one constant has always been travel.
When, in 2017, my nest became empty, I decided it was time to live the way I’d always dreamed of living. I had lived that ‘white picket fence’ life (quite literally in fact) and hated it. And I mean HATED it.
I am not one to live up to other people’s expectations, to be something I’m not and I’m far from ‘perfect’. So why try and live up to those standards? I would rather be, and I cringe as I say this, authentically me.
So, I travel full time, living my life on my own terms.
I’m am also plus size woman which brings it’s own challenges when travelling.
I mean, the idea of ‘picking (insert clothing item here) on the road’, if it’s been forgotten or suddenly needed, is one that really irks me. Have you tried buying a plus-size swimsuit while travelling? Seriously, it is not an easy task.
Or buying lightweight, breathable clothing for an 800km walk across Spain when you have no address to ship to? It’s a real life challenge to find anything over size 12 in retail outlets for such an adventure.
And the notion of ‘retail therapy’ is my idea of hell…unless it has to do with office supplies.
I’d rather de-stress being anywhere near water. Or hiking in a gorgeous location. Or travelling somewhere I’ve always dreamed of exploring.
(Phew! Moving on…)
So, where have I been on my travels (to give you an idea of how much content I have yet to write)?
Before I began travelling full time, I have been to Italy twice, Ireland three times, travelled extensively throughout the United States (including a 13-day, 10-state road trip). I’ve been to Scotland, England and Wales and I’ve spent a great deal of time exploring the east coast of Australia.
Then I started travelling full time and it’s been like travel on steroids:
- In 2017 I completed a 10 month road trip with my partner, driving throughout Australia, primarily from Sydney to Perth (Australia) and return, ending in Tasmania.
- In 2018 I spent 9 months of it travelling solo. I:
- Road tripped through New Zealand on a DIY tiki-tour for 5 weeks, solo.
- Drove for 3 weeks from San Francisco to L.A., across to Texas via the Grand Canyon and Santa Fe, and then north to Chicago. Again, solo.
- Spent five days exploring the south coast of Iceland. My partner flew 40 hours from Tasmania to Iceland to join me for the week (!!!).
- Spent about two months on and off exploring the southern part of England, solo.
- I walked 800km across Spain completing the Camino Frances, aka the Camino de Santiago. Another solo adventure.
- I spent three weeks in Japan with my daughter, exploring Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka.
- I spent 2.5 months discovering parts of the U.S. I’ve not seen in a while including Chicago, Portland and Santa Fe, as well as Canada, this time with my partner-in-crime. (I’m just going to call him Rich or my PIC.)
- And we somehow, after all that, we ended the year again, back in Tasmania. (I think we like Tasmania).
How can I afford to travel full time?
- I am a housesitter. I am a member of a few housesitting services, which means I look after homes and/or pets in exchange for accommodation and utilities. I am not paid to do this, but it keeps my travel expenses down. I have completed 20 housesits all over the world including many in Australia, England, the United States and Canada.
- I own and manage a couple of websites, which diversifies my income.
- I worked in a corporate job for over 20 years, which allowed me to build a nest egg. One which keeps me afloat when the above doesn’t cut it.
You can read more about how I travel full time here.
How long do I plan on travelling?
My travel plans are indefinite.
I have made some plans for 2019, which includes housesitting in England, another Camino Wander (800km walk across Spain), and time to explore Portugal and France. After that, I need to slow it down some, as I need to get some writing done! Travelling at the speed I have, which I don’t recommend by the way, doesn’t permit time or bandwidth to write well.
Plus, I’d love to unpack my suitcase for more than a few days! So I will most likely park myself somewhere for 6 months, before planning the next adventure. But the mega adventure continues.