Occupation: Traveler / Human Resources Manager
Thank you for your time Theresa, could you give us a quick introduction about yourself?
I was born and raised in Germany. A few years ago I decided to take a leap and move to Hamburg, also known as the most beautiful city in the world. According to Radio Hamburg that is, though I strongly agree with them. When I think back to my childhood, I vividly remember the days spent at my grand mother’s farm, the day trips with my dad and the countless days with the horses.
It was not always clear to me what I wanted to do with my life but I have always tried to pursue my passions. In fact, I had completed vocational training related to fashion which was and still is one of my favourite past times besides travelling.
Nonetheless, I have always been in pursuit of THE dream – how do I make a living whilst living my life outside of an office from dusk till dawn and at the same time doing something which brought some sense into my life the way I wanted it to be?
We love Hamburg!
Where are you in the world currently?
In Australia, I’m on my working holiday visa since June 2018. I started in Darwin and was working as an live in AuPair. I did some trips to the Litchfield and Kakadu National Park and also to Alice Springs where the Ayers Rock is.
Melbourne was nice, I stayed in a Hostel in St. Kilda, which is a nice area close to the beach and the city.
Before I went to Sydney I did a day trip by bus along the great ocean road. I’ve been to Sydney for Christmas and New Year’s Eve, it was amazing. Then by car to Surfers Paradise – I had the best time there. The people, the beaches and the vibe is awesome.
I really wanted to stay at the Gold Coast but it was hard to get a job there. Now I’m in the middle of nowhere, around 3 hours north from Adelaide, to complete my 88 days of farm work, to get my 2nd year visa and that’s definitely what I want.
Good luck on the Visa! 😀
Where else do you plan to get to this year?
Im planning to visit Fiji, Bora Bora and the Cook Islands. Im also planning to do a little road trip in Italy and afterwards off to Hawaii for a few month before I go back to Australia.
Sounds a beautiful few places!
What has been your all time favorite place?
There are so many beautiful places in the world but one country really surprised me and stood out which was Norway. It’s so different to other countries. The nature is breathtaking and during the summer time the sun is up the whole day. I definitely recommend a speed boat tour through the fjords and you may even see the northern lights in the winter time! Usually I like it better in warm destinations with nice beaches but Norway was amazing. The highlight while there was when I climbed up the Preikestolen and the trip to the north cape.
The Northern Lights should be on everyone bucket list!
How many countries have you visited?
I’ve visited almost 40 countries. I’m using the app “Travello” to have always a good overview about my travels.
I remember my early trips very vividly, exploring some of the best spots in Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. I was fascinated by positive vibes in these countries and seeing how happy people were even though they lead a relatively poor life. Kind of makes you question a lot of your life choices….
The travel bug I was then infected with, pushed me to take a job on a cruise liner which aside from giving me the opportunity to see some of the most mesmerising places in the world, it also helped me finance additional travels in my free time. With this big ship, we floated along the coasts of America and Northern Europe, with stop overs in Iceland and Greenland as well.
I was lucky enough to spend days basking in the sun on dream beaches, a private flight over the great blue hole in Belize, sipping margaritas in Mexico and the Caribbean as well as countless days in the vibrant New York city.
Back home in Germany, I took an office job but in the meantime I still planned several short trips to different cities and places in Europe to have a break from the mundane office routine. In particular, was a trip to Stromboli and trekking up the volcano – a once in a life time moment, watching three craters erupt with lava at the same time.
It was just a matter of time until I got bored sitting at a desk all day and less than a year ago I purchase my one way ticket to Australia with a stop over in Indonesia for a month – relaxing doing yoga and simply enjoying life the best way I know how.
Being on the move all the time is not as easy as depicted in the several instagram accounts, which of course tend to report only the good stuff. I have since then embraced these moments too because after all, that is how life really is.
That is a great list of places!
Could you share your all time favorite travel photo?
I’ll never forget that view when I arrived at this magical place called Railey Bay. It is in Thailand and you can only reach it by boat. This place is actually the beginning of everything.
I relaxed on the beach and felt so free. It was quiet and there wasn’t many other people around, only my best friend and I.
I sat up and said to her, that I do not want to do anything anymore what not makes me happy and how I would love to quit my job and explore the world. That was years ago and I know that this place has changed a bit and is may not what it once was, but I had the perfect moment there and felt what I really want and need in life.
That looks stunning – Beautiful photo!
What is your top backpacking tip?
Don’t take your favorite clothes with you and only to pack light! The washing machines in the hostels are horrible and after a while your clothes get very worn out because you wear them a lot more than usual. Doesn’t really matter if you forget to pack something because I’m sure you can get everything you need in different countries for a good price.
What is your backpack?
I bought my backpack years ago online. It’s a low cost variant of the original German Bundeswehr Combat Backpack, a very simple one. Probably not the healthiest thing for the back but I’m still happy with it and I put lots of flag patches from all over the world on it so it’s not just a backpack anymore, it’s full of memories.
Which thing should every backpacker carry with them?
There are a few things like a spare backpack (Day pack), the ones you can fold very small. It’s space saving and you can use it for day trips or as hand luggage. If you planning to travel a lot by boat or where you may get wet, just choose a waterproof one (Dry Bag).
Another good thing to have is a Sarong, which is more for girls. I bought mine in Bangkok years ago and I use it as a blanket on the plane, plus as a beach towel while sunbathing and as a dress or I just use it as a pillow incase the one in the hostel is too bad to sleep on it.
Sarongs are so multi-purpose!
What has been your favorite food whilst away?
While traveling I always love eating different fruits, like Watermelon, Pineapple, Strawberry and so on. It is just the perfect food at the beach or pool and it’s super healthy. At the moment they’re all doing these yummy fruit & veggie bowls everywhere or fresh fruit shakes, that’s exactly what I want… I’m addicted!
Fruit is always a great choice!
What has been your most exciting experience whilst away?
It was an amazing and sad experience all in one… The hurricane Joaquin around the Bermuda Triangle in 2015 was epic but It also showed me that we should enjoy every minute of our life’s, because not everyone survived….
I was working on a cruise liner and the ship was supposed to leave the Bermuda islands at 6pm that day, but because of the bad weather situation the captain decided to leave earlier and not to go straight back to Miami. We got information that the hurricane may cross our path, that’s why we rerouted and choose a longer way back along the caribbean islands, but we were still close to the hurricane. I never saw such amazing colours in the sky and the sound of the storm was so powerful.
The weather was pretty crazy and the sea was very rough, I was a bit worried that something may happen which it did. Unfortunately we got some very sad news a few days later, the cargo ship “el faro” didn’t make it… The ships captain made the decision not to rerouted like every other ship in that area and got hit by the hurricane. The crew of 33 people and the El Faro are still missing. Only a few of the ship wreck Pieces were found.
That sounds crazy!
Do you have a soundtrack to your travels?
Do you have any words of advice or inspiration for anyone undecided about travelling?
So, cut the questions starting with “what if…” out of your life! You are still on this planet, you can go back home at anytime. After traveling you will have so many different opinions and experiences about things than before. You will see how unimportant some things are and it will put other things into perspectives.
We agree completely!
Is there anywhere left where would you like to visit?
Whenever I see photos of Hawaii I get wanderlust. It looks like the landscape is wrapped in a magical veil of mist, it’s amazing. The beaches and nature look so breathtaking, it’s definetly a place that I would love to visit. If anyone has already been there then I would love to hear about your experience, so send me a PM on instagram @theresalila and tell me about the best spots like views, restaurants, trips, beaches and so on… i would be glad to hear from you.
Finally, What quote do you try to live by?
“Your life is a result of choices you make… if you don’t like your life it is time to start making better choices”
Thank you for your time Theresa, some brilliant words, stories and advice.
Please follow Theresa on Instagram, to keep up to date with her travels: @theresalila