Francesco and I began our travels through Australia with a road trip through New South Wales, which makes a great jumping-off point if you’re new to the country.

We started in beautiful Sydney, with its instantly recognizable skyline dominated by the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Outside the city, though, we found ourselves captivated by the natural beauty and wildlife of this part of the country. There’s Bondi Beach, just outside the city, where you can swim, bask in the sun, and then head to one of the many nearby cafes and restaurants. We did a bit of climbing at Blue Mountains National Park to get views of the otherworldly Three Sisters, incredible rock formations that have significance for Australia’s aboriginal population. But one of the things that I was most eager to see in Australia was the wildlife! In NSW, Francesco and I were not disappointed. It’s a great place to explore a country famous for its animal life! We were able to get up close and personal with seals, kangaroos, and all manner of birds. Did I mention seals? At Montague Island Nature Reserve, loveable seals lounge along the coast, giving us a bucket list experience!