Welcome to Tracy’s Travels in Time
I’m Tracy a self-confessed travel addict. At present I am living in Brisbane Australia after relocating from the UK in 2017.
Although moving half way around the world to Australia was a huge decision it was not an entirely new experience as I had previously worked and lived in the UK, South Africa, Canada, France and Botswana.
During my years relocating and traveling – solo in my 20’s, as a single parent in my 30’s, as a family in my 40’s, and now in my early 50’s as an empty nester – I have had the privilege of visiting many iconic locations, learnt a second language, eaten all sorts of interesting foods and met some amazing people.
I started Tracy’s Travels in Time over 3 years ago to help and inspire others to travel through sharing all the tips, advice and experience I have gained from a lifetime of travel and living and working around the world.
How can Tracy’s Travels In Time help you?
Time to plan * Time to discover * Time to learn
Time to plan
There are detailed destination (and planning) guides for many countries which contain practical tips, advice and resources which will help and support you during the planning process.
This is the best place to start for inspiration and guidance.
Time to explore
My comprehensive itineraries, city guides, tour guides and more will help you to explore and experience the best from your destination.
If you love exploring by train you will find advice, tips and itineraries for some of the most beautiful rail journeys in the world as well as country specific train travel.
Time to learn
Travel is a great way to learn about the world and my articles dedicated to culture, history, language, UNESCO world heritage sites, wildlife and food will provide you with lots of great information.
10 things a lifetime of travel has taught me
- I love seeing animals in their natural habitat (just not ants I hate them).
- Nothing beats actually living in a country to learn a language. C’est vrai!
- Never order room service in a dodgy hotel in Bangkok.
- Some places you just have to return to two, three, four, five times. Malta anyone?
- It doesn’t matter how many times I fly I am still terrified.
- I don’t like cruise ships and the damage they do.
- Theft-proof bags are an essential. Unfortunately.
- My obsession with travel started young and I had a bucket list aged 8 – to see Table Mountain and the Golden Gate Bridge.
- A pair of comfortable shoes can never be underestimated.
- Don’t collect things make memories!
A MORE DETAILED WRITE-UP OF MY LIFE
When I was 7 my Grandmother bought me a pack of 52 cards each with a photograph of a beautiful place around the world on it. My favourites were Table Mountain in Cape Town and the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, USA. Oh how I wanted to see them for real!
I was lucky enough to stand at the top of Table Mountain 9 years later at the age of 16….it took me another 32 years to stand on the Golden Gate Bridge which I finally did in 2015. That was a pretty good feeling!
I was born in the UK and lived in Newcastle until the age of 13 when we (me, my brother, my Mum and step-Dad) moved to South Africa. During school holidays I sometimes travelled back to the UK on my own to visit family – I think I was 16 the first time I flew home alone and I really think this made me fearless when it came to the idea of solo travel! (Though not of flying unfortunately)
Aged 21 after finishing a Bachelor of Arts degree (majoring in both History and Psychology) at University in South Africa I decided I wanted to see more of the world before thinking about a career and settling down in one place. I had planned to travel for a year or so (that was the plan) but it ended up being 7 pretty amazing years.
AN EXPAT LIFE
MY 20’S – THE SOLO YEARS
In my 20’s I lived in
FRANCE – Evian-les-Bains
ENGLAND – London
CANADA – Toronto
SWITZERLAND – Basel
BOTSWANA – Gaborone
The difference between Toronto and Gaborone cannot be underestimated and I soon learnt to adapt rather quickly to different environments.
I worked as an au pair, nanny, English teacher and an assistant manager of a nursery school and met and worked with some fantastic people I am still in contact with nearly 30 years later. I learnt to speak French and to to appreciate food (the French really do have the edge on this) and that skiing is a lot harder than it looks. I learnt to fit into different families and cultures and I also learnt that despite 2 winters in the French Alps I had not really felt the cold until I had experienced a Canadian winter!
During work interludes I also travelled as much as possible visiting Italy, Holland, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, and Denmark.
My 30’s – the single parent years!!
In my late 20’s I moved back to the UK where my daughter was born. I qualified as a secondary school teacher and sort of settled down but travel was a major part of our life and every opportunity we travelled.
We explored France, Malta, the UK, South Africa and Botswana together. And we had fun! Those years were different – as a single parent your priorities change and travel had to fit around school holidays for us both!
My 40’s – the married years!
And then there was 3! After marrying in my late 30’s the travel continued except now it was me, my daughter and my husband. We spent summers travelling all over Europe by train – we visited Hungary, Austria, Italy, Czech Republic, France, Switzerland. We visited Majorca, Greece and beautiful Malta …. and fell in love with it.
In my 40’s I continued to travel either solo (London to Zurich by train in a day) with my daughter (her 18th birthday present a trip to NYC) or my husband (a 40th birthday visit to Amsterdam) or on some occasions as a family (Canada/USA/Singapore/Australia).
Train travel continued to feature with longer trips through Italy, Croatia, Switzerland, Germany and the Czech Republic and shorter (though extensive exploration) of the British Isles by rail on a monthly basis.
My daughter is now grown up and studying a PhD at university but I achieved my aim of showing her the world. By her 19th birthday she had been to Europe, Africa, Asia, North America and Australia.
My 50’s – So what’s next for us empty nesters?
With a new phase of life as “empty nesters” upon us we decided to relocate to Australia. A fairly huge decision at any stage of life but with 6 countries behind me (and fully prepared for the ups and downs of expat life) we felt the opportunity to live and work in Australia was one we could not miss. So at the age of 50 plus we find ourselves living and working in Queensland!
Australia is my 7th country to live and work in (and my 6th as an expat) and I find the same ups and downs, challenges, obstacles and issues here as I have experienced previously. Emigrating is a process and is not for everyone. If you are an expat – at whatever stage of your journey – you will find multiple posts about our experiences as well as tips and advice which may answer many of the questions/issues/dilemmas you are facing in the Expat Life section of the blog.
Thanks for reading all about Tracy’s Travels in Time!