Honeymoon Posts

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Honeymoon pt 6: Hawaii

Hawaii has always been one of our favourite places to visit. We love the beaches and relaxing atmosphere of the islands, and it has that exotic feel without the dangers of other exotic places. Hawaii was also one of the a places where Sophie and I first met briefly back in 2006, as I described in my book. So this was a special place for us.

We landed into the lovely open-aired airport in Honolulu and was picked up in a Mini by Sophie’s good friend Melissa, who Sophie hadn’t seen in years. This was the first time I met her, even though her design company Unleash Studio was the unofficial sponsor on my book tour. Check out her creative shirts and print designs. Melissa took us back to her wonderful apartment near Waikiki, where we caught up on old times and caught up on some much needed sleep. After all, we did just travel back in time (our flight left Sydney at 6pm and arrived in Honolulu at 8am on the same day). After our beauty rest, we headed out for dinner and then to Chinatown for some local nightlife.

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Honeymoon pt 5: Australia

Back in 2007, I spent a great deal of time in Australia living in Melbourne. Six years later, I returned with Sophie on our Honeymoon. As we arrived at the airport, we were reminded of just how strict the customs and quarantine control was in this country. Before entering immigrations, everyone was asked to drop their bags in the middle of the hallway and stand in a line while 2 dogs came through sniffing the luggage and then everyone as well. Finding nothing, they let us carry on. Immigrations was much easier.

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Honeymoon pt 4: New Zealand – North Island

Before the trip even began we knew that this wasn’t going to be enough time. Our initial plan for a couple of weeks in New Zealand was almost up and we hadn’t even got to the North Island yet. We were having too much fun driving around in the van. But with just a quick email to our travel agent and a phone call to Wilderness camper vans, our flight and van rentals were extended by a week and, with it, our New Zealand trip.

When we first picked up the camper van, the Wilderness representative sold us on the idea of upgrading to the VIP lounge for our ferry ride between the islands because it was the highlight for a lot of visitors. There would be a buffet included with great sushi, open bar and free wifi internet. We decided to splurge. After a few weeks roughing it in the van, we were excited when they put VIP wristbands on us at the terminal in Picton. It turned out to be a disappointment though.

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Honeymoon pt 3: New Zealand – Queenstown

With a week already under our belt, we were starting to get quite comfortable travelling in the van. Not that we were foreign to the idea to begin with, but we had originally anticipated a weekly stay at a B&B or hotel just to recharge. Here we are starting our second week in New Zealand and we have no desire to stay anywhere else other than in the van. Without having to figure out any accommodations, we only needed to decide on a route and direction for the next few days. There was some nasty weather threatening the South part of the island that will affect whether we can visit the jewel of the area, Milford Sound, which has only one road of entry. But avalanche warnings and possible snowy conditions didn’t deter us from making the trek. We decided to book it all the way to Milford Sound and leave before we get caught up in unfriendly weather. We called to book the only accommodations in the area, and luckily they had a powered camp spot available.

As we headed west, the clouds began to form and a storm hit us hard. It wasn’t looking good. When we got closer to Milford Sound, the elevation would rise. But before we could even start to worry about it, the skies opened up and we seemed to be in the clear. 3 hours later, we arrived in Te Anau. It was the last town before we entered the mountains and we were told that we needed to be prepared just in case we get stuck in Milford Sound. So we filled up on food, gas and propane. The remaining drive was only supposed to about 100km in distance, but the drive took over 2 hours. The road was narrow and we weaved through a forest of trees blocking the magnificent mountain view. When the tress disappeared, so did the mountains. We were on them now. As the landscape opened up, we see signs of past avalanche and glacier slides. Some of the snow and ice were only meters away from the road.

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Honeymoon pt 2: New Zealand – Welcome to the South Island

When Sophie and I sat down to discuss our honeymoon plans, it was pretty easy to decide where we wanted to go. We both wanted New Zealand. Being adventurers at heart, we couldn’t have picked a farther destination to travel to from London, UK. In between, we just filled in the locations to connect the cities and it just happened to take us all the way around the world.

For New Zealand, we agreed that the best way to travel around would be by camper van. This was music to my ears, my ultimate dream honeymoon and Sophie suggested it. So in true Sophie fashion, she conducted weeks of research to decide on the absolute best company to hire a van from. Our choice? Wilderness Motorhomes. When we called to book, we were offered an exceptional rate to drive the van from the South Island to the North Island instead of our original plan. So we took the deal and re-routed our flights into Christchurch.

Our arrival into Christchurch was well after midnight, but the owner of the Belmont B&B picked us up and brought us back to his lovely Edwardian style villa for a much needed rest. The wide variety of fruit and breakfast options in the morning only added to the warm welcome into the country.

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Honeymoon pt 1: Macau & Hong Kong

So how do you get ready for an around the world trip? Well, you give your landlord your notice and put everything in storage of course. This wasn’t the way it was planned, but that is how it played out. So as we were packing and preparing for our honeymoon trip, we were also packing and moving all of our stuff (mostly Sophie’s) into a 90 sq foot storage space. When we finally got everything out of the flat and into the box, we were free of our load and ready for the trip.

The first stop was Hong Kong and Macau, where many of my relatives live.

Macau was well represented at the wedding by my cousins Stanley, Jacqueline, Francisco and Olivia, but many of my uncles and aunts as well as my grandparents were not able to come to Hungary. So we went to them.

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Around the world honeymoon

Our honeymoon is booked.

Special thanks to all of you that gave wedding gifts that have contributed to our epic trip. We have just booked our flights with Round the World Flights and the New Zealand camper van with Wilderness Motorhomes this week and, in true Sophie and Jason fashion, we are going around the world.

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