Kristen Parisi is a student at Manhattanville College and an ISA Photo Blogger. She is currently studying abroad with ISA in Gold Coast, Australia.
This weekend, my friends and I took a spontaneous trip to the Outback in the Northern Territory of Australia. It’s something that was always on my bucket list and a “must-see” if you’re headed down under. However, once I heard we would have to camp for the weekend on the ground with no service and no real bed or bathroom, I became a little reluctant. I’m from a big city with lights and action everywhere so an area as deserted as the Outback seemed like it could be too much for me. But sure enough, I bought the plane ticket anyway, closing my eyes as I handed my credit card to the travel agent and ended up having the best weekend of my life.
The sights I got to see like the ones in the pictures above are incredibly rare and I’m so happy to get to say I saw them. Uluru is the famous rock of the Outback, and there it was right before my eyes. It was almost surreal looking up at it, and even my friend Megan shed a tear because she was so blessed to get to experience its beauty.
I felt emotional myself watching the sunrises which the common wander-luster would call “eudaimonia” – the emotionally happy state you feel when you travel. No, getting up at 4:00 am doesn’t seem appealing, especially after a night of sleeping on the cold ground, but once you see that sun peak over the earth’s horizon, it all becomes worth it. Every sunrise ends up being incredible, but have you ever seen one over pure land with no buildings to block any part of the view? I reckon it’s worth it and a moment you will cherish forever. Below is a sunrise during our early morning hike that I’ll never forget.
I also met so many fun and incredible people this trip who were just as mesmerized by the Outback’s beauty as I was. If you’re a travel junkie who enjoys new people and new views, you need to plan a tour like this one at least once in your life, even if it’s somewhere other than Australia. You will make friends very easily because of the curiosity and fearlessness traits you all already exhibit. Camping in the middle of nowhere with bugs and dingos just for some good views isn’t something the average person would do so you know that the people on your tour are just as awesome and adventurous as you. People with that much dedication and appreciation for nature are hard to find, and I’m sure if you’re a sunset geek like me, it’s hard to find a friend back home willing to hike with you to see a good one. So book a tour like this and befriend the people on it so you can see sunsets, sunrises, and other views in different countries when you go to visit them.
Booking this weekend was probably one of the best things I’ve ever done and might even be the coolest thing I’ll ever get to do. Going into something spontaneously and with no expectations usually ends up being a well worth experience, so buy that plane ticket you are unsure about and let the magic happen naturally.
The world awaits…discover it.