Where in the world?

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Me - Emily

Me – Emily

Welcome to Emily Meets World – the adventures of a twenty-something English girl as I blog, teach and travel my way across the globe.

Current country count = 28

Where am I now? UK – Time to catch up with the fam!

Where was I last? Australia – I have finally left my job at the station and am moving onto new adventures.

Where am I going next? Italy – a short city break in Rome.

Check out my Google travel map here or better yet, follow my blog by clicking the ´follow´ button and you will not only receive emails whenever I publish a new post but also get FREE access to my awesome eBook – The Ultimate Guide to Working in Australia!

Bolivian highlights: Volcanoes, lakes and a LOT of salt!

Bolivia32The Salar de Uyuni is known as the world’s largest salt flat and is a must on any visit to Bolivia. What most people don’t know is that taking an extended tour of Southern Bolivia is probably even more incredible than the Salar itself. From multi-coloured lakes and barren desert to ice-capped volcanoes, geysers and hot springs – there are few places in the world that are quite as striking. I chose to do my tour from Tupiza, where the companies are generally a lot more reliable and you get the advantage of building towards your ultimate goal – the Salar – on the last day. Tours from Uyuni visit the Salar itself on Day 1 then spend 3 days visiting the other sites, which seems a touch anticlimactic. For me, Tupiza made a lot more sense. Packed and wearing my warmest clothes (definitely necessary), over the next 4 days the cook, the guide my 3 companions and I made our way across spectacular scenery as we drew ever nearer to our much-anticipated destination. Take a look at my amazing journey through some of my favourite photos, because sometimes words just aren’t enough. Continue reading

Tupiza – Butch Cassidy and the Wild, Wild West

tupizaFresh from my death-defying bike ride in La Paz, I packed my bag and headed south on a local bus followed by an overnight train heading to Tupiza. Known as the setting for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, this quiet mining village is nestled amongst striking Wild West countryside littered with menacing cacti and orange-dusted canyons that make it the perfect destination to try out your horse-riding skills. As a keen horsewoman myself, it was far too tempting to miss even if I did have to do a 20-hour slog across half of Bolivia to get there! Sleepy, stiff and slightly sore-headed from trying to keep up with Iron Man 3 in Spanish, I finally hopped off the train the following morning and checked into my delightful little hotel, La Torre.  Continue reading

Death Road – Biking the world’s most dangerous road!

death road1If you love Top Gear, you might be familiar with the Yungas Road – or Death Road as it is better known, apparently due to a combination of the number of workers who died building it as well as the 300+ people that fall foul of its steep and perilously winding cliffs every year. For those of you not in the know, Death Road is a 64km stretch of mud and gravel connecting the Amazon rainforest in the North to Bolivia’s capital, La Paz. Running from the freezing Altiplano, a whopping 15,260ft above sea level, it descends over 11,000ft to the small, balmy rainforest village of Yolosa. After the first few kilometres of pleasant, wide bitumen, the road suddenly becomes a single lane, dirt-covered death trap. With no safety barriers, sharp turns at a moment’s notice and up to a 2000ft drop just metres away, it might come as a surprise to know traffic runs both ways along this so-called highway! Continue reading

A world of reeds – life on the Floating Islands

On the boatImagine spending virtually your entire life on a self-made island of reeds, big enough for just a handful of reed-built shelters, in the middle of the world’s highest lake. This is the uncomplicated life of the Uros people. Whether they were driven there by the spanish or the Incas is well-debated, however the fact remains that these people now subside almost solely upon the lake itself, with some heading to the mainland only for their burial. Buildings, furniture, boats and even the islands themselves are all constructed of the same totora reed that also anchors them to the shallow bed below, preventing them from floating away. Such is its prolificacy, the head of the reed forms part of the staple diet of the Uros as well.  Continue reading

Condors in the Canyon

Colca CanyonContinuing my journey through Peru, the next stop on my hit-list was the phenomenal Colca Canyon. At more than twice the depth of the Grand Canyon I was pretty excited to hike it, if a little nervous. Nevertheless, with my Arequipan squadron of boys in tow, we booked onto a 2-day return trek to the bottom. Already slightly regretting it, at 3am the next morning we heaped our bags into storage and, still bleary-eyed, stumbled onto the minibus for the 5-hour drive to the drop-off. Rising to 4,900m above sea-level, our tiredness was soon overtaken by a sense of wonder as we coiled through the magnificent national park lined with colossal volcanoes and snow-capped mountains, one of which – Mismi – is recognised as the starting point of the Amazon river itself.  Continue reading

Back to Blogging

crossroadsA lot has happened in the past few months which has brought me to a bit of a conundrum of late. I went back to my job in Australia and, after a fantastic but ultimately exhausting 8 months, I decided it was time to move on to pastures new. My feet were itching like mad for new adventure and my body and mind were craving a rest. So, here I am, back in England visiting my much-missed family and making some big decisions on my future. Feeling a bit like Tom Hanks in Castaway, I’m standing at a major crossroad in my travelling life and am figuring out which is the best way to move forwards. I don’t want to reveal anything until I have actually decided what that direction is but, in the mean time, I thought it was high time I got back to blogging.  Continue reading

Arequipa – calming cobbles and raging rivers

parkHaving left my travel buddy behind, I took an overnight bus across Peru to the city of Arequipa (got to love those sleeping tablets!) Along with a few guys that had been planning the same journey, we booked into a hostel just metres from the main square and quickly set out to explore. Within minutes we were ambling in one of the beautifully landscaped parks that are littered between the cobbled paths and plazas of the main town. I hadn’t really known what to expect out of this city more than just a pitstop on my way to Lake Titicaca, however, with each passing hour strolling through the pretty streets under the warming sun, I found myself growing to truly like it here. Continue reading

Huacachina: Dune-buggies and a bug in the dunes

The lagoon2There are few countries in the world where you can wake up surrounded by colourful parrots and playful monkeys in the rainforest, eat lunch in a major city and then fall asleep in a peaceful beach hut in the middle of a perfect, sand-duned desert. Luckily for Jenna and I, Peru is one of them. That said, reality is never quite as smooth as us bloggers might have you believe – a change of route, massive flight delays and a missed bus meant our relaxing commute to our sandy oasis was actually an incredibly long and stressful day. Nonetheless, we made it with our bags intact, if not quite so our patience! Continue reading