Between Dima’s work schedule and having visitors, we’ve spent the last few weeks at home. Wanting a break from the wind and perhaps a change of scenery, we decided an impromptu weekend away was much needed. With most of the North Island calling for rain and having only Saturday and Sunday to work with, we decided on Brisbane—sunny days in the mid-70s and just a 3 ½ hour flight. After booking a cheap airbnb and a rental car, we were set!

Our first stop on Saturday was to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. We got up-close and personal with some koalas and then we got to feed and snuggle some kangaroos. Dmitriy even braved the emus…though I thought it better to keep my distance (they’re huge!). It was truly incredible to have the opportunity to get so close to these animals—by far the highlight of the trip and highly recommended if you’re ever in Brisbane!

After some serious snuggling, we drove into downtown Brisbane. It’s quite large compared to Wellington; we enjoyed wandering through the street market while taking in the sun and sights. (Although we did accidentally stumble upon some sort of Pokémon Go event…eek!)

As we were staying in Kangaroo Point, we hopped on the ferry to head downtown for dinner. It seems we’ve grown accustomed to the casual nature of Wellington, but it was nice change to see people dressed up and having a fancy night out. We had a pre-dinner cocktail at Jade Buddha bar and a spectacular dinner at Aria. (We managed to pace ourselves through the tasting menu…as opposed to that one time at Morimoto…)

On Sunday, we woke up and drove about an hour south to Surfer’s Paradise. Between brunching, sunbathing and grabbing some sushi on the way back to the airport, we couldn’t have asked for a better day.

It’s hard to believe that we’re living in a place where it’s possible to take a night and go to Australia. We’re feeling extremely fortunate.

It’s back to Welly for the next few weeks. We’re looking forward to having visitors in about a week and then we’re heading off on our first big trip: Bali!

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