G’day from Australia!
My name is Bianca, and I am a 24-years young, a private pilot, and environmental biologist in training. Here is my story how I ended up living an ocean side, remote life on the far West Coast of South Australia during a pandemic.
Leading an all-round coastal, nature loving, and adventurous life I of course, have many passions such as, free-diving, surfing, swimming, scuba diving, skydiving, and hiking. Right now, most of all, I am simply in love with living far away from the city life. My entire life is currently spent surrounded by the ocean and all the beautiful nature Australia has to offer.
Now, I did not always live this incredible remote life. In fact, I grew up in the capital city of South Australia, a small city called, Adelaide. To the rest of Australia, Adelaide is known as a small quiet city, but it always seemed big and busy for me. Any chance I had, I would travel to the coast and escape the Aussie winter with an overseas getaway.
The only reason I kept Adelaide as my home base was so I could complete my pilot license and training. Going into 2020 my plan was to become a licensed pilot and then reward myself with overseas travel. This plan to travel included heading to Indonesia for a few months where I would be able to spend my time scuba diving, surfing, getting instructor ratings in diving and yoga.
My long-term life goals include running my own health/nature/outdoor retreats. Then, as you all know, COVID-19 hit and all my travel plans completely collapsed. No one in South Australia could leave their state borders.
From Adelaide, the coastline is a 20-minute drive, this was my only escape from the city. Visiting the coastal beaches daily kept me going for about a week until we were then told to stay home by the government. Surfers could not surf, divers could not dive. It was a shock to the whole coastal community. Even though we were being safe, avoiding people, and enjoying the ocean we were told to stay home.
At this time, only essential travel was allowed which meant we could only move for work, school or food shopping. We were allowed one-hour of exercise outdoors, but it was only to be local. That meant no coastal escapes for me. During this time, I felt completely trapped and like my whole life was coming to a standstill.
The only thing I had was my flight training; flying is so wonderful; you feel free because you are travelling and seeing the earth from above. Even if it is just a local flight, it was my escape from having to stay home in isolation. Then the worst happened, you guessed it, the flight school closed due to COVID-19. It was then that I realized I had to really surrender to this experience.
As I mentioned before, we were not allowed to travel across our state boarders, but we could move residences. So, I thought to myself, there ought to be somewhere else I could move that was out of the city, completely surrounded by nature. My first step was to reach out to a few people I knew living all around South Australia. For those of you who are not familiar, South Australia is a big place with 3815km/2370 miles of mainland coastline. For those of you in the US, that is equivalent to driving from New York City to Las Vegas!
Within 48 hours of making my phone calls, a miracle happened; a remote ocean home, 10 hours away from the city became available to me. It lies on the Eyre Peninsula, which is on the west coast of South Australia. This place is beyond incredible, I am surrounded by the ocean and many untouched, pristine beaches. Every morning, I wake up to the sound of waves crashing onto the cliffs and fall asleep seeing the most stunning, 360-degree view sunsets followed by a clear, unpolluted night sky bursting with glistening stars.
Every day I am enjoying a variety of water activities. From boating to free diving, kayaking, or surfing. The best part about being in the boat is when the dolphins come up to play. Magnificent pods of over twenty dolphins come up to and play. It is so fabulous and uplifting to watch them in their element.
Just recently, I was out snorkeling near a shallow reef when another fun sea creature came up to check me out, a pair of Australian Sea Lion pups! They are super inquisitive and playful. They will swim right up and around you; it is impossible to not smile and enjoy such an incredible experience.
There are also whales that travel to the coast and sometimes there are up to one hundred of them. They come to give birth at the great Australian Bight, which is a huge open bay at the south center of Australia. You can really see this on the map and people often joke and say it is called a Bight because it looks as if someone has eaten a bite out of it. It really is a wild coastline; the headlands are beautiful to hike and flying over them gives a great perspective of how rugged and raw they are.
There is something magical about living remote. I live hours away from any shops, or even traffic lights for that matter, but honestly, I would not have it any other way. I feel at peace and calm when I am surrounded by nature. The people who live here are friendly and happy. I get food from local farmers, neighbors or from my vegetable garden in my own backyard. Life is not rushed here; you find the value in life and feel rich every day because of the beautiful place you live in.
As an ocean lover I can swim with sea creatures and learn so much about them and expand my skills in diving. My knowledge about the natural world has increased immensely, not just about the sea creatures but the way the world flows. This part of Australia is called ‘Big Sky Country’ because you get a full, clear vision of the entire sky. Based off the clouds or wind, you can easily read and predict the weather. Due to there being no skyscrapers or pollution, you can see the beginning and end of a rainbow.
Even though travel is still not in the cards due to the pandemic, I feel like you can make your life a holiday by living in nature that is far away from the city.
To be happy, you need very little.
It feels like a lot of people who live in busy cities are chasing their tails and not seeing the bigger picture. They will take holidays away from their industrial lifestyle for a week or two, max, and then go right back to their 9-5 and TV dinners.
This opportunity has reminded my what a blessing it is that I genuinely enjoy the simple things in life and value my freedom, nature, peace, open spaces, clear skies, and natural lifestyle.
While, I may not have many fancy or expensive belongings, I feel extraordinarily rich with the life I live.
Bianca | Australia | Instagram
1. Three hours early to the airport or running to the gate? For some reason, no matter how organized I am I seem to have always rush to the airport and I have once missed a flight! Oops! Hopefully when we start travelling again, I will be better.
2. Pretzels or Lotus Biscoff cookies? I think it must be because I am half German, but I am going to have to say Pretzels!
3. Excel planned trip or just wing it? I usually like to wing it when I travel as that way, you are open to so many more adventures! However, I think a brief itinerary of what you would like to do is a good guideline to have.
4. Favorite continent? My favorite continent would have to be Australia as there is so much variety, from the desert to coast!
5. Dream destination? My dream destination is the Great Barrier Reef: one of the wonders of the world and you can see it from space! An incredible place to dive and the water temp is on average 26 degrees Celsius.