6. Kakadu National Park
In 2013, my husband and I packed up and set off for the Northern Territory, where we camped under canvas and beneath the stars for seven wonderful weeks. We missed the southern winter and enjoyed temperatures in the mid-thirties as we explored this beautiful park. We headed into glorious Kakadu National Park; a stunning environment with so much to see. We bushwalked and watched out for snakes, we climbed Ubirr rock and revelled in the majesty of the view across the wetlands, picking out crocodiles in the distance as . We watched foolhardy fishermen fishing knee deep in the river as crocodiles cruised on the surface of the water only metres away.
We took a sunset cruise on Yellow Water and the inspiration for my first print book, Kakadu Sunset, was born. We visited Sandy Billabong and saw the huge crocodiles basking on the edge of the mud, while the uncaring jabirus pecked around them. If you only get the chance to see one place in Australia, Kakadu National Park is up there on top of the list!
5. Cinque Terre
Every time I wear my olive-green dress I remember my visit to Cinque Terre where I bought it! Cinque Terre is located on the north-west coast of Italy and the coastline; the five villages and the surrounding hillsides are part of a World Heritage location. Little restaurants dot the waterfront and you can travel by train or boat from village to village. The village names are inspiring to an author and simply roll off your tongue: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore.
The best part for me in this beautiful region was the approach along the motorway where you see the most amazing views of the marble in the Apuan Alps. The marble in the mountains looks like snow- capped peaks! I fell in love with this location and used it as a setting in one of my books.
4. The Amalfi Coast
Did I say I love Italy? How fortunate was I to go to a writers’ retreat in Italy and discover this wonderful place on the Italian coast? The Amalfi Coast is a fifty-kilometre stretch of coastline along the southern edge of Italy’s Sorrentine Peninsula. Little villages are located between sheer cliffs on a rugged shoreline dotted with small beaches and brightly coloured houses. The coastal road is a breathtaking drive winding past grand villas, terraced vineyards and cliffside lemon groves. The best part of the coast…is the limoncello, which must be sipped very cold after a meal. I set a book in Tuscany not far away, when I came home from Italy. One day I shall return and drink more limoncello on the shingly beach at Positano!
3. The Whitsundays
The Whitsunday Islands in the north of Queensland are magical and run a very close second. Seventy-four jewel-like islands floating on a sapphire sea, this is the place to find romance. It is cosmopolitan and a favourite escape for visitors from all over the world. You can sit at one of the fabulous restaurants and watch the world go by, or you can sail, snorkel, sightsee or sky dive…whatever your heart desires. I have already written three books set in this wondrous location, and my readers can escape to the islands without leaving their armchairs. I also have a ten-book series planned for next year! When Whitsunday Dawn was published last year, many of my readers said they were going to book a holiday there!
2. Nambucca Heads
How blessed am I to actually live in one of my favourite place in the whole world? Who needs to escape when you live in paradise? Nambucca Heads is located on the mid north coast of New South Wales and is one of the most scenic places you will ever see. It is a quiet sleepy little coastal village with no traffic lights! The river is pristine, the beaches have pure white sand, the coffee shops are wonderful and when I walk my dog, Toby, sometimes I don’t pass another soul on the beach. One day I will write a book set here and an idea is already brewing in my mind. There is lots of history in this town, so stay posted!
View this post on Instagram
Have you done Undara yet? The Undara Volcanic National Park in @tropicalnorthqueensland @queensland @australia is home to a geological wonder of international significance! The Undara Lava Tubes are recognized as the oldest standing Lava Tubes on Earth today at 190,000 years. Come and discover the incredible stories of this natural wonder unraveled for you by the @savannahguides from #undaraexperience Another cracking 📸 from the amazing @phlipvids 💥👏🏻👍🏻🤠🍻
Outback Queensland is a beautiful place of spectacular scenery. The journey from rolling plains to steep gorges, to mysterious lava tubes will overwhelm your senses. Following dinosaur trails into quarries, fossicking for bones, climbing extinct volcanoes and exploring the mysterious lava tubes will let you escape to adventure! Exploring this area for the research for my new release Undara was one of the most exciting escapes I have made!