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Gap Year Diaries

Author: Emily and Rachel

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Two best friends relive their ’Gap Year’ travelling the world in 2010, by re-reading and reflecting on the hilariously misguided blog diary they kept along the way. Just prior to smart-phones and social media taking over our travel habits, these two wide-eyed 18 year olds set off with nothing but digital cameras and a trusty blog to document their trip. From lost passports to inaccessible bank accounts, jumping out of planes and into gorges, this is a nostalgic exploration of first-time travel and all its hilarious twists and turns.
66 Episodes
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In this episode, Rachel and Emily journey back by rereading their blog entries to some more Queenstown memories, this time involving a pair of Australian snowboarders, a whole baked salmon, the 'car of death' and some drunken hairstyling.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel read back over their blog entries from more Queenstown adventures, including a startlingly creative mini golf course, a desperate search for hostel accommodation, and Rachel being struck down by a mysterious illness. Mentioned in the podcast: Emily's round up of the world's best mini golf courses https://www.lonelyplanet.com/articles/best-mini-golf-courses-around-the-globe
In this episode, Emily and Rachel read back over their blog entry from the day they spent in NZ's Queenstown recovering from their hangovers, being plunged further into financial turmoil on an otherwise tranquil hike, and waving off their good friend Claire after a month of travelling friendship.
In this very special episode, Rachel and Emily look back at the day of Rachel's 19th birthday, celebrated in Queenstown NZ. Among other things we hear, in great detail, about Rachel undertaking the town's infamous Canyon Swing, the mad dash for balloons, and a chaotic night out which results in the unfortunate decimation of Rach's birthday cake. We are also treated to a very special excerpt from Rachel's creative writing degree, which includes a staggering revelation for Emily after 14 y...
In this episode, Rachel and Emily remember the unfortunate day they spent exploring New Zealand's glorious Milford Sound, featuring a highly theatrical bus driver, close encounters with local wildlife, and the most inefficient checking of a weather forecast known to mankind.
In this episode, Rachel and Emily re-read the blog entry from their time spent at renowned NZ attraction Puzzling World. Among other things, we hear of the pair experiencing anti-gravity whilst horrendously hungover and getting hopelessly lost in a maze, as well as their first ever glimpse of Queenstown and Rachel entering a 'hori-bungee' cocktail contest.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel read back over the blog entry documenting their lengthy journey through stunning scenery to NZ's lakeside town of Wanaka. Among other things, we hear of greenscreen style landscapes, chaotic hostel check ins, monopolising the time of passing strangers to take multiple group photos and Emily's attempt to create romantic memories that only ended in numb extremities.
In this episode, Rachel and Emily recount and relive the blissful day they spent hiking around on New Zealand's famed Fox Glacier, led along the way by a particularly chiselled tour-guide.Among other things we hear of the stupendous beauty of the natural surroundings, elite level bribery of two glamorous Danish men, and Emily trying and failing to impress said tour-guide by getting her tongue stuck to a stalagmite.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel recount their experiences of a day spent learning about New Zealand's possum pest-control methods, and travelling onwards to the country's stunning Franz Josef glacier. Among other things, we hear of the eminently memorable 'Possum Pete', owner of the educational bushman centre, the meeting of Pete's singular pet possum, and a trip to the most reflective lake of the entire trip thus far.
In this episode, Rachel and Emily recount the day of the Kiwi Bus' infamous 'Poo Party' on the beautiful Lake Mahinapua, where they finally get to showcase their incredible craft prowess and take the swinging 60s fancy-dress costumes for a spin. Amongst other things, we hear of ageing and grumpy party-host Les and his unceasingly cantankerous manner, the desperate last-minute costume fixes involving string, masking tape and orange paint, and Emily's unhidden annoyance at the inaccuracy o...
In this episode, Rachel and Emily look back fondly over a frantic 24 hours spent procuring and constructing some wildly ambitious fancy dress costumes ahead of the Kiwi bus institution - the Lake Mahinapua 'poo party'. Among other things we hear about a highly tense rugby match between Ireland and the All Blacks, the charms of the town of Westport, and Emily's tyrannical approach to arts and crafts production.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel journey back and relive the blissful day they spent exploring NZ's Abel Tasman National Park. Among other things, we hear of the water taxi driver and the obsession with mid 2000s RnB he was so proud to share with others, a family of ducks with no personal boundaries, and an ongoing battle with the ever encroaching tide.
In this episode, we are treated to a full recount of Rachel and Emily's adventure on the high seas, as they set sail to cross from the heady pursuits of New Zealand's north island to the chilly climes of its south. The pair relive the few days they spent in the city of Nelson post crossing, struggling for warmth under threadbare duvets, eating super noodles and locating famous landmarks, including NZ's most central point and the underwhelming site of the country's first ever rugby match....
In this episode, Rachel and Emily look back fondly at yet another chapter of embassy nightmares as they continue to relive their time spent in NZ's capital city, Wellington. Among other things we hear of a spicy altercation, passport theft related frustration and more escapades that absolutely do not include making the most of staying in the world's most southerly capital city.
In this episode, Rachel and Emily read back over the bizarre blog entry from their first day in New Zealand's lively and windy capital city, Wellington. Among other things, we hear of an accident involving dried fruit in a local supermarket, the city's hallowed Giant Squid exhibition, and the deeply disgraceful result of many hours of hostel drinking games.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel reopen some old wounds and relive the trauma of the day they spent attempting to skydive over New Zealand's beautiful Lake Taupo, reading back over the blog they wrote on the day. We hear of the deeply stressful assent to 15,000ft in a miniscule plane, Emily's near-premature launch out of the plane door, and the overall chaos that ensued. Also including some actually fairly fond recounts of the small amount of the day that went well.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel reread and relive their time in the NZ village of Waitomo, famous for its glow-worm bedazzled underwater caves. Amongst the usual mindless content, we hear of the formative time Rachel spent at a rural farm show, the awkward and cumbersome process of making new bus friends, EXTREME black water caving, Rachel's multi-coloured toes and Emily unwittingly allowing a raucous rugby team to break into the hostel.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel continue to read back over and reminisce on their time spent in the geothermal hot spot of Rotorua, New Zealand. We hear of a bonding trip to a local spa, a narrow escape from an incredibly inappropriate situation with the Pennsylvania State University Glee Club, and many, MANY unnecessary details about the value for money of Rotorua's supermarkets.
In this episode, Emily and Rachel read back over their blog documenting the first day they spent in the geothermal New Zealand town of Rotorua. Among many other stunningly banal details, we hear of their time learning about Maori culture, luging at break-neck speed down forested hills, and, more exciting than all combined, the chance meeting of an entire Glee Club during a traditional Maori feast...
In the fourth episode of series 4, Emily and Rachel reread the blog entry from their, in all honesty, fairly uneventful visit to New Zealand's Mercury Bay, viewing its highlights through unceasing drizzle.As well as this, we hear of wet weather wanderings, the world's most poppin' hostel bar, and a detailed review of the local children's play park.Follow the podcast on Instagram at @gapyeardiariespodcast.
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