UP IN THE AIR
More than 3000 flights have qualified Steve Jacobs as a true travel expert
WHICH AUSSIE DESTINATION HAS SURPRISED YOU THE MOST?
The northwestern Kimberley area of Western Australia. It is one of the last great wilderness areas of the world. The colours of the coastline are amazing, with more than 1000 islands dotted along the mainland. We were lucky enough to fly into a remote pearl farm for work and to see the rugged red landscapes juxtaposed against the brilliant aqua green water. It is something to behold. It is one of Australia’s great and relatively unexplored areas.
WHAT’S THE BEST MEAL YOU’VE HAD WHILE TRAVELLING?
I love sampling local cuisine like street noodles in Asia, reindeer stew in the Arctic or elk in Canada. I remember a steak in Argentina so soft it was carved with a spoon. More often than not our only option is the local pub or RSL and my favourite comfort food is always a good old chicken schnitty, an Aussie classic.
WHAT’S THE TOP TRAVEL EXPERIENCE YOU RECOMMEND?
Visit Uluru. It really is the beating heart of the country. The sheer size is awe inspiring and the colours at sunrise and sunset are like nowhere else in the world. There is something incredibly spiritual about this place that connects you with our great country and that is why you have to go there to feel the magic of Uluru.
WHAT’S THE FIRST THING YOU DO IN A NEW PLACE?
Research. We only ever have a short time in each destination so I make sure I know exactly what I want to see and where I want to eat. I love exploring a place on foot as you often get to see things and find hidden gems that you miss in a car..
DO YOU COLLECT SOUVENIRS?
I’m not really one for collecting snow domes, fridge magnets or tourist souvenirs while travelling. If I’m overseas I like to find a local artefact for our home. I love things that have history and a story that remind you of a place and time. On a recent trip to Myanmar I had the chance to buy the gold jewellery worn by tribal women to elongate their necks but decided it was too expensive at $US500. I’m still kicking myself for missing that opportunity. One thing I do always have to bring back is a Kinder Surprise for my girls.
WHAT DO YOU NEVER TRAVEL WITHOUT?
Flying is often the only quiet time I have in a day to relax and I love to be entertained. I always have a movie or TV series loaded on the iPad as I’ve normally already seen everything on the inflight entertainment. I also take a good book wherever I go. My ultimate Aussie book is Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey and another great read is All the Light We Cannot See by
WHAT’S YOUR PACKING TIP?
Never leave home without thermal underwear. When you are on the road five days a week across different states and climate zones, suitcase space is at a premium. Bulky coats, jumpers and jackets take up too much space so choose a favourite and keep warm with long johns.
HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH JET LAG?
I’ve tried most things like melatonin tablets and staying awake until night when you reach your destination but they are not guaranteed. There are now new technologies like goggles that simulate daylight to wear on your flight. I’m not sure if they work but they will guarantee you look like a total goose!
WINDOW OR AISLE SEAT ON A PLANE (AND WHY)?
I have travelled so much domestically that I don’t really care where I sit anymore, as long as it’s not in a middle seat. The experience of being squashed between two large smelly blokes is not pleasant. When flying overseas I love the window as I feel more cocooned and cosy. Unfortunately so does my wife, so the race is always on to get there first.
WHAT’S YOUR TOP TRAVEL TIP?
Be open to new experiences. Plan some of the things you want to do and then let the road unfold in front of you. The world is an amazing place so don’t be afraid to immerse yourself in new cultures and experiences. People are fascinating and friendly, so get to know and understand them and you will have a better trip. Travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer.
MY FAVOURITE INSTAGRAM LOCATIONS: Vanuatu:
I love the colour of the water and the relaxed tropical atmosphere that photos always seem to capture.
Australian Outback: The red landscapes of the Outback with the brilliant blue skies always make for a great shot.
The snow: There is something magical about being in the snow with my kids. The photo is from our annual family ski trip to Charlotte Pass in NSW.
Television presenter Steve Jacobs makes a new friend in the Outback