"What is Dubbo?" That was the first question 24-year-old Maria Goltermann had when she found out she would be visiting Australia from Denmark. Maria has 12 weeks to learn all she can about Dubbo, its visitor offerings and the Australian lifestyle.


I’d been looking forward to this stay for quite a while and was really excited to finally stay at the Taronga Western Plains Zoofari Lodge. 

It started Wednesday afternoon (or arvo as you guys would say), where I was first welcomed to the Zoofari Lodge by John, who was to be the tour guide through my stay there. 

It had stopped raining and it turned out to be a cold but beautiful day and it only got brighter when I saw the lodge that I was going to stay at, A.M.A.Z.I.N.G! 
At first I didn’t really want to leave it again, I could sit there and watch the animals on the savannah in front of the lodge all day, but 3.30 pm it was time for a backstage tour of the zoo. 

First stop – The African Wild Dogs! We saw them getting fed, which as a true supporter of the Zoo, I had already seen. However, with John there it was really interesting to hear more about what kind of animal the African wild dogs are – definitely not the type of animal I usually come across. Did you guys know they are the most dangerous animals in the zoo with a 90% kill, whereas the lions are only 30% kill? And they like their food ALIVE! 

I always enjoy seeing the wildlife around the zoo as well, kangaroos are still my favourite, it’s so funny to see them just jumping around minding their own business at the zoo. 

On our backstage tour we had a chance to see the black rhino Kafara as well as the elephant Cuddle, (how cute is that!) getting fed. Cuddle is an African elephant and can eat up to 250 kg. of food a day! 

These backstage tours just made it so much more interesting to see the animals, as I learned so much about them at the same time! For anyone who has a chance to do this, I would definitely recommend this! 





The beautiful lodge!

Coming back to the lodge, we had some time to ourselves before a complimentary wine tasting, I spent that time, just sitting and watching the animals on the savannah until the sun went down. I never thought I could spend so much time just looking at animals – but I guess this whole experience just got to me! 

Wine and cheese was served before a really delicious African dinner. All guests had dinner together, which was really nice as I got to meet people from all over this beautiful country! 

The rest of the night I spent in my lodge, it’s a really good place to just relax and listen to the animals outside. No TV, makes it even better to just appreciate the facilities of the lodge, enjoy a bath, book and just have a nice sleep and waking up to the sound of animals in front of the lodge. 

Everything had been so great thus far, BUT my ultimate favourite part of the whole stay, was feeding the giraffes Thursday morning. Getting close to these gorgeous animals and seeing how they interact with the zookeeper was just incredible.









Next up were the Ring-tailed lemurs, which I could actually really relate to in the way that they hate the cold and will always move around to be able to sit right in the sun (that’s me!). I probably wouldn’t fight with the birds for banana bites but that was hilarious to watch though. 

Another animal that caught my attention was the white rhino, which eats 25 kg. of hay a day, this should be like chocolate to them. A bit dry if you ask me… Anyway it was time for us to get back and have a feast of a breakfast, really delicious and perfect way to end a perfect stay at the Zoofari Lodge. 

For anyone who loves the zoo, want to give a special person a special experience, or just want a night away I would really recommend the Zoofari Lodge, get there as early as you can and just enjoy being at your lodge sit on the deck and watch the animals. It’s a unique scene, that I would recommend anybody, Dubbo people as well as tourists to experience, I KNOW YOU WILL LOVE IT 



 I found somebody taller than me!

Now, I will leave this lovely city for a week to go and explore the outback – so long Dubbo!  



The view from my lodge

What a lovely day to stay inside! Not that I mind after a busy weekend I Sydney!

But there’s one thing I know, coming from a cold country, It doesn’t have to be boring when it’s raining. And Dubbo certainly isn’t boring. I’ve said it a few 100 times, but I LOVE sports, and I may not know all about it but I’m always keen to learn.

I remember, one of the first things I did when I found out I was going to Dubbo, was to check out the gyms here online!

Now… When it’s raining and there’s no Rugby on, there’s always other things to do, and my favourite thing to do after work is Crossfit! I started doing Crossfit a few years ago back home. But because of travel etc. I’ve had to put it on hold for a year. That break didn’t last long after I arrived in Dubbo. I hadn’t even been here for a week before my Aussie brother decided it was time for me to start again.
I was a bit sceptical, and to be honest my first few times doing it, didn’t go as expected. But with the help of a brilliant instructor at Crossfit Dubbo, I’m now so much better and enjoy seeing the progress every time I go + the atmosphere is great, everybody’s so helpful and friendly, which makes it 10 times more fun.
If anybody needs a changeup in their workout routine, try a WOD at Crossfit Dubbo, you might get hooked too.

The best thing about crossfit is that everybody can be a part of it!
All photos courtesy of Crossfit Dubbo (


I’m struggling with a few old injuries that affect me when doing sports, however, I have been introduced to a new form of treatment here in Australia, ‘Bowen’. So I’ve had a few Bowen treatments from Prue Duffy’s “A Bowen Clinic… and other journeys”, which is helping me achieve better and have less pain when doing sports, which I’m really excited about as it makes Crossfit even better for me! Yay!

And if that’s not enough, a friendly soul from work thought it would be a good idea for me to try a boxing class… Last time I did a boxing class was 7 years ago, and I decided never to do it again, as it almost killed me. Apparently I had forgotten that when I said yes this time…
But I’m always up for a challenge, and a boxing class in Wellington didn’t seem too scary.

One thing I really like about Dubbo, Wellington etc. is it’s so local and everyone are so friendly! When I arrived at the Hardnox gym in Wellington, I felt welcomed and comfortable right away, which made the whole experience so much better. The trainers were the best, I even got a round of applause after the workout for coming all the way from Denmark, where else would people do that!? Not only that, but a trainer was helping me out the whole time! I do feel bad that he had to put up with my poor talent for a whole hour, but I had so much fun doing it! :D The workout was hard, and as I’m typing right now, I’m still struggling with a shaking hand… But I love being pushed and how great do you feel after a good workout!? And even better when you feel it the next day – that means something must have been done right! Hardnox in Wellington is definitely a place I’ll come back to!


Pretending boxing is no biggie...

Who else is excited about the Olympics btw!! :D

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