Meet Kallie, Dylan, Lincoln and Zephyr, a young family who chose to live an extraordinary life travelling Australia in their gorgeous bus Nelly. Get an insight into what it's like road tripping with young children, and if its something you would consider doing one day!
Kallie, Dylan, Lincoln & Zephyr
We are Kallie (26), Dylan (24), Lincoln (4) and Zephyr (1) a young family of four currently travelling Australia in our Nissan Civilian Bus that is now affectionately called Nelly. We purchased her in late 2017 and self-converted her to become our home on wheels for the last 2 years where our dream of living life on the road began and we’ve been loving life ever since. We’ve travelled up and down the east coast in 2018 and after returning to Adelaide to welcome Zephyr we continued our travels in 2019 up through the heart of Aus and down the west coast and returning to Adelaide on New Years Eve, completing our lap of main land Aus! We are currently working and saving before setting off again soon and hitting up Tassie at the start of March.
How long have you been travelling Australia / plan on travelling Australia for?
So far we’ve been travelling Australia for about 10 months with a few months living in the bus in our home town of Adelaide where we return to work and save money and for the birth of our 2nd son Zephyr. Right now we have no set end date in sight and only really have up until we get back from Tassie in April planned but we have no intentions of stopping what we’re doing but to maybe take it a bit slower and find work along the way and the possibility of international travel is also on the cards.
What made you both decide to travel Australia with your family?
Our original inspiration came on our honeymoon in 2017 after we road-tripped through the Canadian Rocky Mountains. We loved how much time we got to spend together compared to our everyday 9-to-5 lives. We started to really believe that there was more to life than what we get sold by the majority of the population. Up until this point we had spent our adult lives saving for and renovating our house so we could ‘properly’ support our new family. We started to discuss the prospect of buying a van when we got home to do a bit of travelling on weekends and holidays, after that it quickly escalated to ‘let’s buy a bus’ for a more permanent lifestyle change and to travel Australia.We wanted a lifestyle where we would spend more time with each other and both of us being present in our children’s lives. We wanted a lifestyle that contained adventure, new experiences and beautiful views.
Who inspired you to travel Australia?
There wasn’t really anyone that inspired us to travel Australia, however once we did decide to take up this journey there were a few people that did inspire us. The guys from Bilby the bus were a big inspiration for us as we hadn’t seen too many other busses at the time. Another big one was Elise Cook, because honestly who wouldn’t want to drop everything and buy a van once seeing her page.
Why did you choose the bus as your vehicle?
We ended up choosing a small bus to travel in for practical reasons.They’re big enough that you can fit all the creature comforts in but small enough to still navigate around cities and even park into single car parks. They are also very well priced when compared to vans of similar sizes which meant we could get on the road sooner with less to pay off.
What vehicles would you recommend a family choose to travel Australia in?
We would say that it really comes down to an individuals requirements or how they want to live. What do you want to get out of your travels? Do you want to be able to have a shower inside your vehicle, do your own laundry and sleep in a bed without kids kicking you in the head every night or do you want to be driving on beaches and zipping around town and you don’t mind squeezing in with the kiddos, having beach showers and washing in a bucket or laundromat? We’ve met families that have lived out of camper trailers for years and we’ve met families that live in 40ft busses and both have seemed equally as happy with their choices.
Biggest challenges living on the road?
This is a bit of a tricky one for us because we haven’t really found anything that we really struggle with but it would probably have to just be the financial side of this lifestyle. Its always in the back of our minds that we may have spent too much money here or there and this has at times caused us to leave nice places early or miss out on experiences that we would have really liked to do.
Do you recommend an age for children to be, to road trip Australia?
Honestly we don’t feel that there is a right or wrong age to travel with kids. We get a lot of people say to us stuff like don’t you worry about them not remembering where they’ve been or what they’ve done but for us travel is about so much more than just the places you see, it changes who you are as a person and for our kids it shapes the people that they are becoming. We also get asked often how we go with zephyr being so young (6 months when we left) but we honestly find it better, it means we both get to be present in his life and share the joys of parenting and to us its no different to looking after them in a house. Just with more adventure!
Follow their journey on Instagram at @slowly.salty
Kallie and Dylan use the Phoenix Rug on their adventures around Australia.