This is a story about the value of insider scoop. Some days, the odds seem unbelievably out of your favor, so much so that you just have to laugh about it. With travel, there will always be times when you find yourself wondering why something is happening and how on earth you would have foreseen it. The unknown and the new bring challenges, but those challenges often make for some of the most memorable stories. As a community of travelers who are passionate about connecting with others, we understand how helpful it is to combine experiences and foster a community of sharing. Still, those moments that don’t go as planned can make a trip. Please enjoy the story of how our CEO Brice’s campervan trip around Australia inspired him to start Ravel.
After spending some time in Melbourne, and completing a weeklong road trip by car in the north, Brice and his girlfriend decided to embark on the rest of their journey via campervan. Not totally accustomed to van life, they followed word of mouth directions from Brisbane to set up near the beaches of Noosa Heads. As they drove towards the stunning coast, the sunset was the first attraction they came to see. The beaches were beautiful and lined with other vans, serving as a confirmation that they could set up there for the night. After exploring the beach and taking the sunset in, they headed back to the van to find that the crowd of camper vans had disappeared and the chance of staying overnight seemed gone with them. On a search for an explanation and a new place to stay, Brice decided to drive deeper into town for more information.
As they drove inland, more and more campervans appeared in the center of town. Suddenly, it became clear that these vans didn’t typically frequent Noosa Heads in such numbers. Hopeful for an explanation, Brice asked around to find that they had visited the town on the one day of the year that a race was held, campgrounds were packed, and all hotels were booked. After taking a second to grin at the absurdity of these odds, Brice started to call every campsite within a somewhat reasonable radius.
By the time they found directions to a site it was almost midnight. Unsure exactly where they were about to stay, they held onto hope and the relief of finally finding the guidance they needed. Now two hours inland, they drove up to the campsite which was completely hidden in the forest by the night’s darkness. They cautiously drove into a suspected parking spot, slowly guided only by the van's headlights. Finally, they had found a place to end their adventure and hopefully get some rest. Trying to ignore the fact that it was 2AM and the park was eerily dark, they worked to get acquainted with their new van set up, touring the back using only a flashlight.
For those who don’t know, Australia is known for its sizable spiders,bugs, and strange animals, the type of guests that can make camping feel unsettling. Trying not to think about that, the two set their van up, satisfied by all of its features. They finally felt settled and equipped with what they needed, except for a bathroom. Suddenly the giant spider imagery reappeared. They braved the unknown, spending what felt like hours searching for the bathroom. The walk back to their van was made exciting and terrifying by multiple jump scares and the lack of light.
When morning came, they were happily surprised to wake up to one of the most beautiful campsites they had seen. Despite the stress it took to find it, they were happy they had. Spontaneity can be a fun part of travel, but it’s still important to be able to find security and support when you need it. Brice is so passionate about the Ravel community because of the confidence and encouragement it can bring to even the most inexperienced traveler. Although their trip was amazing and memorable, Brice knew that his experiences could be used to improve someone’s future trip, and his vision unRAVELed from there. Our stories, challenging and hilarious, can build our future adventures. Moments like these should be shared because moments like these make us travelers.