Recently I took advantage of the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in NSW and headed off on a 6-day trip away to Byron Bay. My partner and I went to get a little rest and relaxation which was much needed!
The last few years has brought a lot of positive lifestyle changes for me, including a fair bit of travel. Some domestic, however mostly international which obviously is off the cards for now. But one thing that was missing from my travel experiences was a good old-fashioned campervan trip! Now was as good a time as any to give this a go.
We wanted to slowly make our way up the coast, starting in Sydney with two overnight stays before entering Byron. As well as planning our route, I needed to plan what foods to eat.
We opted for a campervan equipped with a fridge, microwave and cooktop. While we did want to take advantage of the beautiful food from local spots along the way, these three features meant I could be prepared for any situation. A must when you’ve got a medical low protein diet to follow!
We set up each night at a powered campervan site, meaning we had electricity to cook and reheat any meals that night and in the morning before we set off again the next day. With that in mind, I prepped some meals while I was still at home to refrigerate to use as lunch and dinner. I opted for low protein pasta, mixed with grilled zucchini, cherry tomato, garlic, olive oil and fresh basil. My go-to quick and easy low protein meal. I made a huge batch and stored these in containers to fill the campervan fridge. This turned out to be a smart choice, because after some huge days exploring or being stuck in the middle of nowhere without PKU friendly options nearby, a ready-made meal was all I wanted.
Now admittedly, we never ended up using the stove! We were way too excited in the mornings to start our day, and at night too exhausted to cook. Before we left, we did a big supermarket shop. On the shopping list was a whole lot of fruit that would keep for a few days and served as a quick and easy breakfast or snack. Bananas, apples, mandarins, and a few packs of blueberries to throw into the fridge. I also grabbed some other low protein options like coconut yoghurt, veggie chips and popcorn to munch on as well.
We obviously couldn’t pass up the opportunity to eat at the beautiful cafes and restaurants along the way too. For breakfast I’d usually opt for a plate of sides; mushroom, avocado, roast tomato and hashbrowns.
Rice paper rolls were a great on-the-go lunch. I was able to pick up some at a café we stopped at for breakfast. It was filled with lettuce, avocado, capsicum and carrot.
I found this great lunch dish in Byron Bay which I didn’t really need to alter at all. A very rare but welcomed sight! A sweet potato flatbread (made with just sweet potato and corn starch) topped with roast carrot and beetroot and sautéed kale.
Acai bowls were everywhere and served as a great mid-afternoon treat.
And a Thai veggie stir fry is always a good choice for dinner.
We visited some very cool sandstone rock formations, stunning beaches, waterfalls, a gaol, blooming jacaranda trees and a beautiful BBQ with my family who live up the coast too.
All in all, a great little trip exploring some of what New South Wales has to offer. I find planning really is key to sticking to diet when I’m out of routine, like on a holiday. Bringing along pre-cooked meals and lots of snacks is ideal, but I made sure to factor in some flexibility to be able to enjoy delicious cafes and restaurants along the way