Lara Miller: living a nomadic life with trusty camera in tow

Lara Miller has ditched her conventional 30-something Australian lifestyle to become a woman of ‘no fixed abode’, photographing every single life-changing moment, person and place she encounters during her global travels. What started as a six-month sabbatical, has now become a race against time for Lara to see as many nooks and crannies of this earth as she possibly can before she permanently looses her eyesight. Backpack, camera (and husband) in tow, Lara chronicles her nomadic lifestyle on Instagram and has self-published a stunning photographic memoir of her travelsLove Walk Eat See. She shares her adventures with Khoollect.

Tell us a bit about why you set out on your travels – we understand you’re slowly losing your vision, so this must be huge motivation to soak up all that there is to see in this world?

The fact that I am losing my vision is a huge motivating factor for us (myself and my husband). Being in our mid-30s with a mortgage, we feel there is nothing else that we want to be doing or putting our money towards more than seeing the world while I can and not waiting until retirement age.

Lara Miller

How many places have you visited, and what’s the one place you haven’t been that you’re absolutely hanging out to see?

New Zealand in November last year was my 19th country! I’m hanging out to see Scotland – give me those foggy skies, barren hills and dramatic coastlines please.

You’ve been documenting your travels via photographs and recently published a book. How important is that book to you?

As our sabbatical went on, friends were saying “when you make that book…..” So I started to think about a keepsake that I could share with loved ones with snapshots of the trip. It is a beautiful thing to have, and a great trigger for many good memories. It is also very handy for giving loved ones an overview of our travels without subjecting them to a long slideshow night!

Tell us about some other interesting projects you’re working on right now …

I am forever travel researching! I have just completed my first exhibition, been honoured to appear in Collective Magazine and am pondering an online space to enable me to get back into writing. I’m also getting ready to host my second #PassionForProvenance luncheon that celebrates the origins and stories of food, and the people who cook with thoughtfully sourced ingredients – this is a personal project I hope to take with me to different locations as we travel.

Then we’re heading back to the USA and Canada to see family and friends, and do a road trip. We’re really excited about some cool weather and unexplored epic landscapes to photograph between the cities we have already visited.

The most amazing and inspiring thing you’ve seen or done on your travels?

Iceland was such an incredible trip and it created a sizeable shift within me. I had come to feel increasingly trapped by my poor vision, and was ready for the sabbatical we had long said we would do. Iceland revealed to me how much I yearned for open landscapes on which I could roam independently without fear of bumping into anything. Once a full ‘city girl’, I came to crave the freedom of the country just as much. We came back from Iceland more determined than ever to make the sabbatical work. A few months later, we took a life-affirming glamping safari in South Africa where we were within arm’s reach of lions and dwarfed by elephants. I was downsizing and packing up our home just weeks later.

Lara Miller

What’s your favourite travel destination?

The first part of our sabbatical was spent in Italy. I have long been convinced that I have some Italian heritage, for I was certain I was going to love it. And adore it I did! We spent seven weeks covering the Amalfi Coast, Rome, Florence, Lucca, Milan and regional Tuscany. (Unfortunately I still haven’t found any Italian ancestors!)

Your top five travel essentials to pack?

My camera. Icebreaker merino under-layers. A course of antibiotics in case of sickness in the middle of nowhere. On arrival at the new country, a local SIM card for internet that allows spontaneous AirBnB and flight/train bookings or language translation help. A cute notebook and pen for jotting down feelings, restaurant names or stories when on a plane.

Best thing you’ve ever eaten abroad?

One of our stand-out meals was a five-hour degustation at Restaurant Story in London! We were with friends we hadn’t seen in a long time, so it was an idyllic setting in which to catch up while each exquisite course came to us.

Lara Miller

What rituals do you put in place to make your life easier away from home?

I tend to pack my suitcase the same way each time, so I know exactly where everything is. I have a few digital photos of family and my dog so that I can see their faces whenever I need to. On our travel days, we do not place any expectations on ourselves, but rather give ourselves breathing space and the time I need to adjust to new surroundings. Upon moving in, we always ‘Lara-fy’ a place, moving anything that represents a hazard for me or — in the case of fragile breakables — me a danger to it! We have regular rest days too so that I can let my eyes recover and recharge for more adventures.

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Read Lara’s tips for travelling mindfully abroad.

Buy Lara Miller’s book of stunning travel photography or follow her on Instagram to be a part of her journey.

Photo by

David Miller. Other photos from Lara Miller’s Instagram.