Enjoying the weather

THROUGH rain, hail, sleet and snow, the mailman always gets the mail through - or so the saying used to go.

But posties aren't the only ones who battle the elements to do their job.

Spare a thought for The Weather Channel presenters.

Sure, they may visit exotic locations but they also must deal with everything Mother Nature throws up at them in doing so.

Today, well-travelled presenters Ken Heatley and Lee Brooks share their best travel tips on beating the weather and making the most of your trip, their favourite locations around the world and most memorable moments in doing their job - even during severe weather events.

KEN HEATLEY, PRESENTER

Top five holiday locations

Campitello in the northern Dolomite Mountains of Italy

Absolute nightmare to get there (three trains and three buses from Milan) but well worth it.

It was our first stop on our European honeymoon with my wife and we didn't want to leave. Not only did we ski one of the top five rated ski runs in the world with half a metre of powder snow on a 100km ski tour, but we melted right into the authentic Italian culture and food in Campitello. One of the happiest weeks of my life.

Jungfrau Region in Switzerland

The Jungfrau Region in Switzerland, in particular Wilderswil near Interlaken, is a special place for me. We have great friends. I love the culture and the amazing scenery but you do get sick of eating meat, cheese and bread for breakfast.

Hirafu, Japan (Niseko)

Hokkaido Japanese culture is really something you have to experience. The locals are so nice, polite, helpful and respectful I think it made me a better person just by interacting with them. Because of the unique geographical setup of the Siberian Desert and the Sea of Japan and the way weather systems move through the area, Japan has some of the deepest powder snow on the planet.

I was there four months and only saw the sun three times. The rest of the time, it was snowing.

New York, US

In terms of world city locations, this has to be one of the coolest I have been to. Cruising around Manhattan makes you feel like you are on the set of Ghostbusters, and Times Square is just a sensory overload.

The amount of electricity that city must burn boggles the mind.

Treachery Camp, Seal Rocks, NSW Mid North Coast

This place is paradise. It's just a camping area but has all the facilities you would want. Whenever I go there I think I'm in that movie The Beach with Leonardo DiCaprio. Great waves and a huge beach that stretches as far as the eye can see, making you feel like you have the whole place to yourself. I surfed a whole wave for the first time at Seal Rocks, I thought it was a great achievement. Good chance of swimming with dolphins, which happen to be very friendly.

Five best travel tips

If you are flying economy, try to organise your seats as far away from the front row as possible. This is usually where all the screaming kids are located. Fly business (although, I have never had the privilege).

Talk to as many people as you can, as politely as you can when overseas. This will not only give Australians a good wrap, but you never know where new friends you make may take you.

Always be open to suggestions from locals, they know best.

Always try to speak the language. The locals usually see you are struggling and talk to you in English anyway, but they will appreciate your attempt and will usually be more helpful.

Don't withdraw way more currency than you need. You don't want to be carrying lots of cash, and the conversion costs back to Aussie dollar are a killer.

Most memorable on location moment

I was sent to Mackay in Queensland to cover Tropical Cyclone Ului. I never experienced tropical weather as kid since I grew up in the mountains, so having a cyclone pass right over my head was definitely an experience. Our crew did not get much sleep that week.

LEE BROOKS, PRESENTER

Top five holiday locations

Durban South Africa

I spent a lot of childhood holidays there with fond memories of the beach and Mr Wimpy ice-creams. I revisited it in 2006 and stayed in the same hotel my parents stayed for their honeymoon.

Madrid, Spain

Three of my favourite things in one place - sangria, siesta and tapas, now that's living....

Whitsundays

Nothing can beat the beauty of the Whitsundays, it's a tropical paradise.

Prague

One of a few of the European cities that didn't get completely bombed out in the Second World War, beautiful, original buildings all through a city of cobblestones.

Shanghai, China

Cheap, exotic, amazing and so totally different. I ate the best Australian beef I have ever tasted there, great Aussie wines, too.

Five best travel tips

Never leave home without sunscreen, an eye mask and ear plugs. City hotels can have brutal early morning noise.

As long as you have your passport and a credit card on you, you'll be able to handle any travel mishap.

For long plane flights, moisturise, moisturise, moisturise and drink LOTS of water.

Carry a neck roll or pillow on the flight - it makes all the difference with sleeping on the plane.

Put a good jacket, a fresh t-shirt and change of underwear in your carry-on luggage - nothing like being left out in the cold if your luggage doesn't arrive with you.

Most memorable on location moment

My most memorable on-location moment was standing on top of Mt Wellington, Hobart in mid-summer. I wasn't completely prepared for a Tasmanian summer cold snap. The temperature was 2˚C but 80kmh winds meant it felt like 20˚C out in the elements. I had to deliver a piece to camera but I was completely frozen within about two minutes of getting out of the car. It took all day to feel my hands and feet again.

The World of Weather report airs daily at quarter to the hour on channel 603, The Weather Channel.

>> Read more travel stories.



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