Elisa Detrez nabbed one of the Best Jobs in the World as a Queensland Park Ranger for a six-month whirlwind stint where cuddling koalas, watching baby turtles hatch and scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef was all just another day at the office.
Best Jobs in the World was a worldwide competition organised by Tourism Australia last year to promote Australia internationally, and more specifically to spark interest in youth travellers. Six amazing jobs (one per state) were on offer, all different. Elisa Detrez chose the position of a Park Ranger in Queensland as she wanted to live and work in the great outdoors and to be in contact with wildlife.
Best Jobs in the World made me realise that there are many opportunities out there for those who dare to follow their dreams and passion.
A Frenchwoman with a strong media background, Elisa created a compelling case for herself – and it paid off. She has now finished her six-month posting as a Queensland Park Ranger and we catch up with her to see how it all went.
GAB: Hi Elisa, please can you tell us more about this amazing position?
ED: I worked for six months as a Tourism Ambassador and Advocate for Queensland. My role was to work alongside Queensland’s Park Rangers and share my stories with the world via my bilingual blog and social media channels. My partner, Max, came with me as he is a professional photographer, and both of us lived the dream. As a result of the job, we provided thousands of professional quality photos, dozens of narrative blog posts and short videos, and a social reach to hundreds of thousands of people every month. We visited more than 60 national parks in Queensland and met over 200 rangers.
GAB: What have been some of the most memorable moments of being a Queensland Park Ranger?
ED: Witnessing the nesting and hatching of turtles at Mon Repos Conservation Park was amazing. This experience is a unique Queensland natural encounter that I will keep with me forever. Also, tagging an endangered species of rock wallabies in the Whitsundays. I participated in the whole process from capturing them to releasing them back into to the wild – wonderful. I also participated in a bird survey with the rangers on Michaelmas Cay, a sand cay of the Great Barrier Reef – simply a postcard! And finally, exploring West Queensland and more particularly Diamantina National Park. The red sand, the unique wildlife and observing the quiet of the Outback was something I’d never experienced before.
GAB: Are you sad to soon be leaving Australia?
ED: Of course, I can’t really imagine my life back in France at the moment. I’m so impregnated by Australia now – the climate, the wildlife, its people, the lifestyle, etc. – that the return will be a big shock, even though I’m excited to see my family and friends again.
GAB: How has this experience changed your life?
ED: Best Jobs in the World made me realise that there are many opportunities out there for those who dare to follow their dreams and passion. I discovered a true interest in travelling the world. After this kind of experience, I don’t think it’s possible to go back to my previous life: working in an office, Monday to Friday 8:00 am to 6:00 pm. I have also realised how much I love working in the nature and with animals.
GAB: What are your plans for the future?
ED: Max and I want to write a book about this adventure of a lifetime. We have so many great photos and stories that we think are worth sharing. We’re also looking at possibilities to come back to Australia for a year or more – if you have any propositions for us to come back to Australia, you know where to find us!
Visit Elisa’s blog at www.elisathebestjobintheworld.com/#!home-english/cjfd or follow her on Instagram @elisaparkranger.
To learn more about the Best Jobs in the World, visit www.bestjobs.australia.com
Watch Elisa’s Best Jobs in the World entry video: