Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Perfect wedding location set to make it 67 in New Zealand

A couple who have already said 'I do' 66 times around the globe are getting ready to add New Zealand and Australia to their list of weddings in their mammoth quest to find the perfect location to tie the knot.

Hopeless romantics Alex Pelling and Lisa Gant, from Manchester, northern England, have been on a blissful mission for the past three and a half years and are now in New Zealand travelling down to Queenstown, in the South Island, to get married on January 28.

The adventurous couple have had a traditional wedding ceremony in every destination they have visited on their journey but are yet to legally exchange wedding vows.

Daily Mail Australia caught up with the intrepid pair at Arthur's Pass, in the South Island, while they were making their way to their 67th wedding.

Despite the big day only being eight days away, Lisa still knew very few details about the big bash.

'It's depends on the weather if we have it outside or inside,' she said.

'I think we are wearing fairly western clothing but a Maori cloak,' she said.

'The ceremony will be conducted in Maori and we will be greeted the traditional Maori way with a song.'

The relaxed bride-to-be was unsure if the haka - a traditional popular war cry and dance - would also be performed.

Far from a Bridezilla, a Kiwi photographer Emily Adamson is organising most of the finer details for the couple.

'She was one of the first people to contact us when we started in 2011 - that was when we expected the trip to only take two years,' she laughed.

'It's really cool that she has followed us through our journey from the beginning.'

The couple, who have a Facebook page and blog documenting their expedition, came up with the idea when they decided to move to Australia.

'We both applied for residency and thought we would circumnavigate the world testing out possible locations and then settle in Australia,' Lisa said.

The journey has taken a lot longer than they expected but the duo will finally arrive in the land Down Under in early February.

'We fly into Melbourne and first go across to Western Australia before going down the east coast,' she said.

'We plan to take three to four months but we have no idea at this stage where the ceremony will be.'

The travellers rely on the goodwill of friends and strangers all over the world to help them out after they both threw in their jobs and sold their possessions to take on the challenge.

'We just had to sell our house back in England - the world is bigger than it looks on a piece of paper,' she said.

'So now we are homeless in a campervan and couldn't be happier.

'We have warned friends that we will be turning up on their doorstep begging for a bed.'

The kindness from the complete strangers has been very overwhelming.

'We couldn't have done it without the help we have had,' Lisa said.

'It's not about spending and being lavish - it's about giving time.'

After their fair dinkum affair in our Great Brown land - the next and final stop on their adventure will be Singapore before deciding on which location - out of all 69 - will be the most idyllic to officially become husband and wife.

Lisa, 32, and Alex, 34, had been friends for eight years when they began dating in 2008.

In 2011, after four years living together, Alex and Lisa made the brave decision to uproot their lives and follow their dream to relocate in Australia, beginning their location hunt.

Just one day after they said I do for the first time in a traditional ceremony in their hometown of Didsbury, they started their search for the very best place Down Under and cheap bridesmaid dress online.

The couple rented out their house and sold their possessions to get funding for their trip. Lisa quit her job as a retail manager for Marks and Spencer while Alex sold his car body repair business.

On their way to Australia, the couple decided to travel the world and their idea slowly transformed into finding the best place in the world to wed, by trying each one out, embracing the local marriage cultures and traditions as much as possible in every location.

Their aim was to find the most exceptional and unique wedding locations possible, blogging about their experiences so others could better chose where to tie the knot themselves.

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