Van Cat Meow: One man and his cat adventures in a campervan through Australia

You’ve heard of one man and his dog, but how about one man and his cat? Van Cat Meow chronicles the life of Willow, a rescue cat, who travels Australia in a campervan alongside her human parent, Richard East, who makes their journey possible.

Nearly four years ago Richard East quit his full-time job, sold his Hobart house and took to the road with a custom-fitted van and his best friend Willow, the cat.

The Tasmanian-native and his feline companion have completed a trip around Australia, from coastal roads to crossing deserts to even taking a little trip over the Great Barrier Reef.

Willow spends the majority of her outdoors time off-leash under supervision. This means the travelling pair find places to camp which are suitable both for her safety and the health of the environment.

She also has a tracking collar, so if she decides to wander off her human parent can nab her.

Richard East says: “Willow is very curious and loves to explore. She adapts well to new environments but is quite cautious until she feels comfortable. She spends most of her days snoozing on top of the roof rack, under the van, or sleeping in her cat carrier. On cold days you will find her snuggled up in my blankets.

“When she’s not snoozing outside she will either sleep on the bench seat or curl up by my feet at night. When we are driving she snoozes in her cat carrier. The cat carrier is one of her favourite hiding spaces where she has access to her food and water.

“We do not go into National Parks or Flora/Fauna reserves, but we still get to see some incredible places.”

When Richard East first started his journey with his black adventure cat in 2015, he set up an Instagram account to post the occasional photo of his new life.

As he started to drive around Australia with Willow, his account under the name of Van Cat Meow started to grow and now has more than 62,000 followers.

Speaking to ABC News, he said: “As we started travelling I started putting up more pictures of Willow and it started to get more and more interest.

“It’s so nice to get feedback from people that they enjoy hearing about our story; it’s quite a motivating factor in our journey so far.”

Van Cat Meow

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea

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