WHEN Welsh siblings Jessica and Duncan Wellings stopped in the sleepy village of Iluka, they never expected they would fall victim to opportunistic thieves.
On April 2, the couple decided to drop into the village and go for a walk around the bluff.
After about 15 minutes, Jessica said they returned to their van, only to discover the windows smashed and their possessions stolen.
Money, passports and MP3 players were among the items taken, along with personal items such as Jessica's travel diary and address book.
“I felt violated, especially when they took stuff that wouldn't have any meaning to them but has a huge amount of personal value to me,” she said.
Jessica and Duncan reported the theft to Yamba police, before heading up to Murwillumbah to stay with friends.
She said it had taken two weeks to organise new passports and banking details, effectively putting their trip on hold.
“It hasn't ruined the trip but it's definitely put a damper on it,” she said.
Now in the Whitsundays enjoying the last few weeks of their three-month holiday, Jessica said she wanted to warn holiday makers to be careful when visiting tourist areas.
“It was the only time I actually left my bag in the van and unfortunately that's when it happened,” she said.
“It was probably just an opportunist crime.”
On a more positive note, Jessica praised the Iluka community for helping the duo after the burglary.
“They were just so helpful at the time,” she said.
If anyone has information about the crime or the whereabouts of any of the items stolen, contact Yamba Police on 6646 2000.