Happy 2 year anniversary!

I can’t believe it. It has already been two years since I started this blog. It all started with a trip to Bolivia, to see my best friend from my all-consuming, incredible and once in a lifetime experience in Oklahoma. The journey to Bolivia was my first ever solo trip and it made me learn so much about myself and the world and experience South America’s beauty for the first time. Another continent crossed off my bucket list! We ventured around La Paz, spent some days at the Salar de Uyuni salt flats and I took an overnight bus trip to see Sucre on my own.

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Sucre, Bolivia

The rest of the summer was filled with trips around Germany, a week in Ibiza and a long awaited trip to Santorini, one of the most heart-warming, dazzling and enchanting places on this earth. Exploring this tiny island by hiking from one end to the other and enjoying utter tranquility and the natural beauty of the island just left me breathless.

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Galatia Villas in Santorini, Greece

Then it was time to prepare for another adventure: a year in Wales, finishing my Master’s degree in Cardiff. Little did I know that I would find my soul sisters, two incredible souls that I know will never leave my side, wherever life will take us. We share something real, something that is beyond words, beyond this world and even beyond my imagination. Definitely changed for good! I finished off the year with a trip to Dublin, Ireland to spend some time with my dear friend Susann to ring in the Christmas time.

Besides meeting incredible friends from all over the world, I got to experience that Wales is a truly underrated country. The landscapes, cities and people in Wales are so much more than beautiful, I cannot wait to come back this summer! I also got the opportunity to go back to Greece and see Athens, Cape Sounio and the Kaisariani Monastery. Despite being robbed my adventurous spirit made me make the best of it!

During my time in Wales I was lucky to travel to Canada for my best friend’s wedding. I definitely left my heart there and hopefully I’ll be back rather sooner than later to go and collect it. I can’t wait to be back in Alberta, meander windy roads around the Rocky Mountains and just LIVE.

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On our way to the Glacier Skywalk.

2015 got even better once I handed it my dissertation and left Cardiff for good. I jumped on a plane to Southeast Asia with my best friend and soulmate Nicole to start our first backpacking trip around Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. It is safe to say that I more than fell in love with backpacking and taking the day one hour at a time, truly relishing the bliss of having the day at your disposal and enjoying a time off without responsibilities.

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Bali Bliss.

The incredible and eventful year wrapped up with a huge surprise. I got invited to go on a roadtrip through Japan! Never would I have imagined to get the opportunity to travel even more that year. I will forever be grateful and humble for this opportunity and wouldn’t want to miss the experience for the world. I got to admire Japanese architecture, eat carefully crafted dishes day in and day out and experience the craziness and mind-blowing size of Tokyo.

Nara, Japan

Nara, Japan

The new year started on a more slow note. I am incredibly happy to have found a full-time job and I even got to take a little trip over Easter, recharging from the craziness of everyday life in the Netherlands.

I am more than positive that this year and this life has so much more to offer and I cannot wait for all the experiences to come and to share them with you! Happy Birthday on wanderlust!

 

 

Tunes for the Road.

What does traveling sound like for you? Is it the soothing sound of the waves kissing the shore, trees swaying the wind or a tiny creek tirelessly running through the woods? Or did you immediately think of man-made tunes? Then you probably know this. You’re on the road and this one song keeps blasting through the radio, accompanying you along the way.

Back home the same song suddenly comes on. In an instant you’re taken back to the way you felt during your trip: lazy hazy days of summer, crusing around during an epic road trip, venturing on a weekend getaway or just chilling in the sun. Travel playlists make life so much better and make your experiences last longer, sending you away on dreams about past travels.

We all have our preferences when it comes to music. For the road I personally prefer tunes that are a bit indie, folk-y and acoustic because they are so raw and real. Just the way I like my travels to be. My favourites are the ones that list endless cities, countries and places because it always inspires me to travel more, see more and experience more. Here are my top three for the road:

1. City and Colour – Home
Although this one technically talks about coming home after traveling for a long time, I feel it has the longest list of places that has ever been mentioned in a song.

2. The Head and the Heart – Down in the Valley
Simply because it mentions my second home, Oklahoma!

3. Passenger – Travelling Song
It’s just such a perfect tune for riding along the road and the lyrics are just sweet.

 

Choosing who to travel with.

Overseas trips like my recent trip to Canada typically raise one big question: Are you a solo traveller, do you prefer to travel the world in a group or is there this one person that you just cannot travel without? I can definitely say that I am not a solo traveller. It’s because of the sheer fact that sharing your joy simply doubles it! I’ve travelled alone once in Bolivia and it just wasn’t for me. I feel that I am not a group traveller either. Too many different ideas, too many ways to approach travelling. That just stresses me out. I need one or two people that share the same vibes as me and “run the same pace” when it comes to travelling.

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Whether you prefer to travel in a group or with one or two travel buddies, I’d say knowing this is the most important thing. Make sure you share the same mind-set when it comes to travelling. Here are some questions that I feel you should ask yourself when deciding who to travel with:

Do you like to start the day at the crack of dawn or are you a lazy bird that likes to sleep in?

Party, a little party or please no party at all?

Do you loooove the beach or are you an albino-sunburn type of person that just can’t be outside in a bathing suit for too long unless you want to look like a lobster?

Are you a culture and museum kind of person or would you rather hike the highest mountains?

Of course, everything and everyone is not as black and white as this list. I, for example, like to get up early most of the times but I like some lazy days to just sleep in and relax. A little party is great, a hell lot of beach makes me happy. I love culture and museums but I’d much rather spend time outdoors and take in the wonders of nature.

What I am trying to tell you is that you should try to determine whether your travel preferences somehow align with those of the one you choose to travel with. Only then you can experience this incredible joy and let loose because you are totally entailed in activities that define you. From time to time consider letting go and let your travel buddy steer the way – you might be surprised that you’re an avid hiker after all or that you always thought you detest expressionist art but you suddenly find yourself in the Guggenheim museum in New York, admiring art. Compromises are good! Try new things, explore, leave your comfort zone and get to know the person that’s been hiding inside you all along. That’s the beauty of travelling – some hidden away traits suddenly come alive, you will feel recharged and rejuvenated and come home with endless stories to tell and an energy that is infinite.

Road trippin’ through Canada

Highway 93. Sounds like any other highway in North America. Don’t be fooled by it. It is also referred to as “Icefields Parkway” or “Promenade des Glaciers”. It takes you all the way through Alberta’s flagships, Banff and Jasper National Park. Sit back and just take in the breathtaking beauty of 230km of the Canadian Rockies leading you all the way up to the Columbia Icefields, Corrie’s and my destination for the day. The Athabasca Glacier is the main attraction there – you can book a tour that takes you onto the surface of the massive glacier where you can walk around and explore. Or you can check out the brand-new Glacier Skywalk: a glassbottom skywalk that hovers over a valley surrounded by sharp mountain ridges. To be honest, it is not as scary as I imagined it to be! Even if you are afraid of heights, you should give it a try. It is definitely worth peeing your pants!

Glacier Skywalk with the Canadian Rockies.

Glacier Skywalk with the Canadian Rockies.

Although these attractions are incredibly stunning, being on the road is the main attraction on this trip. The freedom of hopping into your car and just leaving everything behind is the best feeling in the world.