Meeting fellow travelers has been one of my favorite things about traveling since I was younger. For years, I traveled solo through many countries and, whether for a day or for an hour, fellow travelers and I would talk and learn something about each other; where we were from, why we were traveling, or the best place to get a coffee.
These were days before social media. I couldn’t just ask these fellow travelers for their IG info and then “like” every picture they snapped, following them through their journey. Our encounter would end–most of the time, as quickly as it began. We would go our separate ways, likely not to see each other again, except in our memories.
What it did do, though, was to make my journey so much more exciting. I got to talk with other people who also wanted to experience new cities, foods, cultures, and languages. We passed our time on the trains, buses, sometimes in bars, discussing where we had been and where we were going. In the days before blogging, we gave each other tips, breaking bread together, and just having social contact. Meeting so many different people from so many different backgrounds enriched my travels.
Fast forward to today: I was recently on my favorite Facebook group, Travel Bloggers Club, and stumbled upon a post about a 7-day Travel Blogger Challenge. Admittedly without reading the rules, I decided to join. I figured this would be a chance to share with a group of dedicated, diverse, and talented writers. Reading the work from this group, I feel myself walking in their shoes, eating the food their trying, and experiencing their journeys. The Club’s 7-day challenge is to create and publish a new post every day for a week.
I wasn’t sure how I would get a new post out everyday for seven days while juggling work, three kids, and afternoon/evening activities. However, I signed up and I was going to do it. I started out strong, but mid-way through lost one day to the flu. However, I was determined to finish. Writing the posts, I was brought back to my days of solo travel. Learning about fellow travelers’ adventures, getting their tips and advice, felt like conversations with fellow travelers on trains and in cafes. I got to know my fellow bloggers through daily message threads. Each new post told me about where they had been, how they love to travel, what challenges some face when traveling, what they ate, their favorite airlines, and why you need to go certain places off season. The best part about this is that, unlike the past when I would lose touch with fellow travelers; this time, I get to follow these amazing travel bloggers online.
Here are the wonderful travel writers, who’ve shared their journeys with me:
Roots Wings and Travel Things share their travel experiences and tips while homeschooling their boys. They travel gluten-free. Their adventures seek out the best playgrounds in NYC, the best restaurants that cater to their dietary limitations, and have taught me so much about Detroit (a city I didn’t know enough about). Their passion for family travel shines through in all of their writing. If you ever need a hot chocolate recommendation in NYC, Roots Wings and Travel Things has you covered.
Reading about globe-trotting while getting in graduate school inspires me not to put off traveling. A World in Reach has traveled throughout the USA, Europe, Asia, South America, Caribbean. Even better, her guides us how to travel far on a budget.
Alex and Lisa are life partners and world conquerors. They decided to leave their 9-5 jobs in London and take a career gap. Their blog details their destinations, with off-season and off-the-beaten path tips. They also give wonderful, realistic monthly blog business reports about their blog audience target, continued success, and financials.
After university, Nina couldn’t find a job, which was probably a blessing in disguise, as it led to her taking a year to explore Europe. Now her second year traveling, she is discovering New Zealand and documenting it all. Her path, growing up traveling with her family and decided to take the travel world on herself after university, resonated with me.
Caitlyn combines her love of cooking (she started cooking when she was six) with her love of traveling. She is currently learning Spanish in Spain and is most likely enjoying a pincho de tortilla at this moment. She worked as a tour guide and has heard every crazy complaint there is. Caitlyn is all things Netherlands and her site provides an extensive guide to Dutch food.
I’m jealous of Sippin Gypsy’s ability to make any cocktail look like the best in the world. She documents her sips from location to location throughout the USA. Her blog then highlights her sippin destinations with the things to see and do while there. Check out her posts on New Orleans for thirsty inspiration.
Hop along with Mirela as she gives you honest reviews of places to stay, eat and tour. Her trips are affordable and you will not miss out on anything–even on a budget. I’ve learned about the intricacies of getting sailing permits and preparing a twelve-meter boat as she gets ready to sail on the Mediterranean Sea on her honeymoon.
Forty three countries and counting, Digital Travel Guru has a wealth of travel information both off the beaten path to luxury. She offers travel advice and covers all types of travel styles; adventure, beach, city guides, health and wellness, nature, nightlife, and many more.
Jayashree Sengupta is a civil engineer and researcher from India. She details her travels in India, sometimes solo, but having a companion is the “cherry on a cake” for her. She credits her parents for instilling in her the love of travel.
Fly Away Goddess would like to roller skate her way around the world. She is all about adventure and discovering solo travel.
Diana will lead you to the best places to eat in all of her travels. Her mouthwatering photos will make you want to book your reservations immediately. She will always make sure to lead you to the best cup of coffee in all of her locations. Diana covers the best of both worlds, food and travel.
La Vida Belle takes you on wonderful, weekend adventures while working and longer vacations when they have time off. They focus on the traveling as a couple and vlog their adventures together. A lot of their writings focus on their home town state of California and what’s really cool is a majority of their posts are dual lingual, English and Spanish.
Musings and Adventures shares her love for (and sometimes frustrations with) New York City in detailed and amusing posts. She also educates us on wonderful day trips from destinations all over the world. Her posts are extensive; they always give me insightful tips.
Melissa writes from her now-hipster, port town of Ballard, Seattle; where he lives with her son and husband. She writes about her solo, family and past history travel adventures. Her blog concentrates on Seattle, family travel, and travel tips. .
Hello Yeshi writes about her years spent immersed in American Culture and now about her hometown, South Africa. She can show you how to dance the classic Indian dance, Kathak and will be happy to teach you about the importance of a nap.
Julie is the ultimate backpacker. She chronicles her twenty something year old backpacking adventures throughout Latin America, volunteering, working, and living life. Now she is taking on Andorra with her boyfriend and her dog Teas.
Arunima has a voracious appetite for travel. After not being able to find enough blogs relatable to her type of travel, solo, POC female traveler, Arunima started her own blog. She writes about her experiences, tips and unique travels and always makes sure her posts have something for every type of person to relate to.
Travel Fun Family writes about their travel adventures with their little one in hopes to inspire other families with young kids to travel. Although sometimes a challenge with young ones, Travel Fun Family shows that it is possible to travel with young kids.
Frederica started traveling with her family from a young age and has not stopped. Born in Rome, she moved to Chicago to follow her love, started a family and now lives in London. She has not stopped traveling and has a knack for uncovering some unconventional places like street art in Rome or the most romantic restaurants in Rome.
My Challenge Comes To A Close
As my week comes to an end (and it was a challenging week, indeed), I know it is not the end. The week started as quickly as it ended, but I will continue to follow my fellow challenge bloggers. I end the challenge with the satisfaction that we all did this together. Some of us had to overcome a quick onset of illness, kids schedules, new jobs, PhD dissertations, and just daily life. However, we all enriched each others lives with tales of travel destinations, travel tips, foods and cultures.
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