I have been an avid reader of numerous blogs for many, many years and when I decided to embark on a solo trip, I added tons of travel blogs to my feed reader. Traveling solo as a girl is not the same as traveling solo as a guy, and I found these blogs to be particularly inspiring/helpful/authentic for my travel preparations:
Travelettes: “The Travelettes are a group of female travelers, writers and photographers sharing their travel stories online since August 2009. We come from all corners of the world and it is our goal to inspire, inform and motivate young women to travel more.” There are hardly any countries not featured on this traveller collective’s website. They are particularly strong on content for Asia and Europe and also run a very active and helpful Facebook Group.
Adventurous Kate: “At age 26, I quit my job to travel the world alone. I spent six fantastic months in Southeast Asia and turned my travel blog into a full-time business. Today, I travel full-time, going anywhere that sounds wacky or beautiful or interesting. My goal is to show YOU how you can travel the world on your own — easily, safely, and adventurously.” I guess there is nothing more to add here!
Alex in Wanderland: “I’m a New York native who left my home to explore the world slowly and thoroughly. I’m just a little obsessed with photography, scuba diving, and reading guidebooks to countries I have no immediate plans to visit.” I love the colourful layout of her blog, combined with good photography and authentic writing. This blog makes you want to pack your bags immediately.
Messy Nessy Chic: “Blogging on the Fashionable, the unique and the chic, everything you read and see on Messy Nessy Chic has been written and designed from my shabby chic room in Paris or sometimes from the little cafe downstairs ; ) Messy Nessy Chic is a mood board of information for just about anything from life & style to travel & food recommendations.” This may not be your traditional travel blog, but I could spend hours procrastinating over Nessy’s eclectic content.
World of Wanderlust: “Out of a love for writing and sharing stories, I created this space on the internet to connect with likeminded travelers around the world. I travel the world solo full time living a work + travel lifestyle. I share my experiences and travel tips here on WoW and I hope you enjoy the site!” Definitely more upscale and less adventurous than the other travel blogs featured here, but I still love Brooke’s writing and photography. Plus we both share a love for hats.
Books, stylish things and a more intellectual examination of travel: My favourite web-picks of the week.
My motto? Look good at all times! One of my favourite filmmakers? Wes Anderson! Combine these and out comes a beautiful, beautiful luggage collection inspired by the wonderful Darjeeling Limited. Everything seems to be currently sold out, but I hope the bags will be back in stock soon, because I just NEED them!!! (Via Messy Nessy Chic)
Rima Karaki is my heroine of the day. The Libanese TV anchor was interviewing some old islamist douchebag, who does not seem to be particularly fond of working with women – and especially not being interrupted by one. Her ballsy response is pure gold? Best quote: “Either there is mutual respect or the conversation is over!” Way to go girl! Show that mofo who’s boss!
Apparently, the urge to travel might be genetically determined: “The inherent urge to travel can be traced back to one gene, which is associated with the dopamine levels in the brain. The gene has been dubbed the “wanderlust gene,” because of its correlation with increased levels of curiosity and restlessness, for the most part.” If this is true, I was most definitely born with The Wanderlust Gene: Why Some People Are Born To Travel.
On the same matter: The School of Life explains the Point of Travel, which is more complex than one would think. Best quote: “We need to re-learn how to be ambitious about travel, seeing it as a way of helping us to grow into better versions of ourselves.” #asiahereicome
Weapons of mass instruction: I love the idea of this tank-shaped bookshelf driving around the streets of Buenos Aires, handing out free reads. Because education is the best weapon! (via KFMW)
Books, the Spice Girls and Joy Furr Division: My favourite links of the week.
I have been an avid reader for as long as I remember. I remember once going on a holiday and bringing a three-volume edition of St. Clare’s, which my mum was expecting to get me through this two week vacation. Well, I finished it within two or three days. So it is hard for me to imagine a A Childhood Without Books – even though this a reality we are clearly facing.
Exactly eighteen years ago, Geri Halliwell wore the iconic Union Jack “dress” to the BRITs and wrote pop history. On the occasion of this year’s awards, Geri posted this message on Insta. <3
Ein von Geri Halliwell (@therealgerihalliwell) gepostetes Foto am
Also, this plus the fact that I celebrated my 27th birthday last weekend suddenly makes me feel very old. Watch the whole performance from 1997 here.
We all know that travelling broadens our mind in so many ways. World of Wanderlust shares her experiences on this in her article “TRAVEL MADE ME BETTER AT…”
Sometimes I feel like all I do for a living is writing emails and attending meetings. Meetings can be particularly boring and/or pointless, so I find these 10 Tricks to Appear Smart During Meetings without actually putting an effort into it come in pretty handy.
There can never be enough smart websites for teen girls, so I was very pleased to find out about Amy Phoeler’s Smart Girls. The website and Facebook page puts the spotlight on female achievers of all sorts – sports, arts, science, business… Because doing something “like a girl” is NOT an offence – it’s freaking awesome! And YES OK I KNOW I am not a teenager any more, but I still love websites like Hello Giggles and, especially, Rookie.
On the same matter, make sur to check out this video:
My graphic designer co-worker and I are both addicted to Pinterest and Pinterest-worthy food, photos, furniture etc. and constantly send each other stuff we find online. Recently she sent me an article on a beautiful same-sex wedding and we discussed how most wedding blogs tend to feature only heterosexual weddings. So I was very pleased when a few days later, I accidentally came across an entire Pinterest board dedicated to beautiful LBGT weddings, curated by Offbeat Bride. I don’t really believe in mariage, but do think that everybody who wants to get married should have the right to do so and these photos show that same-sex weddings can be just as beautiful!
Based in LA and Vancouver, Alex Strohl is a French photographer who spends his days exploring the most stunning landscapes, notably in North America. You can check out his work on his website, his Tumblr and – my favourite source – his Instagram. His shots of Alaska make me want to go there even more (as I already mentioned in this post about the Magic Bus). I can’t believe he really took all these photos with his phone!
Street harassement is one of the topics to upset me most in life, and Alex in Wanderland just wrote a very insightful post about her experiences with catcalling in Nicaragua: Catcalls and Question Marks.
My current binge-watching addiction? Pars and Recreation! “From the moment she took a dive into the empty pit where she would one day build a park, Leslie Knope was the perfectionist role model I never knew I had always wanted: likable, determined, passionate, kind, flawed, and real.” Read more on How Leslie Knope Taught Me to Love Being a Perfectionist!
Big Data + Instagram + Photography = What more could you ask for? For several years, Eric Fischer has compared data of geotagged photos taken by tourists vs. locals and put the results into beautiful maps.
For many cities, the results are quite impressive. In Paris, you can clearly see that tourists (red) mostly stay around the major sights like the Eiffel Tower, the Camps Elysées and Saint Germain, whereas locals (blue) tend to mainly hang out in the northern and eastern neighbourhoods.
Those maps are particularly fun to look at when you have already been to a certain city. But I do think they’re also a good way to discover cool neighbourhoods while travelling. Because after all, walking on the beaten tourist tracks when visiting a city is not even half as fun as hanging out like (and with) the locals!