Travel Inspiration – 6 Travel Bloggers and Vloggers You Need to Be Following

At this time of year, many of us are sick of the cold weather, and if you’re anything like me, you can’t stop dreaming about some far-off destination. Wishing that instead of putting up with the rain and cold weather, you were climbing volcanoes in Central America or exploring ancient temples in Southeast Asia! This is where travel bloggers/vloggers come in to save us, and make us feel as if we’re actually exploring the far reaches of the planet ourselves, and ultimately help us make it through the last couple months of cold! But beware, there is a high chance that you’ll get sucked in to exploring the world on your computer, and find yourself a couple hours later, still scrolling blog posts and watching YouTube videos. But oh well, it happens.


Nomadic Matt—Ranked the top travel blog in the world, this blog is everything an aspiring travel writer hopes to be. Matt, the author of the blog, has been traveling the world for the past ten years and counting. Aside from his blog, he’s written best-seller, How to Travel the World on $50 a Day, which I’ve read and would recommend to anyone planning on taking a trip. On his blog, Matt offers endless helpful tips and how-to’s, as well as guides to many different countries and cities around the world. The other great thing is that you can shoot him an email if you have any questions (regarding trip planning, writing, overcoming fears, anything). I’ve emailed him in the past and he’s been very supportive and helpful!

Be My Travel Muse—This blog, run by solo female traveler Kristin Addis, is a great place to find inspiration! Literally just click on one of the countries on her map and start reading about it! She writes about off-the-beaten-track destinations, and usually spends a good deal of time in each place in order to get to know the culture and people better. I just finished reading her book about backpacking in Southeast Asia, called A Thousand New Beginnings, and absolutely loved it. She also wrote Conquering Mountains: The Guide to Solo Female Travel, which is next on my reading list.

Expert Vagabond—This blog by another Matt, is actually quite similar to Nomadic Matt’s site. He offers great travel tips, from saving money before you go to packing guides, as well as advice on starting your own blog (which I found incredibly helpful), and posts about all the different places he’s been.


Hey Nadine—Nadine is a solo female traveler who makes great videos of her travels, as well as packing tips, advice for fellow solo female travelers, and sometimes collaborations with other vloggers! She has a beautiful website as well as a YouTube channel. Her personality is great—she’s super positive, energetic, and funny—and I’m sure you will love her.

Fun For Louis—This YouTuber makes DAILY vlogs of his adventures while traveling the world! He makes them quite funny, while at the same time informative. He’s often with his girlfriend, Raya, who has her own channel as well, Raya Was Here, so be sure to stop by there, too! They are a really fun traveling couple (hence the name FUN for Louis), and you can be transported almost anywhere you want just by watching their videos! Also go check out his Insta, @funforlouis to see some great travel photos!

Sailing La Vagabonde—Now this isn’t your typical travel vlogging couple, but if you dream of hopping on a boat and sailing around the world, this is the channel for you. The adorable Aussie couple, Elayna and Riley, have set out to circumnavigate the globe on their sailboat, named La Vagabonde. Elayna narrates most of the vlogs, and they document their travels to gorgeous destinations, as well as just their daily life onboard La Vagabonde.

I also want to mention some of the travel photographers/videographers you might want to check out on YouTube. These guys make some incredible videos and vlogs that I promise will inspire you to go have an adventure of your own! Rob Strok, Sam Kolder, Nainoa Langer, Sam Evans, and Thomas Alex Norman.

Exploring Close to Home: To Travel, You Don’t Always Need to Go Far


If you’re itching to get out and have an adventure, take some nice pictures, and have fun, but don’t have the time or money to hop on a plane to some exotic destination, just look to your own backyard! There are likely plenty of parks or cities nearby that you haven’t had a chance to explore, or maybe ones that you have, but still provide a good change of scenery. Trust me, there are ways to travel without going far from home!

You might have heard the term, “be a tourist in your own town” before, and thought, ‘How could I possibly find anything new to do in the same town I’ve lived in my whole life?’. Well, you probably can. I’m serious, get online and look up things to do in your area, or check out your town’s tourism website and just find something that sounds interesting. Then all you have to do is get out a map and go there!

Another thing to do is to just start driving. Grab a camera and hop in the car. You can either look at a map to find a nearby park or don’t–just drive. Maybe it sounds crazy, but even if you just take a road you don’t normally go on, you might find a great place to explore.

A couple weekends ago, my friend Anna, and I wanted to go take a hike somewhere, so we hopped in the car with my parents (and dog) to go out to the dunes at Meinert Park. Once we found the trail (which took a little looking), we set off hiking. It was freezing and very windy, but we still had a lot of fun. Anna and I immediately ran up to the highest dune to look out at the lake and take pictures. When my parents decided to head back to the car, we thought we would find a different way to get back! So we ran all the way down the dunes to the beach–and that little decision was what started what will forever be known as “the adventure.”

Once we got to the beach we realized we would have to find a place to cross the little river running between the lake and where our car was. We looked for places to get across as we slipped and fell on the invisible ice covering the sand, but every spot was just a little too far to jump! So Plan A was shot. Plan B was to climb onto the partially broken bridge a ways back from the lake, hoping that it wasn’t as bad as it looked. It was. And soon we were stuck climbing the same dune we had run down just 20 minutes before. It might sound like a bad turn of events, but really, that was what made it fun! We got to the car eventually after an extra mile or two of hiking, where we continued to laugh most of the way home while telling my parents what had happened.

If you have a little more time, say a weekend, find an interesting city/town an hour or two (or three or four if you want) away and book a hotel room. Or, for a more affordable and adventurous option, pack up your camping gear and pitch tent at a park campground. You can have a mini road trip!

Last summer I convinced my parents to take a short trip up to the U.P. to go camping and cliff diving. We spend a weekend where we kayaked along Pictured Rocks, hiked to numerous waterfalls, and of course, jumped off a couple cliffs! It was great!


No matter your budget or amount of time off, there is an adventure to be had! Don’t let the “travel is expensive” myth slow you down, and definitely don’t think you don’t have the time–just an hour or two one weekend can help clear your mind and partially fill that desire to travel!

Sailing the Bahamian Way: Ridin’ the Pry


On the very first day we went out on the dive boat with Dive Exuma, I noticed the beautifully painted wooden sailboats that were moored near the dock by the dive shop. They were definitely racing boats, with their names streaked across the hulls. When Jonathon, my instructor, saw us admiring them, he told us about the upcoming Bull Reg Regatta, an annual sailing race that was going to take place in a few days. We learned about “ridin’ the pry,” which refers to the outrigger boards for the crew to sit on to keep the boats from tipping over. It was like hiking out on steroids. We immediately decided we wanted to go watch the races, and he told us that Fish Fry was the best place to watch. Fish Fry was a local hangout made up of colorful shacks, all bars and restaurants, located along the shore a ways up the road from town. We had already heard the name thrown around a bit in the few days we had been there, so we figured it was a pretty happening place.

A few days later, the morning of the regatta, we decided to go down to one of the shacks that served as the hub for sailors on the island. The race was advertised to start at 9, so we came down around 10, expecting that 9 meant about 10 in Bahamian time! There were no boats racing, so we chatted with a few locals to find out what was going on with the regatta. We found out it was postponed until the next day, in hopes that the currently-howling winds would calm down a bit. 

One of the bars at Fish Fry

We came back the next day to find that the races were on! Locals gathered at the shack pictured above, chatting and drinking beers at 10 in the morning, and waiting for the races to start. The start–wow! The one minute horn went off, and the eight or so boats were still sitting anchored with sails un-hoisted! Aren’t they going to get ready? The race is about to start! I was thinking. But then, when the horn blasted to signal the start of the race, bam! Within 5-10 seconds, all of the boats had their anchors up, sails up, and were racing! I couldn’t believe how fast they got moving! And when they did, we found out just how big of a thing sailing was in the Bahamas. The locals were about as bad as Americans watching football! They were pointing out the window of the open air bar, yelling “red boat!” and “Long Island boat!” …And that was about all we could understand through their thick Bahamian accent and the fact that there were about 6 people talking over each other. I had no idea how they could even see what boat was ahead, let alone which boat it was (if it was the red boat or the blue boat, etc.), since by then they had sailed far from shore, and all you could see was their graceful white sails. When they came around the mark close to shore, we were able to see better, and watched as the crew scrambled out onto the pry. It looked incredibly fun! Buzzy, the son of Bull Reg, who the regatta is named after, won the races. 

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On our third to last day on the island, we came back to Fish Fry (which by then was our 4th or 5th time there), and tried to find a sailor to take me out as crew. My dad and I were talking to some men, and we asked if Buzzy was around. They all started laughing, and soon we figured out that we were talking to Buzzy himself! He told us he had to put his two boats on a barge the next day to take them to Nassau for another regatta, so he might not have a boat to take me out on. We said we’d meet him down at the dock after our dive that day, but when we got back the barge was already there and they were getting ready to load the boats. So, I never got to sail, but that’s just one more reason for me to come back again!

5 Reasons Why You Should Learn to Scuba Dive

It’s fun! – Learning to dive was definately one of the best experiences of my life! I’ve been snorkeling ever since I was a little kid, and I absoulutely love it. I’ve wanted to try diving for a while now, and I was always certain I would love it even more than snorkeling – and I was right! If you like swimming or snorkeling, diving will be twice as fun! It might be a little weird or scary when you first breathe underwater, but I quickly got used to it. By the second dive, everything just clicked and it was amazingly relaxing and easy!

You’ll learn something – I used PADI’s eLearning program to do the classroom portion of the course, as well as Dive Exuma (the island’s local dive shop) to do my required dives to become a certified Open Water Diver. The only surprise was how much classroom work I had to do on eLearning! You had to learn a bit of the science and technical part of diving, understanding the pressure increase as you dive deeper, and using a dive table to plan your dive time & depth. It was pretty interesting stuff! I am glad that I had to learn it because it made me appreciate diving even more.

You will get to see a completely different world underwater – My favorite animals have always been sea animals (dolphins and turtles). Diving in the Bahamas let us get close to sea turtles, sharks, and various species of beautiful fish and corals. Unfortunately, no dolphins. The shark dive we did was at a reef about an hour long boat ride from Exuma to a spot off the shore of Long Island. And it was incredible! We descended to a sandy bottom about 40 feet below the surface, and were immediately encircled by reef sharks. They weren’t scary at all, and were quite small, only about 6-8 feet, and as my instructor Johnathon encouragingly said beforehand, “If they bite you, you’ll survive. You’ll just have a big scar!” We also visited 2 blue holes (one diving, one snorkeling), which are quite literally just big holes in the sea floor. They are like caves, with circular openings and steep walls. Some are deeper than others, for example the Angelfish Bluehole that we visited with the dive group was about 90 feet deep, with the surrounding sea floor only about 25-30 feet. There are so many things underwater that you just can’t experience without scuba diving, and for me, that alone is why I wanted to learn.

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It opens up job and travel opportunities – I (obviously) want to travel when I’m older! Even before learning to dive, I fantasized about being a dive instructor at different locations around the world, spending every day underwater. And besides teaching, there are tons of cool group dive travel opportunities as well! You can find fellow divers on PADI’s ScubaEarth website and go on dive trips to places all over the world, with divers from all over the world! Just in the few days we spent with Dive Exuma, I met two divers from Austria, one from France, and two snorkelers from Italy!

You can help protect our oceans – When I went to the Grenadines two years ago, the coral there was not in great condition. Most of the corals were “bleached,” where the color is gone and it appears dead. It was really sad because it didn’t used to be like that! You can read more about coral bleaching here:  Being a diver, you can get involved in marine conservation projects to study the damage being done, as well as play a part in working to reverse the direction that our oceans are going in. Debris is also a big problem, and as a diver, you can help by picking up trash and other objects, or by checking out organizations like Project AWARE, an organization that teams up with PADI to clean up our oceans. Visit them at