I had a couple of posts planned for this week, but I don’t think I’ll be writing either of them. In fact I’m barely managing to dig my way out of the pile of tissues I’m buried under to write this. In my excitement about the start of winter I guess I managed to completely forget that one awful thing that always seems to arrive with my favorite time of year: getting sick.
But enough feeling bad for myself, because I am lucky enough to have sweet Danielle of The Wild Trek Experience to come to my blogging rescue this week by stepping in to answer some questions about her travels and website.
I’m trying to think of a clever segue here but my mind is total fog. As in, it just took me a bunch of tries to realize that fog is spelled with only one g. So, let’s here from Danielle then?
Ugh, I mean “hear.”
1. How did you first catch the travel bug?
When I was 12 I received an invitation by letter to go to Amsterdam for a soccer tournament. After begging my parents to let me go they finally agreed and this was my first opportunity to travel outside the country. I hadn’t fully caught the travel bug at this point but I loved discovering a new place. Then at 15 I did a service program in the Dominican Republic for a month, which is where I fell in love with the Spanish language.
In the entire month I could barely speak more than a few words so when I returned home I vowed to myself that one day I would be fluent. So at 17 I went to Buenos Aires, Argentina, to study Spanish for the summer. I think after this trip it was really the turning point for my desire to continue traveling. Those one-month trips didn’t feel like enough and I didn’t want to give up not only on learning Spanish but discovering new cultures. So I found a university in Spain and moved to Madrid when I was 18.
2. What is that one destination that you just can’t stop talking about?
I would say Iceland is definitely that one destination I cannot stop talking about, since prior to visiting Iceland I had mainly stuck to Spanish speaking countries. Iceland was so different from anything I had ever seen but also was a dream vacation for me because of how much adventure it offered. Plus I love the cold so it was a perfect environment for me. I actually would love to return this winter to explore the glaciers since it wasn’t safe to do in summer.
3. Can you explain a little about the concept behind The Wild Trek Experience?
The idea behind The Wild Trek Experience is to promote intercultural understanding through travel stories. I came up with this concept during my last year of university when I found myself constantly on blogs or alternative outlets to get the news.
Even within my university I found myself learning about other cultures and countries through the diversity of the student population. I ended up traveling to countries I had never thought to before because of the fantastic stories I had heard. I graduated with a degree in Political Science so I was always fascinated with culture and language.
The website felt like a positive manner to connect my love of travel and my desire to learn about the world around me. I thought if it could give someone the same experience I had where I ended up visiting a country I had never thought to before then I would be happy.
4. What three posts will give us the best idea of what you and your website are all about?
Another concept I wanted to incorporate for the website is also to revisit the child-like wonder we all had growing up through travel. The post Vision explains this concept within the website.
Then there are articles about learning from another culture. This piece is what I understood of Icelandic culture in one week.
There are also articles that have ideas of activities to do while visiting a specific country. Here is my take on zip-lining and hiking in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. This shows some of the diversity the website offers but there is also much more. There is also a section of practical advice while traveling under the section “truffles”.
5. And finally, if you could give your younger self travel-related advice, what would it be?
I think when I was younger I was much more timid about going on spontaneous travel adventure. I would tell my younger self to take advantage of those random trips or activities that are presented to you. Some of my fondest memories were decided a day or two before like paragliding or camping in Medellín, Colombia. I think it helps to remind ourselves that we may not return to the place we are at today so it is best to take advantage of all it offers instead of telling yourself you could do it tomorrow.
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