Spotlight: Tyler Govaars

Meet Tyler Govaars, a rockstar blogger and fellow jetsetter who we had the privilege of speaking with

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We never pass up the chance to chat with inspiring and ambitious young gypsets who are passionate about all things travel. Tyler Govaars, the fabulous blogger of The Weekend Edit is here to share her wanderings with us. She has traveled near and far to over 32 countries! YUP. Basically, she’s everything we aspire to be. Read on for more fun facts {hint: being detained in Thailand}. 

How did you become a gypset? Was traveling always something you were interested in?

I think I’ve always had a bit of the gypset mentality. Growing up I spent a lot of time in Lake Tahoe exploring and spent summers at Ghost Ranch outside of Abiquiu New Mexico with my extended family. During the day the adults would take workshops like ceramics, poetry and painting and the kids would hike and explore the vast New Mexico landscape. I’m drawn to adventure and feel a strong pull to nature, which fuels a lot of my wandering. Travel is the biggest source of inspiration in my everyday life.

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What made you decide to start a blog? Was writing always something you’ve been interested in?

I wanted a place to document my travel stories and photography when I moved to Australia after college. The Weekend Edit is actually the third blog I’ve written and each one has opened the door to amazing opportunities around the world. Writing is a great way to hone your voice and discover what truly excites you – plus it allows me to develop a personal portfolio while doing something I love.

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How do you decide where to travel?

It’s usually a mix of places I have researched online and where my friends are exploring. Instagram is also a great source of travel inspiration for me. I ask everyone I know what new travel destinations are on their radar – the next Bali or the next Tulum. I have an ongoing list of places I want to visit scribbled down in my notebook.

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What do you do when you’re not roaming the world?

Right now a mix of travel writing, content strategy and web design. I also help produce a three-day music, yoga, and arts festival in Austin called Euphoria Music & Camping Festival. I have been focusing a lot of my time on that recently – we just had our fourth annual event and it has really taken on a life of it’s own. I’m in awe of the creative community that we have built over the years.

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What is the craziest thing that’s happened to you while traveling?

When we were living abroad in Australia my boyfriend and I were detained on the way back from Thailand. I was on a yearlong work exchange visa and he was only renewing a tourist visa, so I guess that set off a flag in the system somewhere. We had to answer all sorts of personal questions, and were quizzed in separate rooms. They let us go eventually, but we did miss our next flight and had to spend the night in Darwin. I’ve spent the night in plenty of airports, and have found that it is usually the uncomfortable situations that result in of the most memorable travel stories.

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What is your favorite place you have ever traveled and what would you recommend people do there?

My favorite places have been Japan, Iceland and Vietnam. In Japan, navigating the Tokyo subway, riding the Shinkansen and ordering udon from a vending machine; Iceland, renting a car and driving the coastline, stopping to explore waterfalls, hot springs and black sand beaches; Vietnam, a bike tour of rural Hoi An, winding off the tourist trail and stopping to eat river prawns and ride through bright green rice fields.

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How many countries have you traveled to?

So far, 32. I had a personal goal of visiting 30 countries before my 30th birthday, which I completed this past summer while crossing the border between the Czech Republic and Germany by train. My whole family was there, and we celebrated with wine and beer at 11 AM from the restaurant car that my mom had bought while I wasn’t looking.

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What destinations are on the top of your bucket list?

South Africa, Cuba, Colombia, Chile, Bhutan, Norway, Uruguay, Brazil, Indonesia. My bucket list is pretty long…

What are your favorite travel essentials?

A good backpack, like the Little America from Herschel Supply and a camera whether it is my Nikon or my iPhone. I also always bring a sleep mask and ear plugs.

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If you could choose one Wanderable experience (we have over 2,800!) which one would it be and why?

I would pick something in Myanmar. I’ve always wanted to see the sunrise over the Bagan temples.

We told you didn’t we? Tyler might just be the definition of awesome. Make sure to follow her travels, whether in Houston, TX or at the Tomorrowland music festival in Belgium. We know we will xoxo

#WanderOn

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Spotlight: The Lazy Travelers

Besties, Ashley & Carolyn of The Lazy Travelers share their stories and travel tips.

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Ashley & Carolyn at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

Ever dreamed of traveling the world with your bestie? Of course you have, as have we. Ashley and Carolyn of The Lazy Travelers have made this dream a total reality. These two gypsets conquer the globe one glass of red at a time, and have had their fair share of adventures (downed pints in the Irish countryside, got locked in an Austrian dungeon in the middle of night, etc.). As you can see, these two travel gurus live an unaverage yet incredibly fascinating life. Ashley and Carolyn have taken the time to share with us their story, their traveling tips and much more.

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Ashley & Carolyn in Budapest

How did you two meet/become best friends?

On the seventh grade school bus! Once we found out we had every single class together that year, we were pretty much inseparable.

How did you guys get the idea to start a blog? Was it something you always dreamed about?

Not at all. We were both working for the same company, and the work/life balance was… lacking. After a lot of post-work wine one night, we brilliantly decided we would run off to Dublin and open a pizza shop. We created a full presentation for Ashley’s husband, who immediately talked us off the ledge. Apparently he didn’t agree that there is a major hole in the Irish pizza market.

A blog seemed like less work, so we bought the domain and just started writing!

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Ashley & Carolyn in Nob Hill, San Francisco (via Flytographer)

What do you do when you’re not roaming the world?

Ashley just moved to London and Carolyn is back in Philadelphia after a few years in NYC, so we’ve been doing a lot of hometown exploration and weekend staycations!

We also enjoy drinking wine whilst wearing comfy clothes and gchatting/whatsapping/snapchatting each other excessively. Standard bestie protocol.

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 Ashley & Carolyn at the Brooklyn Bridge 

What is a typical day like for the two of you when you’re traveling together?

We’re big proponents of getting to know a place by aimlessly wandering, which means we don’t really have a typical day. If we’re in a city, we’ll get up, grab breakfast, and then pick a neighborhood to explore on foot. We also find ourselves renting a car for at least one day on most of our trips, and going on a bit of a roadtrip. Recently, we were in San Francisco for four days, but went out to Napa for a night so we could get a taste of the wine region.

Whatever we do, almost all our travel days include a few hours spent in a local bar, pub or cafe, people watching and taking it all in. Oh, and instagramming, mildly obsessively.

How many places have you traveled together?

Our first real adventure together was a week long pre-college program in NYC when we were sophomores in high school. Not sure how we convinced our parents of that one, but they fell for it.

Since then, we’ve been up and down the US East Coast together, all over Europe… it’s hard to keep track! Most recently, we were in South Africa for a week, which was incredible.

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Stellenbosch, South Africa 

What is your absolute favorite place you have ever traveled? What is one thing people NEED to do while there?

We can’t pick a favorite!! BUT our recent trip to South Africa was one of our best experiences to date.

There are so many things worth doing–wine country, safari, Cape Town–it’s an insanely beautiful country. The thing that made our time so memorable was two days spent with a local charity called Newkidz on the Block. They help establish loving homes for orphaned, vulnerable and destitute children, and the co-founders, Hilda and Michael, are such incredible people. We raised funds in the weeks leading up to our trip (and still are!), and it was so uplifting to meet the kids and caretakers who benefited from everyone’s donations.

It also made us realize that giving back when you travel doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming. It’s not all or nothing–you don’t have to dedicate your entire vacation or honeymoon. It’s wonderful if you can, but even just donating one or two days really makes a huge difference.

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Ashley and Carolyn painting murals in a daycare with Newkidz on the Block!

Which destinations are on your bucket list?

It’s way too long to list! Our recent reunion in San Francisco made us realize just how much of the US we haven’t seen. We also have our sights on South America. Chilean wine country, Machu Picchu, the Galapagos? We’d settle for any of those! We also definitely want to go back to Africa sooner rather than later, ideally to Botswana, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Kenya…

Seriously, the list is just too long.

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What is your favorite part about traveling the world? What is the biggest challenge in traveling?

It sounds cliche, but we genuinely love experiencing new cultures, trying new food and meeting new people. We can get a little cranky about the actual act of traveling, and usually just want that part to be over.

Our husbands would probably argue that we get a LOT cranky, especially on the return journey, but whatever. Who likes to leave vacation?!

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Sunset in South Africa 

What is the last best thing you ate/drank?

Kevin Arnold Shiraz paired with spicy dark chocolate at the Waterford Estate in Stellenbosch, South Africa! And not that Kevin Arnold, we asked. We were met with blank stares.

What are your 5 tips for traveling internationally?

– Don’t put pressure on yourself to see everything! Instead, narrow your personal must-sees to 2 or 3 things that you can’t miss, and check out more if you have the time. Chances are high your favorite moments won’t be zipping through a museum or snapping photos of a building you heard was important.

– Try to learn key phrases in the local language, but don’t let it stress you out if you panic and forget everything as soon as you land! When all else fails, hand signals and an apologetic smile work wonders.

– If you’re unfamiliar with the local cuisine, scout out the regional fare in advance and mentally list a few dishes you know you have to try. This also helps if you’re a fan of ignoring recommendations and just picking a restaurant that looks cute. Even if you can’t read the full menu, you’ll at least have a vague idea of what to order!

– Check out the local public transport situation, as well as how much a cab should cost from the airport. There is nothing worse than wondering if you’re getting scammed the second you step off the plane.

– Pack light, especially if you have more than one stop on your itinerary. We speak from experience when we tell you that there’s nothing worse than unpacking and repacking piles of unnecessary clothes every three days.

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Ashley & Carolyn in Cape Town, South Africa

What are your favorite travel essentials?

Chapstick and a big scarf! We can’t board a plane without either one. Also, on the subject of packing light, packing cubes are a godsend. They make organizing your suitcase so, SO much easier, and are a major space saver.

If you could choose one of our Wanderable Experiences (we have over 2,800!), which one would it be and why?

Welp, just fell down a rabbit hole and literally want to go on ever single trip. Like… is the Treehouse Lodge even real? Or this eco resort??

…Do you guys do best friend registries?

Not yet, but stay tuned!

#WanderOn

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Spotlight: DJ from Dream Euro Trip

DJ, from Dream Euro Trip, inspires us with his philosophy on life, eurotrips, and travel.

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We love nothing more than introducing you to inspiring travelers who share in our passion of discovery. Today, we’re shining the spotlight on DJ, who is not only an immensely well-traveled gypsetter (seriously, he’s traveled through almost 150 cities in 25 European countries!), but also a mentor for fellow wanderers. Just look through his blog, Dream Euro Trip, and walk away inspired to make your own dream trips a reality. Here, DJ shares all that he’s learned from his extensive travels over the years. 

Walk me through and average day in your un-average life.

This is so difficult to answer as I do different things everyday depending if I’m on the road or back home planning my next adventures. But usually my average day would be waking up, eating breakfast, answering emails and updating my social media pages. I would then write a bit and work on my clients since I help plan eurotrips for my readers and help them get that dreaded Schengen visa. I am also currently learning German so I spend around 2 hours of my day learning about the German language with my teacher via Skype. At night I would either be hanging out with friends or throwing dinner parties at home or just spending a quiet time watching movies with my partner.

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What inspired you to become a gypsetter? Was it something you always dreamed of doing or something you just fell into?

There is no one thing or person who inspired me to be a gypsetter. I’ve always been a traveler and always wanted to make traveling as a lifestyle. So it’s definitely not an accident and I have planned my life to be this way.

How do you decide where you want to travel?

I like planning my travel around festivals, events, food and discovering new places. I also plan depending on where the best beaches and best parties are. But I can pretty much go anywhere since I simply love the fact of being out there in the world. It doesn’t really matter where sometimes. I crave more than ever the transformative and thrilling experience of just moving through a place, taking it in, and letting that movement heal you.

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How many countries have you traveled to and what is your favorite place you have ever traveled?

To be honest I’m not sure, but I am pretty sure I have traveled to over 150 European destinations in the last 5 years. I love Europe a lot and have traveled extensively in the continent. That’s why my blog is called Dream Euro Trip!

What is your favorite part about traveling?

Meeting new people, definitely. I love hearing their stories and learning about new ideas and ways of living. I can’t live in a place without interacting with a dozen locals.

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What is the biggest challenge in traveling so frequently?

Right now the biggest challenge for me is feeling exhausted after being on the road for an extended period of time. I just recently traveled for 2 months in Europe and Asia for my big Forever 21st birthday and I was exhausted after 4 weeks of it. I was actually ready to go home. I even spent almost 2 weeks in each place and even with this pace I got tired. I will NEVER do a one-year round-the-world trip. I probably can if I don’t have to work while doing it.

What destinations are on your bucket list?

The 5 places I would love to visit are Morocco, Antarctica, Montenegro, Japan and all of South America haha.

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What are you feeling/loving/reading right now?

I am currently reading Last Night in Twisted River by John Irving and Directions magazine by Design Hotels while listening to Manu Delago’s music. He is divine.

What advice would you give aspiring gypsetters?

Believe that you can create and design the life that you wanted. Do not listen to the commoners.

If you could choose one of our Wanderable Experiences (we have over 2,800!), which one would it be and why? 

I would probably choose the Portofino and Tigullio Gulf Excursion just because I’ve always wanted to check out this region in Italy and I’ve never visited yet!

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After this peek into DJ’s rich world, we’re itching to book a trip to Europe! Meanwhile, we’ll be nourishing our wanderlusty daydreams with the fun and informative posts on DJ’s blog. Check it out the next time you’re yearning to escape to a faraway corner of the world, we know we will!

#WanderOn

#WanderableGypset: Rachel and Carly of The Citizenry

Make your home something to talk about with these extraordinary products from The Citizenry 

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We love it when we find like-minded people who believe in the importance of travel and experiences. We caught up with #WanderableGypset, Rachel and Carly, the two travel gurus of The Citizenry, who revealed to us their passions and the concept behind their incredibly unique philosophy and website. These two wanderers have a strong belief that our homes should be a reflection of the journeys that we take, so they travel the world and find the best of the best to sell on their awesome website. They collaborate with local artisans in various countries to combine their modern style with their time-tested techniques to bring you an exclusive collection of home goods. Here is an inside look at our latest #WanderableGypset: Rachel and Carly of The Citizenry.

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Wanderable: Walk me through an average day in your un-average life.

CARLY: Our days in the studio always start with a French press and some time to love on the office dogs. Then we jump into lots of emails and calls with our artisan partners, web team, and graphic designer. It’s a lot of unglamorous hard work, but we have a talented team that makes the day-to-day exciting. The really un-average days are when we’re traveling to visit our artisan partners…

RACHEL: Whether it’s a 20-hour bus ride to visit a rural village in Peru or trekking across Africa, we’ve already accumulated so many great stories. When we’re traveling to visit artisan partners, we constantly have these pinch-yourself moments when we can’t believe we’re lucky enough that this is our job.

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What inspired you to develop this type of business? Was it something you always dreamed of doing or something you just fell into?

RACHEL: The idea came from our own frustrations trying to find beautifully crafted items for our own homes. We were looking for high quality, handcrafted pieces, from a company we could feel good about, at a price that didn’t break the bank. That’s a tough combination to find.

CARLY: We started thinking about the things in our homes that we treasured, and all those items had a story behind them – either the story of the maker or the place where it was from. We wanted to build a brand that celebrates those people and stories behind the products.

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How do you decide where you want to travel?

RACHEL: We choose places for our collections based on their natural resources and product expertise in a certain category.

CARLY: For example, we went to Argentina for the country’s incredible leather, and we targeted Peru for their native alpaca and weaving expertise. Both cultures also have rich histories of craftsmanship, and we were so excited to shine a light on those stories.

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If you could choose one of our Wanderable Experiences (we have over 2,500!) which one would it be and why? (www.wanderable.com)

CARLY: The site is a rabbit hole of experiences I die over, but I’d pick this Cambodia package. It’s a country I haven’t explored,  Angkor Wat is on my bucket list.

RACHEL: I’ll never turn down a chance to go to France. This tour of Champagne has my name written all over it!

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What is your favorite item on the website and why?

CARLY: I’m head over heels in love with our Copper Butterfly Chairs. They are handcrafted in Buenos Aires and are the perfect mix of modern design and old world craftsmanship.

RACHEL: The Estrellas Rug is another one of our favorites. We worked with a small group of weavers outside of Lima to hand dye every color and weave these beauties start to finish. Each one takes six weeks to complete, so they’re true works of art.

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What are you loving right now?

CARLY:  Public Supply Notebooks are my new favorites for scribbling notes and ideas.

RACHEL:  Red velvet macarons and maman coffee cups.

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What are your travel essentials? OR What’s always in your carry-on?

CARLY: Cuyana travel cases and drybar detox dry shampoo.

RACHEL: It may sound like a shameless plug, but I always travel with one of our San Pedro blankets. I’m always cold on flights, and these are the perfect weight for travel.

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What destinations are on your bucket- list?

CARLY: Morocco and Turkey. We’re already dreaming up possibilities in all those places.

RACHEL: Japan would be an incredible collection as well.

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Now you can easily see why we are gushing over The Citizenry. Just wait til you see the other products that are sold on the website–they definitely give Anthro and Urban a run for their money. We cannot wait to see what else Rachel and Carly have in store!

#WanderOn

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#WanderableGypset: Kylee & Steve Niederhauser

Travel Tuesday: Kylee Neiderhauser is the latest #WanderableGypset, bohemian tastemaker in this exclusive interview series

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 What is a Gypset?:

A gypset is a gypsy-jetsetter, a free spirit who is young and heart and leads an unconventional career and life, traveling the globe and wandering through life at her own pace, in her own style. For more detail, check out this post, and this one AND this one-  and of course stay tuned here to peek into the lives of Wanderable’s favorite people to follow.

Who is Kylee (and her fellow Wanderer/husband, Steve)

Kylee and Steve are literally professional travelers. After growing up in sunny Palm Springs, California and studying at University of San Diego, Kylee found herself getting married to the love of her life and moving across the world to Germany for Steve’s job.  Now loving her life as a “Hausfrau,” the two of them are all about collecting moments (not things!) as they jet set their way across Europe, Asia, and beyond.  Together, they have been to over 30 countries on 4 continents in 6 years (and have some really fun facts for how to fly first class, every time).  We picked her brain on what its like being an American living abroad, the best thing she’s recently eaten, and whats on her (growing) bucket list.

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Easther Island

Walk me through an average day in your un-average life.

I’m more of a morning person than a night owl, and morning is a great time of day to connect with friends and family back in California. By mid-morning I’m on the U-bahn (subway) and heading to my German language class. My classmates are from all over, and getting to know all of them has been just as enriching as the class itself. Then I usually head to the market and pick up some daily groceries, and the rest of the afternoon I spend catching up on “hausfrau” duties and homework. On nice days, I like to go out and “get lost”. Munich is an incredible city to explore. Evenings mean leisurely dinners with my husband and catching up on each other’s day.

How did you come to lead such a life? Did you always want to be a traveler, or did you just fall into it?

I was lucky to be able to vacation abroad with my family starting at a young age, so I have always enjoyed traveling. When I first started dating my husband, his job took him frequently to Asia and Europe. I joined as often as my work schedule would permit, but the more places we visited, the longer our “bucket list” grew!

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Paris: Obviously

What is the difference between somewhere you’d want to live & somewhere you’d want to visit?

I think the difference comes down to whether or not the place feels like “home.” I knew we had picked the right place when, at the end of a vacation this year, I said “I’m ready to be home” (and we both knew that home was our cozy German apartment). That was definitely a moment.

What are you feeling/loving/reading right now?

Feeling: Chilly! The leaves have fallen and winter has arrived!

Loving : Evening visits to one of Munich’s outdoor Markets and warming up with a glass of Glühwein

Reading: Under the Wide and Starry Sky by Nancy Horan

What was the best thing you recently ate?

We recently spent some time in Vietnam and couldn’t get enough of the street food! Ten days of Banh mi, Pho coun, Bun cha, Xoi xeo, Banh coun, Ca phe trung and countless bowls of Pho bo. Take me back!

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What pays the bills?

My husband has been the bread-winner of the family since our move.  He works for an American company whose Munich office develops technology to charge electric vehicles. It’s very exciting to see something that he’s worked so hard on starting to come to fruition.

What do you miss about “home?” (Where you’re from.)

Unsurprisingly, not having family and friends with us has been the hardest part. Thank goodness for FaceTime. We’ve also been fortunate to have 20 loving visitors in the past year!

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If you could bring anything/anyone from home, what/who would that be?

My family

Televised football (American football, not “soccer”)

San Diego sunsets

In-N-Out…definitely In-N-Out.

Advice for aspiring Gypsets? Go.

If you’re set on seeing the world, but your travel budget is limited…LOYALTY POINTS! We have planned vacations where our entire international airline fares were covered using points earned. Travel blogs like FlyerTalk can be a great resource. Even small things like sticking to one airline or hotel chain can help out over time.

What location is on your bucket list, and why?

We are really excited to be visiting southern Spain and Morocco in a few weeks! Outside of Europe, Australia and New Zealand are high on our list along with South Africa. We also still have plenty to explore in Germany.

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What are your go-to travel essentials?

Lo&Sons O.G. bag

Kindle

Downy Wrinkle Release

Digital camera

Last, but not least, my hubby!

What has recently taken your breath away?

Recently we did a day-long hike in the Swiss Alps near Lauterbrunnen. The contrast between the lush green valleys and snow-capped mountains is unbelievably beautiful.

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What was the last thing you bought abroad?

A Vietnamese lacquer painting…we walked through a small studio where they were being made, and it was really interesting to watch the artist intricately layer the paint, egg shell and mother of pearl.

What is the best part about traveling with the one you love?

We love looking back on things like that leisurely picnic with a bottle of wine in that cute little park we found in Paris, or that time we wound up lost on a dirt road in a tiny, tin can they called an Italian car!

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What have you learned about each other?

We’ve both found that we enjoy learning about the food culture in the different places we visit, so we try to incorporate that into our travels by taking a local cooking class or exploring markets. I’ve learned that he is better than any map I could bring along with me.

If you guys were to go on a Wanderable experience, witch one would it be?

We think the idea of Wanderable is really cool– and it’s exactly who we are as a couple.  After we got married, we moved pretty quickly to Germany and have been traveling the world together ever since (we didn’t go on a traditional honeymoon, you could say). I think that if we were to pick just one, it would be something in Santorini, Greece, like a sunset jeep tour or exploring their wine caves.

#WanderOn

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All photos courtesy of Kylee and Steve