Less than 6 months since I launched my travel blog, By Land and Sea, I was touched to be nominated not once, but twice, for the Liebster Award! Thank you so much to What Way Today for my initial nomination, and thank you to The Bristolian Backpacker, who nominated me shortly thereafter. Because I was nominated by two bloggers, and because Q&A is fun, I decided to go rogue and answer both sets of questions!
The Liebster award is for newer blogs to gain some recognition for their hard work and awesome content, and it’s also a great way to pay it forward to other bloggers. Once you’ve accepted the award, you answer 11 questions from the blog who nominated you (making sure to thank them for the nomination and linking back to them too), find 11 more people to give the award to, and give them 11 questions.
Questions via What Way Today
- What’s your number 1 luxury item you take on your travels? Probably my iPad mini. It’s so versatile and it allows me to do everything I need and more – from movies and magazines, to tracking information, writing blog posts, etc. I only got it a few years ago, so everything it’s capable of is still a treat to me!
- What’s the best travel deal you have ever found? Any deal that we can redeem miles/points on and go for free!
- What’s the most interesting accommodation you have stayed in? We are fortunate enough to be able to stay in some wonderful places. As far as interesting places, I do remember staying at a super sketchy place several years ago – the kind of place where you’re not sure if you’re going to wake up in the morning. Needless to say, I could not get out of there fast enough.
- For what food would you travel halfway around the world for? We’ve already had some great food experiences – Gelato in Italy, gyros in Greece, apple tea in Turkey, churros and chocolate in Spain, jerk chicken in Jamaica, pizza in New York, etc. We love trying different types of food and make it a point to try local things wherever we might be. I know there are a million types of amazing food out there that we’d love to try… foods we can’t even imagine! So, we’d be happy just to try any of a given area’s amazing foods.
- Whilst traveling, what’s the best experience you’ve had that has cost you nothing? So many things!! But, I’m a sucker for a good sunset/sunrise. My hubby and I have spent a lot of time enjoying some really spectacular ones from some great locations. We will make it a point to stop what we’re doing and take in the moment. I’m known for getting up early to watch the sunrise, and I always watch the last sunset of our trip. It’s very symbolic to me.
- What do you think is the most overrated destination? Personally, I think every place has some element that makes it worthwhile it is own rite. I can’t really say there’s many places I have visited that I walked away wishing I wouldn’t have been there, seen that, or experienced it. But for the sake of this post, I would have to say Disneyland and/or Disneyworld. Granted, I haven’t been there in probably 20 years or so, but I just think it’s really unfair. It’s supposed to be “the happiest place on earth”, but have you looked at the prices for admission? I guess you can buy happiness starting at $400.00 per day. I have known several people who would like to take their kids there, but they can’t really afford it. And, for those who are able to afford the trip, what a disappointment it must be to spend hours and hours just standing in line. I just think it is unfortunate that someplace like that is so unattainable for so many people.
- Have you ever been stuck in an awkward situation whilst traveling? Yes! It seems like we always have some awkward or sketchy situation. It’s what makes our travels so interesting. For example, during a recent trip to Jamaica, we had booked an excursion that was bad right from the start. After a very long day, we were making our way back to our hotel. Our bus encountered another vehicle going the wrong way on a crowded one-way street. The bus driver got out of the bus and started yelling at the driver of the other car, who also got out of his vehicle. This turned into a full knock-down, drag out brawl in the street. As things finally settled down, we made our way to the first hotel to drop the bulk of our fellow riders off. When we pulled into this hotel property, we realized the bus all of a sudden had a flat tire (perhaps it was slashed as a result from the fight earlier?!) Because it was going to take hours to get repaired and it was late at night, we ended up hitching a ride back to our hotel with the tour guide.
- Where have you met the friendliest people? We’ve met friendly people pretty much everywhere we go. But, I’d have to say the friendliest are in Antigua! Without a doubt!
- What country would you like to live in on a long-term basis? That’s a very relevant question as we are currently pondering this for our future. We love the US, but have dreams of experiencing other places too. Currently, we’re attempting to narrow down our list of potential locations in the Caribbean.
- What’s your best tip for saving money whilst traveling? We go to great lengths to keep our travels within our budget. While there are a variety of ways to save money while traveling, I think it depends on what you’re hoping to get out of your travel experiences. If we are on a road trip, we will often take our own snacks and drinks to cut some costs. Depending on where we are going and what we are doing, we may search for deals, discounts, and free things in the area. Popular places like Vegas have great Groupon deals and coupons. We rarely check bags when we fly, and whenever we are staying at an all-inclusive resort or going on a cruise, we bring Ziplock bags. Fill up the bags with extras from breakfast, and you can munch on them during the day while in port or off the resort property. Just don’t try this if you’re cruising to Cozumel… the food-sniffing dogs at the port will catch you!
- What local habits/norms/practices would you like to see spread around the world? Conservation, appreciation, empathy, and kindness. We’ve been places where visitors are so rude toward the locals because their lifestyle isn’t the same – they don’t respect the people or how they live – and that’s just not cool.
Questions via The Bristolian Backpacker
- Why did you decide to write your travel blog? It’s a long story. The short version is that travel is one of our biggest passions in life and although we work full time, we are still able to travel quite a bit. Many people enjoy hearing our stories and recommendations, and had questions about what we do and how we do it. I had encouragement from my family and friends to start a blog because we love traveling so much, and have really great experiences and tips to share. Plus, I like to write.
- Which place is at the top of your bucket list. Why? The list of places we don’t want to go is shorter than the list of places we do. I guess if I had to qualify it, I would put the places that are in danger of disappearing (sooner than others) at the top of the list. For example, the Taj Mahal is on track to close down in about 5 years, so that might have a little higher priority than something that is predicted to be around another 150 years.
- What’s your favorite type of transport while traveling? Plane, boat, coach, hitch-hiking? We travel By Land and Sea, and pretty much any other method in between! Wink, wink! But really, it depends on where we are going. I like to say that we are “geographically travel challenged” where we live… you either have to drive or fly to get out of our isolated town. Once we are at our destination though, we’ll use a variety of transport methods. But, after totaling a car on a road trip, I tend to get a little anxiety in heavy, fast-moving traffic, so that makes some car travel challenging at times.
- What’s the most adventurous things you’ve done while traveling? We like to try fun things like flyboarding, dog sledding, etc. wherever we are going. We also like to venture off the map, meet locals, get lost… I guess it depends on your definition of adventure…
- Do you prefer to travel on your own or with somebody? With my hubby! We are fortunate that we both like to travel and we travel relatively well together. There are times when we like to go by ourselves or with friends too though.
- Where is your favorite place you’ve visited? Florence, Italy. One of my most favorite places in the world.
- Do you prefer planning or just going with the flow on a trip? It depends. Some things require planning and some things I just can’t even think that far ahead.
- Hostels or hotels? Hotels. We are hoping to start using Airbnb once in a while too though.
- Who is the most interesting person you’ve met while traveling? We’ve met many locals during our travels who have the most eye-opening stories about their lives. It would be a disservice to pick just one person because they are all unique and have such interesting stories to share.
- What’s the longest time you’ve ever been away from home? One month while traveling Europe the first time I went. We tend to go on multiple shorter trips per year.
- What have you learned from traveling? That the world is a big, beautiful, diverse, impressive place and the more I travel, the more I want to see of it, especially before the things that make it big, beautiful, diverse, and impressive are gone. There are many things in the world that are at risk of disappearing in our lifetime. I’m honestly hoping that through my graduate studies in Sustainable Tourism, I might have a chance of changing some of this in even a small way.
By Land and Sea’s Liebster Award Nominations
- Anny’s Adventures
- Feet Do Travel
- Passport To PhD
- Tom @ My Travel Mission
- Two Peas In A World
- We Wander Together
Several other nominations were sent out, but they were too busy exploring the world, and I felt it was time to “go or get off the pot” with my Liebster Award Post. Sorry… going rogue again…
Eleven Questions for my Liebster Award Nominees – I can’t wait to read your responses!
- Out of all the countries you have visited, which one did you like the most?
- What/Who inspires you to travel this world?
- Name the top 3 most beautiful beaches you have visited:
- Why did you start your travel blog?
- Give a tip for other bloggers or potential blog starters:
- What do you think of selfie sticks?
- When were you officially bitten by the travel bug?
- If your budget was unlimited what would your itinerary include?
- Backpacking trip or luxury trip?
- Worst experience while traveling?
- How did you determine the target audience of your blog?
Many thanks to my readers, followers, and fellow bloggers for the continued support and atmosphere that fuels my love of travel. I hope everyone out there has as much fun with this as I did!