Besides being a nature lover’s paradise, Bukit Lawang is the most magical little town buried deep into the Sumatran jungle. Getting to Bukit Lawang is not easy, especially if you are prone to motion sickness (LIKE ME), but it is incredibly worth it you want to see orangutans in their natural habitat. You can only see orangutans in SEAsia in 2 different places: Borneo & Sumatra. After much research, we decided on Sumatra, the less popular choice, and for that we were rewarded with a more authentic experience.
THE TRAVELING LOVE BUG HAS BEEN AWARDED NUMBER 26 on “TOP 30 ASIA TRAVEL BLOGS” by FEEDSPOT, a content reader that allows you to view all of your favorite websites at once, while saving time. This list was curated by using search and social metrics. All bloggers included on this list were ranked based off of: Read more
3 months, 23 cities, and 29 hotels. What a whirlwind. A crazy, beautiful whirlwind. As I sit here taking it all in and enjoying the Florida sunshine with my pup back on my lap, I can’t help but get lost in my memories. Sean and I have gotten many questions specifically around our travel route and where we stayed in Southeast Asia. The biggest question we’ve gotten is: “Is it really that cheap?” and the answer is a lot of YES and a bit of NO. It depends on what you want to do, how safe you want to feel while doing it, and where you want to stay. I will dive into each country individually in future posts, but I figured I would start my virtual diary (in essence) explaining our travel route in hopes that it will inspire you to get out there, and step outside of your comfort zone! Although I had a preconceived notion of our timeline and cities we wanted to visit, we generally flew by the seat of our pants. The only accommodations we pre-booked were the flights into Singapore and our hotel upon arrival. This was the BEST decision we could have made, as our “plan” uncontrollably and drastically changed 5 days into our trip.
Hello January 5, 2017! I never would have thought you’d arrive so quickly. It feels like just yesterday I was welcoming 2016, and looking forward to so much. Without a doubt, 2016 was the best year of my entire life.
As you will see in my prior posts, reflection has always played a huge part of my life. I feel the most gratitude when I slow down and take a second (multiple seconds) to realize how much I have to be thankful for, and how much I have accomplished. I did a lot this year: I married my best friend, I took a leap of faith, I traveled throughout Southeast Asia and Central America, I met wonderful people who taught me so much, and I fell in love with my husband over and over again. I also became more emotionally in touch with myself, and learned so much about WHO I am, and what I want to do with my life. I will no longer do anything I do not feel passionate about, and I will ONLY spend my time & energy fueling my creative passions, and making my dreams a reality. I’ve learned life is way too short to be doing anything that doesn’t make you smile from ear to ear, or nearly pee yourself from laughing. I’ve also learned to see a different side of love and happiness, and it does not include anything our Western bubble provides. It includes being mind- blowingly happy all the time, so happy no matter the situation, and so happy even when you have nothing. This is a life-altering experience to witness, and it puts so much into perspective. It is my mission to live my life the way I want to live it, and I have truly encompassed my favorite quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world” – Gandhi
As far as New Years resolutions, I have always seemed to come up with a list in year’s past. This year I have not done that, and this year, I do not intend to. Why do you ask? Well, because I feel different. I feel like a changed person. I have a clear vision of what I want to do and how I will do it. For the first time, I don’t need a list to remind me. It is engrained in my soul.
These last 365 days have been so wonderful to me. Each and every month has taught me something, and I am so incredibly thankful! It is no secret that the best day of 2016 was the day I vowed to stand by my husband’s side for eternity. April 2, 2016, is a day that changed my life forever, a day that I would do over and over again alongside my family and friends.
I have decided to do something different this year. Sean and I traveled A LOT. We learned so much, and there are so many life lessons that we will cherish for the rest of our lives. Rather than go through each month, and state what I loved about it, I am going to post one of our favorite photos (Gosh, that will be hard) from each country we visited and what impacted us the most, or taught us to think outside of the box.
You hear it all the time, and I definitely wont be the first or last person to bring up what a sad time in history it is. With all of the darkness in the world, especially now, it’s hard to think love and kindness can be found in someone you do not know. A stranger, to be exact. We are all guilty of judging others. I unfortunately know I am, especially while traveling. It’s like you’re always second guessing yourself: Should I talk to that person? Will they like me? Are they nice? Will I be safe? Can they speak English? Can I say that one phrase I’ve been practicing well enough? Are they going to think I am a dumb American? These thoughts are normal, and a huge part of exploring abroad because traveling makes you vulnerable, and that is the beauty of it.
Traveling also causes you to get lost… a lot…which I highly recommend. Get lost willingly and purposely, get so crazy lost, you have no choice but to ask a local, and THEN find your way!! AND while you’re finding your way, you’ll find yourself, which ends up being the absolute best part.
Sean and I have been awe struck at how many times complete strangers have shown kindness to us while traveling abroad. Whether we asked, or not.
During our first extended travel trekking through Europe, we found kindness in Paris, and then it happened again and again and again.