“Not all those who wander are lost.”
– J. R. R. Tolkien
After five years of traveling and meeting more people than I can count, I have had the opportunity to create relationships with amazing travel experts, namely bloggers and vloggers (video bloggers.) Our jobs may seem like the dream career to some, but being on the road for weeks or months at a time isn’t for everyone. It takes courage, commitment and a serious, incurable case of the travel bug. This field is demanding as it is fulfilling, and thankfully we have these dedicated travel-obsessed wanderers to encourage us to embark on our own unforgettable journeys.
Here is a list of the 12 travel bloggers I think make this world a little bit better, one trip, video, blog post and article at a time. Check them out for inspiration, expert advice and products. Have a pen ready because your bucket list is about to get longer…Meet the top 12 travel bloggers of 2012:
Area of expertise: Luxury, adventure and budget travel.
Bio: Ryan Gargiulo is an experienced traveler and professional writer/editor. His around-the-world blog has been named one of the best in travel circles for its wealth of useful information, consistency and Ryan’s personable writing style. Ryan is an adventure junkie of sorts. He’s currently on his newest adventure: a Pacific Coast bike tour. His blog posts are thought-provoking and inspirational. Ryan also documents his array of experiences through videos. He encourages all of us to break out of our comfort zones. Ryan has been to over 25 countries and has not the slightest intention to stop getting all he can out of life.
Area of expertise: Budget travel
Bio: Brock is a motivational, energetic force that got bit so hard by the travel bug, he’ll probably never work a 9 to 5 again in his life. Backpack with Brock is a resource that includes picture, blogs and videos on Brock’s travels. He shows us that you don’t have to spend a fortune to have a great trip. His encouraging nature will make you want to have your travel agent on speed dial.
Area of expertise: Budget travel, skiing, traveling as a couple.
Bio: Nathan and Sofia may travel with a limited budget, but they playfully showcase the different things they see, taste and experience around the world. From hotel reviews to honest thoughts on local food, the pair’s fervor for new experiences is infectious. Their blog posts are focused, which makes their information applicable and unique. Their unpretentious, laid-back style is ideal for couples and amateur travelers who may not know where to start. As We Travel is also an excellent resource for ski aficionados- Nathan and Sofia are avid skiers who can impart a wealth of information on the subject.
Area of expertise: Adventure travel
Bio: Matthew Karsten is addicted to fresh, new experiences and he isn’t ashamed to admit it. His website features blog posts, pictures and videos from his quirky, fun-loving adventures around the world. This photographer-turned-traveler is committed to exploring the world indefinitely as he brings his ideas, tips and personal experiences to life with beautiful photos and helpful information. His work has been featured on the Travel Channel and CNN.
Area of expertise: Adventure travel and travel advice
Bio: Gary Arndt is a one-man traveling machine. He has visited all seven continents, all 50 states and over 150 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. He is also very active on social media. Gary thrives on 100% cultural immersion. His blog is packed with photo essays, personal memoirs and valuable travel advice. He is the recipient of various awards for his journalism, which include honors from Lonely Planet, The Bloggie Awards, the North American Travel Journal Association and National Geographic, just to name a few. His story is proof that it’s never too late to begin fulfilling your dream. Check out Gary’s site for an extensive directory of blogs from all over the world.
6. Sonia’s Travels
Area of expertise: Travel episodes
Bio: Sonia Gil is a Miami native who isn’t satisfied with taking a passive stand while traveling. Instead, she makes it a point to delve right in and shows all of us that we can too. Sonia’s take on traveling is similar to the experience of learning a new language- each word teaches you a little more about a language as each new place or person we encounter teaches us about the world. She began a language-learning software company called Fluenz, which has not only opened a new linguistic world for others, but has inspired her to produce fun, fresh videos for us to enjoy.
Area of expertise: Budget travel, African travel
Bio: Marcello Arrambide was born in Venezuela and has been bouncing from one international destination to another ever since. He currently teaches others how to day trade via his other website TheDayTradingAcademy.com. Marcello’s brutally honest blog posts will make you feel as if you have known him all your life. And let’s be honest, is there a better travel tip than one from a friend? He has not only traveled to, but has lived in 10 countries across 4 continents. Marcello’s goal is to help plan a trip to remember.
Area of expertise: Gastronomy and travel philosophies
Bio: Jodi is a lawyer-turned-foodie from Montreal. She has collaborated on numerous travel-related articles for AOL Travel, Cosmopolitan Magazine Italia, Discover.com, BBC.com and Lonely Planet just to name a few. Jodi’s website is a valuable resource for amateur and expert travelers alike with interviews, personal experiences, travel advice and a host of information about maximizing cultural experiences abroad. Another commendable theme in Jodi’s work is social awareness. She realizes that it is an important trait for any modern traveler. You could say that her blog has a “soul.” The place Jodi holds most dear is Thailand. Her posts about this country’s culture and food are inspirational and heartfelt as they are useful.
Area of expertise: Adventure travel, traveling as a couple
Bio: Anthony Milotic and Elise Reeks are Australian natives who ditched their dreams for a big house and conventional careers to set out on a world adventure together. The pair give their readers money-saving tips, honest reviews and great travel ideas for couples. Being on the road for an extensive period of time have taught them a thing or two about preparing well for trips. Check out their invaluable tips for smart, efficient traveling here. They touch on several subjects including travel insurance, staying in shape while away from home, avoiding getting scammed, how to protect your belongings and more.
Area of expertise: Videography and photography about science and nature
Bio: Mike Corey has been to 31 countries and has a zest for life and travel that he beautifully captivates in his vibrant work. Scrolling though his albums is like getting to know him and the places he has visited. Mike’s videos are up close and personal windows into his most memorable experiences like the time he got a magical Buddhist tattoo on his back while traveling in Thailand. Fans can pick Mike’s brain during his live stream Sunday broadcast sessions. All you have to do is ask! Kick the Grind is a truly unique site that will inspire you to get out there and photograph the beauty that surrounds all of us.
Area of expertise: Trip planning and how-to articles
Bio: David Lee is dedicated to the art of traveling. He creates blog-style travel guides for every type of traveler. For each country visited, David touches on the food, customs, public transportation and must-knows for anyone thinking about going. David also creates gear guides and reviews for serious backpackers, hikers and adrenaline junkies alike. Go Backpacking features various articles on survival tips, budgeting expenses while traveling, overcoming fears and the list goes on. Practicality is David’s forte and we could all use some of that!
Area of expertise: Women’s budget travel
Bio: The travelettes are a team of 11 women who have made it their mission to showcase how one goes about “backpacking in heels.” Don’t let their seemingly superficial motto throw you off. These ladies are serious travelers who blog and explore the best things to see and do in cities around the world. Each travelette’s contributions to the site are different- while one is Europe, two others may be traveling through Asia. Everyone shares their experiences so that others can learn from them. These women form a team of hard working international correspondents that inspire and education. Talk about girl power!
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
– Mark Twain
97 Countries • 1400 Cities
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