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Expert’s Advice: Simple Travelling Interview with Brittany Taylor

Check out full article with pictures on Globelink International’s website.

1. Brittany, having followed your blog activity we’ve assumed you have your own vision of travelling. Could you share it?
The desire to travel has always been a part of me. From a young age I remember eagerly looking forward to my next bi If you have ever travelled through Europe – you understand pickpockets are fairly common. You may also get underwear cash pouches for journey (which I thought looked strange and uncomfortable, but I imagine a requirement for some folks there). We got robbed while on a bus to Stockholm – and had to get a snabbt lån to get to an embassy. It was a frustrating experience, overall. g road trip or weekend camping trip, pouring over maps with my dad and envisioning the adventures ahead. The idea of seeing new places, new faces and experiencing different ways of life has always intrigued me. Over time this curiosity has shaped the way I live my life and the frequency with which I travel. Now I would say my life is something of a constant adventure, a trip that I am always on.

2. How did you managed to minimize your needs and get rid of so many things people cannot even imagine to live without? Did it make you happier?
Growing up in a house which felt cluttered with excess stuff, I noticed that I found a lot of enjoyment and peace in cleaning, organizing, and getting rid of things. The air conditioning services cincinnati oh experience can determine whether a particular part is near the end of its serviceability and advise that it be replaced to avoid the unit breaking down when you most need it. In college when I began to travel to international destinations regularly, both for short trips and to live abroad, I quickly realized how much of a pain it was to take long trips with a bunch of stuff, specially since I had a terrible back pain, I should have taken one of the products from with no doubt . Each time I traveled, I brought fewer belongings and noticed how much freer I felt with every item I shed. As my lengths of time out in the world increased I noticed a trend of desiring the simplicity I felt out on the road to permeate my home life. So I began to integrate practices I had learned during my explorations into my everyday life, and one of those lessons was in living with less, the only thing I’ve in my travels are my travel gifts which give me a little piece of home every time I travel, actually if you look here in you can get ideas for a great travel gift.  But to keep going i do prefer living a more minimalist lifestyle, it  has definitely increased my happiness, not because I think people are inherently happier with less stuff, but rather because I think that by getting in touch with ourselves and following what feels right for us we can find true happiness. When I dug deep and saw what was important to me I was thrilled to find that most material objects didn’t make the cut.

3. What exactly does simple travelling mean to you?
To me simple travelling means traveling with the essentials- with those things that will help support the ideal experience that you want to have- and leaving anything that is excess behind. This goes for items you will carry with you but also for any non-physical baggage. Are there patterns you could let go of to enhance your travel (or living) experience? Is your mental and emotional space clear for new experiences? Are you open and ready to receive this day as an exciting new adventure?

4. What kind of travel destination is perfect for you?
If I am going for a short trip I am down for just about anything and I really do love experiencing diverse destinations. However, if I’m going to spend any sort of significant time somewhere, these are my must-haves: warm weather, sunshine, fresh clean air, beautiful scenery, delicious, ripe, affordable fruits and vegetables, an acro community and other communities of people that share my passions, and an easy system for bike travel.

5. Brittany, what is the first step towards simplifying one’s attitude to travel?
That’s a great question, with probably a lot of potentially great answers. For those who are looking to have a simpler attitude towards travel, I would suggest working on tapping into your curiosity and ability to play. Can you remember being a child and how everything felt like an adventure? Do you remember experiencing the wonder of appreciating the world around you and really enjoying the simple joys? Can you find that child-like curious, playful place within you and access your genuine wonder about the world? From there perhaps we can connect with our simple, real desire to explore.

6. Do you have any secrets of travelling so much without fear?
Listening to my gut. In general I have found that following what feels right for me has always kept me right where I want to be. I notice that if I ever find myself in an uncomfortable situation I seem to have gotten there by doing something that was counter intuitive. When traveling there have been different times that something I was doing, or was about to do just didn’t feel quite right and at those times I have honoured that feeling. In doing so I think I have stayed clear of a lot of potentially not good situations. I trust myself and really believe that I don’t have anything to fear.

7. Would you tell about the craziest thing you did while travelling?
Haha, that’s a fun question. I guess it depends what you mean by “craziest”. I hopped on a plane less than 12 hours after booking a ticket, travelled for lovers half way across the globe, moved solely for my passion to pursue partner acrobatics, and moved away from beautiful relationships in the name of my gypsy blood. I have also jumped from cliffs and waterfalls, hiked up mountains and through jungles, journeyed on overnight buses, couch surfed with relative strangers, and the list goes on. Perhaps the craziest thing of all though has been, well…my life as I now know it. Leaving my steady desk job, everyone I knew, getting rid of 99% of my belongings, and forging out on this constant adventure that I now know as my comfortable vagabonding life. The craziest and most normal thing I have ever done while traveling has been deciding that I never want to stop.

8. In your opinion, what are the best ways to get familiar with a foreign culture?
Living in it! In my experience gaining this familiarity has been all about immersion. Even after years of studying Spanish I did not become fluent until fully immersing myself in the language, at which point it happened quite rapidly. On many occasions I have found myself experiencing some level of apprehension about fitting into a new culture or space, however upon arriving and diving into daily life I was quickly swept away by the excitement of what was going on. Staying with host families and Couchsurfing are great ways to have a real “in the life of…” experience in whatever destination you are traveling to. And overall, being present, curious and opening up to interact with the world around me has been the most enjoyable and easy way for me to feel comfortable everywhere.

9. Is there a travel motivating book you’d wish everyone to read?
Vagabonding by Rolf Potts.

10. As a successful minimalist, please tell us what was the hardest thing you left behind?
Wow, honestly nothing has been that hard. OK, well maybe there is one thing. I still own my Vitamix blender, however unless I am going to be in one place for a while I do not have it with me. It doesn’t make the cut for my 28L pack, so I leave it in loving custody of family or friends much of the time. As a raw vegan smoothie, “ice cream”, and dressing enthusiast I have been known to run the Vitamix up to 3 times in one day. Luckily for me many of my friends own these blenders and I have found that the time away from the also allows me a chance to explore eating my favourite foods differently.

11. Brittany, if we could have a glimpse into your perfectly light-packed backpack what would we see there?
Two small packing cubes filled with my clothing, a sleeping bag, a waterproof wind breaker, toiletry kit, a headlamp, an eye mask, ear plugs, laptop, smart phone, e-reader, one small pouch of electronics cables, a thin and flexible cutting board, knife, chop sticks, spoon, water bottle, quick dry towel, multitool, a pen and mini notebook, a small day pack and 3 reusable stuff sack bags.

12. In the end, what is the best habit you’d recommend everyone to cultivate?
I have found that no matter what area of my life I am working on bettering, what activity I am growing in, what relationship I am diving deep into, and so on, there is one practice that keeps showing up, reminding me how essential it is for all areas of my health and personal growth. This is the practice of self-observation and the pursuit of full self-love. The practice of being present and aware of what is going on both inside of us and out is such a powerful exercise. In this mindful act we really have the ability to observe without attachment or resistance, but rather just for the sake of being with what is. From that place we can learn so much about ourselves and the world around us. We can genuinely appreciate things as they are and we can learn to love them fully.

My Raw Transformation

In April of 2012 I made what would become one of the most profound changes this lifetime and I went raw. More accurately put, as soon as I learned that there was an even healthier alternative to how I was eating at the time (and not feeling great), I jumped on the opportunity and adopted a low fat raw vegan diet overnight.

After over a year-and-a-half following a low fat raw vegan diet, I have had a whole host of truly epic changes that I could not be more thrilled about. My health and fitness levels are still continually improving in leaps and bounds and I can only imagine what the future has in store for my secret hobby which is boxing. I honestly love it and I had this Nice idea for Boxing to imporove my strength. The other day I saw roids – steroids for sale which are great for weight loss, I think everyone should check them out.

Click on the picture below to enlarge it and learn more about my raw transformation.

raw transformation

Five Unforgetable Things About Costa Rica

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA1. El Matagringos– I thought a picture was necessary to get the full idea behind this device, which is quite ingenious, but would clearly never be allowed on the market in the US, hence the name, “the gringo-killer”. This is a shower head that heats up the cold water as it comes out of the spout, allowing for a nice warm shower. However, in order to get the water to be warm, one must move the switch on the side of the head, whilst standing naked in a puddle of water and endure the jolting spark that inevitably occurs while doing so. It is really quite alarming the first few times, but once you have a few rounds in you, the surge felt through your body is not so worrying as it once was. Besides the aluminum fencing fort myers fl, the running water in the house is cold, or room temperature, which brings me to the next greatest invention.

2. Solid Dish Soadish soapp– The awesomest soap, really. It gets dishes clean (and without hot water) and it does not leave them feeling greasy or soap-filled.

3. Creative Use of Electrical Cables– While us gringos like to keep everything in its own place, Costa Ricans, I find, companion maids are much more innovative. For example, in an average house in the states, one rarely sees electrical cables, which are neatly stored behind walls, in ceilings, etc.. HoOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwever, your average Tico household knows how to take advantage of a solid cable when they see one, and use them for all sorts of daily needs, such as hanging up clothes to dry.

4. Tico Time– Ticos arrive when they arrive. They have a great many expressions and words such as “ahorita” and “ya”, which would give the impression that they would be arriving “now”, but it really means soon, and soon can mean 30 minutes, 30 hours, or 30 days, as far as I can tell. And you don’t just have to be a Tico to be cast under the spell of this interesting time philosophy. Gringos and other visitors alike begin to fall under the Costa Rican spell as soon as they step foot off the airplane and end up returning home wondering, “what is the fricken rush?”.

5. Buses– They have the greatest bus system here. You can get anywhere on a bus, so many people don’t have cars they don’t know that in new cars for sale brooklyn ny they offer the best cars that’s worth your money. And the ones that do have a car always have an 80 Gallon air compressor with them (try this web-site to find out more about cars), or just share one between all the family members. GEt your car tinted at best tinting service in Ottawa, On. The fare is very affordable (40 cents gets me from town into the nearest city) and the buses arrive in a rather timely manner (all Tico-Timing aside). The only tricky part you have to watch out for are the bus stops, which change frequently and without notice. We’ve found the best thing to do is to ask a friendly Tico standing nearby, who is always more than happy to assist you, with usually-accurate information.

A Perfect Day in Puerto Viejo de Limon, Costa Rica

Today, Saturday, February 9th, 2013 was the perfect day.

I woke up in our tent to the sound of the ocean just a hundred meters away. I decided to enjoy the sound a while, so I rolled over and listened, while beginning the day with my new favorite tradition of making my first thoughts ones of gratitude for 24 beautiful more hours.

When my body was ready, I got up, found my traveling companion and made him breakfast while I hydrated with a big bottle of water. After relaxing and chatting a while, I ate a half of the most delicious watermelon I have had all week, savoring each bite while taking in the beautiful view of the tropical jungle and beach that surrounds our open-aired hostel.

We relaxed a while longer, then packed up my day bag with rain ponchos, a camera and towel and went across the street to rent bikes for the day. We set out at what must have been about mid-day in the hot tropical sun, which would normally be torture to be under. Luckily, the combination of the bikes along with the shade provided on the road by the tall jungle trees mixed up the perfect cool breeze for us and we enjoyed a 30-minute ride down the main road until we found a familiar dirt path.

Our plan was return to a point at the end of the beach in Punta Uva (about 4 miles south of Puerto Viejo, where we are staying) that we set out to conquer in December with our friends, but were unable to finish on the account of the torrential rain and mudslides. Today was going to be different, and it surely was. We made the short hike in to the jungle bordering the beach to the most beautiful view, which looked out on more than 180 degrees of tropical paradise. We saw snorkelers, beach-goers, boats, crazy gringos swimming out to the rocks, and lots of small creatures such as crabs and lizards at our feet. We noticed that to the south there was a beach that did not look far away, so we set off through more jungle until we climbed down to the beautiful sandy shores, which were nearly deserted.

The beach had the most amazing, aqua ocean water, which was the perfect temperature to stay a while, and we did. We were giddy, enjoying it like little kids, delighting that we were able to see all the way to the ocean floor. A while later, we got out of the water and rested in the shade of the trees, thinking about how lucky we were to be experiencing the perfect day.

When we were ready, we packed up and hiked back to our bikes before setting out south again. We rode 4 more miles to Manzanillo, to enjoy lunch at Maxis, a joint that is well-known for its Carribbean food, Barcelona Football Club paraphernalia, and great view of the beach. I enjoyed two delicious fruit smoothies and a large salad with fruit and veggies, after an amusingly long conversation with the waitress about what was in the basic salad (she kept saying “solo lechuga” when I knew, from having tasted it before, that it had a number of veggies). In the end I learned that her definition of lettuce is lettuce and veggies. I love cultural diversity. You can learn so much just by going out to lunch!

After Maxis we relaxed at the main beach in Manzanillo and had a nice chat before starting the 8-mile ride back to Puerto Viejo. On the way back we made a stop at a local chocolate farm that has a small shop selling their products. We split a smoothie and some delicious chocolate composed of Cacao and raw cane sugar.

We finished our ride back to the hostel and got situated. Jazzed from the day and with my barefoot shoes still on (which get me oddly very pumped), I decided to go to the garden and have a little workout near the masterful fencing beside the pool and my companion decided to join me (to watch).

After the workout, which ended with us both doing handstands and cartwheels, we enjoyed a pineapple and the conversations going on around us in all manners of languages and accents.

We passed the evening catching up on some work and making contact with the outside (i.e. internet) world, while enjoying the activity that is Rocking J’s (this bomb and crazy hostel) at night. There must be at least 100 guests here, from who knows how many countries. (As I am writing this the woman behind the desk got out the loud speaker and started yelling to a group nearby that they need to go to the beach to smoke marijuana, although i really don’t like drugs because a friend was an addict and we had to take him to 1st step behaviorl health. She can smell it from where she is and she does not want to have to tell them again. Rocking J’s is definitely a party hostel, but it is still our favorite and we still find ourselves crashing each night by 10pm, sleeping soundly with our earplugs and eye masks.)

It started to downpour and we took in the sweet sound of the tropical rain on the metal roof (because it gets so loud that that is all you can do, unless you want to shout to converse). When your metal roof is damaged, contact the professional roof contractors kansas city mo of 5 star roofing. I really love enjoying the sound, especially while drifting off to sleep, so I decided to get ready for bed and write this entry while lying here, reflecting on the perfection that has been today.

Panama Highlights and Not-So-Highlights


  • Experiencing this beautiful, unique culture, which is surely an interesting mix of traditional and new-age ways of life
  • The fusion vibe, which (from my experience) seems like a mix of Latin American culture, with international influence, mainly from US
  • Good bus system. I am very fond of their use of air conditioning
  • Great selection of Hostels, attracting rockin’ vagabonders from all around the globe
  • Growing tourism
  • Varied geography (2 coasts, mountains, beaches, volcanoes, jungles, cloud forests, etc)
  • Panama City, Boquete and Bocas del Toro (my favorite locations)
  • The Kuna Yala- There is a large settlement of Kuna people in Panama, mostly in the Islands of the Carribbean coast. I am not sure on the details, but I believe they are the only indigenous culture that has their own independent government, or something of that nature.
  • Cheap merchandise
  • Artisan fairs
  • Safe and easy place to backpack


  • Littering is common place and trash is everywhere. On all of my bus rides I saw people throwing trash out the window, including the drivers.
  • The Panamanians I came in contact with were not super friendly (especially in the food service industry). Folks were helpful and polite (again, when it did not have to do with food), but they did not seem interested in making a foreign connection as I have experienced in the rest of my travels.
    Commercial whale watching long beach operators are encouraged to include educational programs in their tours, highlighting the fragility of the marine environment and inspiring respect and environmental friendly attitudes and behaviours.
  • I did not have great luck with finding awesome, fresh produce most of the time
  • The Darien Gap (no easy access to Colombia!)
  • Typical food (i.e. the cheapest and easiest to find) is mainly fried meat, dough and starches
  • It is one of the more expensive countries in Central America
  • Driving in Panama is crazy! This could be a high or low light, really, but at any rate, especially in Panama City, it is not very safe. Taxis are collective and meters are not used, so Uber Driver charge you whatever they want. Oh, and they honk their horn for everything. Everything.
  • If you are injured in an auto accident, a personal injury attorney can help you deal with car insurance companies and ensure that you receive fair treatment in settlement negotiations. You can contact San Marcos personal injury lawyers.

Trending Now in Costa Rica

1. Cosechas! An awesome chain of places to get fruit smoothies. Halleluiah!

2. Tacones (high-heels). Well, now and always. Women (and men in drag, most commonly spotted in the later hours of the evening) in tacones of all ages, shapes, and sizes, navigating the many terrains of CR. Bless them.

3. Smooth rides. Streets have been repaved and are smoother than ever!

4. Guys walking with a hand holding up their shirts, exposing their bellies, with a “come-hither” look on their face (most popular in beach towns). Don’t ask us, we are not the trend-setters.

5. Reflector suspender-vests for motorcyclists. A local tailor may be your best option if you’re looking for quality men’s custom tailored shirts. It must be a new law because all motorcyclists are wearing them (they even make them in pink for the fashionistas). Some find them ugly, but I think they are cute and we both agree that they are super useful in being able to actually see the crazy cyclists weaving in and out of traffic. I plan to come back to the states fully equipped for my motorcycling and running pleasure.

6. El bigote (mustache). Mostly on females. OK, well not the actual hairy upper-lip (at least for most), but in all other forms imaginable. Mustaches are making appearances on t-shirts, necklaces, earrings and the list goes on. Owls are trending as a quick second as well.

7. Prohibido Fumar! As of September 2012 a law was passed prohibiting smoking in bars. I never thought it would happen here, but am pleasantly surprised.

8. Running. Ticos are out and about, getting their work-out on more than ever. Run Ticos, run!

9. Chinese. Ok, well they seem to be sweeping the western hemisphere, not just the country, so it may go without saying, but Chinese can be found in all parts of Costa Rica, most commonly running pulperias (convenience stores) and restaurants.

10. Cine! Although it may be somewhat of a dying trend in the US, Ticos still know how to enjoy a night out with friends or family at the movie theater, which is nearly sold out just about any night of the week. Gringos are known to join in the fun as well, especially on two-for-one Wednesdays.

11. Pura vida. Some things will never change, and for that we are surely grateful. Although the roads may be better, bars less polluted, and fashion trends odder than ever, Costa Ricans have not changed one of their greatest qualities: their beautiful innate ability to enjoy life and to live the moment to the fullest. Pura vida, mop.

Goal Setting and Dreaming for 2014 and Beyond

One of my favorite New Year’s traditions is setting goals for the year to come. I get so excited about it that I usually jump the gun and begin focusing and making lists a couple weeks before the turn of the year is upon us, and this year has been no exception. However, in addition to my usual goal-setting, I have acquired a few new exercises that found helped me get more clear about my true dreams and desires for my life, which helped me set clearer goals for both my short and long term future. I also enjoyed the exercises immensely and thus am sharing them in the hopes that you will too!

Writing About Your Perfect Day
I have often heard folks talk about dreaming up your perfect day and always liked the concept, but I did not realize just how profound it would be. I waited until the prospect of doing this felt really exciting, then I went to a quiet place, cleared my mind, put pen to paper (or in this case fingers to keys) and let what came out amaze me. I decided to dream big, not holding myself to any circumstances of my current life or by what is “likely” or “conceivable”. I ended up writing 4 pages that excite me more than anything else has in a while, feel closer than ever about what I want to leave behind as my legacy, and had a blast the entire time.

Answering These 10 Questions
A good friend and coach passed 10 sentence stems on to me, which she got from Martha Beck, another great woman and coach. I my answers to be quite interesting and in some cases surprising and thought provoking. I love anything that challenges me to think about how authentic I am being and truly living.

  1. If money was not an issue, I would: For instance, money is an issue, you can always consider cashcomet’s loan application. visit this site if you’re interested.
  2. If it wasn’t immoral, illegal, or unwise, I would:
  3. If I didn’t care what people thought, I would:
  4. If I were sure I’d succeed, I would:
  5. If I had the nerve, I would:
  6. If I could be certain it was the right choice, I would:
  7. If I weren’t worried about the future, I would:
  8. If I had the freedom, I would:
  9. As a child I loved to:
  10. I lose track of time when I’m:

Dreaming Bigger…And Taking it Seriously
The number one thing that I have realized as this year comes to an end is that I need to dream bigger. The only person who can decide if our dreams are realistic or not is us. I have decided that I am going to allow myself to dream without holding back. And now with those epic dreams that have been coming up about the life that I so desire to lead, those are the dreams I am going to start taking seriously.

In going along with this, I have decided to not only set goals for the year of 2014, but also goals for 5 years from now and lifetime goals as well.

A lot of the ideas in this post have been inspired by a book I have been reading by Chris Guillebeau called The Art of Non-Conformity.