1. Okay, Miss Laura, what was the specific incident that got you to this interview?
I reacted on a post in a bloggers’ group on Facebook.
2. What has earned you the right to be an authority on this topic?
I’ve been travelling alone for a few years now and have travelled by myself in 4 different continents. It’s my favorite way of travelling and it has taught me so much!
3. What is your brand, your topic exactly about?
My blog is about (female) solo travel and travelling in a responsible way. It’s about immersing yourself in a culture, gaining confidence and making wonderful memories around the world.
4. Why is it important?
To me, travelling solo is all about conquering your fears, building confidence and learning that you can rely on yourself. I’m a very anxious person and used to think I would never be able to travel alone. I postponed it many times before finally deciding to face my fears and take the plunge. Although it was scary at first, it ended up being one of the best decisions of my life.
When it comes to travelling responsibly, it’s so important to leave as little impact on the environment as possible and not to exploit people or animals. This is something I’ve grown increasingly aware of and try to implement in my travels as much as I can. The world is beautiful and it’s so important to treat it well.
5. Now that I know what it is, now that I know why it’s important and relevant, how are you implementing this on your travels? I mean like, is there a process, that you follow when travelling?
Before travelling to a new destination I always take the time to research the place and make sure to know what I should be aware of. I want to know about more dangerous areas if there are any and make sure to look up tourist scams, etc.
When it comes to travelling responsibly, I do a lot of research about the ethics of certain activities and am very cautious when animals are included. I also do my best to find eco friendly ho(s)tels, restaurants and activities and am trying to reduce my plastic waste to the bare minimum and travel overland as much as I can.
6. What if people took advantage of your tips and steps you are providing? What will happen, how will their travels change?
They’ll expand their comfort zone, learn how to rely on themselves, conquer their fears and fall in love with everything this world has to offer!
7. Now we would like to get just some general information about you and your travels:
(if not answered before) – When did you start traveling?
I’ve been travelling for as long as I can remember, first with my parents and later with friends. I started travelling solo in 2017.
– Do you remember how you felt when you traveled alone for the first time?
I was so nervous and excited at the same time! I had a thousand scenarios in my head about what could go wrong and wondered if I had made the right decision. But when I arrived at my destination, it took me just one day to realize I LOVED it. I had never felt more free in my life and I was so proud of myself for finally conquering my fears.
– How did you, or do you deal with fears?
What helped me a lot was reading blogs of solo travellers. I kept thinking that if they could do it, then so could I. When something bad happens I always try to stay calm and have the confidence that there is a solution for every problem.
– Is there a place where you have been and you would definitely not recommend it for women on their own and why?
No. Although travelling through Togo and Benin was a little more challenging, so I wouldn’t recommend it as a first solo trip, unless you’re very confident.
– Do you still have this excitement, when you go for a trip?
Yes absolutely! Maybe not as much as when I first started travelling solo but I still feel very, very excited every time. Every country is different and you never really know what’s going to happen, whom you’re going to meet and where your adventure will take you this time.
– What are your top 5 destinations and why?
I love destinations where there’s a lot of nature and where you can immerse yourself in a culture. My top 5 destinations are: Myanmar, Nepal, Indonesia, Guatemala and Benin.
I loved Myanmar because it’s incredibly rich in culture and still very authentic. There aren’t too many tourists (yet) and the people there are so friendly.
Nepal has a mix of Buddhist and Hindu culture, which I found incredibly fascinating. I really love the mountains so it’s no wonder that the Himalayas are one of my favorite destinations in the world.
Indonesia (I visited Sumatra) was another authentic destination with a fascinating culture, amazing people and beautiful nature. I loved the jungle trekkings and I’ve met the most hospitable people ever here.
I loved Guatemala for its beautiful volcanoes, colorful towns and the adventure. I’ll never forget sleeping in a tent near an erupting volcano. What a view!
What fascinated me about Benin was its Voodoo culture. I didn’t know a lot about Voodoo before visiting this country and have learned so much there. I also loved the challenge of travelling here, I didn’t see any tourist during my entire stay and feel like this is the country where I learned to rely on myself even more.
– Funniest story that happened to you when traveling?
It wasn’t very funny at the moment it happened, but I can laugh about it now. When I was crossing the border from Togo to Benin, I forgot my backpack in the minibus in Togo due to a miscommunication. I had to cross the border back to Togo illegally (because I had a single entry on my visa) surrounded by a bunch of security people in order to go get my backpack.
8. Call to action – what do you want people to do?
I want people to expand their comfort zone, conquer their fears and make beautiful memories all around the world while considering the environment.
Read more from Laura: Website: https://www.laurewanders.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/laurewanderscom Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/laurewanders/