I created the “Travellers’ Tales” section to give my readers and other travellers an opportunity to talk about their travels. Today I would like to introduce you to Naomi, a travel blogger based in the Netherlands. She blogs at “Probe Around the Globe ”.
I would love to hear about your travels too. Go to “Travellers’ Tales” , fill in the quick questionnaire and email it to me with your blog links.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Naomi and I’m from the Netherlands. I work full time and have a travel blog. I also have a Chronic Illness called Crohn’s disease. I found that many people travel with complications and I’d like to raise awareness and show a different side of travel.
2. What is your earliest travel memory?
Collecting seashells at our summer holiday house in South of France. My family would go there every summer and we’d rent a house. I remember sitting in the evening sun and looking at my sea shells. I must have been 3 or 4 years old.
3. Where was your last holiday?
I just got back from a 10 day road trip through Andalusia, Spain. I rented a car and visited the famous cities of southern Spain. I learnt how to eat tapas properly and I started drinking, lol. I guess you’re never too old to start right?
4. What was the best thing you did there?
I really loved the culture and the different layers of history stacked upon each other. I loved exploring places like the Alcazar in Seville and the Alhambra in Granada, but I think the food tours I did in Malaga and Seville were the best! Nothing more amazing than a night filled with fun, good food and interesting information about life in Andalusia.
5. What was your best holiday ever? Why?
This must be the most impossible question to answer ever!! I have never had a horrible holiday. Some holidays went wrong and didn’t turned out as planned, but each had their memorable moments. If you force me to choose it would be my epic trip from Russia to Tibet by train or my latest big travels to Peru and Bolivia. Although I was sick half of the time, these places are so amazing and fuel my wanderlust even more. They need to be mentioned as the best ever!
6. What is your favourite travel destination?
Another impossible question! I do love Turkey though. The country has such an amazing history and food scene. Add in the beaches, the great people and the wonderful shopping and I am in. I do try to find the good in every travel destination though. My dad and I have this thing where we travel to smaller cities nobody goes to as a tourist and each time we have an amazing time, like our last trip to Liverpool. I was surprised how fun it was.
7. What must one do there?
In Turkey I definitely recommend a boat trip. Cruising on a yacht along the pristine beaches and bays of the country is amazing. No cell phone reception, just good fun and good food.
8. Who is your favourite travel companion/s?
I guess I have to answer: “myself”. I love to travel with my boyfriend but I am too exhausted to steer him in the right direction all the time. I love going exploring with my mom and dad, but being the tour guide is also exhausting. I like to explore on my own as I can do everything I want on my own pace (which is pretty fast). However, when I am with other people, they do force me into some pretty amazing situations I’d normally not do.
My mom insisted on visiting a waterfall she saw at the castle hill in Nice and was dead set on finding it. I would have thought - ok can’t find it, never mind, next. But she insisted and it was really gorgeous and we had a lot of fun taking pictures (aka she took so long I got soaking wet from the waterfall).
9. Name one item you must have when travelling.
My scarf. I always wear a scarf as it protects me from the sun and warms me when it is cold. I can use it to cover myself up when visiting a church or cathedral. And I love that it spruces up my outfit. I use it to create more privacy when I sleep in a dorm and I can use it as a pillow on the bus or plane.
10. Your best travel advice?
Research. I know a lot of people like to go out on a whim and that way, you’ll create some unique experiences. If you have to travel on a budget like I do or have limited time, it is best to do your research. Many tickets for major events can be bought online. We skipped a 2.5 hour waiting line outside the Vatican in the pouring rain, all because I bought tickets the night before in my hotel. If you research the place a little bit, you’ll know about discounts, and things to see and can make the most of your time abroad.
11. The one place you want to visit before you die?
Almost everywhere?! Nah, I do have Jordan very high on my list. I actually planned twice on going. One time was with a tour but it didn’t have enough participants so it got cancelled. The 2nd time I was going to travel around the Middle-East. I had my plane tickets and everything, but life and health issues got in the way. All in all, I have not yet been and still really want to go.
12. Your favourite place in South Africa?
Until now, I have only been to Morocco but I would love to explore more of Egypt and go on safari once, in Tanzania or Kenya. However, my health problems prevent me from going to Africa. I have the idea I would be pushing my boundaries so far if I would try Africa. Or I’d have to leave my budget travel ways behind and try a more luxurious approach but there are still so many other places to explore.
13. Any embarrassing travel moments?
My illness makes me have to go to the toilet over 10 times a day on an average day. I am always anxious that I cannot find a bathroom or not in time. This is especially the case when I travelled in places like Nepal and Bolivia. I have never been as sick in my life as I have been on the Uyuni Salt Flats in Bolivia. I had to go to a bathroom like every 15 minutes.
But guess what.. there are no bathrooms at the Salar de Uyuni. There are not even trees or scrubs or anything to hide behind. It was one of my most humiliating experiences to have to go behind the tyre of the 4x4 while the rest of the group pretended to look the other way.. ai..
14. Worst travel experience?
My worst travel experience must have been when I went to the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia. I arrived in the middle of the night and notified the staff at my hostel of this. It was 4 am and the taxi driver assured me that I was at the right address, but there were 5 building blocks with 11 stories each. No signs on the door or any directions as everything was so new.
In the end, after numerous phone calls and looking around (bless the taxi driver) I found the hostel, but there was nobody there to check me in or even talk to me. As I was so tired after 16 hours of travel, I looked into one of the dorm rooms and found an empty bed. In the morning, they directed me to another building and my own room, so everything ended well.
15. How can people connect with you?
I’d love to hear from other people. It is not hard to find me.
Thank you, Naomi , for sharing your fascinating travels with us!
I would love to hear about your travels too. Go to “Travellers’ Tales”, fill in the quick questionnaire and email it to me with your blog links.
Who will I feature next? I’ve got an exciting line-up ahead. Make sure you subscribe to the newsletter so you don’t miss out on some exciting travel tales