The moments that turned us into lifelong explorers.
By Tyler Protano-Goodwin, Marketing Executive at Audley Travel
In the world of travel we talk a lot about our favorite countries, but what about the places we first fell in love with? The place that changed our idea of travel forever.
Where did you realize that travel was something that you would never stop doing? Below we share our own stories about how we went from people interested in travel to people determined to see as much of the world as possible.
An Italian adventure with family
Jo Tudisco Guntert, Japan Country Specialist
The first international trip I took was when I went to Italy with my family after my high school graduation. My mom was determined that we would experience our Italian heritage before I left for college and I quote “take one more family trip together since we’ll never have the time again”. We look back now and laugh since that trip was just the first of what has now been 9 international adventures. However, that first trip to Italy was everything. I fell in love with the ancient streets, the delicious smells, the friendly shouts and laughter from vendors and voyeurs alike. I fell in love with the glitter of sunshine off Venetian waterways and the smell of grapefruit on the worn road to Pompeii. Most importantly I fell in love with what it feels like to discover new places, to notice details that we miss in our everyday lives, to glimpse a world so outside our own that our thoughts can’t help but turn to dreams. When I tell people that I love travel, that trip with my family is the one that I think of.
Sharing the gift of travel in Colombia
Matthew Nilsson, Latin America Senior Product Executive
Standing on the Pacific shores of Colombia at daybreak, my brother beside me, we watched as newborn turtles made their way to the sea for the first time. Having lived in Colombia for over a year I was already enchanted by this vibrant country, but the joy of watching travel transform someone else was a new feeling entirely. I was elated to share the moment with my brother who was at the time in the Navy. After our experience in Colombia it wasn’t a week before we were both home and I got a call from him to say that the moment had swayed his decision to leave the Navy and move on to the next chapter in his life. An unlikely affirmation for myself that travel is unwavering in its generosity to transform anyone who is open to it.
Connecting with Irish culture
Shannon Dirrane, UK and Ireland Product Executive
Before Freshman year of college I traveled to the island, Inis Mor in Ireland with my dad for a family wedding. The beauty of the island was overwhelming, but what changed my idea of travel forever was the people. A culture so similar to my own was in reality so unique and different. Tea and scones are a way for the people to connect with one another and the packed pubs foster important face to face interactions. The lively sense of community and the hardworking spirit of the locals inspired me to return, I felt a sense of calm in a place that puts such a high value on connection. I went back and lived in Ireland for close to a year and afterwards have kept exploring – eager to find more places where the people are more important than the landscapes.
Witnessing the unknown in Tanzania
Jack Morris, Africa Regional Manager
It’s a long journey by light aircraft to get to Greystoke Camp in western Tanzania, and this is partly the reason why it’s so special. The camp sits on a lake and I knew before arriving that it would be an experience not to forget. The lake itself is crystal clear, drinkable in fact, and you can see the cychlids and yellowbelly fish swimming every which way. Plus there was the reason I’d come all this way – trekking into the jungle to visit the M community of chimpanzees. Clambering through the thick jungle vines and through the steep rocky streams of the Mahale Mountains to find them was something from a childhood dream. Traveling to see things I couldn’t have even imagined felt almost mystical in a sense and it was in this moment, staring at the chimps, that I knew I would never stop visiting new places.
Tyler Protano-Goodwin is a marketing executive at Audley Travel who create customized trips for curious adventurers around the world. Each trip is designed by someone who is deeply passionate about the art of travel and who believes that travel has the power to be transformative. Our handcrafted itineraries provide the framework for life changing moments to unfold for you.