Wanderlust Duo: Exploring the World Together
We met way back in school. We were put in the same class, and, as they say, the rest is history!
13 years of adventures later, it’s safe to say we now have an ever-growing love for seeing new places and having new experiences together. Whether that be a wholesome weekend away close to home or sailing around the untouched Komodo Islands in Indonesia, we just can’t get enough.
How We Plan Our Trips
Alongside our blog, we both currently work full time, so in recent years our longest trip is for a few weeks at a time, though we do lots of ‘mini escapes’ at weekends to satisfy the itch. We’ve got a knack for finding the very best of a destination in a short amount of time, sparking inspiration for most of our blog itineraries.
Our longest trip was a 4-month sabbatical just before COVID.
How We Decide On Our Destinations
It's funny because strangely, a lot of the time our next ‘big’ destination is decided by what wildlife we want to see next!
For example, this year we finally ticked off seeing wild orangutans in Borneo. In the run up to this trip, the fun part was then researching all the best activities, destinations, and places to stay whilst we were there.
Our Must-Haves To Pack
We each just have a daypack and a 70L backpack (now both smothered in collected travel patches) that we bring on every trip.
We pack so much more efficiently after our sabbatical; knowing you only need a few core essentials, and everything else can be brought (or washed) when you’re out there!
Our must-have items are packing cubes (lifesavers!), a flat money belt to wear underneath your clothes, and a fully stocked first aid kit / medical bag.
Our Most Remarkable Adventures
We are very lucky to have been to many amazing places so far, though a few of our favorites are road-tripping and living in a campervan across New Zealand, cruising Borneo’s Kinabatangan River, and seeing wild orangutans and pygmy elephants, sailing the Komodo Islands, and witnessing the Northern lights in Tromso, northern Norway.
Firmly set on our bucket list for the next few years are: Sailing the Galápagos Islands, seeing narwhals and polar bears in Arctic Canada, beluga whales in Greenland, and a spring getaway to Switzerland.
What Inspired Us to Start 'The Flainstravel'
When we began the blog back in June 2021, it was initially a way of documenting all the useful tips and personal experiences we had gathered during our travels, as well as a great memento to look back on. Since traffic is rapidly growing, it’s become much more than that.
Our blogs, especially the shorter trip itineraries, have received very positive responses from our readers. They really help them get the absolute best out of any destination in a short space of time. This is what we hope to continue to pursue with our blog, eliminating the common overwhelm for most people planning big trips so they can follow our guides, just get excited and most importantly - get booking their next adventure!
Though traveling full-time or for an extended period is most people’s dream, the truth is - it is not everybody’s reality. We want to show that anyone can still squeeze the very best out of life, even if they are restricted to one place.
One Of Our Favorite Memories Of Meeting New People
One of our favorite memories of meeting new people was during a group tour to Fraser Island, Australia.
In our group, there were 8–10 people from all over the world, including Ireland, the US, and even China.
On our last night, we all ended up singing karaoke together in a random island bar. I just remember at that moment thinking how amazing it was that all of us likeminded people were there together (having met just 3 days ago), and at that moment in time, we were all happily screaming out “Zombie” by The Cranberries at the top of our lungs!
One Of Our Most Exciting Outdoor Experiences
One of the most incredible outdoor experiences (that Jordie still hasn’t quite got over) is swimming with wild Hector's dolphins in Akaroa on the South Island, New Zealand. Floating in the ocean while the World’s smallest and rarest dolphin species circles around you like a playful puppy?
This experience needs to be on every wildlife lover’s bucket list!
Precautions That We Take
We always take out a good travel insurance policy to cover all activities we plan to do. Never travel without it!
In terms of health, we always take a medical bag with a little bit of everything we could need (from plasters, antiseptic creams, etc.). We feel much safer knowing we have all these products we know and trust with us should they be needed.
Major Challenges That We Have Faced
In terms of travel, I guess, like most people, a major challenge is trying to get the most out of life despite working full-time. This is why we have started just doing spontaneous weekend breaks to keep that wanderlust alive between big trips.
How GAFFL Can Help Solo Travelers
I think GAFFL can play a significant role in the lives of solo travelers, it can be lonely out there, and there’s nothing better than sharing travel experiences with other like-minded people. It’s a great way to give people the confidence to get out there, collect epic memories, and maybe even make lifelong travel friends.
Advice That We Can Share
Our advice would be to not dwell on the reasons why you shouldn’t, and instead focus on why you should. What are you waiting for, the right time? There will never be a right time, so just go for it.
We love the saying, “Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do." It’s a great quote to ground you, just keep that core goal in mind and do everything you can to make it a reality!
Another tip is to buy a pen because once you’ve completed that first trip, you’re going to be constantly scribbling new destinations onto that bucket list of yours!
Conquering Fear: How Travel Can Change Your Perspective
There are practical lessons learned over the years, of course, such as packing how much you think you’ll need, then halving it, then halving it again, but the most important lesson is that the world is not as scary as you think.
Living in our home bubbles, the unknown can easily make your mind freak out over nothing.
The more you travel, and the more people you meet, the more you realize the majority of people are kind and we are all much more similar than you’d think.