Lisa Lubin decided to chuck her ‘conventional’ life to travel around the world in 2006. Now it’s 2014, Lisa has spent the last seven years meeting new people, experiencing a variety of cultures and updating her blog, the LLWorldTour. We caught up with Lisa in New Jersey, USA where we talked about delicious cuisine, luxury, and being inspired to travel.
Nowadays you split your time between the US and travelling. Where are you now Lisa and where have you just been?
Right now I’m actually in New Jersey. I split my time between the States and travelling. I live in Chicago mostly, but my boyfriend lives in New Jersey. My most recent travels were two extremes, I was skiing in the Canadian Rockies and I was also in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for a lovely luxury trip which was wonderful and warm compared to right now. It’s snowing at the moment in New Jersey!
What’s your next adventure?
I’m going back to Chicago in a few weeks to speak about my experiences at the Women in Travel Summit. And then I’m doing a press trip in Alabama, which is somewhere I’ve never been before. It’s supposed to be beautiful and it’s right on the beach!
Tell me about some of your favourite destinations and why you like them so much.
It’s really hard to answer this question because I’ve been to a lot of places, so I have lots of favourites. I usually break them down into groups. My favourite natural destination would be the Galapagos Islands. That place is amazing because it’s full of beautiful wildlife. You can get up close and personal with the animals. They’re not afraid of you because they don’t have any predators there. I also loved Patagonia, which is shared by Chile and Argentina. It has beautiful mountains and really amazing glaciers, which I’d never seen before. In terms of cities, I really like Stockholm. I like that it is beautiful, clean and efficient. But I also love Buenos Aires, which is totally different. I think that the reason why I like them both is because they have great people and neighbourhoods. I like cities where I feel at home.
You’ve travelled 25 percent of the globe so far – which is a huge amount! Tell me about the parts of the world that you haven’t travelled to yet that you want to visit.
It’s weird, I’ve been to all of the continents expect Antarctica, but I’ve only technically visited 25 percent of the globe. As I haven’t been there before, I’d love to go to Antarctica. It’s so unique compared to anywhere else. Same with Alaska. Since I love Europe and have been to most of it, I’d like to go to still get to Slovenia as well. It has that that gorgeous mix of being near Italy, but still being near the Alps. I guess there is still a lot out there to see!
What does luxury while travelling mean to you?
During my ’round the world trip’ luxury to me was the little things. It meant when someone had a car and would pick me up from the airport. It was really luxurious to be able to have a ride and not carry my bags. But nowadays, things are a bit different. I just returned from Mexico with Funjet Vacations and we stayed at Casa Velas and the Marival Residences & World Spa where we were in a beautiful one bedroom suite which was as big as an apartment! It was modern and very cool.
You often blog about food you’ve had in different countries. Tell me what your favourite cuisine is and why.
Before I travelled, my favourite cuisine was probably sushi, but now it’s so hard to pick one. I love Middle Eastern food. I especially like couscous, hummus and baba ganoush. It’s comfort food to me. Thai and Ethiopian food is wonderful too. My least favourite is Eastern European, just because I’m really not a fan of meat and potatoes!
You say that about a decade ago, before you traveled extensively, you were inspired and influenced by a variety of mediums, including email newsletters such as ‘Transitions Abroad’ and ‘Student Traveller’, as well as the TV show Globe Trekker. Tell me about stories you’ve heard from people that were inspired by your blog?
It’s so inspiring to hear that I can have that effect on people. I’ve received so many wonderful emails and comments over the years. There was one guy I met from North Carolina. He found my blog and was inspired to travel around the world himself. He had emailed me asking what gear to use and ideas of where to go. Of course he had an amazing time and it changed his life as it changed mine. He still thanks me to this day and says that I changed his life which is so very inspiring and cool. I host an event in Chicago called Meet Plan Go, where I try and inspire people to leave their jobs, sell their stuff, and go travelling. And one year I invited him to come along to speak which was great. He’s inspiring people himself now.
What would be your advice to anyone who was thinking about travelling but was too scared to do it?
Easy – just do it! DO it. Nowadays there are so many blogs showing other people what to do and where to go. It’s so much easier for anyone who wants to go travelling now, compared to when I went. I had read a few books to inspire me before I left, but now there are all kinds of resources and a glut of websites.
I also think that there is no right or wrong with travelling. I’d never judge anyone for how long they can go away for, because any time is really good.
My last piece of advice would be to take your time when you’re travelling so that you can really get to know the culture, the people, and the food. I always used to only go to places for two to three days, which isn’t a good idea as you’d be travelling for one day with only one day left to enjoy the sights. You get to see stuff, but you’re not really meeting people or having wonderful experiences. When I got into the groove of travelling, I lived in places for a long time to really get to know where I was. So for example I went to Turkey for 3 months and lived like a local, which was much better than whizzing in and out like a tourist.
Lisa Lubin was interviewed by Sophie Rodgers from cunard.co.uk. Cunard offers luxurious cruises for the travelling kind.