Why do I travel?
In continuation to my new blog series: “Why Do I Travel?” which features articles from my fellow blogger friends from around the world, it gives me immense pleasure to present to you: Ilana Schattauer, who is a fellow travel blogger who runs the her own travel blogging website: LifeWellCruised.com Ilana believes in Living Life One Cruise at a Time.
In Ilana’s own words, “LifeWellCruised.com focuses on cruising as a way to visit and explore many different destinations, all while enjoying ship life of course!”
Ilana started her blog as a way to share insider tips about cruising, port advice and inspiration with the wider community of new and seasoned cruisers.
Let’s hear it from Ilana:
Since taking my first cruise about 15 years ago, I loved it so much that I knew I needed to find a way to cruise more often. I decided to work in the industry as part-time cruise consultant. I now share my passion for cruising with clients and have gained a vast amount of knowledge through my profession as well as through my own cruise and travel experiences.
Being a travel blogger, I obviously love to travel. I grew up in a family that valued the idea of travel, even though our travel was not extensive. I have great memories of annual trips to Florida as a family to see my grandparents. While there we would sometimes visit Disneyworld, Naples, Miami or Key West. Exploring and visiting was always on the agenda. When I was 16, I was really fortunate to take a 21 day graduation trip to Europe and it continues to stand out as one of the best experiences of my life.
Once I had a family of my own, we continued with a tradition of family road trips to Florida and other cities. However, about 15 years ago, we started to add cruising to our lives and we were hooked! I am definitely a self-diagnosed Cruise Addict! My husband and I have been on many cruises, both with our children and on our own, and get an immense amount of joy from the experience.
I believe that we were not meant to simply work, make money, pay bills, and repeat.
We travel and cruise for a few reasons.
1.Relaxing and fun vacation:
Our travel experiences give us something to look forward to. We recharge our energy and reinvigorate ourselves with new activities as well as comfortable experiences. My husband and I both work full time and this time to get away from from the many routine tasks that we have at home is much needed. For me a cruise vacation is a chance to get away and relax, but it is also so much more.
We also reconnect with each other as a family and as a couple. This is really valuable, especially in a time when many families consist of two working parents and kids with busy, scheduled lives. We create anchoring memories through the activities and little adventures we have together. I know how these experiences have greatly contributed to who we are as individuals, and as a family.
2.Discovering new places:
One of the limitations of cruising is the amount of time spent in each destination. Despite this, we really do love seeing and experiencing different parts of the world. We have been to many different destinations through cruising, and really enjoy researching where we will visit and planning an activity in each area. When we travel we love to learn about and explore new areas.
Since we have cruised many times, we have become comfortable with the idea that we can choose one or two things to enjoy and see in each destination, and the rest will have to wait for a return visit. We have returned to some places several times, such as our cruises to Bermuda, which is one of my favorite places ever! When possible, we plan cruises where we can spend a few days before or after our cruise, allowing a more in-depth visit.
Some of our most memorable experiences have been drift snorkelling off the teeny, tiny paradise of Goff Cay in Belize, climbing Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica, exploring the ruins of Ephesus in Turkey and visiting the charming French town of St. Paul de Vence where Marc Chagall is buried.
I love good food and enjoying it with family and friends and this is definitely one of my favorites parts of travelling. Whether it is local street food, cruise ship fine dining, or something in between, we like it all! We have had some of the very best meals on cruises, including Celebrity and Princess Cruise ships. We certainly appreciate the opportunity to try new and different dishes on a cruise that we may not have regularly at home.
When travelling, we usually make it a point to eat a meal or snack in each destination. The food really does taste better within the ambiance of our holiday destination! We have had AMAZING gyros and baklava in Santorini, pizza and pasta in Florence, croissants and pastries in Cannes, churros in Barcelona, and gelato – well everywhere! During our 12 day Mediterranean cruise, we were on a mission to find the best gelato. We may have found it in at a little shop just outside of Pompeii – just the best!
Cruising gives us an opportunity to meet new people – locals, crew and other passengers. I am a pretty social person so I really enjoy talking to people and getting an understanding of their views and how they live their lives. Travelling has meant that we have been able to meet people from different countries and from different walks of life.
Mark Twain has said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
The fact is, getting to know other people helps to humanize us all.
Travelling in the future:
I feel fortunate to be able to take a cruise vacation about twice a year. I have traveled to some of my wish list destinations because of this and I am extremely grateful. I do hope to be able to take longer holidays in the future so that my travel is extended and I can see many more of my wish list destinations, including a River Cruise on the Danube, cruising to Alaska, and cruising the British Isles.