You can call me Anna, Nepali Australian travel blogger / solo female traveler! This is where I am spilling the beans about how I end up doing what I am doing now. Get yourself a cup of coffee/ a glass of wine/or a bucket of popcorn it’s going to be a while!
So far I’ve solo traveled to over 46 countries, lived in 5, and have ticked some big adventures off my bucket list. I enjoy travel writing, travel photography, and a minimalist lifestyle.
With travel being a huge part of my life for the last five years, it really is no wonder that it has somehow molded me into the person that I am today. 5 years ago I left for my first solo travel and I knew I was hooked! If I hadn’t been traveling since then, the hole size of Russia would exist in my heart!
The story goes way beyond that obviously. So, to give you an idea, I was born in Kathmandu, Nepal. Right after high school, I started working in an International office in Kathmandu and saved some money. With the help of my family and my little saved fund, I then applied to complete my further studies in Sydney, Australia.
Little did I knew my life was about to get harder and busier! Alongside my studies, I was working three jobs to pay my tuition fees and saved a little where I can. After years of studies, paying tuition fees/rent/bills and savings, I had saved enough money to book flights and travel to a new Australian city every new year. I must admit I have always been inquisitive by nature, so visiting new places was fun for me and a way to relax.
Workwise, I was working for a Software company. I was good at what I did and had a steady salary, comfort of my place, parties, fancy dresses, high heels, and designer bags. It was a comfortable lifestyle and shortly after, I also became an Australian citizen through my studies and work. I was happy with my life knowing I had achieved the goals I had set for myself when I left Nepal.
But slowly my life started to feel dull! I couldn’t find excitement and passion in my work anymore which I used to love at one point but didn’t had the courage to leave the job either. My personal life was chaotic (maybe one day I will write a book about all the crazy and sad details that went down around this time) and because of that I was confused with my feelings, thoughts, and decisions, my relationships suffered and eventually, I had to deal with a life-threatening health issue, depression, and internal struggles. Coming from a narrow-minded society where talking about the mental state isn’t taken positively made me hard to open up and still find it hard to write about!
In saying that, I am also grateful I met people from different walks of life around the same time.
I wouldn’t have found clarity had I not gone through my deepest darkest times alone and with good people around me.
It was harder starting over Than never to have changed.
Learning all that materialistic things were not making me happy or fulfilled was a true realization. I wanted more from life than just paying bills and doing the same things over and over again. I needed change; a true transformation. So it was then when I left for my first solo trip to Thailand.
After that, it took me another 6 months to wrap everything and finally start traveling the world non-stop. So, I understand when people tell me it’s not easy to drop their life, pack and leave right away even if that’s what they want. The solution here is to plan smart because Travel is worth it. It is life-changing.
That’s me taking a break after a record-breaking, highest trek of my life at Kala Patthar 5643m in Nepal.
So when did I decide to write a blog?
It was way before I left for traveling. I was deep down in the blogging world even before I started traveling, I meant it as a reader. And that is what I advise you as well if you are looking to become a travel blogger too.
I used to read all the Australian travel blogs, about Australia travel, New Zealand travel, about the big travel bloggers, social media, travel guides, top tips, anything about travel I would read it or watch it on youtube.
I was obsessed with the idea of becoming a travel blogger. That lead me to design my first website named travelling records, it took me three months to do it all by myself and I also got all the social channels to go with it. Hence the reason why, if you scroll all the way down my Instagram page or Facebook page (if I haven’t deleted already) you may find images with @ travellingrecords mark on it.
My plan was to write blogs and travel at the same time as all these big bloggers were doing it. I was inspired and super pumped. When I was leaving to solo travel the world in June 2015 I knew I was going to nail this blogging and traveling thing!
But again little did I knew my life as going to get harder and it was a massive headache trying to do traveling and blogging at once! It didn’t take me very long to realize it was a tough skill to manage both things. In saying that though, I did give it my best for the first month! Since I had pre-planned everything for the first month of travel like where I was staying, things to see, do, eat and all. I had some spare time and I invested that in writing blog posts. From memory, I think I wrote 4 times that first month!
By the way, my initial plan was to solo travel only 3 months to central Europe, then come back to Sydney, get a new job, buy a house etc (still keep a blog as a hobby though) but as you would know that 3 months went to become 6 months to 9 to a year, to two years and now 5 years! One thing that has stood the test of time is my love for traveling and sharing what I know about solo traveling.
So I was excited to be in Europe for the first time and as I went on to spend the second month and the third month, I was absolutely loving meeting new people, making new friends, exploring new places and always planning my next destination on the go! Now looking back i think it is a little sad that I enjoyed my travelling so much, I didn’t give blogging any attention.
As an Australian passport holder, you could only stay in EU for 180 days. So I went from central EU to North Africa then to Asia, starting with Thailand. I explored the country and went up to the north in Chaing Mai to complete the 1-month silent meditation up) By this point I was exhausted traveling fast and really wanted a place to reflect on my past travels, plan my future travels, just be still for a while and have a sense of being at home. (One of these days, I will write about my months-long silent meditation experience. Many people who I’ve shared this story with, told me they love it and that I should write it, soon I promise you guys!)
Now coming back to my story, this is one of the important points in my blogging journey. What happened was my one month Thailand visa was up so, I had to quickly decide where to go next. I ended up booking a flight to Hanoi, Vietnam!
Hanoi itinerary for 7 days in Vietnam.
I had a calming peaceful time up in the forest not for 1 day but for the whole month and then I took myself to one of the noisiest cities! The day I arrive in Hanoi, I wanted to leave because people pushing the horns on the road and business of a capital city was a shock to my system then! But up in the forest, I had planned to slow-travel moving forward so, I gave myself some time to adjust and ended up loving Hanoi! Do you know it is one of the country I lived as an ex-pat? I absolutely enjoyed my life there and maybe will return one day to relive the good old days!
Anyway, while making money via teaching English became my work in Hanoi which I loved and should write a blog post about it too. At this point, I had not touched my blog for months. Actually a year, so email came to renew that domain name. I finally logged in to my blog and turns out over the last 12 months I had only written 5 blog posts! (remember all that jazz about writing everyday lol) So with my sad little heart, I decided it wasn’t for it and I didn’t renew that domain name. THE END
Yep, it was the end of that website!
6 months later, I was living as an ex-pat in Vientiane, Laos. There was not 1 day I hadn’t think about my blog. In a way, I felt like I killed my own baby… yes dramatic but the truth is I had built that website all myself and even though it was only 5 blog posts it was the start of my dream to be a travel blogger.
At that time, I had been on the road for 1.5 years already and there was a lot to be shared of course. So, it was then I decided to start again. With my own website name and social channels. I could have hired someone to build a website but I am a bit of a nerd! While teaching English was my main gig at the time, I was looking to open an online business on the side too. Then add life happenings, and all. So in total, it took me about 2 months to make this website ready. Yes the one you are currently on 🙂 It was finally time! Time to write
The first thing I wanted to share here was the main question people were asking me. What is it like to solo travel as a female? So, I spend hours crafting a piece thinking no one will read it and hit publish.
To my surprise, it was shared by an online travel platform and was shared over 4000 times! I was so happy!
What to expect on solo female travel is that piece if you want to read it.
That whole experience gave me the boost to keep going and that is how I decided to continue writing travel blogs.
Since publishing that first piece, many other well-received articles, tips and tricks and travel photography have been added to this site. Ofcourse not all of them go viral but that is not why I do it. I work hard to deliver value in my writing and travel inspiration on my images. Meaning I spend countless hours writing, and creating contents on my own.
Another thing I also want to mention here is that, although this is my second try on blogging I have been posting continuously on Instagram since 2015. I may have taken a break now and then but I never gave up on it. If you scroll all the way to the bottom of my IG feed, you can see pre-blog Anna too!
Perhaps some of you experienced it already it is not easy to take pictures when you travel solo but with time, technology, and habit, I’ve masterd the art! Then comes the editing, processing part and content planning and going live. There are many things that goes behind the scene of travel blogging as well as managing your social media channels.
Some say I got a easy life looking at my gram but reality is I currently work job of 5 people! Why? Because my why is to inspire at least one person to travel and live the life they love.
Having done my share of fast traveling and backpacking. I am now a fan of slow and comfortable travel because it lets me know the place and people more closely. (still just on a carry on though) If I am able, I stay in one country until my visa runs out for that country then on to the next, but as a one off I stayed in 1 country for up to 5 months also.
So what’s next?
One of my goals in life is to travel all the 195 countries in the world! And it is definitely not late to join the fun on my Instagram as I share my adventures from each country via stories and post there. Currently at country #47 only.
On saying that though, I am not in a mad rush either. As I travel around the world, I want to reduce my carbon footprint also. Hence I’m catching absolute must flights only. I have listed other things I’m doing on this post.
I’m forever grateful for the journey I’m on and to gain an understanding of this beautiful world, people, culture, lifestyle and more. It wouldn’t have been possible if I hadn’t risked my comfy life for adventures on the road.
Thank you for taking the time to read about my journey. I hope you got the kick out of it!
- Check out all the Australia travel guide (Everything you need to know about traveling to Sydney is here)
- Solo travel guide to Brisbane (Gold coast and Insta worthy places included!
- Exploring Adelaide the best way is a must-read
- Best Australia travel guide to Uluru trip
- Attractions in Perth, Western Australia
- Must see on the east coast of Australia is fun, it includes barrier reef, beautiful national park, and more exciting places and activities
- Here I blog about the Melbourne attractions
- If you need to book accommodations for your next travels, open a new Airbnb account with my link and use this $76 Airbnb discount for your first booking.
- Alternatively, you can check hotel prices and book it through trusted Agoda, or Booking.com
- For flights, I use the most trusted sites such as Skyscanner or Momodo.
- I have detailed travel resources right here. Save money, learn what and how.