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8 Videos That Inspire My Wanderlust


Every few months I come across a video on Vimeo that definitely makes me want to pick up and leave, and then I find myself repeatedly searching for deals to Japan or Iceland or {Insert ANY country} deals. Here are a few that did that to me in the last year…

“Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.” –Seneca

Travel videos that give me wanderlust:

Inspired by Iceland

I’m sure you’ve seen this one by now. I was so excited to find this one last year, after I’d already purchased my ticket to Iceland.

Move. Eat. Learn.

This is by the same guys (Rick Mereki) who did the walking across America one last year (note: not the guy who actually did walk across America). I love to see all the different food and scenery and people.

Tokyo Slo-mode

Love seeing Tokyo this way. By Alex Lee

I Believe I can Fly

This ‘flight of the Frenchies’ trailer about highlining/slacklining absolutely fascinates me. I put it on tumblr a few weeks ago, and have watched a half dozen times. By Sebastien Montaz-Rosset

Iceland = Mad Wanderlust

The cool thing about finding one inspiring video, is that it leads you to more. (I found this one from the Flight of the Frenchies’ Sebastien Montaz-Rosset, a video by Austrian Klara Harden, who did a 25-day solo hike through Iceland this summer.

A Journey Through Vietnam

This video by Leon Visser reminded me of my time in Vietnam. If you’ve been to Vietnam, watch it! It’s like a trip down memory lane — the people, the traffic, Halong Bay, riding on the back of motorbikes… it’s beautiful.

Do you have a recent favorite?

Prompt #27: Share a photo or video that just makes you want to GO. RIGHT. NOW.

Join the 30 Days of Indie Travel project and share your story.

Eating Tarantulas In Phnom Penh

We took a public bus to the Cambodia border yesterday morning. We arrived in Phnom Penh (pronounced ‘panom pen’ ‘p’ as in ‘pup’ and then ‘pen’) in the afternoon. As soon as we crossed the border, the poverty of Cambodia versus Vietnam was very apparent. There are beggars everywhere. After arriving, we went to a cafe by the river and people watched, until an elephant walked by. Yes, Nelly the Elephant was just walking down the street, past cars and motorbikes, it was the weirdest thing. Hilarious!

Today was probably the most depressing day of the trip. We toured S-21, the prison during the Khmer Rouge regime and then went to the Killing Fields. I felt pretty sick to my stomach by lunch time. And I didn’t take any pictures, because it just seemed to sick to photograph. I’d heard of the Khmer Rouge, but really had no idea about Cambodian history. It’s hard to imagine that something so awful in human history happened so recently.

We went to our S-21/Killing Field guide’s house for dinner. He runs an English school out of his home, so we played with the kids before dinner. My girls were hilarious. We talked about our families and then played rock, paper scissors and they taught me one of those hand clapping games (very similar to the kind we played in elementary school). Then we took a few pictures. Here’s one of them “posing”, they’d fit right in in Japan. ;) Anyway, dinner was huge and delicious! Cambodian food is excellent. And for dessert we had deep fried tarantula and tarantula wine. I ate a tarantula leg… it was really salty.

Tunneling 101 with the Viet Cong


We toured the Cu Chi Tunnels this morning. What a cool place! It was really amazing to see the tunnels and museum. The Vietcong were really creative. I can’t believe that people lived down then, for years. The VC were really determined. After seeing the tunnels, it makes you realize that we (the Americans) had no idea what we were getting into, or who we were dealing with. We got to go through a section of the tunnel. No worries, I brought my trusty headlamp. :) It was really cold, damp and even though we just went through a short section, hard to imagine living there.

Goodnight Saigon


We arrived in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) yesterday. HCMC seems to just be an “official” name in southern Vietnam. Ever since we went through the DMZ area, it’s been referred to as Saigon. So Saigon it is! It’s heading into rainy season here, so we did a cyclo tour of the city, through the rain. But that’s what my Columbia rain jacket (with duck bill hood) is for. :) We stopped at the War Remnants Museum. It was a tough walk-through, but still interesting. After leaving our cyclos behind, we walked around the downtown square and then had drinks at the Rex Hotel (that’s famous for housing all the reporters during the war). We had dinner at a more local (not touristy) place. Their specialty is “beef on a roof tile” dish, where you cook strips of beef on your own rooftile and then make little rice wraps with them. Unfortunately, “tofu on a rooftile” wasn’t on the menu, so I had a so-so veggie dish and rice.

We drove down to the Mekong Delta this morning for a daytrip. We took a boat into the “islands” and then visited a coconut candy place. We watched them make the candy (from whole coconut to complete, wrapped candy). The candy was really good, so I bought some. After the candy place we had lunch at a bee farm. I had some of the fish for lunch. It was delicious. FIrst you pick off some fish, wrap it in a rice wrap with pineapple and cucumber and then dip it in a sauce. It was fun to make and to eat! After lunch, we had the chance to stick our fingers in a beehive. Yums! Then we rode on little wooden boats back to the bigger boat to go back to the mainland. I was expecting the Viet Cong to jump out at anytime. ;)

Same, Same But Different


Although I’ve been laughed at lately for this, there’s a reason I usually pack my bag the night before I have to leave early. Yesterday morning, it came in handy. I didn’t wake up to my alarm, and since I don’t have a roomie, I just kept sleeping! (I know, what a pain to have gotten stuck with my own room!) So I got ready in 15 minutes, and yes, that included a shower.

We bused to Hoi An, and arrived around noon. I’m so excited because our hotel has bikes! Yay for bikes. We rode our bikes into town and then several people went to get things tailored. If I ever come back to Hoi An, I will definitely get some things tailored, but I really don’t want to carry a bunch of stuff around right now.

This morning, I went on the snorkeling trip that goes out to an island near Hoi An. Unfortunately, I started feeling sea sick, especially after snorkeling in a wetsuit. Note to future wetsuit snorkelers: It’s not fun at all! So I sat on the boat for about 20 minutes, and we finally got to the island. By the time we arrived I was feeling better, but I decided to play it safe and just had rice and 7-Up for lunch. Then I laid in a hammock for several hours. So relaxing! Before we left, we had the option of taking a 10 minute walk to an island village. After 30 minutes of hiking uphill, we arrived at the village. It was kind of strange to see a village that exists without really being connected to the mainland.

Olivia Raymer
Things I ♥: travel, food (I'm a pescatarian), the Pacific Northwest, bikes (I ride an orange mixte), beer (IPAs), summer, coffee, lists, and kitties. Travel enthusiast, former product manager, dabbler, and currently helping small businesses with digital strategy at Early Bird Strategy.

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