Let’s say hello to Chanel from Cultural Xplorer!
1. First of all, what are your website and social media links?
2. How did you come up with your website name?
Before becoming Cultural Xplorer, my site used to be La Viajera Morena. Now, if you are someone who understands the Spanish language, the name old name might be easy to remember, but if you don’t, it is easy to forget.
I decided to do a rebranding, as I wanted a name that people could easily remember and something that also explained what my brand was all about. I am very passionate about learning about different cultures when traveling, and exploring what makes them unique; hence the name ‘Cultural Xplorer’.
3. What more can you tell us about your blog? What are your goals or intentions for it?
My blog explores various aspects of cultures around the world, from the food, to the people, to the customs. In addition to exploring cultures, I also seek out tips and advice from locals and bring them to my readers.
My main goal for my blog is to have people use it as a resource when planning their travel to a destination that I have visited. I want my blog to be informative and useful. I also want people to want to engage with the content.
4. Can you provide us with a Throw Back Thursday picture of one of your favorite travel memories with an explanation?
One of my most memorable moments when traveling was in 2010 when I visited the Forbidden City in Beijing. Living and traveling around Asia for over two years forced me to get used to being stared at on a daily basis, however, I have never experienced anything to date as what happened to me in China. While I was standing around the Forbidden City chatting with one of my Korean friends and taking pictures of the beautiful buildings surrounding me, I noticed a group of children start to stare at me in complete awe. One of the children wanted to take a picture with me, so I told her that it was alright, and we took a picture together. Once we had finished taking the picture, I noticed that a line had started to form, and that all of her friends and classmates wanted to take a picture with me. My Korean friend thought the sight of all these little Chinese children lining up to take a picture with me was hilarious, and she snapped this photo of all of the people who wanted to be in a picture. I still wonder to this day where my face has landed – Am I in someone’s family picture album? Is my face floating around on the internet? I will never know.
5. Which are your favorite and least favorite cities you’ve traveled to? Why?
It is hard to pick a favorite because I have many places that I have loved, but one of the places that I would love to visit again is Florence, Italy. Here are my 5 top reasons (http://www.culturalxplorer.com/5-love-florence-italy/).
One city that I did not really care for was Manila in the Philippines. After just staying there one day, I had no desire to stay any longer and decided to leave an explore the rest of the country.
6. What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten? Where?
When I tell people that I have eaten live octopus in Korea (http://www.culturalxplorer.com/noryangjin-fish-market/) , they think it is pretty strange, so I guess that is up there with eating cow stomach in Italy (http://www.culturalxplorer.com/eating-florence-italy/).
7. Who are your travel idols?
My travel ‘idols’ are local travel and food bloggers. They are my go-to resource whenever I travel to a new destination.
8. What’s your best travel tip?
My best travel tip is get to know locals when traveling. There are a number of ways in which that can be done, but meeting local people on the road always makes for a great experience.
9. Which is your favorite post you’ve written?
One of my favorite posts that I have written (and continue to update) is How I Make Travel a Reality (http://www.culturalxplorer.com/how-i-make-travel-a-reality). Since I am constantly asked how I am able to travel as much as I do, it is a resource that I keep referencing and telling people about. It is also one that gives guidance on how people can like I do!
10. What advice would you give to someone new to travel blogging?
If someone were to begin travel blogging, I would tell him or her that it is a continual learning process, and success definitely does not happen overnight. I would also say that it takes passion and a lot of time if you want to succeed in it. Seek out information about blogging, network with other bloggers, and attend travel events!