This week we get to chat with Titania of Backpacks and Baby Grows!
1. First of all, what are your website and social media links?
Twitter: Titania Radcliffe @backpackingbaby
2. How did you come up with your website name?
I wanted something catchy that people could remember that wasn’t too overused either. I was also determined to get something that really summed up the place I’m in right now and convey what the blog would be about. As it’s primarily a travel blog but also with a lot of my thoughts about being a single parent and how that influences my travel decisions and how it will influence my travel in the future I went with Backpacks and Babygrows.
3. What more can you tell us about your blog? What are your goals or intentions for it?
Interestingly as time goes on I think this will eventually grow and change and ‘Backpacks and Babygrows’ will become my specialized family travel site and I will develop another one that will hopefully appeal to the more general traveller who doesn’t have a family. I’d like to really provide information for all travellers whether its couples, single females/males or families – although my biggest dream is to inspire other single parents to take a leap of faith and not let their circumstance prevent them from following their dreams. So I need a name that will properly reflect that in the future although for now I love my little Backpacks and Babygrows blog and I think it really encapsulates where I am in my life right now.
I’m really hoping to make writing a big part of my life and a big part of my earning potential. I’m aiming to start taking photography very seriously and to incorporate that into my blog too with a possible aim to doing some kind of sociological photography project as I do my RTW trip with my little girl in a couple of years time. But mostly I just want to create a fantastic travel website with a lot of information for families and single parents. If that could help fund my own travel and allow me to home school my daughter my dreams would genuinely be made true.
4. Can you provide us with a Throw Back Thursday picture of one of your favorite travel memories with an explanation?
When I went to Egypt it was a last minute holiday and we almost plucked the destination out of thin air. It was just in our price range and we made a quick decision to go on an all-inclusive holiday to Sharm el Sheikh. But this one decision really kicked off my love of travelling. When I laid eyes on the sphinx I just had a really spiritual moment I guess. No photo has ever conveyed the sheer size of this structure and when you see it, it just takes your breath away. I was transported back in time and I found the whole experience and trip to be life changing so Egypt and the sphinx will always have a special place in my heart and soul.
5. Which are your favorite and least favorite cities you’ve traveled to? Why?
This is actually a really hard question to answer as I’ve fallen in love with most of the cities I’ve visited. However I think I’m going to put Rome as my favourite. It’s hard to explain why I’ve made this decision but it’s a big mixture of things. It was my first holiday as a grown up that I paid for myself (very cheap Ryan Air flights back before they got completely awful) and I went with my ex boyfriend as our 1st year anniversary. The relationship was doomed and we spent the whole time arguing but Rome just made me feel so sophisticated at the age of 20. I loved people watching and visiting all the incredible historical sites – the Colosseum gave me my first historically spiritual experience. I think I get overcome with emotion when I stand in these unbelievably poignant and ancient settings, as I’m so imaginative I’m immediately transported back in time. I was really affected by the Colosseum and that feeling will stay with me forever. I desperately want to go back and get some better memories and also to take some amazing photographs as I’ve lost all mine over the years!
I feel a bit mean saying my least favourite but it’s a toss up between Paris and Athens. However (and there’s a big however) I think everyone should go to them both but maybe more than once. Paris gets better the more you go and that’s because you have to work out the right way to do it for your own travel needs. It’s a difficult city to navigate and as with all capital cities it can be a bit intimidating and unfriendly depending on the luck of the draw. But saying that I love Paris as well and I’ve had one of the best nights out ever in that city when I went to Moulin Rouge so it’s a city of great contradictions too.
It’s a mistake to go to Athens thinking you’re visiting Greece – it was too hot to even see the place properly when I went and I’m desperate to go back for a few weeks and visit the islands and to properly see the historical sites. It was a last minute offer from someone who was working out there and I spent most of the time on my own so I think I just didn’t do Athens properly – but out of everywhere I’ve been it’s only these 2 that maybe didn’t add up to my expectations although I think that’s a reflection on me not them!
6. What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten? Where?
I’ve not really eaten much in the way of strange things – maybe that’s because I’ve not travelled enough or I don’t see food as particularly exotic and I’m willing to try most stuff. Maybe the strangest thing would have been octopus when I was 8 years old and in Sardinia. I don’t think octopus is that strange anymore and I’ve had it a lot but when I was 8 my family thought it was pretty adventurous of me to try it!
7. Who are your travel idols?
Oooh so many to choose from! I love Nick and Dariece from www.goatsontheroad.com but I also love the story of the Zapp family who travel round the world in an 83 year old car. They’ve had 4 children since they started and I’m just completely inspired by their story.
A special little mention should go to Megan of mapping Megan as her site is great and I also use Nomadic Matt’s site a lot. I’d love to eventually be providing something of the quality and quantity these guys offer on their blogs/websites.
8. What’s your best travel tip?
Learn some of the language wherever you’re going and take an active interest in the people, culture, and environment where you are. You’ll have a much better experience because of it.
9. Which is your favorite post you’ve written? Please provide a link.
This is another difficult question you’re throwing them thick and fast here! I think though I’ll put forward my post ‘Emotional Landscaping’. It’s not a travel post but one where I allowed myself to be really honest on paper about where I am in life, how I’m feeling and how all my thoughts and feelings are affecting my decisions and where this may take me in the future.
10. What advice would you give to someone new to travel blogging?
Try not to overthink it much and try and post something at least 3 times a week in order to get used to writing regularly and improve your writing style. Also read lost of other travel blogs to get a feel for what’s out there and how you can approach it whilst be true to yourself and your personality. Take it slow and expect your blog to be like a child – it’ll need feeding and nurturing and lots of care and it will take time to grow. But given enough time and patience it should flourish in the long term.