This week we’re talking to Will from Going Awesome Places!
1. First of all, what are your website and social media links?
2. How did you come up with your website name?
I was in a crunch for time as I finally committed to starting my travel blog literally 2 days before I was flying out for my 4 month adventure. The process looked like this. I had GoDaddy’s domain searcher in one screen and Google in another looking for travel related synonyms and words.
I honestly can’t remember how I arrived at the exact name but I thought that “awesome” was a fun word to use. Then came “places” and finally after figuring out what domains were available, Going Awesome Places was born!
3. What more can you tell us about your blog? What are your goals or intentions for it?
My blog initially started off as a way to keep my friends and family up to date with my travels as I roamed around Asia. However when I got back, I started seeing traffic coming in and I thought to myself “Wow, maybe I can keep this going!” So ever since September 2012, I’ve been growing the blog, first writing bi-weekly to weekly to now 3 times a week.
It’s been an incredible ride to see the brand mature and breakthrough on several different levels.
Long term, I’d love to grow this into a viable long term lifestyle business that not only brings in free trips but a modest stream of income. That’s every blogger’s dream right?
4. Can you provide us with a Throw Back Thursday picture of one of your favorite travel memories with an explanation?
This dates back to 2006 when I did a 4 month exchange to Lund, Sweden. I can’t even begin to explain how amazing of an experience this was. This particular photo was taken from my bike as I was heading into town. I loved living the Swedish student lifestyle out there, skipping (some) classes and backpacking all around Europe. Lund will always have a special place in my heart. It’s where all my dreams of travel really began.
5. Which are your favorite and least favorite cities you’ve traveled to? Why?
Favorite has to be Barcelona because it’s a city that has a little bit of everything. It’s got culture, it has history, Gaudi’s architecture is incredible, there are beaches and of course the food is incredible. I’ve been back 3 times and I’ve never been bored.
My least favorite is probably Paris not because I don’t think the city is beautiful and amazing but because I got my backpack stolen there. It’s sad but you do have to be careful in the city. Since that incident, I’ve definitely become a much safer and savvier traveler to make sure that doesn’t happen again.
6. What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten? Where?
I think the weirdest thing I’ve had was snake in China when I was a kid. I thought it was the craziest thing but when I had it, I literally went “oh this tastes like chicken”.
7. Who are your travel idols?
I don’t think you really grow up with a travel idol but of late, I’ve been a huge fan of Dave and Deb from The Planet D. I truly look up to them as inspiration for where I want to be 10 years down the road. They’ve really paved the way for travel bloggers.
8. What’s your best travel tip?
Best travel tip: Pack light
My biggest regret from travelling was not packing light. At home, you always think you’ll need to bring EVERYTHING and the kitchen sink but you have to realize that when you’re on the road, your lifestyle is totally different. Honestly who cares if you’re wearing the same pair of pants for a couple days in a row. The other thing to know is that if you forgot something, you can always buy it wherever you’re going.
9. Which is your favorite post you’ve written? Please provide a link.
My favorite post which also took the longest to put together is my top 20 list of restaurants in Hong Kong based on my visit this year. While writing it, I kept on thinking about all the delicious foods we had there.
10. What advice would you give to someone new to travel blogging?
Total shameless self promotion here but any new blogger should check out my Travel Blogger’s Toolkit. It’s a weekly series of posts I’ve been putting out for a couple months now focused on the “need to know” things for any starting blogger. A ton of good information that I had to learn the hard way.