This week, WSGT is interviewing Rachel Jones of @Hippie_InHeels, a travel blog dedicated to glamorous travel/trip planning in India. Rachel has been living the beach life in Goa now for 3 years!
1.)Where was the first place that you traveled that made you think WOW—travel is amazing (think history book come to life or …..)
The first trip I took was to Western Europe backpacking for 1.5 months. I had a blast. The last two weeks I spent in Holland on my own couchsurfing and I really enjoyed it. I think that is when I was addicted to travel!
2.)If you had unlimited resources, where would you go and what would you do?
I think right now, I’d head to South America! I haven’t been yet and since I live in India it just hasn’t worked out for me. I think if I end up being based in America again, I”ll definitely make trips down.
3.)What were you afraid to do and how did you find the courage to overcome it?
I was afraid of bungee jumping. I saw the setup when I was in Jinga Uganda randomly one afternoon with a few other travelers. We had no intent to bungee but ended up deciding to do it. I just thought of my days in swim team and closed my eyes and did a real swimmers’ dive. It was a feeling I”ll never forget- and it was nearly 4 years ago. I wouldn’t do it again!
4.)What apps do you use regularly that make your life easier?
For India, cleartrip app is so good. I can book hotels, trains, and planes plus check my train status. You can change flight times and pay a fee as small as $10. I love it! I also love VSCO editing app for my photos and can’t live without Instagram!
5.)What place do you wish more people had seen?
India. I’ve been here for 3.5 years and explore it in depth. I see a lot of bloggers get asked where they are afraid to visit and most answer India. I think the media has showed a negative side (which is true) but the positive isn’t shown as often. I try to show both on my blog is a series called this is India (http://hippie-inheels.com/expat/this-is-india/). There is so much beauty here, stunning nature, tea fields, breathtaking mountains, and even surf!
6.)Best advice you have been given and by whom?
My parents are very cautious and don’t love my traveling alone. I think I take all their advice with a grain of salt and it’s just enough to keep my from doing the “very crazy” things that cross my mind!
7.)When were you surprised by the kindness of strangers on a trip?
Absolutely! I mentioned before about my time in Holland when I was 19. At one point I was looking for a couchsurfer’s house. This was when CS was new and there weren’t many options. It was a cute little town, not touristy, and not used to seeing backpackers. Someone on a bike felt bad for me and wouldn’t take no for an answer when they asked me to jump on the back of their bike with my big backpack on! That person got me to the couchsurfers house!
8.)What inspired you to travel for extended periods of time or live in a new country?
Part of why I’m in India is because while traveling here I met my British boyfriend who lives and works based in Goa, India. I wrote about what it as like getting an accidental boyfriend when I was NOT looking for one and actually had made a pact with myself I wasn’t going to meet any guys. http://hippie-inheels.com/backpacking-love-stories/.
9.)I travel because….
Life would be boring if I didn’t! I love seeing new places, learning, and eating new food. I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of it.
Rachel Jones is an American who left a career in nursing to live on the beaches in Goa India 3 years ago. Her award winning website gives advice on the 30 countries she’s been to and has become the go-to site on India travel. The blog like it’s name is a contradiction, combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and girly travel. Hippie in Heels has been featured in ELLE, Thomas Cook, & Grazia UK magazines & was voted by Flipkey on of the top 25 female bloggers to follow this year. She’s a writer for Bravo TV. You can follow her adventures on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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Our next Travel Influencer interview will be up in a week, follow the series here.