Traveling is probably the only constant in my life. My happiest early memories are about trips. You see, when I was a kid we would go to the seaside in summer and to the mountains in winter. Additionally, we would spend long months at our small cottage in Serbia’s most charming city, Subotica. Unfortunately, during the 90s as I was becoming an adult a nationalistic torment hit my country and I was unable to travel for almost a decade. Now I see this period of my life as a storm before the sun.
I enrolled in Belgrade University in 1999 and was lucky enough to travel all around Europe with barely any money. I would get scholarships for student events and spend days and nights on trains going from place to place. These were fantastic years and I loved moving every single minute! However, one trip proved to be pivotal and changed my life.
In 2003 I attended the International Students Festival in Norway. Serbia, my home country was going through rough times and there I was close to the North Pole meeting great people and exchanging ideas with the world’s future elite. I realized I would be traveling all my life. There wasn’t any other option, I simply had to travel.
After graduating as an architect, I moved to Barcelona in 2006 to pursue a master’s degree in urbanism. The city is an architect’s dream, a hedonist’s playground and most importantly, super multicultural. Consequently, I had to stay. During those years I continued exploring Europe and got to know many corners of Spain.
In 2013 while partying at The Merce Fiestas, the most important ones in Barcelona, I met who would become my husband, Eitan. He is also obsessed about traveling and we clicked immediately. In fact, we had been dating just 5 months and decided to go to South East Asia for 5 months! Such an adventure can only reinforce or break up a couple. We happily succeeded and agreed that traveling would be at the center of our relationship.
Since then we have been traveling all around the world. In fact, we traveled all the way to Argentina to get married and continued up north to Brazil. It’s hard to believe but we’ve been traveling together on average half of the year. We simply can’t get enough and intend on traveling till death tears us apart!
As I’ve aged, my travels have evolved. I don’t stay in hostels anymore. In all honesty, I’ve become a bit of a hotel queen, the nicer the better. Additionally, I don’t like spending more than one night on a train and have never been a fan of buses.
Yet, through all my life one thing hasn’t changed: a zest for adventure! I love fancy hotels as much as small family run places. I prefer public buses and a tuc-tucs over cars. I love walking and biking whenever possible. I love being in nature and in the middle of cities. To me, luxury is not really about comfort, it’s about authenticity and getting to know real people.
The recent rise of nationalism in Catalonia and other worldwide events made me wonder if I wanted to settle down in one place. The answer was a resounding NO. My nature is to explore, to keep moving. Therefore, we decided to move to Athens, Eitan’s favorite city. We came to Athens with only two bags each; that’s pretty much everything we have. We travel with hand luggage, something that gives us flexibility and saves us some money.
After a couple of months in Athens we decided we are not ready to settle down just yet. It’s time to explore the world! I feel so blessed I simply can’t let go of this opportunity. I’m healthy, got the means and have someone to share my travels with. This to me is perfection.
So we will travel slowly during a year. We plan on going to places and deciding then and there how long to stay. Thanks to my travels, I have learned to embrace uncertainty. That’s the quest for adventure that I was talking about! Who knows where I’ll wake up tomorrow? All I’m sure is that it’s going to be in a wonderful place. The world is full of them!
That’s why I created Happy Frog Travels. Our webpage is a place for adventurous happy people to meet and exchange experiences and ideas. We are focusing on Architecture (my specialty) and Nature (Eitan’s dominion). We’ll show you how to appreciate the most stunning buildings and sites and how to get to the most remote pristine places.
If traveling is your thing, join us. Tell us what’s on your mind, plan trips with us and open your world to us. From our side we promise loads of interesting photos, information and comments. Happy Frog Travels is not about me or you; it’s about the place, our planet, much bigger and cooler than me and you.
You can find out more about me in this Interview I gave for the Best Travelled site.