My name is Vanessa. I am a Canadian travel blogger and this is my global travel blog Modern Mix Travel. Here’s a bit of background about me, explaining how travel has always been something I can’t get enough of.
Growing Up: My Family Around the World
I was born in Hong Kong, but moved to Vancouver, Canada, with my mom and grandparents when I was four years old.
My mom’s side of the family is very international, with friends and relatives spread around the world. Family vacations and travel were an important part of my childhood, as my mom felt like it was important for me to be exposed to different cultures, experiences, and destinations around the globe.
Growing up, my mom would plan our vacations so we could visit different relatives overseas. From a very young age, I was fortunate enough to travel to international destinations like New Zealand (1990 & 1997), Singapore (2003), Hong Kong (2003), Australia (2004), London (2005), Paris (2005), Italy (2005).
2007: A Semester Abroad in Europe
After highschool, I went into the Business Program at the University of British Columbia, majoring in Marketing. In 2007, in my third year of university, I participated in a semester abroad in Vienna, Austria. For those of you who have been on a school exchange, you’ll know that an exchange student’s priority is to party, travel, and experience life abroad – not actually study! During my exchange Europe, I went to 14 countries in four months, taking weekend trips, or stacking classes together so I would have extended long weekends to travel.
This was right when Facebook was picking up in popularity, but before Trip Advisor, Instagram and other social networks were super prominent. My trip planning would consist of using physical guidebooks or the recommendations of other travelers. During my semester abroad, I went to exotic destinations like Stockholm (2007), Amsterdam (2007), Bratislava (2007), Barcelona (2007), Brussels (2007), Prague (2007), Budapest (2007), and Geneva (2007). Some countries I knew nothing about before arriving.
At the end of my exchange, I spent Christmas in London (2007) with my family, and New Year’s Eve in Edinburgh (2007) for the Hogmanay celebration with my cousin.
The travel bug bit me, and — talk to anyone who has it — it never really goes away.
2009 and Onwards: SE Asia and My Dad’s Side of the Family
In 2009, after graduating from university, in-between school and a full-time job, I spent 5 weeks in South East Asia, basing myself in Penang, Malaysia, where my Dad’s side of the family is from. On that trip, I went to Hong Kong (2009), Singapore (2009), Cambodia (2009), and Thailand (2009) – meeting up with my then-friend, now boyfriend, Steve.
From that trip onwards, every time I visited my dad and my grandparents, I would group together other destinations in South East Asia like Vietnam (2014) and Indonesia (2014). Thanks to having family in Malaysia, I have been able to squeeze in multiple travel destinations in SE Asia.
2010 to 2017: Travelling While Working Full Time
Talk to any global traveller, and they’ll tell you that three weeks of vacation is not enough. But with some strategic planning, and weeks off in-between jobs, I’ve managed to make the most of it.
- In 2010, I did a 10-day trip in Japan with my mom. When you only get two weeks of vacation a year, that’s all the time you can afford on a trip.
- In 2012, my boyfriend and I went to Cuba. It was our first and only experience with all-inclusive vacations.
- In 2013, I did a small trio of cities in Western Europe, visiting friends in Dublin, Marseille, and Amsterdam.
- In 2014, I had my first taste of South America in Argentina and Chile. My boyfriend and I spent our 27th and 31st birthdays on a plane to Buenos Aires. Later that year, I met up with a friend in Vietnam who was in the midst of a 9-week sabbatical from work.
- In 2015, in between jobs, I booked a three-week trip to Bolivia with my boyfriend’s sister. We met up on a Thursday, and booked a flight that departed on Monday.
- In 2016, my boyfriend and I rented a car and did the ring road drive around Iceland – one of the most naturally beautiful countries I have ever visited.
- In 2017, on yet another South East Asia trip, my boyfriend and I went to Myanmar and back to Thailand. Then, we were in London and Ibiza in the fall.
2017: Modern Mix Travel is Born
When I’m in Vancouver, I run a Canadian lifestyle blog called Modern Mix Vancouver. But as writing about travel and sharing my global experiences became more and more important to me, I wanted to branch off with a stand-alone site dedicated to travel.
In 2017, I have finally completed my long awaited project – Modern Mix Travel. Although I’ve been writing posts about my travels for years, it’s been a long-awaited personal objective to finally start Modern Mix Travel – a blog dedicated to my global experiences! My current country count now is 36 countries, and this count will continue to grow. Follow along on my travels as I blog about my travel experiences around the world!
2018 and Beyond: My Travel Wishlist
Recently, someone asked me what were some of the cities on my travel wishlist, and my list of future cities I want to visit include: Nicaragua, Colombia, Morocco, Turkey, Greece and Croatia. Planning for these destinations are in full swing. If you are a brand, PR, marketing or tourism company, and can provide me with experience in any of these countries to feature and review, see when and how you can collaborate with me or sponsor an experience, or email me now at firstname.lastname@example.org.