The World is at My Fingertips!

Juana S-A.., from Puerto Rico, based in the continental U.S., shares her travel journey and how she learned to set and crush her travel goals. Check it out below!

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What inspired you to travel?

In Fall 2007, the seed was planted for me to develop a passion for traveling the world by visiting South Africa as a requirement for the course, ‘South Africa Now’, as a student at Stockton University. From this experience, I developed a deeper understanding of the importance of maintaining a global perspective, and traveling the world to learn about and appreciate other cultures became a priority. I realized that the world was literally at my fingertips, I have not stopped traveling since.

What did you learn about love through travel? 

My love for travel grew even stronger in 2010 when I was accepted to the University of Virginia’s Semester at Sea program. Studying abroad changed me in unforeseeable ways, and if I had to develop a slogan for future travelers, it would be, “Studying abroad is a transformation: prepare to return a changed person, for good.” My travels during Semester at Sea helped me build relationships with people from all over the world, and I have not had more of a rewarding and humbling learning experience, than interacting with individuals from around the globe. 

Woman sitting on Great Wall of China - Travel Love Go

What is a travel tip you would share with others? 

So, one of my professors on Semester at Sea had a list of 10 Travel Tips that he shared with us. #1 was, “Never let your age get larger than the number of places that you have explored”. This is the PLAN! I’m currently at 33 countries & will be adding one more this weekend!

I wanted to share ALL of Prof. Gogniat’s “10 Joyful Travel Tips”. Also, just found out he wrote about it called Crossroads: Becoming a Geographer, Ten Joyful Travel Tips That Will Change the Way You See the World definitely checking it out!

  1. Never let your age get larger than the number of places (countries, states, provinces, cities, World Heritage Sites, National parks, etc.) that you have explored.
  2. Keep your feet on the ground.
  3. Take the time to really smell the roses.
  4. Sit on a park bench for one hour.
  5. The more you know, the more interesting it is.
  6. Find the essence of a country/place
  7. It’s all about people.
  8. Meet people with a smile both ways.
  9. Take time to think about “trading shoes” and what that may be like: listen with your ears and your heart.
  10. From travel, learn and practice humility and kindness.
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What bonus info would you like to share with TraveLovers?

Finding travel deals will definitely help you save money, BUT if you honestly are not able to go to another country, travel domestically. And, if you can’t travel domestically, travel within your own community. I came back from my study abroad program and was so excited about learning about new places that I hadn’t explored. Right in my own backyard, I visited Lucy the Elephant (Margate, NJ), the Statute of Liberty, Ground Zero, (both NY, NY) to name a few! So pick a place where you can do a day trip, learn about it beforehand and enjoy exploring.

Woman smiling in front of Statue of Liberty - Travel Love Go TraveLoveGo

Travel Tip # 5 was “The more you know, the more interesting it is”. I came back and visited Washington, DC. I had been there PLENTY of times, but I actually learned some things before going there that made the trip even more interesting. Like the fact that the Washington Monument was constructed in two phases due to lack of funding and because of this, the monument is two different colors! So explore near or far, but learn and fall in love with discovering new things.

Woman standing in front of the Washington Memorial - Travel love Go - Travel Apparel

How many places have you visited? 

33 countries (+1 after this trip on Sunday) & 19 states! 

Where is your next trip? 


What other things should TraveLovers consider?

When you are traveling, choose one thing you are going to collect from each country, weather its shot glasses, magnets, key chains, flag patches, etc. Just so you’re able to start and grow a cool collection. 

Also, add places or other categories to your bucket list; for instance, I want to go to all 7 World Wonders (I’ve been to 4 & 3 more to go!)

I have visited:

  • Great Wall of China (China)
  • Chichen Itza (Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico)
  • The Roman Colosseum (Rome)
  • Taj Mahal (Agra, India)

I look forward to visiting:

  • Petra (Jordan)
  • Machu Picchu (Peru)
  • Christ the Redeemer Statue (Rio de Janeiro) – I'll be going in August!

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