The latest in my series of World Travellers was actually meant to be published last year initially yet me being the idiot that I am, I somehow lost the e-mail and eventually I am now delighted to present to you Carmen and Dave from Double Barrelled Travel.
Who are you?
I’m Carmen from Double-Barrelled Travel, a travel blog I founded with my husband Dave. We both have backgrounds in journalism and on our site we focus on vlogging.
Where are you from?
Dave and I are both from Perth, Western Australia – a beautiful part of the world if I do say so myself! Our parents live 10 minutes apart from each other and are now good friends thanks to us getting together. They even go on holiday with each other…
Where have you been?
Dave and I have been to all six continents. We’ve explored lots of Europe because we lived in London for nearly five years. We’d love to see more of Africa as we feel we haven’t adequately explored that part of the world yet. The year though we’re working our way through South and Central America. We’ve been to Bolivia and Peru so far and are loving each day.
Where are you now?
At the moment we’re in Arequipa, Peru. We love this colonial town, it’s beautiful. Tonight though we leave for Cuzco and plan to hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu next week – very exciting! We love trekking and this is probably the most famous hike in all of South America so we can’t wait.
What are the top 3 places you’ve visited?
We get asked this a lot and it’s a tough one! For sight seeing we love Croatia – we find it’s just as beautiful as Italy but with less tourists, especially if you get off the beaten track a little and head inland to the mountains. Plitvice Lakes is still the most beautiful place we’ve seen.
For food and wine we’d have to say our part of the world in Western Australia. Down south in the wine region of Margaret River there is delicious food to sample, not to mention great vineyards! Some of the best Aussie wine comes from there yet hardly anyone knows about it!
For adventure I’d have to say that skiing in the French Alps earlier this year was pretty spectacular. Those mountains are powerful! (And our skiing, not so much.)
What is the best travel experience you’ve had?
Dave proposed to me on Millennium Bridge in London. That was a special moment!
What is the worst travel experience you’ve had?
Probably last year, when our car broke down the day after we bought it in Toronto! It cost US$1,500 to repair and with other repair costs as we travelled, it ended up costing a fortune. And we only sold it for US$400 in the end! Bummer. You can read the full story here.
What is the funniest travel experience you’ve had?
When we were in Marrekesh, Morocco, I kept getting hassled by men. As we got out of a bus, a group of men came up to me and one of them started yelling ‘BIG ASS, BIG ASS!’ It was the final straw for me. I turned around and snapped at him, ‘I DO NOT have a big ass!’ Our tour guide laughed and said, ‘He’s saying big EYES not big ASS.’ Oops!
What is the scariest travel experience you’ve had?
That would have to be last year when we went on a 12 hour hike up a mountain in Oregon, USA. It was extremely difficult and on the way down Dave tripped, backflipped off a steep ledge and landed on his back on a pile of sharp boulders below. I thought he’d broken his back and was hysterically crying. He was lucky to get away with a few cuts and bruises thankfully, otherwise he would’ve needed to have been air lifted off the mountain!
What is the most random job you have had on your travels?
When we first arrived in London we had no money and no jobs. The recession had just begun and there wasn’t a single media job to be found. I worked as a shoe shiner so we could pay the rent. Dave still jokes that I ‘got down on my knees for the bankers’ to pay the bills!
How do you fund your travels?
At the moment we are living 50% off savings and 50% off our writing ventures. We just launched a creative content company called Red Platypus – www.redplatypuscreative.com. We also make a small income from our blog. Hopefully by the end of this year we’ll be making all our money on the road – because our savings would’ve run out by then!
What 3 tips would you give a new traveller before they set off on their adventure?
1. Organise a rough budget on how much you plan to spend each day via research and then try to stick to it. The last thing you want to happen is to run out of money when you need it most! Make sure you have a back up fund for emergencies – we learnt this the hard way when our car broke down.
2. On the other hand, don’t plan too much. Sometimes it’s fun to do things spontaneously – that’s how you have the best adventures. So relax and let the journey take you on the adventure!
3. If you’re travelling with a friend, go on a weekend away with them first to see how you go spending time with them 24-7. It’s better to know in advance whether you’d make good travel buddies or not, rather than to find out on the road!
What are your future travel plans?
For the rest of this year we’ll be travelling through South and Central America. After this we head home to Australia for Christmas and the summer before travelling through Asia next year. We can’t wait!
Carmen is one half of the couple behind Double-Barrelled Travel, a travel blog focused on vlogging. Carmen married Dave two years ago and they quit their journalism day jobs in mid-2013 for a life on the road.
You can follow Double-Barrelled on Facebook and like them on Twitter.
Thanks to Carmen from Double- Barrelled Travel for being the latest in my series of World Travellers! If you travel the world and run a travel blog or are a travel writer, please get in touch, you can be featured (there’s a HUGE waiting list at present), either e-mail jonny (at) dontstopliving (dot) net or head to my contacts page and get connected! You can also subscribe to Don’t Stop Living by filling in the form below! Safe travels!