In my latest edition of World Travellers, I interview another married couple out exploring the world – Liz and Josh, who run the website Peanuts or Pretzels. Here’s the lowdown on this cool couple for you…
Who are you?
We’re Josh and Liz, a married couple who love to explore the world together. Being curious travelers, we love learning new things and getting to know a culture and the people who live there. We are always up for laughter, a good adventure, and a bit of geocaching! Our travel blog, Peanuts or Pretzels, documents our adventures around the world, as well as providing tips and resources, and how we incorporate geocaching as a unique way to experience a destination.
Where are you from?
Liz is originally from Idaho, while Josh is from Georgia. We met here in Atlanta and currently reside here. It’s nice being only a few minutes from one of the biggest airports in the world – so we can easily go anywhere we want!
Where have you been?
We have traveled all over the United States, as well as parts of the Caribbean and Mexico. We love Europe and really enjoy the history and culture there, but we also really love Asia!
Where are you now?
We are in Atlanta right now, but preparing for a cross-country road trip as well as a trip to Hawaii. Then we will be heading back out to Asia!
What are the top 3 places you’ve visited?
By far our personal favorite has been visiting Angkor Wat, Cambodia! We absolutely loved our time spent there and cannot wait to go back. In particular, we arrived early in the morning before dawn and watched the sunrise over the temple. It was spectacular.
The Scottish Highlands is another favorite of ours. Renting a car is the best way to explore the area, and we just loved the scenery! We also enjoyed going out and doing some hiking, as well as staying in a castle-type hotel that overlooked an awesome lake (loch).
Lastly, we recently visited a small town in the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. Paa Mul is just south of Playa del Carmen. This tiny place isn’t even a town, but more of a little piece of heaven along a private cove of the ocean. We stayed in a thatched roof bungalow on the beach and loved every minute of it!
What is the best travel experience you’ve had?
We have had so many amazing experiences while traveling. But one that really sticks out in our mind is when we were in Thailand. We were up very early to catch a 6 am train from the outskirts of Bangkok to the Cambodian border.
The train was pretty crowded, so we had to stand, and periodically people would walk by with baskets to sell food and drink. After a while we noticed that there was a monk sitting nearby and that some people were buying food and then offering it to the monk. We appreciated observing the generosity and respect toward the monk.
Suddenly, Liz was tapped on the shoulder by a local woman. Without speaking, she handed Liz a banana and motioned toward the monk; inviting participation in their custom. Luckily, Liz had been watching how this worked. So she bowed 3 times with her hands pressed together, extended her hand with the fruit toward the monk but then to the man sitting next to him, as a monk cannot take directly from a woman. The woman gave a huge smile.
Then she returned a few minutes later and tapped Josh on the shoulder, also giving him a banana and motioning to the monk so that he could participate as well. This experience was so unexpected, and so memorable. It touched our hearts, and that’s when we really fell in love with Thailand.
What is the worst travel experience you’ve had?
Luckily we really can’t recall anytime that we would consider the “worst” travel experience. We’ve had some inconveniences, but overall we have the attitude that “it can always be worse!”
What is the funniest travel experience you’ve had?
We’ve had a number of hilarious moments while traveling, but that’s just our everyday nature! One moment that sticks out is when we were visiting Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. While walking around inside the cave / temple we noticed that the monkeys seemed to run the place. But when we were watching a hindu ritual take place we noticed a monkey sitting up on a trash can rummaging through the trash. But his attitude is what really got us!
This monkey would pick up items and if it wasn’t what he wanted, he would literally throw it behind him — like 5 feet behind him! He was throwing trash everywhere, but at one moment he picked up a soda can. He shook it next to his head, listening for liquid inside, then proceeded to drink from it like a person with both hands! Then when it was empty, he threw that behind him too. We could not stop laughing about this moment!
What is the scariest travel experience you’ve had?
Again, we have been fortunate to not have many scary moments while traveling (knock on wood). However, riding in a taxi in Cambodia on the highway from Poipet to Siem Reap was a pretty scary adventure. We learned that lines painted on the road are purely for decoration, and that you can easily fit 5 lanes of traffic on a two lane road! Oh, and don’t forget about the livestock on the back of scooters! The speeds, horns, and passing was so scary that Josh actually did not like being in the front seat – he just wanted to close his eyes.
What is the most random job you have had on your travels?
We have not really had any jobs while traveling, but we plan to do some extended traveling here in the near future. So that will give us the opportunity to do some working and volunteering. We are really looking forward to it!
How do you fund your travels?
We both work full time jobs here in the States. Travel is definitely our priority though. Our lifestyle is built around it, so we don’t spend much on “things” around the house. We are always planning for the next adventure!
What 3 tips would you give a new traveller before they set off on their adventure?
Details really are important. Do your research in advance so that you can maximize your time, especially if your time is limited. Also, you do not want to be caught unaware of important facts such as visa requirements, etc. So be sure to do your research and follow up on these details. They are not fun, but they really can make your trip go so much smoother!
Talk to the locals. We really love meeting people, and locals are always full of so many good stories, and useful information! Often times, our best memories have come from locals that we have met along the way.
Lastly, but very important, is to be respectful at all times. This seems like common sense, but it is frustrating as a traveler to see other travelers who do not exhibit respect. When you are visiting another country you are just that, a visitor. You are a guest, and I have some seen some horrible behavior by entitled, rude tourists. Not okay!
What are your future travel plans?
We actually have some big travel plans coming up. Currently, we are planning an around the world adventure for an indefinite period of time. After the road trip and 3 weeks in Hawaii, we plan to spend a number of months in South East Asia, then get certified to teach English. We plan to spend the next couple years traveling, teaching, and working other jobs along the way. We figure that if this is something that we really love, we should do it now while we are young enough to enjoy it.
Sometimes salty, sometimes sweet, but always a little nutty! We’re Josh and Liz from Peanuts or Pretzels Travel Blog. We are always up for laughter, adventure, and a bit of geocaching! People tell us we can find the “fun” in just about anything. We are curious travelers who love experiencing and learning as much as we can. After all, isn’t that what life is all about?
Thanks to Liz and Josh 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!