My favorite hidden gems in South America

After a year traveling around Central & South America, these are the places I liked the most. Since they are not very well-known, I’d like to call them ”my hidden gems”.

These ”cities” are very down-to-earth and laid-back places where I have felt something special inside, like a bubbling feeling of happiness, calmness and fulfillness.


1. — Holbox – Mexico —

The beach at Holbox

The beach at Holbox

Sunset in Holbox

Sunset in Holbox


Shallow water, birds, and blue sky.

Shallow water, birds, and blue sky.


There is just something special about this small island outside of the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. This island has a natural beauty – white sand, palm trees, shallow ocean, thousands of flamingos and pelicans. Most of the habitants work as fishermen and it’s considered a virgin tourist destination unspoiled by mass tourism. There is only a main square and a few streets which are made of sand and there are just a handful of ”cars” on the island. You sleep, eat, do some small excursions, go to small music events, visit small shops with handicraft and just relax. You eat and live cheaply here too.


2. — Isabela – The Galapagos – Ecuador —

The mainstreet in isabela... beautiful with sand!

The main street in isabela… beautiful with sand!

The tuneles

The tuneles

Bluefooted boobies

Bluefooted boobies

Beautiful surroundings!

Beautiful surroundings!

I love all the Galapagos islands,
but if I would have to choose one of them for living – it would be Isabela. although it is the biggest island it is the less populated of the habituated islands. Most tourists only come here for day tours so the ambiance feels very local. Also on this island, the streets are made of sand. It is very safe here. There are plenty of things to do and see here, you can visit lava tunnels, active volcanoes, you can snorkel with big tortoises, watch blue footed boobies, pink flamingos. It is not expensive here either.


3. — Jericoacoara – Brazil —

Enjoying life!!!

Enjoying life!!!

Windsurfers and a man playing capoeira-music

Windsurfers and a man playing capoeira-music

The streets are full with hantcraft stands

The streets are full with handicraft stands

Sunset in Jericoacoara

Sunset in Jericoacoara

A little street filled with restaurants

A little street filled with restaurants

This is like a bigger version of Holbox
, with more people, more shops and more activity, but still it has a lot of charm. This place is a paradise for windsurfers and kitesurfers. So yes, it is very windy but hey! – there are no mosquitoes :) If you get tired of the wind you can visit the Blue Lagoon, lovely calm lagoon famous for the hanging hammocks in the water. Jericoacoara is a mix of great people – during the day you’ll see all the active sporty people, and during the nights you’ll see all the musicians and the handicraftsmen out selling their work. There are always live music in a bar or a restaurant, always something to do. The main streets are of course – made of sand. :)


4. — Lagoa da Conceição – Florianopolis – Brazil —

Barra Da lagoa

Barra Da lagoa

View over Lagoa do Conceicão

View over Lagoa do Conceicão

Praia do Joaquina in Florianopolis

Praia do Joaquina in Florianopolis

This is a magical place
. It’s a laid-back neighbourhood with super nice surroundings. The area has a small town center and some of the island’s best beaches, and a lagoon that is surrounded by beautiful green hills. Surfing is a popular sport here. There is a lovely big mixture of all kind of Brazilians, but also a lot of Europeans that decided to stay or study here. The city Florianopolis has a lot of culture and bars to offer too.


5.  —  Isla del sol – Copacabana –  Bolivia — 


Boats, beach, small houses and snowy mountains behind


Clear water and hills with place for cultivation


Local people in the south of Isla del Sol

This is an oasis in all the chaos between Bolivia and Peru
. This small island in the lake Titicaca is beautiful and super quiet. There is no noise, no cars, no rubbish on the streets. Not even lampposts (bring your head-torche). Beautiful sunsets and sunrises and the sky is super clear so you can see a lot of stars during the night. People live in harmony here with the nature and it’s surroundings. You can walk from the north to the south and see llamas and donkeys and some old inca-archaelogical sites along the way. Sweet local kids will offer you a little guided history about the history of Isla del Sol. There are a few small museums on the island too. I really enjoyed the landscapes in the south.


¿Have you been to any of these places? ¿What was your impression?


~ If I would extend the list these cities would probably make the list too, all though there are all not ”hidden gems” since some of them are capitals.

• Cusco (Peru) • Puerto Maldonado (Peru) • Quito (Ecuador) • Rio De Janeiro (Brazil) • Salvador (Brazil) • San Cristobal De Las Casas (Mexico) • Isla Mujeres (Mexico) • Tulum (Mexico) • La Paz (Bolivia) and • Buenos Aires (Argentina).

Crossing the border to Bolivia


Right now I’m in Tupiza in our hotel Anexo Mitru. I’ve shared a private twin room with Anne from Germany.. We were supposed to get picked up at 8.30 by Tupiza Tours, to start our Salt Flakes tour, but apparently the other two that are going with us are late, the train they are on are delayed so… we’ll be picked up around 11.30 instead. Typical!

But then I have time to write this ;)

We arrived here yesterday. We all met in La Quiaca, the border town of the Argentinian side. We arrived like 7 in the morning and it was still dark and freezing cold, and it was such a heavy atmosphere there, I really felt uncomfortable.. and there was no info what so ever about where the border was or how to cross it.. and the tourist information was closed.. it was really weird.. I spotted a couple that I saw in Salta, that took the same bus as me. They also felt the strange feeling there and were also going to take the train to Tupiza. The border didn’t open until 8 so we started to talk there.. and then 3 other people joined us that they had been talking to before too, so we were a group of 6 people together going to the same place and it felt much safer to walk around there. It’s really nasty and doesn’t feel safe to walk there by yourself. Also it’s quite far away from the bus station to the border.

Sunrise in the border between Argentina and Bolivia. The river is the border.

Sunrise in the border between Argentina and Bolivia. The river is the border.

We crossed the border without problems and landed in the border town Villazon in Bolivia. A little better atmosphere, maybe because the sun actually had come out and made it a little bit more friendly but I still had this molding feeling inside of me, I wasn’t comfortable.

Then they tell us that there is no train to Tupiza, that it doesn’t go anymore… whaaat? Haha. Some of us even stayed an extra day in Salta just to catch this train since it only goes 4 times a week… but they were buses leaving in the morning, good! Buuut… then there is a traffic stop or something right before Tupiza, so the buses didn’t leave either!
….whaaaat again?? Haha.. We didn’t want to be stuck in that town! Such a bad luck. We waited a little bit and then they said that the buses actually were going to leave, but a little bit later.. phew! We met some other people waiting there and had some breakfast (coffee and plain bread, they didn’t have anything else). Nice to get together with all these other backpackers actually, it felt so much safe.

Breakfast in Villazón in Bolivia, the border town... so cold here.. and they only had coffe and bread.. :) This is Sarah, Matt and Anne!

Breakfast in Villazón in Bolivia, the border town… so cold here.. and they only had coffe and bread.. :) This is Sarah, Matt and Anne!

Then we took the bus to Tupiza (15 Bs), and it was actually really quick! And the bus was totally ok, I mean is not the kind of bus as in Argentina or Peru, a little bit more broke, but still ok comfortable ;) When we arrived in Tupiza it was totally a different atmosphere, so much lighter, and it felt much better. We walked to Hotel Mitru which we all had seen in hostelworld, they had rooms for 100 bs at night, but they also have 2 other hotels close by where it’s cheaper, so we stayed at Anexo Mitru for 60 bs at night, private room. :)

Then we had some lunch, took out money and paid for our Salt Flakes tour (1200 bs with discount), then went back to the hotel to chill a little and take a shower. In the evening we went out to buy some more clothes, I bought a pair of gloves and a hat because it’s really damn cold here. Then we had something to drink at a coffee/restaurant place in the main square of tupiza, it took like 40 minutes to get our coffee, beer, submarino and fanta, haha.

I really enjoy the company of Anne, Sarah and Matt, they are funny and easy going, and I feel better at heart when I’m around people I enjoy and not alone with my thoughts. After that we had dinner at a place called something Antomos or something, ”it’s recoginized by it’s green light outside” as it sais in the lonely planet book haha. Really funny place, they have sliding doors and a private security guard outside haha. The menu was great too, really cheep and they have all kind of different food, even vegetarian hamburger, which I ate! And the decorations in that place is really funny too. :)

Finally in Tupiza! The busstation.

Finally in Tupiza! The busstation.

Ate lunch here, they had plenty of vegetarian food. But then when we walked around town we noticed that they are like 5 other restaurants that look the same that also serves vegetarian food! :) Great!

Ate lunch here, they had plenty of vegetarian food. But then when we walked around town we noticed that they are like 5 other restaurants that look the same that also serves vegetarian food! :) Great!

Uhhh.... Fresh. And people wonder why I'm vegetarian.

Uhhh…. Fresh. And people wonder why I’m vegetarian.

Having dinner at a really good place in Tupiza, called something the Antomos or something like that...

Having dinner at a really good place in Tupiza, called something the Antomos or something like that…

At night we were all dead and went back early to the hotel, I tried to skype with Duilio allthough the internet connection is really bad here so it was hanging up all the time. But still I told him that I had reservated an apartment for us in Santa Fe from the 15th of July, and he just couldn’t believe that, he was so happy to hear that and I was so happy to hear his voice all that happy :) Haha. It really felt great. Looking forward to it, less then a month left ;);)

So… soon time to leave for the Salt Flakes Tour! I’m actually a little bit excited about it, it feels good to have that feeling in the body again, excitement for traveling. :)

I’m so glad I’m doing this with Anne and not alone too. It feels good to have travel company :) We will be staying at basic lodges with no electricity or hot water... and at night it’s below freezing point.. uffuff. Maybe I should have bought another warm sweater.. I’m really something in between if I should or shouldn’t… Hopefully I don’t regret not buying one, haha. 

Anyhow.. I’ll be gone now for 4 days... See you next time in La Paz!

The pink route is our tour, the 4 day salt flakes tour. We are going to see some amazing things!

The pink route is our tour, the 4 day salt flakes tour. We are going to see some amazing things!


On my way – first stop: Paracas

Finally: I’m on my way again. It feels good. I have been in Peru for over 3 weeks but I don’t really feel like I know Peru. I don’t know that much about the culture and what’s typical Peruvian. Well, more then the language of course, haha. For example, they say “ya” aaaall the time. Also they say “no más” all the time.  In the beginning I was all confused, especially while surfing.

This could be a conversation, I have to write it in Spanish though.
En el surf por ejemplo:
“Empiezas a remar cuando digo ya, ya!”
“Ya?” (empiezo a remar)
“No, ya no, ahorita cuando diga ya remas,  ya!
“no ya!”
“si ya rema rema ya!”


Otras cosas que dicen es: “Hasta allí no más” , No dicen “no quiero mas” (hablando comida), “allí esta” (sobre objetos en algún sitio) o “allí mismo” (si estas en ese justo sitio).. todo es “allí no mas”.  Tambien utilizan el “ya” como nosotros utilizamos el vale y otras palabras.  En español por ejemplo despues de comprar algo, decimos “Vale, gracias” y se responde “De nada”  pero aquí se dice   “Ya, gracias” “Ya”.
“Voy al baño, vale?” = Voy al baño, ya?
“Esto lleva carne, no?” = Esto lleva carne, ya?
“Te gusta esto, verdad?” = Te gusta esto, ya?

Es decir.. nosotros tenemos mucha mas variación, y aquí dicen Ya a todo.

Anyhow.. Back to what I was going to say… I’m glad that I’m on my way again.

I took the night bus with Cruz del Sur to paracas, and woooow, such a luxury bus, I wish the trip would have been longer then just 3,5-4 hours. I’ve never seen anything like that and never slept so well in a bus or anything. It was like 100 times better then the cinema chairs. They were so comfortable, I had arm rests and foot rest. And they gave you a pillow and a blanket too. And breakfast!!! You will never se this in Ecuador or in mexico! Haha.

This is where I'm staying. There are rooms from 15 soles (dorm) up to 40 soles (private). Clean and good place! With wifi :)

This is where I’m staying. There are rooms from 15 soles (dorm) up to 40 soles (private). Clean and good place! With wifi :)

I arrived 7.15 in the morning in Paracas, where someone was supposed to  pick me up, but no one did. Instead a tour group was kind to help me to get into town so that I could go to the meeting point for the tour to the Ballestas Islands that was supposed to leave at 8. I talked to the tour office and apparently they hadn’t got the info that my dates had changed, so they didn’t expect me until the 14th. It didn’t matter that much, I rescheduled the tour for next day and went to find a hostel, and there was one just across the street.

Went home and sleeept. I woke up, went for a walk, went home, slept again, woke up, went to eat dinner, went home, slept again, woke up, talked a little to Duilio, then I slept again – 8 hours in a row – without waking up even once, I didn’t hear anyone in the dorm or anything. I really needed this, haha.

Sea lions in isla ballestas :)

Sea lions in isla ballestas :)

So many birds everywhere!!!

So many birds everywhere!!!

Today I did go on the tour to the Ballestas Islands, it’s said to be the Galapagos of Peru, and it reminded me of it too. There were thoousaaaands of birds and sea lions in those islands. Quite amazing. We saw penguins too.

And on our way to the islands we stopped to see the Calendabre, which is dated to 220 before chris and it’s around 180 metres long, carved into the rock… It reminds of the Nazca lines (which I will see in a few days from an airplane), but the difference is that this is ‘around 60 cm deep,  and the Nazca lines are about 15-20 cm deep. Also they are only visible from airplanes, and this is not.  Still amazing. Who did this? And why?

Penguins, rocks and birds! Isla ballestas.

Penguins, rocks and birds! Isla ballestas.

The prehistoric geoglyph; El candelabro, dated 220 BCE. It's carved into the stone underneath the sand, about 61 cm depth (2 feet), and it's about 180 meters long (595 feet)

The prehistoric geoglyph; El candelabro, dated 220 BCE. It’s carved into the stone underneath the sand, about 61 cm depth (2 feet), and it’s about 180 meters long (595 feet)

I spent a couple of hours at the beach reading, it’s not the most beautiful beach but at least there is sand :)  In the afternoon I took a walk around the city, it’s really small, but I like it here, it’s calm in the evening, a lot of tourists only come for the day to do the ballestas islands. I hanged out with my roomie Guy from Israel, had dinner at the same place I ate dinner yesterday and lunch today, haha. Then we talked for hours in the hostel with another German girl, sharing travel stories and travel comfortable-tips haha (yes, there are built-in pillows in the head rest in the airplanes!).

The beach in Paracas. Not soo nice, but the best I've visited in Peru so far, it's still sand. ;)

The beach in Paracas. Not soo nice, but the best I’ve visited in Peru so far, it’s still sand. ;)

Now I’m heading to Huacachina to do some sandboarding.

(Hm.. apparently there’s no electricity here now, why does this always happen to me? So I guess I’ll have to upload this from my next destination. Still this with gas is really good because even if the electricity is of you can always cook, which isn’t possible in for example Sweden where we only have electrical stove)

Surf and football in Lima.. and some catacombs


wierd, I started to write this in Spanish… haha. I guess I’m actually starting to think in Spanish now. To write this in english gets harder and harder, haha. But it’s good so that I don’t forget! The swedish is even more weird, when people speak swedish around me and I don’t here it, it’s like I haven’t activated that ear, not until someone actually tells me they are Swedish I hear that they are speaking Swedish.. haha.

I’ve soon been here in Lima for a week. I’m really enjoying it here mostly because I feel calm and relaxed and I like to do nothing. The days pass by quickly even if I don’t have any particular plans… I haven’t actually seen so much of Lima. I’ve mostly been moving around here in the district of Miraflores, between the beach doing surfing and the hostal. : )

The beach of Makaja, as you see, a nice white sandy beach!

The beach of Makaja, as you see, a nice white sandy beach!

The church of San Francisco, with lot's of doves!

The church of San Francisco, with lot’s of doves!

I was in the city center a couple of days ago, together with a guy from Chile, nice to have company. We went to Plaza de Armas and then to the church of San Francisco and visited the catacombs here. Here the archeologists have fixed all the skeletons after they counted them, I would have wanted it to be more natural and not that organized… It’s not similar to the roman catacombs (which are really fascinating and scary). But anyhow, interesting : ) It’s approximated 25.000 people buried down there. You are not allowed to take pictures here, so I only have the picture of this postcard so you can get an image about how it looks like.

The postcard I bought, hehe. At the right you have the catacombs!

The postcard I bought, hehe. At the right you have the catacombs!

By the way, in town, after asking in 4 different restaurants if they had ANY vegetarian plate (which they didn’t) we found a vegetarian restaurant!!!! Yeeeeaaaaaahhh. So I was totally happy after that. My first meal out in Peru, after 4 days, and it was good, and cheap too, a menu for 8 soles. (about 3 USD) : )

The veggie menu! So many thing's I've never heard of..

The veggie menu! So many thing’s I’ve never heard of..

One thing I really miss here, is that no one says hi to you on the street just like that. It makes me a little sad. In the beginning I didn’t feel that welcome here.. now I’m more used to it. This is a big city. People don’t say hi if you don’t know each other.. I suppose that is normal, I just got used to being saluted to by everyone in Mexico and Ecuador.. Maybe it will change in the smaller cities, I hope so :)

Another thing about Lima: Traffic is horrible!!! The drivers are crazy and there is NO respect at all for pedestrians…  if there is a pedestrian crossing with the zebra and everything, the car will never stop for the pedestrians, instead you have to wait until there is a little bigger gap between the cars that are coming and then run to the other side.

Oh, also, in the beginning of pedestrian crossing I saw a man with a stick, the ones the blind people use.. and he was standing there for quite a long time.. So I asked him if he needed help to cross, and oh he was so thankful and happy for that! I’m really glad I could help. :) It can’t be easy to be blind in this city! Or old!

I was wondering how it works for the older people, and I asked a woman today, she said that yes it’s horrible and difficult but that she waits for the red light longer down the street, then there is a bigger gap before the other side has green light, so she can cross the street.. Still way to weird. Also there are some crossings without any traffic lights or signs of who is to yield to, and there is no respect for the rule for the ones that comes at right… instead you see cars coming from both sides in the crossing, and they instead hit the gas to accelerate to be the first in the cross, so the other one has to hit the brake hard in order not to clash.. haha.

A small crossing one street from our hostal... Where the cars do a little bit as they want..

A small crossing one street from our hostal… Where the cars do a little bit as they want..

My eye is good now, I have been surfing for 3 days now… it’s sooo much fun! And so difficult!! How much time do people spend before then can surf for real?? Damn it… I need months of training! Haha.

At Playa Makaja, Miraflores. I think the city looks amazing above those hills, like if they were floating..

At Playa Makaja, Miraflores. I think the city looks amazing above those hills, so futuristic somehow..

So.. yesterday I had my first night out! Haha. There was a big football game here, Chile-Peru, the classic over here, and if Peru lost this it would mean they were out of the Olympics or something, I don’t know really, but it was really important that they won…. Everyone was talking about the game! Haha. I met up with my instructor Johny and went to Flying Dog Hostal,  a guy from Couchsurfing had written a post about that they were going to see the game there.. and wow, I was amazed about how big this event was!!! It was over 50 people there and there was a big projector showing the game in the courtyard.

Very good vibe, but the time started ticking… when it was like 5 minutes left of the game, it was still 0-0…. And then Peru marked their goal, and wooooow, hahahah, people got crazy!!! Sooo happy, jumping, screaming, throwing bear everywhere, laughing, crying.. haha. So yes, Peru won the game, and everybody was happy!

I started to talk to a girl who was very sweet (21 and married), and when I tell her that I’m 25, she says “Oh, I want to have kids when I’m your age” … haha, damn it I felt old! Hahaha :)

Watching the game at Flying Dog Hostal

Watching the game at Flying Dog Hostal

Group picture! Some couchsurfers but mainly friends of Ricardo. He is having his goodbye party because he is leaving Peru for Poland.

Group picture! Some couchsurfers but mainly friends of Ricardo. He is having his goodbye party because he is leaving Peru for Poland.

Full of people outside at the Kennedy park celebrating that Peru won the game!

Full of people outside at the Kennedy park celebrating that Peru won the game!

After the game we went out to a disco, the streets were full of people celebrating. We were around 30 people who left for the disco together and we all got in at the same time and for free, because we had these nametags on our chests, hehe. Very nice done. We danced some salsa, merengue, reggeaton and other normal music. I hate the rnb thing but I love the latino music now.. hehe. I also got the comments “Look who’s dancing! And she said she couldn’t dance!” haha. :)  Anyhow, it was a great night and I had tons of fun.

At the disco! Anthony (chile), Maribela (venezuela), Stephany (peru), me, Johny (peru), another spanish girl, and in front, Ricardo (peru).

At the disco!
Anthony (chile), Maribela (venezuela), Stephany (peru), me, Johny (peru), another spanish girl, and in front, Ricardo (peru).

Oh.. by the way.. the thing about people who opens up for me continues!
My surf instructor for example, told me about his wife who had cheated on him, he recently left her for that, even if they have a 9 months old son (I thought it was right though)… and another instructor I was talking to told me the opposite, that he had cheated on his wife for another girl, but that girl left him.. haha.. (I thought that was right too though)… and today, this third surfer guy started talking to me, he asks really weird questions out of the blue, very funny and unexpected guy, who also started to talk about his girlfriend and that he wants to end it with her but don’t know how to do it…he asks me “Do you eat?” and I say “Eat? Food? Yes of course… Why?”  and he asks “Would you like to eat with me tomorrow?” “I don’t know, I might leave Lima tomorrow” “Ok,tonight then? I really need to speak with someone about this…” haha. How could I turn that down! Maybe I should start working as a mentor/counselor/psychologist/friend/life coach… haha.

Hm.. what else? Hm. Oh yeah, I bought my ticket to Argentina It’s less then 2 months left and I’m looking soooo much forward to it  :) Leaving the 15th of may, the day after Machu Picchu, hehe.

Next post will probably be from Eco Truly Park, where I’m heading next!

See you!

Weird feelings before departure and useful experiences

I’m really looking forward to my trip. I have for a very long time now. (Since I was born, but mainly since September when I decided to go for it). Anyhow, I have been looking soooooo much forward to it, sometimes just lying sleepless just thinking about all the things I have to do before I leave and also dreaming about all the things I want to do during the trip.

But now that it’s getting closer, a new feeling has started growing. A sort of anxiety.

People have said that its brave of me to travel alone to South America for more than 6 months, but for me, it was just how I’ve always pictured if would be. But now, I’m getting a little afraid. I’m finally realizing that I’m going to be alone. Yep.

I know that I will meet tons of new interesting people and get lots of new friendships, I know, but since I’m traveling around from town to town, I won’t have anyone steady, no one to turn to when I need consolation, no one to take care of me if I get sick. And I won’t have my mother who always can lend out a hand if I need help. I’ll for the first time actually be totally standing on my two own feet. That’s scary!

That’s how I felt the last 2 weeks. But now, that there’s only 2 days left before departure, I’m getting quite sad too. I noticed on Sunday after the fencing training, on my way home after saying goodbye to everyone there, I had this really weird feeling inside of me that I couldn’t understand, like sadness instead of happiness. I felt like crying. A friend told me that it’s probably because I feel like I’m never going to see them again, but that I would, and that is true. So today, my last day at work, it went a little better to say goodbye to my co workers. This evening I spent with my roommate Sanna and my neighbor and best friend Carro just watching TV and talking. Have to spend every minute possible with the people I care about, if not, I feel like I’ve wasted time by being with myself.

The fencing family!

The fencing family having sunday-pizza!

Serious co-workers at  Ljud och Bildmedia.

Serious co-workers at Ljud och Bildmedia, my last day at work.

Min favvo-Axel

Quality time with Axel :)

I learned a few things about myself and what’s in head of me on my last trip to France.
First thing, bring a valid passport!! Yeep, I know it’s elementary, but I’ve done it twice now. Brought my old passport with me, who expired 2 years ago. Gratefully, I was within the Schengen-area, so I was able to fly with only my identification.
Second, in Lyon I got sick, throwing up and having problems with my stomach. It was quite weird being sick and not being at my home, I wasn’t able to just lie in bed and not be social to anyone. Also, I felt a sort of shame, because I wasn’t that good company either. I felt like I was in the way.
And third, when I was going home, my flight got cancelled due to a big snowstorm in Stockholm, so I got booked on another flight to Zürich where I was supposed to take another flight to Stockholm, but that one was also cancelled.

I got all stressed up because I had a freelance-job the next day and I didn’t know when I was going to be able to fly, and the cues where sooo long (it took 3 hours to get pass them). When I realized that I wasn’t going to make it that day, I found a new calm, and I started to talk to the other passengers who also were stuck, and I had great conversations. But it was sad too, because I knew that I would never meet them again. It was all just temporary.

I also noticed another thing, it is that, when I was stuck there and didn’t know anything about what was happening, I had this anxiety in my body, I was stressed, irritated and restless. I think it was because I didn’t know where I would end up, so I was stuck at the airport and I couldn’t do anything about it at all. I had no control. I think I need to know where I’ll be sleeping before I go somewhere. I have very easy to say “home” to everywhere I sleep, but I need to feel that I have somewhere that’s going to be my home for that night. Then, I can enjoy.

My lovely mum!

My lovely mum!

Traveling – a human desire?

For me, it’s just something I’ve always wanted to do. I’ve as long as I can remember dreamt about it, but I don’t know why. My mother doesn’t seem to understand this urge at all. Yet, she has lived abroad herself for 14 years, so that’s sort of contradictory, isn’t it? I think she does understand, but she’s to afraid because I, her daughter is going on a trip alone to dangerous South America.I choose to not see the obstacles, but the opportunities.

Here are some reasons why I want to travel:

Travel broadens the mind and make you happier – and I’m pursuing life satisfaction!

I want to see amazingly beautiful places and meet crazy interesting people. This world has sooooo much to offer, places most of us don’t even know about, and I don’t want to miss it. I want to get stumed and loose my breath. I’m tired of taking my life for granted and not seeing anything past my apartment, work, training etc. There’s a hole world out there to discover!!!!

I want to get out of the comfort zone, take a break from my usual casual life. It’s time to get out of the monotone routines and to feed my restless soul. I want to get more experience and have adventures. I want to connect with other people. Find a new way of living. I want to grow as a human, find the meaning of my life.

A wise man travels to discover himself.” – James Russell Lowell

It’s a good quote, I belive traveling opens your mind and body, helps you see things more clear. I believe it helps you discover who you are and what’s important to you.

I hope that all the meetings with different people and cultures will teach me to be more open-minded and welcoming to the world. I hope that I will grow as a person and come back much wiser.

Why do you travel? What have you learnt along the way?
Or what’s the reason why you don’t want to travel?

I’ll end this post with some pictures of our beautiful amazing world:



What I’m planning on visiting

Hello again!

My mother commented that my grandmother wanted to know my itinerary. So cute!
Maybe it’s interesting for you to know where I’ll be blogging from too.

Since I’ll be away for almost 7 months, this itinerary will probably (and hopefully) change a bit, but this is what I have in mind now:

You can see the full map here.

Mexico city
Puerto Escondido
San Cristobal De Las Casas
Playa del Carmen
Isla Mujeres

Galapagos islands

Aucallama Huaral
Puerto Maldonaldo

La Paz
Villa Tunari

Rio de Janeiro
Sao Paolo

My fears and worries

Counting down, 56 days to departure. I’m looking soooo much forward to it. Can’t stop thinking about it. But of course I do have some fears as well. Many of you have also asked me the same questions. So these are my worries and my thoughts about solutions.

vegetarian tempeh lettuce wraps

How am I going to survive over there as a vegetarian? Sweden is a quite good veggie-country, they always have a at least one vegetarian option in restaurants, and people are quite familiar with people being vegetarian (still, it’s quite boring to always have to eat the same vegetarian plate). While traveling I’ve always had problems. Like in Spain, very often I have to eat fried eggs and fries, because that’s the only vegetarian thing they have on the menu. Not even the salads are vegetarian. Now that I’ll be away for a long period, I can’t eat ”bad” food all the time. I will try buy food at the supermarket like all the time, mainly because I can’t afford eating at restaurants everyday, even if they had a veggie-option. Hopefully I will eat at least once in every city, inviting my CouchSurfing-host. I’ll update you about how it is to be a vegetarian in South America.

How am I going to be able to train while traveling? I’ve had problems with my back and with over weight before, and I since I’ll be traveling with my big backpack on the back, going on trekking excursions etc, I need to be in a good shape and be strong. I need to go for training at least 2-3 times a week.. I will try to do this: go out jogging (to see some beautiful sights), swimming (probably inside pool if there is one in that city) and doing strength training only working with my own body (so I can do it at ”home”).


What should I bring? I really don’t want to bring too much, but not to less, it’s always difficult to draw the line. I know I need a sleeping bag in Peru, but should I bring one during the first 2 months of my trip, or should I buy it when I need it, and then throw it away/give it away? I don’t know yet. But I think I’ll be bringing everything I need for 6 months, in ONE backpack. It has to fit in there. I want to be able to travel easily, be able to run to the bus if I need to without everything falling apart, haha. I will pack my bag over and over again before leaving. I’ll update you with a packing list, and later, what have worked and what has not.

Robbery not allowed

What if I get robbed? Surprise! South America isn’t as safe as in Sweden. Here it’s unusual that they even have weapons. I remember a conversation with another CouchSurfer from Argentina,and  he got really surprise that I’ve never been robbed with a weapon before. My camera and my phone has been stolen in different occasions, but by pocket picking, so I didn’t even notice it. I guess I prefer that sort of robbery. So what am I going to do to prevent it? First, I won’t be carrying around a big amount of money, so if there are thieves and they get 20 USD, then, what the heck. Also I have an undercover money belt and security pouches to have under my clothes.The biggest worry for me is to be robbed on my camera and all my pictures. So I’ll be backing up everything on-line as often as possible.  I’m aware of the common sense of traveling, if you aren’t, check this link about safe travel in South America from lonely planet. There are good tips there like try to not look like a tourist, more like a local, or a visitor. Walk with a purpose. Be aware of your surroundings all the times. Muggers look for people who look unaware. Stay alert.

Another big worry is of course, what happens if I get sick during my travel? I do have insurance though, but still I would miss out a lot if I got sick. I’ve taken all the vaccinations I need for the countries I’m visiting, and I recently had chicken pox, so now I don’t have to worry about that, haha. I also just got vaccine against this years flu. I will try to eat good food and eat extra vitamins and I’ll be listening to my body if I’m starting to get sick and need some rest.


What if I get tired? I don’t think I’ll get tired of traveling, but I’m worried I get tired of being social and ”on” all the time. I really have no idea of how it is to be on the move for 6 months meeting new people all the time and always have to present the best side of me. What if I need some time for myself to just do nothing? Go to sleep early, lie in a bed reading a book a whole day or sit by the computer uploading pictures and updating this blog. I don’t want to be impolite and I don’t want offend anyone, especially not my hosts from CouchSurfing. Let’s hope I get enough rest during the bus-trips!

I’m also worried about not be able to bring books with me, since I love reading. Maybe I can borrow one from a host while staying there. Oh, and another weird worry is, what if I’m having the time of my life and I don’t want to come back??? It’s very possible I will feel that. Well.. only future can tell!

Now I’ve shared some of my worries. Which are yours?