It’s Thursday again! And that means time to meet another amazing travel blogger from around the world.
Today we are wandering with Niki from Chasing Departures. Hi Niki, please tell me a little about yourself.
Hi 🙂 My name is Niki Gordon. I am the travel writer and photographer behind the travel blog Chasing Departures. I’ve been to a handful of countries and about 36 US States. My goal is to hit all 50 and the territories by the time I turn 25. You can usually find me running through the airport while traveling chasing after some departure that sounded like a good idea until I had to run for it.
Where are you currently?
Currently in the middle of nowhere North Dakota. North Dakota is home and I don’t think I would change it.
Where do you want to go next? What are your future travel plans?
Umm.. everywhere haha, but if I have to narrow it down, I would say Japan (because I took two years of Japanese in university and want to test my language skills) and New Zealand are very high on my list of places to go.
Where is home? Name one thing that you always recommend to people that visit?
Home is North Dakota, US. I always tell people to try the kneophla (nef-la) soup. It’s a regional dish brought over to America when the Germans from Russia settled in this region. I think it is my favorite thing to cook and eat in the long winter months.
Where has been your favourite place to visit? Why?
That is such a tough question. I love everywhere I have gone for various reasons. I think Spain would probably be at the top of the list though. I went with my high school Spanish class after graduating. I loved the history, the food, and that my Spanish skills improved enough that I am confident in conversing in the language now.
Where didn’t you like/where were you disappointed with? Why?
Key West, Florida was not one of my favorites. I’m sure it was because I did it all wrong. It was my first solo trip and I was too cheap to rent a hotel so I camped in my rental car. I got very little sleep on the whole trip and as a whole didn’t enjoy is as much as I know I could have if I would have gotten a hotel.
What is your favourtie picture you have ever taken? Where was it taken?
I am currently in love with this photo, but my favorite photo changes as I edit them and take more. It was taken while I was on Key West and I finally got around to editing it recently.
What has been the craziest thing you have done/place you have been on your travels?
In 2012 when Spain won the Euro Cup, I was staying with a host family in a small town near Cadiz. After the team won, we went to the town square to celebrate with the rest of the community. When we got there, people were dancing in the fountain. I asked my host mom if we could join in. She said yes, so my host siblings and I climbed in and danced in the fountain. It is something I will always remember!
Three things on your wander list
Trans Siberian Railway, Antarctica, and Following the Silk Road from Europe to China.
What is your best travel hack?
Credit Cards. Now I’m not saying go wild and put yourself thousands of dollars in debt. The way I see it is you spend money on stuff every day as is so why not earn some points while you are at it. I use my cards for pretty much everything. And be sure to always pay them off at the end of the month!
What items do you never leave behind when you travel?
My Kindle and my camera
How much does your luggage weigh?
A lot haha. I still have yet to learn the art of packing minimally. I have managed to travel mostly by carry on now days though. So I guess whatever a carry on would weigh.
How do you track your expenses whilst you are away?
I don’t… I know it’s terrible and I probably should, but when I travel, I don’t want to be concerned with money.
What is one weird thing you miss when you travel?
My family and my pets. I wish they could come with me all the time.
What are your top tips for staying fit and healthy on the road?
Walking. It is something you can do anywhere you go and generally you are walking around to explore so it is a win win.
What are you reading at the moment?
Currently reading Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab. The first one is titled This Savage Song. I love this author! If you have not read the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab (her pen name) then I highly recommend you make them your next reads.
If you could go back in time and be the first person to explore/find a place in the world, where would you want it to be?
I would want to go along with whoever from the west first made it to China. I think it would be so much fun to be there during a period in classical Chinese history.
Thank you so much, Niki! It has been great getting to know you.
Check out other ‘Wander With’ interviews here.
Niki is a recent university graduate trying to figure out her next step in life. You can follow her on her blog Chasing Departures where she blogs about everything travel.