Tell us about yourself
I’m a travel writer and blogger at Chantae Was Here obsessed with all things adventure. I have a bit of an adrenaline addiction so spend most of my time crafting trips centered around extreme sports or writing about it. I’m originally from California but moved to Western Australia three years ago. I’ve just gotten my freediving certification, so have been obsessed with that sport lately.
You have an unlimited travel budget for 24 hours. Give me your itinerary.
Oh wow! The time limit makes this a tough question to answer. Though I’d love to spend the money and go to Antarctica, I’d lose too much time in transit. So, I would love to fly over to the Ningaloo Reef and go swimming with the whale sharks. Then, go for a scuba dive near the coral. Then, I’d spend the night at Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef – a luxury glamping resort.
You have won the lottery. Tell me where you want to live.
I would be modern-nomadic and spend three months in each new destination. I don’t think I could ever choose one place to live forever, though New Zealand is high up on my radar at the moment.
Your favorite travel resource on the web?
I always use Skyscanner.com to search for and book my flights. I’m a contributor and have gotten to know how to manipulate the site quite well. I’ve learned how to see two places for the price of one, and the everywhere feature they have is very inspirational.
What is the superpower you most want?
I’d want to be able to turn into a mermaid whenever I wanted… or teleport.
What fuels your passion for travel?
I have an ongoing to see and learn more about everything in the world – every time I make a new friend, taste a new food, or get a small glimpse into a new culture, it stokes me urge to experience more. I believe that we only get one chance to live on this world so I want to see as much of it as I can before I go.
Why do you write?
If I’m not writing on my blog or for magazines, I’m scribbling in my diary or taking notes on my phone. I write because it’s the best way to document my memories and share experiences with others. I love written communication because it’s a very deliberate way of expressing oneself.
I’m happiest when sitting on a train or in a car reflecting on an experience that’s just happened.
Also, as a journalist, you can be as nosy or curious as you want under the guise of “working.”
Do your family and friends support your traveling escapades?
Yes, my parents were very nervous about my first trip (I was 19 and traveling alone to Nicaragua) and when I moved to Australia – but they’ve always supported me emotionally. If something goes wrong, my mom is the first person I call… or second, after my grandma! They trust that I’ll make the right decisions but sometimes need a bit of convincing.
What is the title of the movie about your life?
Oh No, She’s Forgotten Something
What’s on your bucket list?
I want to visit all seven continents, write a novel, and get my divemaster or free dive instructor certification. I also want to go on a very long expedition but haven’t worked out exactly what yet.
Can you imagine life without travel?
No. Even if for some reason I got stuck in one place, I’d host Couchsurfers all the time to have them bring their foreign lands over to me.
If you were not traveling what would you be doing instead?
I’d open some form of retreat for surfers or divers… or sitting at my home office writing. To be fair, I don’t travel full time – I go away for three months per year and then catch up on work at home.
If you could be transported to one place at one time, what would it be and why?
Another hard one. I’d want to be on the 1969 Apollo 11 moon mission to walk on the moon. Then I would probably sell a guidebook featuring the top 10 things to do there.
A single thing you miss most from high school?
I loved being 17-years-old and having a lot of freedom, but still under the responsibility of my parents. I miss coming home and seeing my family every day – something that’s hard for me to cope with while living overseas.
I also miss the drama – who’s going to prom with me? Why isn’t he texting me back? Who did what and where and why?
Do you have any advice or tips for aspiring travelers?
It’s easy to make excuses not to travel. I don’t have enough time/money/anyone to go with… Plan a trip around the situation you have right now – not in some vague future. If you don’t have money, go somewhere inexpensive. If you don’t have time, go somewhere close. If you don’t have anyone to go with, suck it up buttercup because you’re going to make friends on the road.
If your friends and family discourage you, seek advice from people who’ve done your ideal trip online. There are communities all over the internet that will help and support you.
Your single most treasured personal possession.
A language you’d most like to be fluent in?
My partner is German, so I’d love to be fluent and speak with his family without awkward pauses or interruptions. I love how you can build single words that are 50 letters long but make perfect sense.
Otherwise, Spanish. I can speak it well but am not fluent (yet!). So many countries speak Spanish, so that would bring a lot of opportunities.
Funniest person you have ever met or seen in person
My best friend Chelsea is hands-down the funniest person I know. We used to stay up all plotting pranks for our friends or getting into trouble. When she visited me in Croatia, her suitcase was packed with more costumes than conventional clothing – it was so heavy that the suitcase itself actually broke.
I had her walk on a leash while wearing a banana outfit in front of an old coliseum in Pula, Croatia. One of the locals yelled, “Hey! Cucumber!”
Can you tell us about your next adventure
The next few months are a bit hectic.
Next week, I’ll be spending three weeks in Hawaii and then driving through a remote area of Mexico. My dad and I will then be going on a trip to Lake Powell, and then I’m visiting my mom in Tennessee. I’ve never been to Tennessee before, and my mom is really excited to go to a porch festival together. I’m struggling with a knee injury at the moment, but if everything goes well, I’ll be surfing, freediving, wakeboarding, and hiking throughout the trip.