International Women’s Day has been observed on 8th March each year since the early 1900’s, a time of great turbulence that saw the industrialized world transformed by a growing population and it’s revolutionary ideologies.
This change led to a dramatic shift towards equilibrium between men and women, a shift that has resulted in equal rights and altered perceptions.
Fortunately the reality in which we live today is a far cry from that of those who rallied Votes For Women.
Where once International Women’s Day was an opportunity to highlight aspects of modern life that held an archaic view of women’s rights, there has been such progress that it is now an opportunity to celebrate achievements of women across the globe.
Image by Bianca Pauza
Prominent female travel website Journey Woman has just published a beautiful collection of images detailing women from all walks of life, and all four corners of the globe.
An exhibition celebrating the achievements of women everywhere, we were honoured when one of Benjamin’s photographs was selected for inclusion.
Scrolling through the collection we saw in each image a strong and vibrant woman and a myriad of locations and as such it has inspired our own celebration of women.
Today we are celebrating Women Who Travel.
WOMEN WHO TRAVEL
In this post I’d like to highlight some of my favourite female travel bloggers who are striding out into the world and leaving tracks for those who are perhaps a little less sure of their footing.
Immersing themselves in exotic cultures, exploring off the beaten path and sharing their journey with others, their message is one of liberation, strength and of course adventure.
We were curious to know what inspires them to leave their lives behind and temporarily, or in some cases permanently travel the world.
Here’s what they had to say …
BACON IS MAGIC | AYNGELINA BROGAN
I travel to wander, and as I learn more about other cultures I discover new things about myself. It seems the more I travel the less likely I am to visit a museum or art gallery.
Instead I like to walk around, looking for a good cafe or bar and if I’m lucky there will be locals who offer to talk and share their stories. And the more I learn about other cultures I learn so much about myself.
Travel has made me a kinder person.
I often joke that I’m a lazy traveler but the truth is that spending an afternoon talking and laughing with a local feels so much more satisfying than making it to the top of a mountain.
I started learning Spanish four years ago and there’s something special about sharing a moment with a stranger in their language, being able to express gratitude for being welcomed. That’s a large part of why I’m so fascinated with food, it’s not simply because I love to eat but it’s an easy way to make a connection with someone you may not have anything else in common with. Food is a common love and it can bond.
40 BEFORE 30 | JAYNE GORMAN
After I took my gap year, spending 8 inquisitive months on the road, I just knew that travel had to remain an integral part of my life if I was ever to feel truly happy.
I travel because I can’t help it. It’s an unquenchable urge; a desire to see new countries, meet people and know more about the world we live in.
I have a home in London because despite my flighty nature I like to have a base, somewhere to keep me grounded. It means I have somewhere to come home to but also something to escape when the desire to travel takes over. I think it’s the contrast between my two lives, home and away, that makes me appreciate them both all the more.
I have no set agenda or method for working out where my wanderings will take me next. It could be an article, an invite or just an impulse that shapes my next adventure.
I share my rambling thoughts on places around the world on my blog 40before30.com. The blog has been my creative outlet for the last 4 years and no one was more surprised than me when people started to read it, let alone credit it with awards and offer me work off the back of it. For anyone considering starting a blog I say just go for it – you never know where it may lead.
AMANDA WILLIAMS | A DANGEROUS BUSINESS
There are a lot of reasons why people travel. Some travel to escape; others travel to discover.
When it comes down to it, I travel because I love to learn. I have always been curious about the world beyond my Midwest bubble, and travelling has been the best education I’ve ever received.
Each trip opens my eyes to new cultures, ancient history, different food, and ways of life alternate to my own. Sure there are ups and downs, but I wouldn’t want it to be any other way. When I travel, I am constantly learning about the wider world – and about myself.
I have become a much smarter, confident, and well-rounded woman from travelling the world.
TONI WHITE | RECLAIMING MY FUTURE
No one has ever asked me ‘why’ I travel before because, I suppose, that the answer for many is plain to see; the world is never-ending in terms of adventures and both the tragedy and beauty you can witness.
But in all honesty; I travel for purely selfish reasons.
I don’t travel because I want to experience different cultures of the world, climb mountains because the view looks amazing or to meet people from ‘every corner of the globe’. I travel because I want to be better.
I travel because I want to be the girl that loves who she is without make-up on, wearing clothes stained with adventure. I want to be the girl that knows the importance of a little of everything, not a lot of nothing. I want to be the girl that my future child can be proud of.
I want to be the girl who is as adventurous as her spirit feels she can be. I travel simply to be a better version of myself.
I’m not interested in drinking the night away until I’m sick; I’m interested in sharing a drink with new friends and listening to their life stories. I’m not interested in spending weeks trying to find an ‘off the beaten path’ adventure; I’m interested in walking a familiar path but finding my own direction. I’m not interested in anything or anyone that doesn’t serve to teach me lessons and help me become a better me.
It may sound selfish but I travel purely to learn, to grow, to change. After all, isn’t that what travel is all about in its true form?
ANNABEL CANDY | GET IN THE HOT SPOT
I travel because as a child our holidays in Europe, and especially France, created some of my happiest childhood memories.
Naturally my whole family was relaxed and happy then but I think what appealed to me especially was the sense of adventure and excitement about visiting places I’d never been before. I loved the challenges of communicating in a new language, the surprising cultural differences and the revelation that people do things differently in different parts of the world.
I loved trying new foods, even the things my brother, sister and I all hated like that hare in yellow mustard sauce. I loved being outside with the feel of the wind in my hair as we cycled to a local market, the smell of roast chickens as they turned on the spit, the taste of a dewy nectarine and the rustle of the pebbles being pushed around by the waves.
Getting to our holiday destination with three children squashed on the backseat of a car and two stressed out parents in the front was hell but it was always worth it in the end.
40 years later I’ve lived in eight different countries and travelled to many more and I still love travel. I travel for the opportunity to enjoy new activities, speak new languages, eat new foods, and experience different cultures. I travel because my curiosity about the world seems to be insatiable and because there are still so many places I want to visit and just as many that I’d like to go back to.
I haven’t been able to get my fill of travel in 40 years. I don’t suppose I ever will.
MEGAN JERRAD | MAPPING MEGAN
I travel to live! I started travelling because I wanted to experience something different and see what the world had to offer, and after my first year abroad I was hooked. Hooked on a life of excitement and adventure, which is travel.
Hooked on discovering new places, meeting new people and experiencing different cultures, which is travel. Hooked on the knowledge and education which comes with travelling, and hooked on the feeling of living a genuinely happy and worthwhile life.
Life begins outside of your comfort zone, and I see no need to live a life of monotony and drabness
Travelling is a lifestyle to me, and it’s an ongoing education. It’s what I love to do – so even if people back at home don’t understand, or think I’m being selfish by pursuing a “life of leisure”, that’s not going to stop me from living my dream.
I’ve gained a far more valuable education from travelling the world than I did during my 5 years of University, and it’s my thirst for world knowledge and world experiences that keeps me motivated. I’m also motivated by all of the places I haven’t yet been!
To find out more about International Women’s Day and inspiring positive change, visit the IWD website.
A big thanks to all the inspiring female travellers featured. Have they inspired you to break free and travel the world?