First of all, let me start with a disclaimer: the Liebster Award is definitely not a big fancy trophy. It’s not some kind of Blog Oscar (Blogscar?) or the ‘Digital Nomad’ equivalent of a Grammy. Kanye West isn’t about to come out of the woodwork with a round of, ‘Imma let you finish…’, Meryl Streep isn’t going to get in trouble for a politically-motivated acceptance speech and Adele isn’t going to say ‘fuck’ every five minutes.
What is the Liebster Award?
The Liebster Award is an ‘award’ passed from travel blogger to travel blogger by nomination. The aim of the award is to connect writers together and raise the profile of lesser-known travel bloggers (like lil ole me).
To participate, you write a post (oh, um, much like this one), including these five things:
- ~ A bit about the blogger who nominated you for the Liebster Award.
- ~ Who your favourite travel blogger is and why.
- ~ 10 random facts about yourself.
- ~ Answers to 11 questions set by the blogger who nominated you.
- ~ Nominatations of your own candidates for the Liebster Award.
Liebster Award Nomination
I was nominated by Emma Badger at Where’s That To. Like myself, she’s a twenty-something British wanderluster and has had her travel blog for a little over a year. I am desperately jealous of her amazing trips to places like Costa Rica and Zambia. Also, Emma had a travel-themed wedding, complete with a trunk of travel suggestions that guests could contribute to!
My Favourite Travel Blogger
My favourite blogger and someone who’s a firm fan favourite is Alyssa Ramos of My Life’s a Movie. What I like most about her blog is that she doesn’t gloss over how she makes her money, how she came to afford to travel full-time, her sponsors, her shameless selfie stick and GoPro shots and how much hard work it took to get where she is.
She’s also a huge advocate for solo female travel and is making it her business to get other aspiring writers to build their blogs (without charging them for the privilege), and ultimately travel full-time too. In conclusion, she’s unapologetically awesome.
10 Facts About Me
I can play the piano and I write my own music.
I lived in Hong Kong for five years.
My favourite city in the world is Roma.
I have smatterings of French, Italian, Cantonese, Mandarin and Arabic.
My favourite song is Dakota, by the Stereophonics.
want to be am going to be a travel writer and novelist when I grow up.
My favourite book is Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut.
If I had a Mastermind Specialist Subject, it would be making terrible puns.
My spirit animal and good luck charm is a White Wolf.
My favourite food is a proper Brummy curry.
11 Questions From Emma at Where’s That To
1. Where did the travel bug bite you?
The travel bug didn’t bite me until I first arrived in Hong Kong. Travel wasn’t even on my agenda back then, but the job in Hong Kong was the only job I could get back in 2011’s recession (luckily, it was the best job I could have gotten, too). It wasn’t until I was actually in HK that I realised that there was a whole world out there and I wanted to see it all…
2. Where in the world did you find the best food you have ever tasted?
Hands down, Italy wins at food. I’m talking about pizza, pasta, risotto, gelato, dolce, vino, coffee… Italians can do no wrong in the food and drink department. Consequently, everything tastes so much better in Italia. I could eat an Italian tomato like an apple.
3. If you were running a competition and the winner, who has never left their country, won an all expenses paid trip – where would you send them and why?
I would send them to Japan. Honestly, that country might as well be a completely different planet. Even with five years in Hong Kong and plenty of travel around Asia behind me, I was still absolutely dumbfounded by Japan when I visited last year. I think it would probably jump-start their wanderlust and open their eyes to something beyond their imagination.
4. What’s next on your bucket list?
Oh, I have about a million places on my must-see list and they’re impossible to choose between. I want to watch whales in Antarctica, see the Northern Lights in Iceland, live a year in Berlin, live a year in Singapore, live a year in Canada, go on a US road trip, cycle the whole way around the UK… but I also like being surprised. Some of the best trips I’ve had were ones where I had no idea what to expect.
5. Do you prefer to travel by land, sea or air?
I prefer to travel via water, for sure. I’m pretty sure I was a pirate in a previous life, so I love a good boat.
6. If you had to live somewhere you have never been for 5 years, where would you choose and why?
This question is a little spooky considering that’s exactly what I did with HK, but I guess if I had to pick now it would be Hawaii. That little island has it all: surfing, hiking, history, beaches, chill, culture… and no language barrier!
7. If you could only see one set of wonders (ancient, modern and natural) which would you choose and why?
I’d love to tick off all the Natural Wonders because I think nature is the most talented architect.
8. Which animal would you love to see in the wild and how do you plan to make that happen?
It is my absolute dream to see a whale breaching, even more so if I’m paddling in a kayak alongside them. Whales are intelligent, majestic and who wouldn’t want to see the world’s biggest animal in the flesh? I just need to save up the money and find the time…
9. Which destination has been most in contrast to what you expected?
The Philippines. I first went to the Philippines during Chinese New Year in 2012, though I didn’t really have any idea what it would be like before I arrived. I left the organisation of the trip up to others in our group, but it ended up being an incredible adventure. We trekked through the rice terraces of Northern Luzon, stayed in stilted villages and caught rides on the roofs of painted jeepneys.
I’ve been back twice more since, exploring some of the paradise islands as well. The Philippines is on people’s radar a little more now, but I still think it’s the most underrated country in the world.
10. Beach holiday or city break?
I like cheating, so I would totally pick a city on the coast. I love the grit and buzz of a city, but I need the ocean view to gaze out at too.
11. Which home comfort do you find hardest to leave behind?
Most of all, I miss food, friends and family (not necessarily in that order, sorry guys, if you’re reading this). Authentic British cuisine really isn’t available (or appreciated) outside of the UK, therefore I’m always craving traditional British dishes like roast dinners, pies and fish’n’chips. Plus, the staples like proper cheese, bacon and chocolate. Ironically, I also miss the British versions of foreign cuisine, such as British Chinese food and British Indian food.
However, the hardest part is leaving friends and family behind. Luckily, I’m blessed with amazing friendships and a loving family, so it feels like no time has passed when we get the chance to meet up. That said, it’s hard missing so many of the big birthdays, funerals, weddings, hen parties, engagements and baby showers etc. So, for the time being, I’ve moved back to the UK.
My Nominees for the Liebster Award
Lauren from The Strangelands
Tasha at Tashful
Richelle at Adventures Around Asia
Kate at Petite Adventures
Isabel at Bel Around the World
Sandra and The Puzzle of Sandra’s Life
Sam Sparrow on As the Sparrow Flies
Christina at Cava for Lunch
Lexx at Travelexx
Erin at Oregon Girl Around the World