Reaching 30 Countries by 30
Travel has always been a huge part of my life, practically since birth. From my first trip at a month old to Peru, I continued visiting Peru on a yearly basis to visit family. Over time this expanded to visiting other countries such as the Bahamas, Aruba, and Argentina. Little by little the travel bug within me grew and grew. So much so that I even traded in having a Quinceñeara for my first trip ever to Europe. I also gave up a Sweet Sixteen for a trip to China. These two trips really solidified that I would be traveling for a long time to come. Although reaching 30 countries by 30 wasn’t the original goal, it slowly became so over time.
The journey has not been easy or so straight forward. It actually wasn’t even until about two years ago that I had the goal of reaching 30 countries by 30. It started off unexpectedly just out of curiosity of wanting to visit different countries that I hadn’t been to before and knew very little about. I’ll have to admit that Instagram was part of what inspired me to want to see so many of the beautiful places that exist in the world.
Once I made this goal, I actually realized I only needed five more countries to visit to reach it. So what countries did I actually visit? I’ll start with a list to name them all.
Countries I’ve visited:
- United States (32 states so far)
- Peru 1992 (my most visited country)
- The Bahamas 2002 (Disney Cruise)
- Switzerland 2007
- Germany 2007
- The Netherlands 2007
- Belgium 2007
- France 2007
- England 2007 (all 6 of these were for my Quinceañera trip)
- Argentina 2007 (family trip throughout the country)
- China 2008 (Beijing, Shanghai, Xian)
- Hong Kong 2008 (these 2 were for my Sweet Sixteen trip)
- Uruguay 2009 (during my summer long trip to Buenos Aires)
- Aruba 2010 (senior year of high school)
- Spain 2011 (first time visiting Barcelona during a college course)
- Morocco 2013 (first visit to Marrakech during my study abroad in Paris, France)
- Senegal 2013-14 (New Years with my cousin during my study abroad to Paris)
- Costa Rica 2014 (internship in Monteverde and traveled around the country)
- Italy 2015 (Venice, Verona, Bologna, and Padua)
- Canada 2018 (Montreal on a girls trip, then Vancouver when I visited my cousin)
- Cuba 2016 (visited Havana and Varadero with a friend I met while living in Lima, Peru)
- Chile 2016 (solo trip to Santiago and Valparaiso during my time in Lima, Peru)
- Colombia 2017 (Medellin, Ipiales, San Agustin, Santa Marta, Cartagena)
- Panama 2017 (San Blas, Panama, el Valle, Bocas del Toro. These 2 were part of a 7 week solo trip)
- Egypt 2019 (recreated a photo my grandmother took back in 1992)
- Ireland 2021(Dublin, Cork, Cobh, Cliffs of Moher)
- Dominican Republic 2021 (Punta Cana)
- Hungary 2021 (Budapest, Debrecen)
- Slovakia 2021 (Bratislava, Devin)
- Austria 2021 (Vienna)
- Mexico 2022 (Mexico City)
It’s easy to look back at this list and think it was easy to get here. It definitely took a lot of time and certain sacrifices. If you’re curious to know more about what I mean with sacrifices you can read my post, “I Wish I Could Travel Like You Do” to get a better idea of what I mean.
Because I want to be transparent with you, I’m letting you know that every trip up until Costa Rica was financed by my parents. For my internship to Costa Rica, my parents did pay for the flight, but because it was paid, I financed the rest of my trip with what I made by working. I was 22 at the time and still had one more year of college left.
Tips I’ve learned along the way
After visiting 5 continents and now 31 countries, as I finish up this post, I want to tell you about some lessons I’ve learned from these various trips.
- Go where you want to go
- It’s okay to go alone
- Group/friend trips can have solo time components
- Locals can be very friendly and helpful
- It’s usually better to avoid changing money in the airport
- Always carry a water bottle and a lock & key
These are a few that immediately come to mind but that have definitely come up often over the years. Overall through travel you can just expect to grow. Whether it’s as a person, an individual, in a relationship, as a citizen of the world. The growth possibilities are endless.
I don’t know what the future holds or where I’ll end up, but I’m excited about the unknown ahead. Even if you do not have the same goal I did I hope I’ve inspired you to want to travel and see more of this beautiful world that we live in. I’d love to hear about where you’re planning to go next in the comments!
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Viaja more y live más,