Empowerment Series: Founder & CEO, Latino World Travelers, Vanessa Fondeur-Adams Shares Travel Adventures with AW
The first time I boarded a flight alone, I felt an inexplicable level of anxiety. The idea of leaving my comfort zone, separating myself from everything I knew was daunting. Up to that point, I never traveled alone, as you can imagine, a trip from New York to Montana seemed crazy. Looking back, my favorite part of traveLorganizes beautiful travel experiences for people looking to make connections and create memories around the globe. The CEO & Founder of LWT, Vanessa Fondeur-Adams has visited 29 countries in 6 continents and 33 U.S. States. The entrepreneur is a citizen of the world with a vast amount of knowledge about world travel. Latino World Travelers'(LWT) Instagram is filled with stunning photographs displaying Vanessa’s stories, as well as, the stories of people’s lives that she has touched.
Many of us look forward to the day, we can resume travel without fear of a looming pandemic. Right now, the nostalgia of planning and executing a special voyage somewhere new seems far away but after my conversation with Vanessa, I felt comfort remembering traveling is worth the wait.
How has travel changed you? Is there one major lesson you have learned about yourself during your travels? I come from the Dominican Republic, raised in a strict household. I barely got the chance to step outside the lower-level balcony space in our home. Traveling the globe has allowed me to see a world of possibilities. It has provided the opportunity to share lots of adventures with friends and family, join other communities to extend my network.
Are you a solo traveler? What are your thoughts on women traveling alone? Yes!! I fully support solo travel! I was lucky to get the chance to travel abroad, first, as a teacher then independently. Traveling on your own is a unique experience that we should all try to do. Putting ourselves in a different space, stepping outside one’s comfort zone offers growth. My travels have taken me to Spain, Morocco, China, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, the list goes on. Don’t wait for other people to decide for you, take advantage of the world at your feet. Plan that trip, of course, safety first on any trip taken. It’s important to take precautions, steps to make sure you are safe, research the places you want to visit, look at maps, ask your network of resources the questions that will help your trip be more successful. Once you get to your destination, make sure to regularly contact your family on a daily.
What is the most memorable trip you have taken? Years ago, I remember spinning a globe and committing to the first city I pointed to, a life-changing moment. The trip that has inspired me most with the biggest impact on my life was Australia. It is a lengthy 22-hour journey but totally worth it! I enjoyed a dive in the barrier reef without knowing how to swim! There were three training sessions involved but my determination and desire to get it right paid off in the end – what a view! The New Years’ Eve fireworks in Sydney were magical – unforgettable.
Funny story, there was a mixup on my return date to the states, coincidentally, as life would have it the person that helped me resolve my travel issues, is my husband today!
Would love you to recommend the top 3 places to visit for women on a journey to finding themselves and looking to have an experience that leaves them inspired? If you can, please share the why? Choosing a location to visit from so many amazing places is tricky. I’d say the first time could be made easier if you choose a place where there won’t be a language barrier. As a Latina, I suggest, Spain because there is so much to do and see. Barcelona, Madrid, Toledo are beautiful and easily accessible by train – gorgeous cities! The other location I’d recommend is Jordan, the people are incredibly welcoming. Sleeping in the desert under the stars, being able to have the Dead Sea in front of your eyes is indescribable. Lastly, China which I have visited three times for its rich culture, delicious food, and magnificent sites. The last time I traveled there, I took my mom and had such an emotional breakthrough. I looked at my life, a girl that came to the US from the Dominican Republic who never imagined traveling the world. I was experiencing life through world travel and being in China with my mom and felt like an incredible blessing.
In your opinion, what is the # 1 place to visit in the United States? California! I took a spectacular solo road trip up the coast that I will never forget. You have to experience it to appreciate all it has to offer.
I like ending AW’s interviews with a positive message. What advice can you give women that are considering solo travel, once, it’s safe to travel again? Do it! Life is short, take advantage of the moments now while you can, stop waiting for people to being your adventures. You will be happy that you did!
Traveling alone can seem intimidating with new cities, people, and circumstances alien to anything you may be used to but don’t shy away from the experience out of fear. Vanessa has a long travel resume. She has indulged in rich cultures, customs, and made friends all over the world. Life is a gift that we should treasure and enjoy while we have it. I will be planning my first international trip, soon as it is safe to take to the skies! Ladies, let’s do it!
In the meantime, Vanessa is hosting the first Latino Travel Fest on March 20 and 21, 2021. Enjoy a 2-day, interactive festival that includes virtual workshops, panels, music, cultural experiences, meet & greet with sponsors, networking with participating attendees.
Hope you are inspired to plan that dream trip!
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