Why Travel Beyond

I love to have new experiences and discover different places. I’ve always wanted to share my passion for travel with people and help others have those unforgettable experiences.

Destinations Visited

Africa: South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Morocco
Additional countries: The Maldives, United Arab Emirates, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy, London, U.S. Virgin Islands, and various parts of the U.S.

Education

Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management – Colorado State University

Career History

Manager at Courtyard Marriott – Jupiter, Florida

Where I’ve lived abroad

Florence, Italy

Most Memorable Travel Experience

When I was in Marrakech, Morocco, we were hiking near the Atlas Mountains and a small nomad family invited us into their home for traditional mint tea. They showed us their farm, and their grandmother made us all homemade mint tea, showing us the traditional way of making it. We then learned that the offering of mint tea is a sign of welcoming and hospitality in Morocco. That’s when I realized why I love traveling so much: experiencing all different forms of hospitality around the world and knowing that we are all connected in that way.

Most Recent Trip

In September 2021, I had the opportunity to travel to South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe with two of my colleagues. After three weeks visiting such diverse ecosystems, I was truly speechless. We experienced epic game viewing throughout the trip, spotting white lions in South Africa’s Timbavati, a leopard hunting 2 porcupines in Botswana, and, as a grand finale, 70 elephants making their way to a watering hole in Zimbabwe. Not only did we have memorable animal sightings, but we also enjoyed some incredible activities. In Botswana, it was two doors-off helicopter flights: one over the Okavango Delta and one over the vast Makgadikgadi Salt Pans. The rest of our time in the salt pans was spent horseback riding, quad biking, taking a walk with the local bushmen, spending a morning with habituated meerkats, and even coming across a brown hyena den. In Zimbabwe, we went boating on Lake Kariba with fishing rods and sundowner drinks in hand, and slept under the stars in Hwange National Park. I left Africa as I always do, in awe of this magnificent place and even more excited to return next time.

Favorite Properties

Lewa Wilderness

This lodge truly is your home away from home. From the moment you arrive, you are part of the Lewa Wilderness family. Located in the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, this is one of the only areas in Kenya where you are pretty much guaranteed to see rhinos (most days you can even see a rhino or two from the main lodge overlooking the hillside). Along with incredible wildlife viewing, the lodge offers many different activities in addition to game drives, including horseback & camelback riding, biplane scenic flights, walking safaris, community visits, and a visit to the conservancy’s anti-poaching unit headquarters. The biplane flight is something I will never forget and still one of my favorite experiences!

Ngala Tented Camp

This lovely property is located in the Timbavati Private Reserve, which is also home to the Big 5. I love the design of this camp as it pays homage to a traditional tented style accommodation, but adds just the right amount of luxury without being over-the-top. There is exceptional game viewing in this reserve as it shares an unfenced border with Kruger National Park. They also have a beautiful treehouse retreat for guests who want to enjoy a night sleeping under the stars!

San Camp

There is no place on earth quite like the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans. San Camp is a traditional colonial style tented camp that has all the necessities, but still allows you to appreciate your surroundings. This area is home to desert-adapted species and while you won’t see the masses of animals you may see in other areas of Africa, you will see very rare animals (brown hyena, aardwolf, aardvark, etc.). Along with game drives, other activities include quad biking on the salt pans, a walk with the local bushmen, scenic helicopter flights, a habituated meerkat experience, and horseback riding. I will never forget quad biking to the middle of the salt pans and experiencing the deafening silence and peacefulness.

Mashatu Euphorbia

The newest property to the Mashatu portfolio, this lodge is more like an oasis surrounded by Euphorbia trees overlooking the Majale River. The entire property is inspired by the natural elements that surround it. The Mashatu Game Reserve is leopard country and there was not a single game drive where we didn’t see at least one. Whether you spend an afternoon at the photographic hide, or enjoy a mountain biking excursion, there are plenty of activities for everyone!

Vumbura Plains

Located in the heart of the Okavango Delta, this gorgeous lodge has a contemporary feel and stunning views overlooking the flood plains. The setting, the game viewing, the staff, and the food all make for a wonderful experience here. There’s just something about the remoteness of the Okavango Delta that really comes through in this camp and makes it feel like a hidden gem.