Specialties

Regions: East Africa and Southern Africa
Travel Types: Luxury Travel, Adventure Travel, Active Travel, Expedition Travel, Family & Multi-Generational Travel, Kilimanjaro Treks, Romance & Honeymoon Travel, Primate Treks, Safaris, Mobile Safaris, Special Celebrations
Special Interests: Beach, City Tours, Conservation, History & Culture, Food & Wine, Eco-Tourism, Hiking & Walking, Nature & Wildlife, Photography

Destinations Visited

Africa: South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Tanzania (including summitting Mount Kilimanjaro), Kenya
Latin America: Peru and the Inca Trail, Costa Rica, Belize, and Mexico

Why I’m a Consultant

My love for travel has grown so much since I joined the Travel Beyond team. Prior to starting my career in the travel industry, I had traveled outside the country only a handful of times, including studying abroad in college. As a Travel Associate for a handful of years, I aided in the booking process alongside the travel consultants and producers. My experiences have led me to be inspired by travel and constantly expanding my knowledge on new destinations. After all, knowledge is power. As a Travel Consultant, I am eager to inspire others to travel to new destinations based on my own experiences and knowledge.

Education

BS in Marketing, Minnesota State Mankato

Career History

I began my career at Travel Beyond in 2014 as a Travel/Marketing Producer and quickly moved into a Travel Associate role. Here, I began assisting Travel Consultants with project management tasks and the organization of trips, strengthened my communication skills and my knowledge of the destinations in which we specialize. Each role has aided in my success as a Travel Consultant specializing in travel to Southern and East Africa.

Most Memorable Travel Experience

In September 2019, I embarked on a journey back to Tanzania, although this time was not meant for a jaw-dropping photographic safari, but rather to trek Mt. Kilimanjaro! In order to prepare for the adventure to the summit, I trained for about 5 months, and it paid off! I summited the mountain on September 29 at approximately 7:10am, and was awash in incredible emotion. The road was a long one, and I want people to know this trek isn’t easy. You must be physically and mentally fit to endure the long days, unpredictable weather and high altitude. While I have been an active person my entire life, I had never been above 14,200 feet before, which was very nerve racking. As long as you take each step slowly, or rather “pole pole” (“slowly slowly” in Swahili), your success rate will increase. If you love hiking, camping and the outdoors or enjoy a challenge, then Kilimanjaro should be added to your bucket list. I am already plotting which major hike I wish to accomplish next!

My Most Recent Trip

I recently returned from a personal vacation with my parents to South Africa. This was my first time travelling with them to Africa and their first time on the continent. It was such a special experience to show them some of the places I have fallen in love with since starting my career in travel. We began our journey in Cape Town where we marveled at the sheer beauty of the city with Table Mountain as the backdrop. We also enjoyed six nights of safari in two very different locations. Our first safari stop was in the Kalahari Desert at Tswalu the Motse. I had never been before and was amazed at its drastic landscape- red sand dunes, bright green foliage and a beautiful mountain range all encircling  the lodge. For our final stop, we flew into MalaMala Game Reserve, where we stayed at MalaMala Rattray’s. This was my second time to MalaMala and it never disappoints. The abundance of wildlife in this park is remarkable, making this stop the best grand finale!

Recommended Right Now

If Botswana is not on your bucket list, it should be! The country is a fantastic destination for those wanting to be off the grid and immersed in nature, be it  wildlife or the stars. The best time to visit, in my opinion, is June-September. With the rainy season having just ended,  the grasses are shorter, allowing better visibility of the wildlife. You may also have the opportunity to participate in water-based activities when the Okavango Delta is flooding. Botswana also offers access to one of the largest salt pans on the planet known as the Makgadikgadi Basin. This area has some very unique activities and cultural experiences. Another region that combines well is the Tuli Block, which attracts large herds of elephant and predators.

Favorite Properties

Karisia Walking Safaris (Kenya)

This is a unique walking safari through central Kenya. There are numerous itineraries to meet your needs and camels to carry all camp equipment from one location to the next. In addition to tracking wildlife, you will gain a insight into animal behavior and the land on which they live. Walking safaris are one of the purest ways to explore the African bush- sans engine rumbles. The camp is minimalistic, but the experience embodies our definition of luxury.

Serian Camps (Kenya & Tanzania)

Owned and operated by Alex Walker, one of East Africa’s top guides. Serian camps offer a private vehicle and guide for every booking, which is a big value add. All of the Serian camps are small and intimate. They each project a real home away from home vibe and none of them offer Wi-Fi, a conscious decision to keep you unplugged and in the moment.

Jack’s Camp (Botswana)

Located in the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, the offering here is quite unique. Situated on the fringes of a salt pan roughly the size of Switzerland, you get really interesting wildlife, include brown hyena and notably the habituated meerkats. You’ll also notice elephants who are quite large, a result of the land’s mineral content. There’s also a unique San Bushmen experience and the opportunity to quad bike into the middle of the pans. Out there, it’s completely devoid of life, noise and light pollution. Stars pack the sky from horizon to horizon. It’s a magical and spiritual destination.