Travel Insider: Carrie A. Mitchell
As part of the ‘travel insiders’ interview series, we draw inspiration from the famous Proust Questionnaire, where we will regularly share our own Q&A with women who either work in the industry or are serial travelers. (Other times we do this on our podcast Suitcase Sojourn) This week I introduce…myself!
Given I originally started this blog to share itineraries with friends, but later become more interested in capturing stories of fellow female travelers and their adventures in global travel and culture, I realized I never formally introduced myself. So hello, I am Carrie A. Mitchell! I am part communications & marketing executive (working with media, travel, hospitality, lifestyle) at my company Sonder Communications, and part journalist (writer, author, host, producer, podcaster) here on L’Aventure Travel and many other places (national publications, podcasts, syndicated tv news) on topics of travel and culture. I look forward to sharing more stories with you, would love to connect with you on social at @carrieamitchell @lavenuretravel, and attempted to answer the Q&A below…
Q: Where was the last Country you visited?
Canada (exotic, I know) to see family. I actually wrote my kids travel book for my little niece & nephew there
Q: Who or what inspires you to travel?
My unrelenting curiosity for other places, cultures, people. I grew up pouring over maps and copies of National Geographic, dreaming of the day where I could go see everything for myself. I envy roaming photojournalists that can embed themselves into a foreign place and capture those moments to share with us all. To this day, I am a big solo traveler, since I can take my time exploring, photographing, and connecting with other people. It is my favorite thing in life, and enriches the experience exponentially.
Q: What was a particularly memorable destination or cultural experience?
So many for different reasons, big and small. Probably:
- First backpacking trip across Europe at 19. It felt like freedom and the learning experience was invaluable. We hit everything between London & Istanbul.
- Spending an extended period of time in Asia on a few occasions, in Hong Kong, Shanghai & Bali
- Spending an extended period of time in Paris & the south of France to write/work
- Going to Chile with my childhood friend who was from there originally, so she could show me her family home. It doesn’t get better than exploring with a local!
- Shooting a documentary in Cuba circa 2009/10. Got to really spend time with the locals and a lot of musicians, we saw small changes happening on our different trips
- My favorite project ever: Working with The New Yorker and Destination Canada on a project covering 7 arts festivals across Canada circa 2011 (blogging, video, photography)
- All of my solo trips – had a great time exploring some family roots in Ireland – but I really love my road trips across North America and talking with people everywhere (we did a podcast episode on this of course)
Q: Do you have any favorite hotels and/or airline routes?
We talked about favorite local routes on the blog before. I generally fly Delta and Virgin America (rip) domestically, and Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines and Emirates really know how to fly internationally.
I used to work for Four Seasons (also discussed on the blog), and I still think they offer the best service anywhere. But I love the personality and style of so many other hotel lines, from the Hoxton franchise to Firmdale Hotels (does Soho House count too?)
Q: Where do you go to for recommendations, to research a destination? Does social media have an influence?
I flag articles I read, and save instagram posts that catch my eye from (*real*) travelers I trust. I ALWAYS research online….plan for spontaneity I say. I like having options, I put some things in place, and then I wander. I work in media and travel so I am always reading up on something!
Q: What is one fashion accessory or outfit you always pack? Any additional packing tips?
Lots of faves, I try to role up everything, and always travel with a small hand steamer. I pack light (mostly), it’s not fun lugging things around, and I try to only do carry on. I have listed some of my favorites in my Amazon store
Q. What destination(s) is still on your bucket list?
India, Japan, South Africa/Kenya/Tanzania….so many places, I want to see everything
Q: What advice would you give to would-be solo travelers to encourage an adventure?
Do it! It’s always an opportunity to learn, most surprisingly about yourself. Be open to opportunities, be street smart, have a loose plan, and keep things with you that make you happy in the quiet moments (books, music, etc)
Q. Finally, what is your travel motto?
Stay curious, keep learning, be open. “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page”
Author: Carrie Mitchell
Carrie Mitchell is the founder and content director of L’Aventure Travel. She has traveled to over 40 countries, is the host of the Suitcase Sojourn Podcast, and author of the children’s travel book “To Be We: The Adventures of Owen and Lucy”. A writer, producer, entrepreneur, and communications strategist, Carrie is always seeking to learn from people and places around the world.