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An update, and our plans for 2017

our plans for 2017 include more travel

We’ve just landed in Australia for a surprise visit home, so we thought we’d update you on our last few months, and our plans for 2017! 

After spending hours upon hours holed up in our tiny Melbourne apartment crafting our very first blog post, the thought of doing another 99 seemed daunting and impossible. Our first ever post, in all its awfulness, was to be the start of a long, life changing journey. This post was written long before we’d decided to quit our jobs to travel the world, and to be honest, we had no real strategy around what we were doing; we just knew we wanted to share stories of our adventures.

Stories are the currency of human relationships”

Fast forward to today, and we’re posting our 100th post.

At no point of writing our first post did we ever believe we’d be here, 15 months into an epic world over adventure and 100 posts down. Which kind of leads us to the here and now…

 

SO, WHERE ARE WE EXACTLY AND WHAT ARE WE DOING?

After all the travel in 2016 (28 countries, WHUT?!), we were utterly burnt out, both mentally and physically. The three months we spent in southern Africa were perhaps our favourite; a time when we both felt truly free (poor internet reception does that!). But deep inside we both had an unmistakable feeling that, despite how free we felt, we were actually over travel. Over the delays, over the transport, over the hassles, over the hustle, over not having a home, over the food and over meeting new people. There were times where we couldn’t bear to go outside, or to write, or to take photos. We felt ashamed – “we’re living our dream but we can’t enjoy it anymore”.

It was time for a change, a time to slow down and a time to allow us to fall in love with our passions again. So, after toying with the idea of living in Cape Town for summer, we decided to settle in London, to become ‘normal’ again for a short while, and use it as a base to explore as much of Europe and north Africa as possible.

Here in London we’ve settled into a relatively normal life; yep, we even have our own permanent room and dinners to cook every night. And we’re totally embracing the Netflix and chill phenomenon which we didn’t get to in 2016! We’ve made new friends, caught up with old ones, and we’re doing everything in our power to embrace the London life. We’re even accepting the weather.

We’ve also managed to visit two European cities, Porto and Barcelona, and have embraced #travellyf once again. Slowly but surely we’re falling in love with travel and sharing stories again.

While living in London, our focus is to build this, our little space onto the internet, into something much, much more. In November, we attended the World Travel Market and met a number of bloggers, photographers and freelancers who were making it happen and suddenly it all seemed within reach.

Now, we’ve finally got a clear strategy in place, and the knowledge and expertise to drive it forward. And we have time, glorious time! It’s kind of exciting, and we’re both really content with our decision to stop full time travel for a little while, and start focusing on us, our business and our passions.  

The view of London from London Eye

our plans for 2017 includes exploring more of London

A woman stands on Portobello road, London

our plans for 2017 include more mulled wine!

our plans for 2017 include more ice skating in winter

KEEP READING: 7 REASONS WHY YOU NEED TO TRAVEL WITH YOUR PARTNER

WHAT DOES 2017 HOLD FOR THE COMMON WANDERER? 

We’re really excited for 2017, both personally and for the blog. There’s something about the new year which leads to renewed motivation, and also allows the past to become just that. We’re no longer feeling burnt out from our full time travels, and we’ve now got a renewed lease of travel life.

New year, new life, right?

We’re really thrilled to live in and explore a new part of the world. Sure, we’ve both visited Europe too many times to remember (we spent six weeks travelling around Europe with Geckos Adventures in 2016!). BUT, we’ve never actually lived in the Northern Hemisphere! So, we’re really looking forward to the opportunity to explore the beautiful parts of Europe, the UK and London. Harry Potter museum, anyone?!

We’re also heading home for a very quick visit in Feb/March, where we’ll be working on a few cool projects, and catching up with family and friends. To say we’re excited for this would be a huge understatement! We can’t friggin wait.

Photography is a now a big part of our life, so we really want to continue to push the boundaries creatively. Whether those photos end up on the blog our Instagram is another story, but we’re all about learning the craft a little more. Oh, and reading more. We need to read more.

From a business point of view, we’re putting every ounce of effort into continuing to grow our blog and its channels this year. So far, we’ve had a record page views every month this year, our Instagram has surpassed 20k, and our other social media channels are growing quickly. It’s exciting! 

We’re approaching the rest of the year like a marathon; putting in the hard yards now and seeing where it takes us in 9 months. Hopefully to Olympic gold and beyond…

We’re also hoping to build on existing brand relationships and create some really amazing content in 2017. From there? Who knows!

Lookout for bigger and better things from The Common Wanderer in 2017! We can’t wait to take you along for the ride.

If you guys have any suggestions for us, please leave them in the comments below. We’re always on the hunt for somewhere new to visit.

As always, we can’t wait to take you along for the ride.

Much love,

Mark and Mim x

A man stands in front of the Porto sign in Praca da Liberdade, Porto

our plans for 2017 include visiting more European cities like Porto

Drinking Sangria in Ribiera, Porto

our plans for 2017 include more travel, like visiting Barcelona

KEEP READING: WHERE YOU NEED TO VISIT IN 2017!

#ICHOSETOWANDER - The Common Wanderer

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5 Comments

  • Reply
    April | April Everyday
    March 4, 2017 at 7:57 am

    I can’t wait to see what you have planned for the year. It’s always good to take a break sometimes and just chill out for a bit. I’m glad that you’ve found your love of travel again!
    xo April | April Everyday

    • Reply
      The Common Wanderer
      March 6, 2017 at 11:32 pm

      Aww thanks so much April. It’s taken a while but our love of exploring and adventure is back stronger than ever!

      All the best for your 2017 (or what’s left of it!)

      Mark and Mim x

  • Reply
    Birthe (from Wandering the World)
    March 6, 2017 at 3:33 pm

    It sounds like 2017 is going to be an awesome year for you guys! We really love your blog (wow, your photos!) and thought you guys already had everything figured out. 🙂 We’re still trying to grow our blog too, and though you guys seem all excited and motivated, we sometimes lose that drive. It comes with ups and downs, and sometimes I just don’t understand how everyone seems to grow their traffic except us. My bf says to have patience. We’ll be attending a travel conference (TBEX Jerusalem) for the first time in a few weeks, and we’re both excited and a little scared. 😀 Hopefully we can learn some new things there.

    If you ever decide on visiting Belgium, we’re from Hasselt! We haven’t written anything about our hometown on our blog yet, but are definitely planning on doing so (there should be more hours in a day). Hasselt is often skipped, but such a lovely town! Don’t hesitate to contact us when visiting! 😉

    • Reply
      The Common Wanderer
      March 6, 2017 at 11:32 pm

      Hey Birthe,

      Thank you for your lovely comment.

      We’ve found out you can never have everything figured out with a blog or small business – there is always more to learn! Your boyfriend is right, patience is the key :).

      We found WTM really beneficial and i’m sure you’ll find TBEX so. Just make sure you guys have your business cards ready to hand out to anyone and everyone!

      There is every chance we’ll be in Belgium later this year so if we’re around we’ll shout out. We love exploring smaller towns and Hasselt looks so cute!

      All the best for 2017,
      Mark and Mim x

  • Reply
    Lexi
    April 12, 2017 at 4:04 am

    I felt totally burnt out after our last long trip so I know how you feel. We took a couple of years to rest and now we’re counting down to leave again next year (mixing travel with living in different places).

    Blog wise, I think it’s great to stay in on place for a bit as you have more time to work on it. Hope you keep doing well 😀

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