Wanderlust Traveler | Gaynor from Tulips and Phoenixes

Gaynor has showcased #LocalTravelisLekker in the best way possible by exploring small towns and visiting local cafes and man, does she display local traveling as an endless adventure.

In my latest project, Wanderlust Traveler, I’ll be featuring travel bloggers and enthusiasts who constantly remind me how beautiful South Africa really is. They will be sharing their experience, photo essays and tips on local travel and, get you a little bit more excited to travel more.

1) Tells us more about Tulips and Phoenixes and, why you created your blog?

I started blogging in May 2014 as a means of showcasing my personal style. I changed my blog’s focus to South African travel and lifestyle in July last year and its honestly been the best decision I could’ve made. I actually did a post recently on why I shifted focus which you can read all about on my blog.

2) What does travel mean to you and, where does your love for travel come from?

Travel is a way of escaping the daily grind for me. It recharges my body and mind so I have to do it regularly to keep my sanity! My grandparents have always loved camping and even owned a fully kitted out camper. They always took me along on their trips and I think that’s when I realised what a beautiful place South Africa is.

3) What is your planning tips and budget tricks when going a holiday?

I’m a serial planner so extended getaways are always planned and booked in advance. That way I can take my time to ensure that I choose the right place by comparing rates and reading reviews to avoid disappointment. I also prefer traveling during off peak season as it’s less chaotic and obviously more affordable. When it comes to day trips though, I’m a bit more lenient and spontaneous as it wouldn’t be much fun otherwise!

4) Your most memorable trip and, why?

It’s hard to pick just one trip but I’d narrow it down to our trips to Madi-Madi Karoo Safari Lodge and Botlierskop Private Game Reserve. Both were unique South African experiences that are ‘sister’ reserves so the service was equally exceptional. But if you forced me to pick just one, it has to be Madi-Madi purely because of the game drive, river cruise and 100% South African menu we enjoyed during our stay. It really is a little slice of heaven tucked away in the hills of the Karoo.

5) Any general trends affecting travel these days?

I’m not one to watch or follow trends but I have noticed people preferring small towns more these days. Big cities will always attract more visitors but I’ve seen an increase in local travelers wanting to escape the city and experience the small town life.

6) Your favourite foods to eat while traveling?

I always make a point of visiting a local restaurant or little café in the area I’m exploring. You find the best food and service at these places. Farm stalls are also firm favourites for me. So I don’t really have a certain type of food that I favour while traveling just a belief that you have to eat where the locals are eating.

7) What equipment do you travel with?

My camera and iPhone are always on board!

8) Worst holiday so far and, why you won’t recommend it?

We went to Beaverlac a few years ago after having heard so much about it but nearly lost the life of our precious fur baby there. It was a very traumatic experience and we haven’t been back there since. It’s definitely a beautiful place but they could do with much stricter pet rules as vicious dogs running around are definitely not safe for anyone.

9) Any advice to people who would like to start traveling?

Just go! You can only wait so long and plan so much. Sometimes you just have to make a decision, pack up and head for the great outdoors. BUT start with a local getaway. Explore your own province and country first. We’ve got a tendency to think that an overseas holiday is better. Well, it’s not. I’m a ‘local is lekker’ believer because we’ve got way too many attractions and natural beauty in South Africa to overlook. Where else can you have an affordable 5 star holiday? Definitely not in Europe, I can guarantee you that!

10) Where can we find you? Social Links, Blog, etc

Until the next adventure.