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A self-taught photographer and the founder of travel and lifestyle site, Spirited Pursuit, Lee Litumbe was born in Cameroon and adopted the United States as her home. Spirited Pursuit curates stories not only about Lee’s travels, but other travelers’ as well. Want to travel to Africa but don’t know where to start? Her site has guidebooks for that. She decided to combine her passion for travel, photography and writing and created her travel site after a bad relationship and being stuck in a dead-end job left her struggling with depression and low self-esteem. Her instagram pictures of her travels through countries like Senegal, South Africa, Bermuda, France, Haiti, and different states in the U.S., will lift you straight out of a gloomy mood.
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You can learn more about a country and its people if you don’t follow the guide books word for word during your travels. Ashley Renne, a professional photographer, videographer and video editor, runs a travel blog that will give you the ins and outs of immersing yourself in the local culture of any place you visit, by going beyond the beaten path instead of just sticking to the usual tourist haunts. The travel bug first bit Ashley over 10 years ago when she studied abroad in Egypt and, as she says, “fell in love with the thrilling feeling of being in another country and experiencing a culture completely different from my own.” Since then she has traveled the world and will make you want to do the same with her breathtaking and carefully styled Instagram pictures. Ashley also takes glamping to a whole new level, road tripping around the country and camping in her Tesla. You can ride along with her by catching her well-documented adventures on YouTube.
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Oneika Raymond’s glorious Instagram images will make you want to grab bae and dash off on a romantic getaway or roundup the girlfriends for a girls’ trip. She is an award-winning blogger and travel journalist who has traveled to over 100 countries on six continents. Oneika is also the host of two Travel Channel digital shows called Big City, Little Budget and One Bag and You’re Out. Wanna live it up in New York City or San Francisco but are on a shoestring budget? Head over to Facebook and watch Oneika break down in Big City, Little Budget how you can stretch that budget and still enjoy the best of what some of the most expensive cities in the United States have offer. In One Bag and You’re Out, also on Facebook, she gives you helpful tips on how to travel the world with just one suitcase. “If you can’t carry your own luggage, you’ve packed too much,” says Oneika.
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As a young girl growing up in foster care in Connecticut, Tanyka Renee Henry’s dream was to live in New York City and travel the world. There was a lot of darkness in her life, which she didn’t understand but knew she had to escape. She would hop on her bike and cycle from town to town, exploring. When she signed her first modeling contract at 13 and was flown to Paris, she began living her dream. To date she has traveled to 53 countries and says Nigeria was one of her most memorable destination. “When I went to Nigeria, it was the first time I had seen so many people who looked like me in one place. It was empowering,” she told ESSENCE in 2017 when she was honored as one of 15 Black millennial disruptors who are creating a new definition for success. Besides experiencing new cultures when she travels, Tanyka’s biggest reward is inspiring young Blacks to know they can go anywhere they want.
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Gloria Atanmo graduated college in 2013 and bought a one-way ticket to Barcelona, Spain. She has not looked back since, and has seen 61 countries, a third of the world. Growing up she never imagined that traveling, let alone traveling for a living, was a possibility for her. But, like a lot of our favorite travelers, Glo, as she is known, got her first taste of traveling the world when she studied abroad in England in her senior year of college. Her Instagram shots exude such joy, her beaming face will have you smiling with her. She has written an e-book, From Excuses to Excursions: How I Started Traveling the World, in which she talks about everything that has led up to where she is today. Her blog will inspire you to put on your traveling shoes and hit the road.
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It’s been a year since Ciara Johnson, a Houston, Texas, native, held a full-time office job. Back then Ciara worked in human resources, a position she had held since graduating from college with a bachelor’s degree in business management. It just was not her thing, so she decided to make a change. “I started saving up while I was working because I knew that I wanted to travel long term. I quit my job a year ago, bought a one-way ticket to Mexico and started traveling. I’m still going,” she told ESSENCE. Ciara, who travels around the world solo, was introduced to traveling by her mother who used to send Ciara and her brother on summer camps away from home. Ciara advises followers of her travel blog to start by traveling locally if they don’t have funds for international trips. “Even if you’re going to a town an hour away or to the next state, that will eventually lend itself to greater travel opportunities when the time comes,” she says.
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Being deaf has not stopped these London-based twins from getting out there and seeing the world. Hermon and Heroda Berhane have been deaf since they were seven. One day they were playing outside in Eritrea, where they were born with normal hearing, and the next moment they had mysteriously gone deaf at the same time. They don’t see their deafness as a disability because it has heightened their other senses. In 2017 they took on the challenge to travel to 12 countries to inspire deaf and Black people who wouldn’t normally travel to see more of the world. Their Instagram pictures, where they are often in matching outfits, will make you start packing that suitcase to collect stamps on your passport.
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As the author of the world’s first English guide to traveling through the French-speaking island of Martinique, Francesca Murray is the authority on Caribbean travel. She started traveling at a young age with her parents and her first international trip was to Honduras, visiting the village where her grandmother grew up. While she was in college she went to study abroad in Italy in 2009, and that was when she knew for sure she wanted to travel the world. She highly recommends that college students take advantage of study abroad programs. After graduating with a journalism degree she taught English in France for a year. She returned to the United States and worked in marketing for two years, but she was not fulfilled and felt like she was suppressing the wanderer in her. So she set off to Martinique to teach English. Since then she has traveled to over 20 countries and she is not about to stop. She hopes to make Martinique her second home one day, and when you see her dreamy Caribbean pictures, you will understand why.
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Kellee Edwards does not have to worry about booking flights for her travels because she is a pilot. She can rent an aircraft and fly herself to her destination. She is only the second Black woman in history to have her own show on the Travel Channel. On her series, Mysterious Islands, which debuted in October 2017, Kellee, who is also a scuba diver, travel journalist, and describes herself as an explorer and adventurer, explores remote islands by land, air and sea. As a young kid traveling with her mother from South Central Chicago to California on a Greyhound bus, she saw mountains for the first time and knew then that she wanted to see more of the wold. Now she gets to marvel at beautiful scenery from high up in the clouds, which is iron for someone who is afraid of heights. Kellee knows that she is blessed is giving back by offering free introductory flying lessons to a few young minority women.
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How to get paid to travel. How to travel for almost free. How to make your first $1k as an online influencer. These are just some of the tips and tricks you will learn when you follow Rachel Hill. She is not only about sharing her travel pics, but also about empowering the sisterhood to do what she does. After suffering from Anxiety Disorder and Depression, Rachel retired from a six-figure job in corporate America at the age of 27 to travel the world, starting with backpacking through South East Asia. She uses knowledge gained through her MBA in marketing and four years of experience traveling solo to make a success of the nomadic life she chose. She has been to every continent, except Antarctica.
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