11 Black Women Inspiring Us to Travel

by Arielle Loren

Before I owned my first passport, before I chose a life of seeing the world, before I understood the privilege of traveling, there was my first travel influence: my maternal aunt. A researcher and university professor, she’d travel across Africa, sending me Sankofa bird bracelets, petite dresses made of vibrant fabrics, hand-painted cloth dolls, and other keepsakes that constantly reinforced my young desire to see the world.

There is power in having your first travel inspiration be a black woman.

I could easily see myself in her, unlimited in curiosity, hungry for knowledge, and seeking the wisdom of the African Diaspora. But inspiring me from afar wasn’t enough. Before I was even a teenager, she took me on my first international trip, Ghana, West Africa, delivering the first-hand experience of experiencing a foreign culture and teaching me the connection it had to my own. But also, the journey left a spark inside me to travel again and again throughout college and now as an independent adult.

The women below have ventured to almost every corner of the earth, launching careers based in travel and inspiring numerous black women to just pick up and go. In the world of travel media, it’s not everyday that you witness black women hosting travel shows, international documentary series, or cultural expedition blogs. Thus, these women break the norm and want to inspire you to get your passport, book an international flight, or venture to a new place. They are you, in many ways, ready to deliver the lessons, adventures, and joys of traveling to foreign places.

Andrea and Teri are the founders of Travelista TV, the premiere online travel channel for adventure, culture, cuisine, music, parties, and star-studded events. As MBA graduates of Florida A&M University, the two met as classmates, coordinating their spring break trips to destinations around the world and developing videos of their travel. After receiving positive feedback, they enrolled in night classes on filmmaking, formed partnerships with Uptown Magazine, AOL Black Voices, and Interactive One, and eventually, left their jobs to pursue Travelista TV full-time. Andrea has traveled to over 35 countries, and speaks Italian and French. Teri has traveled to over 45 countries, and speaks Spanish, French, and conversational Italian. Watch past episodes of Travelista TV to see these two travel aficionadas hit everywhere from Mali, West Africa to Croatia.


Evie Robbie
is the founder of Nomad·ness, the reality show of one woman, with one perspective, traveling one country at a time. Through these journeys, she explores urban life around the world through art, music, food, local pastimes, and volunteer causes unique to each place she travels. Hands down, Nomad·ness is the travel show for the young traveler, adventurous enough to sleep in a tent at a Berlin hip-hop festival (yes, she did it) or travel in the rain through the ruins of Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Watch past episodes of Nomad·ness for some lively inspiration!


Ariana Proehl
is the creator, producer, and host of the online talk show Know This!, which features interviews, news, and pop culture commentary with a smart and socially conscious point a view. As a speaker, writer, and entrepreneur, she is a “jill of all trades” with a resume that includes work in non-profit, government, philanthropy, self-help, modeling, and the arts. Currently, she is venturing across the United States on a 16-city tour to expose Know This! viewers to next generation voices doing work with passion and purpose. Her work proves that not every trip has to be outside of the country to gain inspiration. Watch past episodes of Know This! to see what’s going on in your world, right here in the United States.

Dash Harris is the filmmaker behind “Negro,” a documentary series that chronicles real-life testimonies of the African Diaspora in Latin America. As a Black Latina, she laments that Afro-Latinos have been invisible and often misunderstood. In the series, she explores the history and present attitudes of race, color, self-identification, and social interaction among Latinos from Latinos themselves. Through candid interviews, you’ll see the good, bad, ugly, and absolute beauty of Latinos’ perceptions of their culture. And hopefully, learn something new about this complex racial demographic. Check out Dash’s work at VenusGenus.com. The series’ trailer is coming soon.

Oneika Raymond is the Canadian blogger behind Oneika the Traveller and a language educator. With an intense passion for travel, culture, and language, she’s visited approximately forty countries and taught at international schools in France, Mexico, and China. She’s currently trekking through Central America in route to live in her next destination, London. Oneika is fluent in English and French, but remains a student a Spanish and speaks a few words of German. She offers a “practical” inspiration for living abroad with international education as a career, and posts beautiful photos and compelling descriptions of her travels. Follow Oneika’s journeys here.

Kiratiana Freelon is the author of Kiratiana’s Travel Guide to Black Paris and the blogger behind Kiratiana Travels: Let A Black Girl Show You the World. Prior to graduating, the Harvard alum landed a $20,000 fellowship to travel the world and create a series of travel guides to destinations in the African Diaspora. She set out to countries like Senegal, Guinea-Conakry, Ghana, Burkina Faso, and Gambia, which opened her eyes to things you typically don’t see on American TV- houses of strong extended families, gorgeous fabric, and kind people. After four months in Brazil, a year in Paris, working for the Olympics for three years, and numerous other travels, she completed her book and hopes to continue producing “Black” travel guidebooks. Follow her adventures at KiratianaTravels.com.

Tracey Coleman is a storyteller, art director, and travel junkie from South Carolina who landed in New York seven years ago and hasn’t looked back since. The blog Brooklyn Travel Addict chronicles her adventures from Ghana, West Africa to Martha’s Vineyard. She was nominated in the Best Travel Blog category for the Black Weblog Awards, and continues to write with the authentic voice of a newly minted international traveler. Follow her on Brooklyn Travel Addict.

Johnica Reed is a certified jet-setter and go-to girl for global living in a digital world. As a self-proclaimed gadget junkie and early adopter, she was named one of HP’s Tech Tastemakers and works as a cool hunting consultant. From South Africa to Haiti, to China and back, she touts over 200,000 frequent flyer miles each year between clients and creative projects. She also teaches courses for Mediabistro and has been featured in Jetsetter, EBONY, and branded campaigns launched by American Airlines. Currently, Johnica is the VP of Social Media at Buzz Marketing Group. Follow her Tumblr musings at JohnicaReed.com.

Jennifer Poe is the blogger behind Imported Chocolate, your online go-to travel haven. She describes her readers as the college student planning a semester abroad, the girl who just broke up with her commitment-deficient boyfriend, and the employee in a dead-end job that has always fantasized about getting away. In the past, she penned the blog, Hola Morocha: A Black Girl’s Guide to Buenos Aires, which detailed her experience living abroad in Argentina. Currently, she focuses on providing tips for travelers and interviews with women living abroad. Get inspired at Imported Chocolate.

Suhaly Bautista is an environmentalist or “earth warrior” dedicated to advocating for the planet. Recently, she worked with Amigos de las Americas on a volunteer project in Paraguay to empower local youth to express themselves through the arts. She’s currently backpacking through South America, and thus far, has visited Peru, Ecuador, Argentina, and more. As she updates her Tumblr with her recent travels, follow her here for beautiful pictures and visual stimulation to pursue your own travel dreams.

 

Feeling inspired? Which of the ladies above are your favorites? And what’s your new dream destination? Speak on it.

  • PGS

    love this! I check for Nodmadness, Brooklyn Travel Addict, & Kiratiana. I will check out the others as well. Thanks!

  • whilome

    I’m sitting here crying.

    Thanks for this feature. I’m so proud of these sistas. I’ve just started traveling a year or so ago and the Travelistas’ trip to Mali is making me want to book the next flight to the motherland. ‘Bout to be on it.

  • LemonNLime

    LOVE THIS! I had no idea there were so many blog dedicated to black women traveling! And I LOVE the idea of a travel show hosted by a black woman!

  • Simplyme

    Wow…Thank you! Glad to know there are so many other black women globe trekking. I thought my girls and I were the only ones who did this. LOL These women really make me think about moving out of USA permanently.

  • http://twitter.com/nitadee Danita

    Stellar, super inspiring piece–love seeing moxied ladies trailblazing! Thanks, Clutch :)

  • http://www.littleblackvillage.org LittleBlackVillage

    Thank you so much for sharing this article. I truly believe that many more African Americans need to get out of their comfort zones and see the world and represent. It’s good to know that there are many blogs out there encouraging black women, and black men by default, to travel more!

  • http://www.womenworking.com/ KeshaSparks

    That’s really great!!!
    Glad to know there are so many other black women are achieving so much. I thought my girls and I were the only ones who did this.

  • Teofilia

    Dash=awesomeness. tis’ all

  • okthen

    This is a great post. Thanks Clutch. Keep more articles like these coming.

  • SAA

    awesome article!

  • k

    I love this! I love nomad-ness and will def check out the others. I’ve been debating going a abroad again..and this time alone…here’s my inspiration! I’m soooo in love with the Diaspora and want to explore it more. These sites will be great resources.

  • UrbanTravelBug

    Kudos! What joy and inspiration it brings me to read about such women and their passion for travel. Thank you for the article it has definitely inspired me to work my way to be part of that list.

  • http://www.AbsoluteTravelAddict.com April Thompson

    Love this! Great to see some of my fave fellow brown girl travelers here! Keep doing your thing and inspiring us all!

  • http://twitter.com/drewshane Drew-Shane

    Love Kiratiana & Dash!

    Also, forgot to add Arielle Loren. You’re very inspiring yourself. Keep up the great work!

  • Nadell

    They are all sooo inspiring! It absolutely gives me great joy & motivation!!!

  • AJ

    I’m a Black woman who travels, so THANK YOU for this article! The world is beautiful (and far less hostile to Black women than America is), so get out there, ladies!

  • http://www.motravels.com Mo Travels

    Great to see these wonderful ladies featured. As I always say, “enjoy the journey”.

  • D-Chubb

    I’d love to travel more, but I’m low on the cash. Is anything out there for sistahs on a budget?

  • http://blackbridalbliss.com/ Bridgette Bartlett

    LOVE this! Thanks for this article CLUTCH.

  • http://blackbridalbliss.com/ Bridgette Bartlett

    L-O-V-E this, Clutch!

  • http://www.one3snapshot.com ceecee

    I’d like to add K* who blogs at from india –with love http://fromindia–withlove.blogspot.com/

  • EssDot323

    I’ve been dying to travel so this article came just in time. Thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/nicolenewblack nicoleisthenewblack

    So excited to see my girls up there repping for all the travel bloggers of color out there. Great feature and I discovered some new ones :)
    On a regular I check for the Travelistas, Nomad.ness (warm spot in my heart cause she loves my city, Berlin), Tracy and my home-girl Oneika!!! If you guys ever are interested in featuring black american expats be sure to check me out!

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    You all are really making my day! Much love to all the ladies, sites, movements mentioned. And a thank you to Arielle for the article, as well as everyone checking for Nomad•ness TV. You all rock my f&*ing world!

    -Evie

  • http://www.blackchickontour.com Black Chick on Tour

    Love This!! Love the Travelista Girls, and seeing other Black Chicks turning into travel bugs. I’m going to check this other ladies out.

  • http://twitter.com/fabgirltravel Fab Gabby

    We love this post! Perhaps we can make the list next time :) #fabtravels

  • http://twitter.com/fabgirltravel Fab Gabby

    We love this post! Hopefully we can make the list next time :) #fabtravels

  • Jazzy

    This article was RIGHT on time. I swear Im sitting at work daydreaming, and I just made a list of places I wanted to go and things I wanted to see. Then I came to get my daily fix of clutchmagonline.com and I see this. I know now that travling is something I really need to do.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Julienne-Brown/8901586 Julienne Brown

    Great piece! I’ve been following Johnica for awhile & her tales are inspiring! S/O to Brooklyn Travel Addict – Tracey ..who is a good friend of mine. Good job, ladies! I’m an avid traveler myself & I love that we are encouraging other brown people to get out & do the same! :)

  • KC

    Awesome!

  • http://importedchocolate.wordpress.com/2011/09/12/imported-chocolate-finds-live-the-language-part-ii/ Jennifer

    What an honor to be listed in this article! Congrats to the other ladies as well! Imported Chocolate has some good stuff coming!!

  • noirwallflower

    This is fabulous! I really hope to travel after I finish school and seeing these women makes me want to do it more.

  • http://thegericurl.blogspot.com Geri A

    One Word: INSPIRED!

  • http://www.onebrowngirl.com One Brown Girl

    All of these ladies do a WONDERFUL job of inspiring world travel. It is absolutely awesome. =)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hareema-Akinak/100000531851239 Hareema Akinak

    So glad you wrote this article, Arielle! I am a fan of Oneika the Traveller, but now have a bunch of other travel/expat blogs to read! :D

  • http://oneika-the-traveller.blogspot.com Oneika the Traveller

    This article is FABULOUS and I am honoured to be included in such a list of intrepid female travellers! Us sisters are showing that we can and DO travel (at the moment I am sitting in the airport, waiting for my flight to Chile)! Thanks so much for featuring us, Arielle (who is doing it up big in BRAZIL)!

  • Amber

    I love the article but I would like to ask, how can people afford this??? I’m a recent graduate with an MSW and 40,000 in loans. I come from a family that has always been okay living paycheck to paycheck, so I don’t have the support of family and don’t have the funds to do this. It’s very frustrating.

  • okthen

    How about a post for cash strapped sistahs who wish to travel? Can anyone provide some travel hacks?

  • BigBertha

    This great and positive! I hope to be in their shoes one day.
    Can anyone give advice of what country I should head out to first?

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Let’s talk! I was the person who graduated right out of school and instead of a job, I traveled. Hit me through the site http://nomadnesstv.com.

    -Evie

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Definitely do it. That’s right when I started!

    -Evie

  • http://www.internationalblack.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    You may also want to check out my website, which is geared towards encouraging more African-American students to study abroad.

    Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, planning is key, so – though it may be too late for you personally – maybe you know of someone (high school junior/senior or college freshman) who has the urge to step out of their comfort zone, but needs advice and support when it comes to gathering the relevant info (incl tips on financing), developing a feasible action plan, and gaining access to role models who’ve already done it. Successfully!

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    It depends on how much culture shock you’re willing to endure. If you still want a bit of familiarity to ease into it, I’d say Europe. If you’re ready for the gusto, I’d recommend Asia, particularly South East Asia because it’s cheap.

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    You’re dope! ;-)

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    You rock! Thanks for the love on the site!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://www.internationalblack.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    I really believe everyone’s personal journey is unique, so no one can tell you which country will be best for you.

    - What country has already sparked your interest (e.g. via their history, culture or music)?
    - What languages do you already speak or feel inspired to learn?
    - What country has an excellent track record where your field of study is concerned?

    Those are just a few of the questions you should be asking yourself.

    To hear some first hand accounts of young sisters who have recently taken the leap (I took my – 1st – personal leap way back in 1972) check out this link: http://tinyurl.com/64sgnwq

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Hey there!!!! Sending some gratitude your way for the shout out!! Dope that you stop by the site!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Yup it’s called South East Asia! lol. Hit me through the site. May have some ideas for you.

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • Zoe

    @Amber I was wondering the same thing, because I’m in a similar situation. This summer I got the opportunity to do a 3 month internship in Bangladesh and it was the best experience in my life. I was fortunate enough to have the company I was working for pay for all of my expenses. I am not working right now and being back in the U.S. is so boring I would love to find more opportunities to travel the world while making money at the same time.

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Berlin in the house!!! Ummm. I’m obsessed! You have no idea. Tacheles alone sold me. Have you seen the Pilot episode?
    Thanks for the site love!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://stylishthought.com Fajr | Stylish Thought

    This article is right on time! I have seriously been considering solo travel to stop waiting on others and get out and see the world. Seeing these young black women travel, explore and learn different languages is so encouraging. Now to find my passport and get some stamps!

  • http://kinksandart.tumblr.com Paris

    Love this! I love to travel and I love to actually do things while traveling other than lay on a beach or by the pool for 5 days. Lol. I love to be adventurous and explore and find out more about the food and culture of the places I go. Many times my travel companions are not happy about this (lol) but I usually convince them.

    Can’t wait to check out these blogs.

  • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

    I have been travelling from a very young age with my family, but started paying for some of my trips when I was in college. It takes lots of planning, budgeting, searching for deals, and being creative. It may take a while for you to go on a trip, but it is possible. Now, it is a little easier, financially, for me to travel so I am able to go further and for longer periods of time.

  • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

    This comment is in response to Amber.

  • http://importedchocolate.wordpress.com Jennifer

    Hi Amber!
    I am currently working on a free Ebook that answers your question. Stay tuned! When I first started traveling I was working 3 jobs to make it happen. It’s easier than you think! :0)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Stacy-Australia/45504695 Stacy Australia

    First and foremost these are some BEAUTIFUL women!!!! Omg, they are gorgeous. Ok, so now that I have that out the way…

    Thanks Arielle your writing always inspire me. I’ve always wanted to travel. I never knew where I wanted to go but I just wanted to go. Unfortunately, I did not grow up in an environment where traveling was the norm. I went to college an hour away from home and was always greeted with “Why you live all the way up there?” I didn’t know it was possible to travel outside of the South until entered college. I didn’t know it was feasible until a few years ago when I met women like me who’ve traveled all over. Now I know it’s possible. I am not quite sure when but I am planning a trip to travel around the world. Thanks again for this article.

  • http://thewanderlustproject.com Sheryl

    I love this list! Thank you for featuring all of these lovely ladies.

    As I get ready to embark on a round the world trip of my own, these women all inspire me and let me know that what I’m doing is the right thing. Travel is cleansing, it educates and inspires. Thank you again!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Angela-Myers/810385397 Angela Myers

    I love this article. Each and every one of these ladies inspired me! I hope to use their experience and travel wisdom to map out my own life as a habitual traveler!

  • LurkerG

    Y’all missed one:

    http://1browngirl.blogspot.com/

    Tracy Friley organizes Passport parties for young girls to get their passports. She is always, constantly on the grind to encourage travel amongst our female youth. Please highlight her. She is amazing and such an inspiration to me.

    *bookmarking this page*

    Thank you for highlighting those you have shown.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Renee-Adolphe/806504285 Renee Adolphe

    Thank you so much, Arielle, for writing this article. You and all of these women are very inspirational. I have travelled most of my adult life with my family, but now I am travelling solo as of the last two years. I have learned and have grown so much. I am truly blessed for meeting wonderful people on my journey and for being able to learn about different cultures. I again thank you for sharing this article and opening other people up to travel.

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    I concur. I am well aware of Tracey and her project. She actually was a backer on my Kickstarter. I featured the Passport Project on http://nomadnesstv.com . Solid woman and I love that project!

    -Evie

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Thanks for giving us other ladies a chance. I hope you like what you find!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Hope you like what you find!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Thank you for the compliment!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Don’t you love how the Universe does that?! Perfect timing!

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • Alexandra

    I’ve been in a travel state of mind for two years now and I am already following 4 of the women listed and I look forward to following the others. These women inspire me. Great article.

  • ads

    @amber first off, with an msw, there’s probably a lot of international fellowships u can look into – check out idealist.org – also check out the workers’ rights consortium, they’re actually currently looking to fill dr and central america research/ rights monitor positions (if u speak spanish)
    I come from a blue collar fam in the bronx, now work in the non profit sector, but since I was in highschool, I saved all my money working to travel – so I was never the girl w cute clothes, nails done, hitting the movies – but in hs I was doing one international trip a year with about 500 to 800$ per 7 to 10 day trip – now as an adult I actually travel btwn every month and every other month. One thing if ure interested in really travelling, look for work that pays you to do so – I worked for an airline with a desk job but had free flights and traveled for fun every weekend, and in my organizer jobs I’ve been to domestic worker conferences in peru and cattle rancher conferences in south dakota (for a girl from the bronx, that’s just as much a cultural experiemce)n and now that I’m in international develoment I can do it all the time. USE PRICELINE and name your own price on flights, hotels, and rental cars – I’ve goTten 2 star hotels for 30 bucks a night, 4 star for 100$ – bring a friend and all those prices are in half. Start close – do a 4 day trip to a carribean island or central america – read up first and get ur feet wet, don’t wait til u have 3 weeks vacation and 3k$ saved up for an excursion to india – start small, build ur savvy, and keep going

  • ads

    @ok then – monitor airafares – if u go to hotwire.com, on the upper right u’ll see ‘planning tools’ u can see whichdates have the lowest fare to a destination you’re interested in over a 30 day period – both hotwire and priceline.com have hairdrop alerts, ihave them for about 4 destinations at any given time. USE THE LIBRARY, when I lived in brazil, lonely planet was my bible, with tons of cheap ideas – now, I have shelves of lonely planets, I read up on places I’m interested in months or years in advance (more exciting than novels cuz I know ill be in it) book mark the cheap or must see places n things to do, and take the book with me when I go ) I often stayed in bed n breakfasts for 5usd$ per night (brazil’s econ is soaring right now, so the exchange rate makes those deals harder to come by in braz, but u can get them in honduras which is amazing, u can eat a hearty meal of rice beans veg and fish/ chicken for 2-5$ in most of latin america

  • http://femininetouch1.tumblr.com/ Simone Shanise

    I don’t know about anyone else, but I am in tears!! As a 20 year old college student I have so many dreams of traveling the world and speaking the languages …it’s refreshing to see women just like me who are TRULY living the lives they love. It let’s me know that I can do it too! Unfortunately, money is always a constant worry, and it is my fear that because of it, I will not be able to follow my dreams. It’s a back and forth struggle..it’s disheartening to feel like you might not ever get there. But still I dream and envision myself ordering Creme Brulee from a french cafe, or visiting Queen Elizabeth at the Windsor Castle in London! I am inspired, and I will continue to plan and work toward my first international trip. Thank you so much Ms. Loren for the article and all the women who are doing big thangs!

    Simone Shanise

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    You are such a sweetheart. I wrote a blog that caused a ‘stir’ on my site and it may help put the money aspect in perspective…

    -Evie

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    I am reading a number of you stressing about money. It’s a tangible need, but in intangible fear. I travel broke ALL the time. With that said, hopefully this post that definitely caught some attention on the blog, will help give perspective. And again, if you want specifics, please contact me through the site. I get back to EVERYONE!

    -Evie

  • lisa

    i want to travel but i’m scared to do it because
    1. i’m a woman
    2. i’m black (i’m afraid of threats or extreme racism)
    3. i have no one to go with

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    I see I forgot the link. Sorry it’s getting late.
    LINK: http://nomadnesstv.com/blog/2011/9/10/starving-artist.html

  • binks

    Great article! I would love to travel and can’t wait to do it in the future so I will checking out some of these fab women pages for inspiration

  • http://www.jgstravel.com Jamila

    I have always loved to travel. I started traveling solo as a little girl riding the bus alone. While that was scary as a young black girl on that big Greyhound, it inspired me to want to travel more.

    Now my inspiration comes from my mentor and friend, Arlyne Thompson who has shown me how to turn my love for travel into a money making business!

  • http://www.johnicareed.com JR

    Julienne,
    Thank you for following my adventures! There are many more to come (including Antarctica — I have to bang out my 7th continent) and a new digital platform in the works.

    xx, Johnica

  • http://blackgirlinnairobi.tumblr.com Joy

    Officially inspired to blog more. As a black girl abroad, I’m so glad there are sisters who appreciate our unique perspective as well.

    -The Black Girl in Nairobi

  • Culturally Aware

    Finding the money to travel after you graduate from college is more of a challenge, but it is possible. Take mini vacations to places you are curious about…start small. If doing something basic like that is a challenge…be a roommate…and don’t live solo…that will allow you to stash money away for travel…Also,try your local Rotary Club…they have scholarships for any up to age 35 to travel to learn a new language. If you are an adventurer….work…save…travel…come back to your country…and start all over again!You have to make travel a priority to make it happen for you. Good luck!

    If you are in school…your school has money…go to your university foundation and talk up the people there…u have to show them you are serious…they will find the money for you….it happened to me.

    Internationalize your social circle…genuinely…and you may find a companion that can accomodate your lodging for free… :)

    Do not let money paralyze you..if you don’t have children and you are only responsible for yourself..you can make it happen! I also have student loans and adult bills to pay(minus children)…but I make it a priority to travel at least 1x a year…Good luck!

  • Culturally Aware

    Another great idea….try looking into the U.S. Foreign Service careers…if you are in school..there are internships to explore foreign service careers at many posts around the work…I did one for free. My family is not rich…but I networked and the money flowed in……travel is possible people..it has to be something you are passionate about for yourself. If you want incorporate it in your career….go for it. It sounds glamorous, but the glamour fades quickly when you have to blend it with the realities of life in a foreign country…it is necessary to be genuinely interested in connecting with the culture on a human level..than just a wavering fascination.

  • ads

    @lisa on traveling solo – one great way to travel aalone and feel less vulnerable is through a glass – they have 1-3 week spanish language courses in the dominican republic (nobody will notice youre black there), 1 week cooking classes in mexian towns or itlian cities and farmhouses – I’m into food and lang, so that’s what I know, but I’m sure there’s art classes, historical tours, etc. . While hawaii is a us state, it has such an amazing history, mix of cultures, cuisine that I feel like I’m in a new culture there (don’t limit urself to waikiki) on the big island, there’s yoga retreats where u stay on a volcano, overlooking the ocean, and ur in cabin like rooms showering outisde in that beautiful climate for like 70/night. All of these classes have other solo travelers, and u might meet likeminded friends for future onscheduled excursions

  • http://www.littleblackvillage.org LittleBlackVillage

    You can look into the Peace Corps as a cost effective method of traveling abroad. Everything is taken care for you but it is a long term volunteer organization. Look into it as an option.

  • LemonNLime

    I am a black woman who has traveled by myself and it was the best thing that I have ever done! I was afraid to at first too but if you plan, research ahead, and be smart, you should be just fine! Besides there are tons of solo travelers out there, you can usually meet cool people along who you can hang out with from place to place. Good luck!

  • LemonNLime

    Do anyone ever worry about about conformity issues?

    What I mean is, I LOVE to travel and I am planning on quitting my job to move abroad next year but sometimes friends and family bring up good practical points I never think about like how would I save up for retirement while globe trotting, how do you finance it, how do I pay for my student loans, how will I ever meeting a guy while traveling everywhere, how do you maintain your health if you have no insurance.

    Part of me is just like eff it but then the other part of me is like this are real things I should be thinking about. Anyone else deal with this stuff?

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    @lisa

    I’m a woman. I’m black, , and I travel alone. You’re speaking from a place of sheer fear. Fear of something that you really don’t need to be fearful about. Racism is in America, so the idea of dealing with that abroad isn’t far fetched. Be smart about where you go. Connect with other women who have done it, and find a place that you fell comfortable attacking first, within your personal means.
    But, you have to let go of the fear. Or as I say… put it in your back pocket just long enough to get on the plane, and go.

    -Evita

  • a daughter of Yemonja

    Peace and love to all of you citizens of the world!!! I salute all of your queen travelers (whether in the physical or in the state of mind). I hear a lot of hesitation about the financial aspect of travelling (for those that know me from my previous post may be able to predict what I am about to say…but I am going to state it anyway)…Put that worry out of your mind have it on your list for planning but don’t STRESS about it or let it hold you up…because you’ll be pushing 50 (not that you couldn’t travel at that age) wishing you traveled way back when… Continue to plan and then you might not even have the AMOUNT that you set in your mind to have, but KNOW that you will be taken care of.

    To travel overseas cost way less (also depending on what country) than travelling here in the states most times. A sister mentioned Peace Corps and that is a wonderful way for you to get your foot in the door. Right after I graduated from university I joined the Peace Corps and traveled to Zambia and lived there for 3 years and then after my 3 year tour and even during I traveled to several neighboring (almost all) countries bordering and beyond Zambia. I even bought some property in Zanzibar and built a small modest traditional house there.

    Seeing this article has reignited (although it never was extinguished) my thirst, drive and love of travelling. Now that I am a wife and a mother of two homeschooled youth we plan on travelling with the family every moment we can…we have already began exploring our beautiful United States.

    Well, I say all of that to say research options, ask for other’s introspection and don’t hold yourself up by your own expectations of what you think you need to travel…because you will also find out that many people will open their homes to the nomadic adventurer…
    Couchsurfing was mentioned and I’ll mention it again, WWOOFing is also a wonderful opportunity for those of you interested in the agricultural side of traveling, and of course Peace Corps (for those that don’t have a problem committing 2 years of your life to volunteer and live with the bare minimals also Peace Corps pays off some of your student loans…at least they did when I was in it) Check it out!!!!

    EXPLORE THE WORLD AND DON’T HOLD BACK…BE….DO….HAVE
    Peace and love to each of you and remember also be safe and smart

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Don’t expect anyone to be on your side, that way if one person is, you’ll be surprised. I am lucky that my family lives vicariously through me, but some of my closest friends who travel, don’t have that fortune. I have seen the guilt that family puts on them, and frankly, it fucking sucks. But I respect those women more because they do it anyway!

    When I read your post, the first thing that came to my mind was : You’re thinking too much. You’re trying to resolve too much before you go.
    There is a huge sense of faith in this lifestyle for sure. But you have to get comfy in not having all the answers before you leave (that’s also part of the excitement). What I would suggest is that you travel FOR a job, that way the money, insurance, home, financial issues are already taken care of. Teaching English is great for that. I think it would calm your nerves a bit.

    But have faith.

    -Evie

  • http://www.passportpartyproject.org The Passport Party Project

    Wow. Thank you LurkerG (whoever you are!) for acknowledging The Passport Party Project. My aim, as you know, is to help give girls a world view. And Arielle, the author of this article, contacted me as a result of your comment! Thanks to Jennifer Poe for reaching out via Twitter and to you too Evie for your support (and to Kira and Tracey as well). It means alot. =) Safe travels ladies.

  • http://www.blackchickontour.com Black Chick on Tour

    Forget what your family and friends say. They’re putting their fears onto you. So, what? You’re suppose to limit your present by worrying about the future. I don’t deal with that stuff because…I do what I want. LOL. And, my life is better for it. I’m not saying I haven’t had ups and downs. I’ve traveled broke as a joke, and I’ve traveled high end (which is where I’m at now). I just like to go, so I do.

    You can find a job working in another country as a teacher, that helps pay for your life abroad. You could hop from country to country just teaching.. The teachers in Saudi Arabia (where I’m currently at) make MONEY, and they travel the world regularly when not teaching. Medical insurance DOES NOT maintain health. LOL. In fact the medical industry is about keeping people sick. Unless you’re a sickly person, maintain your health by eating right and exercising, you won’t need the medical insurance. What are you going to go to the doctor for? A cold? You can get meds at the pharmacy. I know several American girls who met there American husbands abroad. On my blog (Black Chick on Tour), I interviewed a lady named Runaway Brit. She’s British and she met her Swedish boyfriend while teaching in Vietnam, and now they’re traveling through South America together.

    The thing is this, people who live in the 9-5 world will NEVER have a clue as to what a life of travel is about, because they’ve swallowed the koolaid. They’ve indebted themselves to such a degree that can’t afford to think about anything other than the occasional caribbean vacation, if they’re lucky. You’ve got one life to live. Do your thang!!

    I wish you the best.

  • http://oneika-the-traveller.blogspot.com Oneika the Traveller

    I knew that I loved to travel, so I got myself into a career that would allow me to live abroad and fund my travel. I was a high school English lit and French teacher in Canada when I discovered the existence of schools abroad set up the children of American/Canadian/British/European/etc. businessmen and diplomats. These schools often pay or subsidize your flights over there and living expenses. Once I took the plunge, I realized that teaching abroad had a ridiculous amount of travel perks and allowed me to travel the regions I was living in!

    If you’re not an elementary or primary school teacher, there’s always the opportunity to teach ESL all around the world. ESL jobs in Asia pay particularly well, and there is tons of vacation time in which you can explore all of Asia!

    There are also lots of opportunities in international development work that people tend not to know about or exploit.

    I don’t have the time to write everything down here, but if you have any questions about living and teaching abroad, please get in touch with me!!!!

    http://oneika-the-traveller.blogspot.com

  • LurkerG

    You are very welcome. She is an inspiration to me. You ALL are an inspiration. Continued success to you! :)

  • LemonNLime

    I have always been a long term planner and sometimes I think they use that to try and get me to stick around. The freest moments of my life were when I was backpacking, where I didn’t have plans and didn’t know what would happen, I just went with the flow and you don’t get that being stuck in a 9-5 at a desk everyday.

    One of the many reasons these blogs inspire me. It give me incite to their lives and if they can do it with the ups and downs, I can too. Thanks for the vote of confidence! It shows me I am NOT crazy for not worrying about these thing!

  • joeclyde

    That Brooklyn Travel Addict. She is a fine woman. Let me know when you hit stateside!!

  • Rachel

    Thank you Clutch for the traveling stories!

    I am so proud of all the women featured for sharing their experiences. This is making me think about my next international trip! I initially was a little fearful of visiting some countries having a bronze skin tone. However, after reading some of these blogs and seeing the beautiful sisters traveling. I am throwing caution to the wind.

    Oh and to the young woman who asked about finding a man while globe trotting. One of my friend’s mom (Canadian) asked her dad (American) for directions to a museum in London. Twenty plus years later, they are married with adult children. Love can happen anywhere!

    I say take inspiration from Nike, Just do it!

  • Krain

    yes..i’ve been really thinking about doing some traveling myself…love this article..

    Best Buy giving out $1,000 giftcards http://goo.gl/FRWfB ..4 their 30th anniversary..next 24 hours only..got a laptop & a phone..lol

  • http://globetracer.wordpress.com She Traces

    Nice post, would have loved to have been featured on this list! But thanks for introducing us to more travel inspiration! I am familiar with Robbie and Reed since we have both contributed to the same outlets (Centric TV). These ladies look all very unique and young!

  • http://globetracer.wordpress.com She Traces

    Oh and it’s crazy how small the world is, a fellow friend who went to Stonybrook told me about Robbie’s website. Makes me believe I can be that famous one day too. :)

  • Amber

    Thank you all for your awesome advice and suggestions. My goal is to eventually live and work abroad…thanks for the first steps!

  • Guest Z

    Suhaly is the best! I love going through her photos after my amazing summer in Paraguay with her as one of the directors of the trip. Keep up the art!

  • http://oneika-the-traveller.blogspot.com Oneika the Traveller

    I JUST finished up a 2 week Spanish course in Guatemala. Let me know if you want me to forward you the info!

  • http://oneika-the-traveller.blogspot.com Oneika the Traveller

    I met my boyfriend while we were both working in Hong Kong two years ago… And now I’m moving to London to be with him. Just sayin’… ;-)

  • http://nomadnesstv.com evierobbie

    Hmmm. I literally know less than a handful of people from StonyBrook. Interested in who…

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    I’m taking my first solo trip in December and will definitely write about it! I’ve heard it’s one of the most liberating carefree experiences you could ever give yourself :) Do it!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    You should check out Meet, Plan, Go! It’s a great resource for people who plan to take the leap and quit their full time jobs to travel! http://meetplango.com/

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    Aww thanks for the love Nicole!

  • Chrissy

    I cannot wait to start traveling.

    I might have to go alone…..Im a little bit scared. But I travel most places alone so maybe it wont be so bad

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    Thanks Jules! You’ve always been a supporter and there’s no way I’d be even listed on here without the cheerleading squad of all my awesome friends! Johnica you and I need to meet!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    Hey Amber! I wrote an article about this for In Her Shoes blog. Check it out and hopefully it will give you some practical ways to save on trips – it’s easier than you think sometimes. http://www.inhershoesblog.com/5-tips-for-jet-setting-on-a-budget

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tracey-Coleman/622661380 Tracey Coleman

    Thanks so much for the love! :)

    http://www.brooklyntraveladdict.com

  • JLR

    Thanks for sharing your list. I follow most of them already. Keep inspiring us traveling chicas. But definitely don’t forget to include Chelle & Crystal from http://www.BrownGirlsFly.com …. love those girls.

  • ~Carol

    Wonderful work ladies… I love it! I’m on my journey around the world as we speak, currently in country #11 of this trip. Have hit over 40 in total knowing there are many more to come… What a blessing it is to live your dreams out loud, helping others to see the beauty and value of doing so through traveling?!! Continue to have a blast and be safe out there… ~Carol

  • Coco

    Go it alone. It’s easier than you think. And remember, very rarely Black women are very rarely featured dead or missing on ABC specials.

  • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

    It warms my heart that this post got over a 100 comments.

  • Brodie

    I’ll have to check these ladies out. I traveled most in 20s and ironically my favorite place is one I can’t go back to. But I traveled with the military and having access to certain destinations that the President can’t even go is something I appreciate, especially now.

  • http://twitter.com/KatsReality KatsReality

    This is really inspiring.I will check these adventurous ladies out!

  • LemonNLime

    And it isn’t just young women traveling. I just watch a TV show called Gannies on Safari with two 2 retired black women, I was like good for them! Black people traveling, old and young, always makes me happy!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hareema-Akinak/100000531851239 Hareema Akinak

    Same here!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hareema-Akinak/100000531851239 Hareema Akinak

    I am 30+ and been thinking a LOT about long-term travelling…I have NO idea how to do this due to work/financial stability concerns.

  • BeautyIAM

    So am I. I’m happy to know that so many others have a thirst to travel.

  • http://www.theEchelonLife.com Jas

    Love this article. We all have wanderlust within. My Godmother is my travelling inspiration! She took me on so many travelling excursions within and without the country and I haven’t stopped. One piece of advice that I received that I think is true – travel your own country – we did a New Engladn roadtrip to see the gorgeous colors of the fall (no comparison anywhere), Harvard Square (incl Cheers bar), Maine’s lobster and lighthouses, CT aquarium, RI mansions, VT maple syrup – it was great. I’ve been to most regions of the US but that trip made me appreciate my landscape more.
    Im defienitely going to start following several of the featured travelistas!

  • Maya

    THANK YOU SO MUCH for this list, just what I’ve been looking to add to my Google Reader LOL. This is the kind of inspiration I need to keep motivated while I try to raise funds to travel in the near future! I am really enjoying your contributions to Clutch Arielle! Looking forward to more :)

  • V.X.R.

    This is a great article. Thank you for listing these travel blogs. As a globetrotter I’m always interested in reading about places that I have been or would like to go. At the end of the day, if you want to travel, simply do it!

  • Karen Kim

    Wow, you guys left out Fleace Weaver at BlackGirlTravel.com. Check out her site. She is empowering Black through international travel. You can also learn about her at FreeYourMind.me

  • frankie

    I have recently traveled this year to four countries. This inspires me to make traveling apart of my life. But how do these ladies fund their trips?

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  • http://nomadnesstv.com Evie

    Hope you dig the site when you stopped by!

    -Evie

    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com Evie

    Same here!

    -Evie

    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://nomadnesstv.com Evie

    It’s amazing to go at it alone. I actually prefer it honestly. You can have the experience you want without compromise.

    -Evie
    http://nomadnesstv.com

  • http://www.motorcitymoxie.com MotorCityMoxie

    Loved loved this article. Traveling aboard changes our perspective, and depending on where you travel, can make us more appreciative of our environments. There’s a reason people are risking their lives to get to the US.

  • DD

    Thanks for this article! I’ve been to 18 countries and every continent so far and plan to keep adding to that count! I will be following these ladies’ stories with much interest.

  • Sharifa

    I make travel my priority in life. I have traveled many times outside of the US. One morning I woke up and decided to put United States travel at the top of my list.
    I set my goal to see all fifty states by the time I am 50. Needless to say I am 51 now but I only have 8 more states to visit.

    Most people ask me how can I afford to travel. Well I gave up living in a stick dwelling and now live in my Wheel Estate. I live in my RV full time I have a 1994 30 ft fifth wheel RV which I paid $4500 It has a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, dining, and living room think of it as a small one bedroom apartment. YES I have heat hot water microwave and A/C. I also have a truck which I bought for $2500 to pull it. There are quite a few jobs for full time RVers anywhere you can drive so that only leaves out Hawaii. I have almost completed my goal which will find me in Hawaii in Dec 2012. I then plan on starting my round the world trip for the next two years. Living in my RV not paying utilities or rent allows me to save money I have a small student loan but no other bills including credit cards. I barter or pay cash for everything. Currently I am in Mesa, Az. working 12 hours a week for my rent (inc. electric, lot rent,water,sewer,trash, wifi, use of all amenities, and more) at a large RV resort 1000 homes.
    Of course I am the ONLY Black woman here so I would love to see more women of African descent consider traveling this way. See our country and still make money.
    I write this to give an example of US travel and how to save to see the rest of the world.That is how I arrived at this site planning my RTW travel.

    PEACE AND PROSPERITY TO ALL,
    SHARIFA

    Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness.” Mark Twain
    *~~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~~*
    A NOMAD I WILL REMAIN FOR LIFE,
    IN LOVE WITH DISTANT AND UNCHARTED PLACES.

  • Gabby

    I’m surprise you did not include the sistas over at BlackGirlTravel.com on this list. Are you aware of the website and the positive work they are doing? I have traveled with them twice and saving for my third trip … hopefully 2013.

  • http://www.travelingnatural.com the TravelingNatural

    Great list! I hope to be featured next time: > But I will be checking out the blogs of the ladies I’ve never heard of…which is pretty much all except Oneika the Travellor.

  • Laela

    Fleace Weaver is a TOTAL fraud. I wouldn’t go on another tour of hers if somebody else paid for it.

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  • Grace

    This is a great list – there are so many female travel blogs, but the experience of the black female abroad is so different! I look forward to checking out all of the blogs of these fine ladies !!! <3 Much Love :)

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