Travel and sustainability bloggers Lea and Stefan are on a mission to inspire and make a change. We caught up with them to talk about what inspired them to give up their comfortable lifestyle at home in Switzerland, their favourite travel memories and what they've learnt on their journey to sustainable living.
What does your world look like?
In 2019 we decided to give up our employed jobs and our apartment in Switzerland, sell pretty much everything we owned and take our savings to follow our dream. We traveled through South East Asia and lived in Bali for six months. During this time, we built up our knowledge about blogging and Instagram, and we realized that we want to build a life for us in which we can work from everywhere in the world and run our own business. Due to all the uncertainty, we returned to our home country in spring. We lived with the family for the past half-year, and both worked temporarily in our former jobs. We saved up some money again while building our brand new website entirely from scratch. Now we will finally leave our home again to follow our dream. We will live in Costa Rica for a while and work on our projects.
We usually like to start the day with coffee, journaling, meditation, yoga, or training. Then we work during the morning and have our first meal around noon. In the afternoon, we love heading to the beach, enjoying the sun and the ocean. In the evenings, we love cooking together and sitting outside. In general, we enjoy spending as much time in nature as we can and go on adventures regularly, and of course, photography is a huge part of what we are doing and a big passion.
How do you like to explore?
We love everything in and around the ocean, exploring the underwater world, feeling the warm sand between our toes, that's where we feel most alive. Besides, we love hiking and going on walks in nature and explore new places. We love to travel in all kinds of ways, but our favorites are either renting an Airbnb where we have a kitchen to cook our meals and kind of a home away from home. Or to travel in a van where you have your home with you on the road. We did two road trips in Europe this summer and fell in love with the van life. Especially our time in Portugal, where we traveled in a vintage kombi, which is a dream of ours.
What made you want to start your own travel and sustainability blog?
Traveling and living a sustainable and healthy lifestyle is what we are most passionate about, and we want to inspire other people about going on that journey too. Besides that me Lea, I love to write and have a big passion for photography, so I wanted to find a way to express myself and to share what I learned. Stefan is a former IT specialist, and he loves to do all the technical stuff around our work. Another reason for starting our own business is that we both knew that we want to work together and from everywhere in the world. Our purpose is to spread the message that is important to us, and that's what our platform is helping us with.
What is one of your most memorable trips? and why?
That's really hard to answer because every trip we have made so far gave us some lifetime memories. But some of the most memorable countries we traveled were India, which offers so much culture and opened our eyes to many things. We love Sri Lanka for lots of activities, Bali, our island home, and the Philippines, such a paradise with the most turquoise water we have ever seen. Usually, the things that make our trips so special are the wonderful people we meet along the way, the incredible food, nature and the new activities we try and places we explore.
What is your perspective on slow living and sustainability?
"Sustainability" is the most beautiful journey we have ever started. We had a life with an expensive apartment, a car, and so much stuff. We worked in our jobs for the money but never truly felt like we are doing the right thing. When we decided to change that to live with only the essentials and spend our time doing the things that we enjoy and make sense to us, we got happier than we have ever been before. This change in our mindset took years, and it will probably be a never-ending journey of learning how to get better at living more sustainably. But we are so happy that we started being more mindful and overthinking how we lived and what we consumed. It fulfills us to make different choices today, and we are much happier with the way we live.
We believe that it is essential for us humans and the planet that significant changes are coming. We have taken too much from nature and destroyed most of it. The only way out of this is by learning how to be part of nature again instead of being separated from it. Living with less, living a so-called slow life, living plant-based, plastic-free, zero-waste that's the future, and we hope that more and more people are getting bitten by the slow-life bug.
What is one positive thing you have seen through the recent changes in the world?
We think that the community of sustainable thinking people is growing a lot. More and more people take a step in that direction, away from endless consumption and a money-driven lifestyle to a lifestyle that truly fulfills us. This year, many people in industrialized countries had to slow down because of the situation, started overthinking and got more mindful, and making better choices. We believe that's a good thing. Also, we think it is getting easier year by year because more companies are offering us a better alternative like Mari & Clay :)
What are you looking forward to for next year?
We look forward to all the new experiences we will have while living in a new country again. We have planned to do some permaculture courses because this is something we are very interested in for the future. In general, we want to learn much more about nature and how to live in harmony with it. We also look forward to working on our business full-time again and spending every minute we can in the ocean. We will finally take the diving license that we have wanted to make for years now.
Follow Lea and Stefan on Instagram: @thesunchasingtravelers
Visit their Travel & Sustainability Blog: www.sunchasingtravelers.com