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I’m excited to interview Adam from Cartagena Explorer in this post!
Adam McConnaughhay has lived in Cartagena, Colombia since 2011. He currently works as a school teacher and writes about Cartagena and other destinations in Colombia at CartagenaExplorer.com. You can find him on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
How long have you been blogging for?
I launched my blog in May of 2020. So just a hot second ago!
I started my blog in June of 2018, so about 2 years ago. I started it at a time when I was looking for opportunities to make some side money (and possibly one day a full time income) online.
After looking into ideas, I decided to start a destination blog for Cartagena, Colombia’s most well-known destination, was the way to go. In addition to writing about Cartagena, I have also written extensively about other places I’ve traveled here in Colombia.
Do you have any tips for new bloggers?
My biggest tip is to stay at it, especially in the early goings. It was 6 months before I saw any real significant organic traffic.
Once you have a post or two perform well though, it really helps to keep you motivated. Updating your earlier posts can also be helpful for this, as long as you are in fact adding value to them.
What do you wish you knew before you started traveling?
It has taken me a long time to learn how to pack the most efficiently. Even now, I often pack more than I need.
Why do you love to travel?
I think I love traveling more than any other reason to learn more about the world and to experience other places. Seeing new things and learning about different places and cultures is what I enjoy the most.
What’s your best and worst travel experience?
Probably my favorite travel experience was going whale watching in Nuquí, an isolated area on Colombia’s Pacific coast. Besides seeing the whales, the beach was gorgeous and there was practically no one else around.
My worse travel experience was when my wife and I went on our honeymoon to Jamaica, not because of Jamaica, but because we had trouble boarding our flight. My wife had the national certification of the yellow fever vaccine, but not the international one.
Our flight was early in the morning, so we had to change flights, pay a hefty fee, and go to the health office to get a yellow piece of paper instead of a white one. When we did make it to Jamaica, they didn’t even ask to see it. We still did have a great time there though.
Do you prefer traveling solo or with others?
Now that I’m married, I prefer just traveling with my wife. Although every now and then it can be nice to do a shorter trip with a friend or go off on my own for a couple days.
What’s the best place you’ve ever been to?
Hmm, so I did really like Nuquí mentioned above. But probably overall favorite place was actually on our honeymoon in Jamaica, at Port Antonio.
Besides some awesome beaches nearby, I couldn’t get enough of the Jamaican Jerk and the nearby Boston Beach where it was invented was the best I had on the island.
What’s your biggest travel tip?
Undoubtedly, research before you go. Know expected taxi prices, if you can safely take the bus, collective taxis, or other public transportation.
Have an idea of how things should cost, and be sure you at least can communicate in the local language with basic things.
Is there one thing you like to do, see, or buy in every place you visit?
For me, I really like to buy flags from all the countries I’ve been to. Lately, my wife and I also like to get a coozie if we can find one. Beyond that, I usually insist on visiting any prominent museums, since I’m a history teacher and nerd.
All photos used throughout this post are taken by Adam from Cartagena Explorer.