If you would have told me I’d be in a serious relationship this time last year, I probably would have laughed in your face.
I always pictured myself traveling solo, and I mostly did for nearly five years.
Never in a million years did I think I’d find someone who was as weird and crazy as me, and who wanted to live such a unique lifestyle.
My life consists of living in foreign countries, a wardrobe that fits on my back, spending money on the necessities and nothing more, having no plans, sleeping in conditions unfathomable to others, unstable work, eating questionable dishes, communicating through any means necessary with the hopes of being understood, venturing into the unknown, and a slew of other oddities that most would run from.
Nobody else could possibly want to live this life that I love so much, so for that simple reason, I thought I’d be single for years to come.
Then Garrett came along… Someone as batshit crazy for travel as me and with similar wants and views on life.
For many of us on this list, love came at a weird time. A time where we didn’t expect it, search for it, or even want it! But it found us. And it found us because of one common love: travel.
Because of travel, we have found someone special to share our life of adventuring around this world with.
So here it is, 14 love stories that started with travel…
Nina and Garrett – Where in the World is Nina and The TravelHuman
Wait, what? You don’t have a blog TOGETHER?
Nope, because we already were blogging / vlogging before we even met. That’s the main thing that brought us together! Our passion for traveling and making this a career is just one of the crazy things we have in common. It all started when…
A mutual friend randomly introduced us on Facebook because, “we both love travel.” Since we both blogged/vlogged we chatted a bit and helped each other out. We talked more and more as time passed and eventually Garrett’s visit to Thailand came. Since we met on that day we’ve become inseparable. Garrett went back to New Zealand where he was living, packed up and moved to Thailand. We lived in Pai for a few months, traveled more of North Thailand, North Laos, went to Oregon, vacationed in Mexico, and have now moved to Melbourne, Australia.
Extreme budget living and traveling while being in one of the most expensive countries in the world, living out of a van for a year, hopping around to random countries with no plans, letting Skyscanner choose our next destination, traipsing around South America, learning Spanish, taking years to explore continents, and who knows what else are what’s to come. We can’t wait to share the journey with you! Follow along… here and here <3
Sophia and Guilherme – Slow Spirit
I met Guilherme while I was in New Zealand. We’d both been on the road for a couple of months and we’d gotten to the point where our money was running low so we chose to work for accommodation in a hostel in Wellington. It was there that we met, in our cramped dorm room, which we shared with 4 other people for the first 3 months of our relationship. Nearly 5 years later and we’re still on the road. We have visited numerous countries in South America and Europe, and are currently conquering South East Asia. We plan to get married later this year but by no means do we have any plans to settle down just yet!
Aileen and Jonas – IAmAileen
He is from Belgium and I’m from the Philippines. We met and fell in love in Manila while he was traveling the country and while I was in the midst of a country hop spree in Asia. Ever since our meeting, several flights were made as we tried to get together and travel as ‘friends’, but after 2 months… we ended up starting a relationship!
3 years, 2 continents, and 10 countries later, we’re still irrevocably in love as we continue to travel the world together. We are currently based in Belgium while we are doing the ‘finishing touches’ to the online business that we both own and run (Adalid Gear) and which enables us to live an even more sustainable travel lifestyle. But come February, we’ll be continuing our travels and we’re eyeing trips to Asia, U.S., Oceania, and South America!
True enough, there may be billions of people and countless numbers of cities in the world but if two people are meant to meet in one place and in an exact moment, then so it will… and I’m very glad to have met him because all our experiences and travels proved to us how we’re very compatible for one another. Truth be told, we’ve never had a bad nor serious argument — yet, and somehow, it has become an inside joke between the two of us! 😉
Anna and Tom – Adventure in You
My partner Tom and I met in Mui Ne, Vietnam. I was sand sledding and he was unassumingly rolling down the hill. Soon, he came over to borrow my sled…and the rest was history! Since then, we’ve travelled through 17 countries together, spanning through 3 continents. We are about to embark on another adventure as we head on over to South America. Although it sounds pretty perfect, falling in love while traveling can be hard. People come and go in your life and goodbyes become a pretty normal thing. What is important is the experiences that you make and what you take out from it. Nowadays, our relationship is on overdrive as we both travel together, while building our blog, Adventure in You. Meeting each other changed our lives and we look forward to many more adventures together.
Chris and Laura – One Weird Globe
Laura and I met on OKCupid in late 2011, albeit after several long back-and-forth conversations online. I had given up on OKCupid’s compatibility score, which had produced several first dates but no lasting sparks…. In any case, Laura and I got along rather nicely, spent most weekends traveling around South Korea, where we were both teaching at the time…
It was Christmas Eve 2012 – a party of expats in Seoul. Laura and I had been dating for over a year, so there was no surprise. Heck, we even went to Hongdae to pick out the rings, so it really shouldn’t have been a surprise at all… In any case, the Christmas party turned to karaoke – with this group, that meant doing Christmas songs in the most irreverent way possible. For my turn, I chose a Celine Dion song – an inside joke, since I have a very high tenor voice (and was, erm, a little tipsy, at the time)…
Afterwards, the host reached for the mike – I kept a firm handle on it, whispering to her that I was going to propose to my girlfriend. She nodded and stepped back. I mumbled something about it being a very special night, motioned to Laura, and began to fish the ring out of my pocket. Someone in the crowd drunkenly asked ‘oh he’s NOT going to propose IS HE?!’, which prompted a laugh from the crowd.
A few seconds later, I was on a knee and proposing.
She said yes, and minutes later a bottle of champagne was produced – a gift from the bar, I believe – and she glowed briefly as the other karaoke singers went on… As we walked home, a fresh snowfall blanketed everything around… We got married at a public park in Seoul with the pastor of a local gay-affirming church (about as far from a ‘traditional’ religious wedding as we could get!)
Since then, we’ve traveled across Thailand, Europe, Colombia, and now Ecuador – and a whole world to go!
Keri and Brad – Baby Globetrotters
A rugby match in Cardiff was never where I intended to meet my future husband, but mutual friends, and a few last minute decisions saw us meet 10 years ago on a weekend break to Wales. Although both Australian with a long travelling tale that saw our stories coincidence over many years we had somehow never actually crossed each other’s path before. I was working in London, he was in Afghanistan, I penciled it down to a chance encounter.
It did not end there however; rendezvous were organised during short weekend breaks to Europe. Brad’s contract in Afghanistan ended 6 months later and before we knew it he had become a couch surfing Aussie in London. Far from the usual cliché though, we both held professional jobs for a number of years and traveled at every spare opportunity; dozens of short breaks to Europe, longer tours around the US, taking full advantage of our short commute to Heathrow!
We were married in 2008 and not much later kids 1 & 2 arrived. This certainly slowed down the frequency and speed of our travel but not the desire. We relocated to the UAE in 2012, and now the travel bug has certainly hit again. We use our great new location and its airline hubs to their full advantage. Now with three kids in tow we tackled five continents last year and 2016 is shaping up much the same with Canada already ticked off and SE Asia, Australia, Jordan & the Maldives already on the cards.
It could have been a chance encounter but turned out that last minute decision to join a group of friends in Wales was my trip of a life time.
Ashley and Alex – In Pursuit of Adventure
Ashley and I’ve been traveling for five years together and what a whirlwind of an adventure it has been! As expats in Rome, we met through friends at our local pub. Our wanderlust and the love for the occasional pint solidified our relationship and travel partnership. Three years ago we created In Pursuit of Adventure with the dream of becoming world travelers exploring the world, one culture at a time. Our dream started to become a reality with the decision to take our chances out on the road away from the comforts of home. We traded in our roots for a pair of wings and left on our around the world adventure in April 2015. The last eight months have been far from perfect but what an adventure it has been! Through our many failings on the road we have grown stronger and learned what it takes to reach our goal of being world travelers. We are now creating local food and wine guides to our favorite cities with the goal of writing printed guides. Struggle and hard work are ahead but the future looks bright as we push forward to travel and explore the world through its cuisine. We know that together we can forge our own path and strive to bring people a unique outlook on this world of ours.
Margherita and Nick – The Crowded Planet
My husband and I met in London, in November 2004. We were both working temporarily in the same shop to fund our travels – he was on an Australian on a working holiday visa and had spent the best part of the previous year exploring Europe and South America, and I had been Interrailing to get over a disastrous break up, before my money ran out and I moved to London to earn some cash.
We got along really well from the start and realized we had the same travel style – we both loved adventure, backpacking and being away for extended periods of time. For the first few years, London was our base in between travels – then we travelled full time for two years, were based in Italy for a while and now we’re travelling full time again. It’s been eleven years, and we still love travelling together. When we’re off on press trips by ourselves, we really miss one another.
Jonathan and Kach – Two Monkeys Travel
I had fallen, or jumped rather, into the ever-growing category of young British society who had grown tired and dissatisfied, so had saved up enough money to drop everything and travel, with no plans of a permanent return – In March 2013, I joined the new cliché of the modern western world and flew to Bangkok! After a few weeks of bussing it between tourist hotspots, my friend and I bought two $300 motorbikes in Cambodia went in search of a different Southeast Asia. At around the same time, Kach was having a similar quarter-life crisis and had just moved from Kuwait to Iraq, in a rather extreme search for some adventure! This didn’t last long and she also decided to leave it all behind and head for Bangkok. We weaved through Thailand and into northern Laos, arriving in Luang Prabang.
I first met Kach, who doesn’t normally drink, in one of the bars, where she was celebrating almost drowning in a part of a waterfall she wasn’t supposed to be in! We hung out for a couple of days and went riding my motorbike around the mountains, but then we went our separate ways – her to study Yoga in Thailand and me to Hanoi to find work. But we kept in touch and after 2 months I convinced her to fly to Hanoi to visit for a couple of weeks for a motorbike trip around north Vietnam. Well, two weeks came and went, and have since turned into 2 and half years of traveling the world together! We’ve been through India, the UK, parts of Europe, South America and the USA together. We even got engaged last year on a desert island in the Caribbean! This year we’ve made a Pre-WeddingBucket List of all the things we want to do before we get married in December 2016. It’s going to be an exciting year!
Amy and Nathan – Two Drifters
My darling Nathan and I first met in a hostel in Edinburgh, Scotland. We both had chosen it because it was an old, converted church, complete with stained glass. I think the mystical, ancient aspect of that appealed to us. That is still something which connects us today: our love for the beautiful and the spiritual.
After that serendipitous 2011 meeting, we kept in touch, beginning a relationship that crossed states and oceans. We were long distance until 2013 when we both finally returned to the US, and last September, we decided to join together forever. We will be getting married this coming April, and we couldn’t be happier. We are looking forward to a life together filled with adventures and love. Our next big destination will be Eastern Europe in fall of 2016.
Heather and Matt – Travelationship
Matt and I met in 2011 on Valentine’s Day in an Irish bar in Tempe, AZ, USA. Before meeting, we were both solo travelers continually looking for our next opportunity to head out on the road. Within three months of meeting, we had taken our first steps into developing our travelationship. We shaped a plan to not only quit our jobs to travel Europe and Africa for two months but upon our return to move to Washington, DC. Our first overseas trip went so well, to date we have been to over forty countries, road tripped most of the US together and in 2013 got engaged on a secluded beach on Siquijor Island in the Philippines. In April 2015, we started on a roughly two-year journey that we hope will take us to at least six of the seven continents.
Lauren and Jared – Lateral Movements
In 2008 I was studying travel writing in London and scored an internship to write a blog for Busabout Europe. My first impression of Jared was that he had an overly loud laugh, because he spent the whole bus ride from Paris hungover and cracking up at an episode of The Simpsons. In the hostel in Bruges I recognized him immediately by his voice but was surprised to see an Aussie wearing a Notre Dame shirt. He hadn’t been to Indiana – my home state – but the t-shirt broke the ice.
He moved to London that winter, and the clincher for me was when he committed to taking American Sign Language lessons over Skype with my mom (my parents are deaf). We moved to Australia the next year, taught English in Korea for two years after that (in the same school!), traveled through South America, and got married in Hawaii in 2014. We’ve been living in Australia since 2013 and I’m really excited about our next long term trip, coming up this year. Unfortunately I can’t say what it is just yet but it’s something we haven’t done much of before so anything could happen.
And, yes, he still laughs that loudly at The Simpsons.
Edna and Joe – Expat Edna
I met my boyfriend in Paris. We ran in the same circles, so for months I’d see him every week at friends’ parties — but it wasn’t until a road trip to Belgium that we bonded over our mutual love of good beer…and discovered that we traveled quite well together. We’ve been dating over two and a half years now, and have visited over 20 countries together. He’s 100% nomadic, so the first year and a half we were long-distance, traveling together when we could while I was based in Italy and then Shanghai. In 2015 I quit my job to travel full-time and we’ve been in each other’s pockets ever since!
Alesha and Jarryd – Nomadasaurus
I started travelling when I was 20, after a long-term relationship fell through. I began in Australia, and then ventured overseas for something bigger. Travelling on my own was one of the best things I could have ever done. Personally I think it is the most rewarding thing people can do for themselves. You will learn a lot about yourself, more than you ever thought is possible. I was happy being single and I was not looking for anyone. I met a lot of people during my journey, but never thought about travelling with anyone. That was until I met Jarryd, in a hostel bar in Vancouver. He was a bouncer and I was a backpacker trying to sneak my underage friend in.
It happened to be his last shift, and he lied about his age to start talking to me. It worked, but it was just a fling at first. Well that fling turned into a seven-year relationship, and now we are engaged. Sometimes when you are not looking you find the perfect one, and you just jump in the deep end. He is the love of my life and I am so happy he lied to me that day (as long as he doesn’t do it again!). We have been travelling for the majority of our relationship and have been through plenty of ups and downs, just like anyone else, only in different circumstances. Don’t go out there and look for the one – they will come to you.
Christopher McCandless wrote: “Happiness is only real, when shared.” How true this is!
And that’s it for our love stories that started with travel. Tell us…
Have you found your love on the road?
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Nina Ragusa is an adventurer, messy bun master, breakfast fan, and full-time travel blogger. She’s been abroad since 2011 and blogging on Where in the World is Nina? for nearly as long. Nina helps people like you move around the world while making money. She loves talking about how to work abroad and online to travel longer!