Hi! My name is Natalia and I’m the face behind Travelust. I’m fortunate enough to call wine country in British Columbia, Canada home. I went on my first transatlantic trip at the age of 5 as my parental units moved here from Poland. Therefore leaving behind all my extended family in Eastern Europe. Although young, I swear that’s what spurred my love of travel. Growing up my family spent a lot weekends camping and every couple years we would go on bomb trips. For example, a 3 week road trip from Canada to California with stops in Disneyland, San Diego and Las Vegas.
Since my first international trip, I have been to Europe 4 more times, all over America, Southeast Asia, Mexico, Cuba and the Dominican Republic. After graduating high school I moved to Ottawa, Ontario for university and graduated in 2015 with an Honours Bachelors in Health Sciences. Like most university grads, I entered the real world with enough student loan debt to make me want to cry. However with a lot of over time hours, budgeting and my dads voice echoing in my head to never spend more than I make, I was able to pay off the tens of thousands of dollars in debt in 3 years. Not sure what that says about me that that’s my proudest accomplishment to date?
During those three years of vigorous loan repayment, I still made sure to budget a weekend in Las Vegas, a week in the Dominican Republic, a two week cross Canada train and Ontario trip, four weeks in Thailand and Bali, 10 days in Hawaii and then one last quick 5 day trip in Ottawa. So yes it’s entirely possible to pay back a ginormous loan while still feeding your inner travel bug. If you want something badly enough, you will find a way to do it. And I really wanted to be debt free while still seeing the world as a twenty-something wannabe globetrotter.
I always thought the best time in my life would be shortly after graduating university (and not being a broke student) and before having kids (yes, I know this will change once I have kids but for now, traveling > my non-existent children) and I’m finally in the time of my life I’ve been waiting for! There are a few travel regrets I have – spoiler alert – they all include the times I DIDN’T go traveling. Now I intend to travel as often as I can and as far a way as possible.
Thanks for joining me in my travelust!