How to be a Conscious, Minimalist, Traveler

Travel Lifestyle for Digital Nomads

When did you first know you were a traveler?

Since I was a kid. 

What do you do for work?

Communications work primarily for startups and non-profits.

Tell me a little about where you've gone?

Digital Nomad for 3 years - Spain, Slovenia, France, US, Nicaragua, Mexico, Colombia, Indonesia, Vietnam, now Estonia.

I have to remind myself, it's not a full-time holiday; it's a full-time job in different places.

What has been your favorite place you've traveled to so far? Where has left a great impression on you?

Always an impossible question to answer. I've learnt a lot in every place I've been, be that about myself or the new place I find myself. Our first stop, a month in a national park in Slovenia left a very strong impression and influenced much of our further travel. If we're in any one place for an amount of time close proximity to nature is a non negotiable. And the WiFi was excellent.

Meet inspiring activist Angelo. We met Angelo after he walked thousands of kilometres through Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.👣👣🇵🇬🇮🇩 What is your message to the 🌏 Angelo? "Realise how many things physical or mental we don't need, and no longer serve us. Release your body, release your mind; we don't need much.  Learn to leave behind what you don't need, learn to use just what is necessary and share with others. Reciprocate; respect somebody and you will likely receive respect, help and you will receive help. But the same goes the other way, hurt and you will be hurt.  If you want a family and children, think carefully about their future and what world they will be left with, there is much to be done to provide a good future for them." Learn to leave behind what you don't need, learn to use just what is necessary and share with others. Reciprocate; respect somebody and you will likely receive respect, help and you will receive help. But the same goes the other way, hurt and you will be hurt. - 
Angelo Paolo Noviello

What are your favorite items that you always travel with?

Key desk items like my roost laptop stand, good books, massage ball, loose leaf tea, moleskine notepad -plenty more. I like to travel with as little single use stuff as possible, reusable coffee cup, water bottle, handkerchief, napkins, straw, cutlery.

noice cancelling headphones digital nomad office

For your backpack, What size do you carry? Can you speak a bit about what things you stopped carrying over time, and what you replaced to keep a light load?

I travel with a 75l Caribee backpack. I had a standard pack I'd had for over a decade. When I was gifted this one I thought I wouldn't need it on wheels - but I was wrong. Nine times out of ten the wheels are the most convenient. My back is thankful too!

My baggage used to be around 20-23 it's now down to 15-18. I've cut back a lot on clothes, using jewelry I pick up from around the world to jazz up different outfits. I've cut right back on hair and beauty products, opting for lush solids etc. We used to travel with a Peruvian throw and a few homely feeling knick knacks when we started, we've stripped that right back now. Everything in my bag has a purpose and a lot of thought has gone into why I have it. I love everything that is in my bag. I travel with extra pieces that mean I cut down on my single use plastic where possible too. 

Books is where I haven't cut back though, I can't get on with a Kindle!

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You mentioned that you often read books that are written in or about a place before or while you are there. Can you tell me some specific books you read about where you were going?

Sometimes I look up recommended lists before I go but often I ask around when I'm in the country; the woman running the free walking tour, person in the bookshop etc. If I'm in a place for a few weeks I'll try and read 1 piece of literature. For example here in Estonia I'm reading The Man Who Spoke Snakish - a fantasy fiction looking at forest life at the turn of the agricultural revolution. Reading it while I'm a cabin in the woods made for a very atmospheric experience. 

It adds another dimension to the country you're in, an invaluable one in my opinion.

What advice would you give to a new traveler?

Look after your back, you will always overestimate how much you can fit in, travel days take recovery time. You don't need to see EVERYTHING! Immerse yourself in the local culture as much as possible - and my personal fave - try reading historical fiction by an author from the country you're in - an emotional way under the skin of the culture.

Solo female traveler

You can follow Sophia on her travels at
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Sophia Cheng, Conscious, Minimalist, Writer, Reader, Traveler, Woman
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1 comment

  • Marine George

    Hi Farawild,

    I’m an actress, screenwriter and producer, as well as a nomad – when I can, and I’m currently working on a webseries about digital nomads – the first fictional series about this tribe actually!

    I’m currently working on a blog as well as a shop to help finance the project, and I came across your very own project. I think your initative is great and I’d like to discuss a few points with you:

    - first of all, I’d really like to feature you on our blog or social media as I’m looking for initiatives that are truly innovative. FYI our series is humoristic and makes fun of the typical instagrammable nomadism that is so far for reality, so I’m trying to link our blog to slow travel, sustainable, authentic blogs and offers. Let me know if you’d like to be featured.

    - Second, I’m really curious about your shop: you offer very different products, do you make them yourselves or are you selling through other brands? If so, I’d be really curious as to how you managed to do so – or if you’d potentially like to discuss a partnership, and bring to life a line connected to our series. I have a few items in mind but don’t have great knowledge of logistics and e-commerce, so a partnership could be a potential idea.

    I know my request can come off a little scammy, so I’d love to chat further with you, perhaps through Skype. Also, FYI here is our IG page (we didn’t start posting our own content but will do in a month or so): @digitalnomadsseries .

    Thanks for your interest, and happy holidays wherever you are!



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