Wandering Helene

Slow Travel | Local Food | Mindful Living

About Me

My name is Helene and I currently run this little corner of the internet. I have been wanting to start a blog since I knew what one was but never really had the time or right idea. I decided to take the dive and this is what I created. Before we discuss what you can find here, let me introduce myself.

wandering heleneI am an American living in Slovenia. I just married my best friend in the whole world, Jaka. You will probably see him around in some of my posts and videos, He shoots all of the incredible drone shots you see in my videos, and is the best travel partner a girl could ask for.

wandering helene wedding

There is something truly special about finding someone who encourages you to be the best version of yourself. I know it is mushy and you might be going aww or gagging but every day is an adventure when you find your other half. Jaka goes above and beyond to support me and we even collaborate filming videos together. Check out the video below of a hike we did to Triglav Lakes.

If you watch my Instagram stories you might see another character, our kitten Gucci. She is the sweetest thing that brings joy (with a dash of stress) every single day. She probably hates me for the number of times I shove a camera in her face.

I have lived in the US, Mexico, Italy, England, and Slovenia. Yes, I have quite the list now. Which also means that I am learning my fourth language! I have a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Applied (Cultural) Anthropology. It always felt like a natural fit to start a travel blog because it felt like doing brief ethnography. I love to observe and document and I think I have an eye for picking up cultural habits or differences even if just spending a short time in a new place.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

What to expect when reading this blog?

My vision is that this place is a fresh take on traveling in the world today. My goal is the share my experiences and ideas about interacting with the world, especially in new places. While I hope that my articles are informative and help guide your travels, my intention is not to just list the top spots. My intention is to document my experience, my emotions, and what it felt like to interact in a new space, to taste new flavors, hear new music… moving forward I plan to share more of an immersive experience through videos and photos.

What is it like to live in Slovenia?

I think it is pretty great. Slovenia is centrally located in terms of Europe and the country itself has everything to offer. I live in the capital, Ljubljana, and a one hour drive can take me to the Alps, or the winegrowing region, or the seaside. I can easily drive into Italy, Austria, Croatia, or Hungary. I did an interview with Let’s Go Slovenia about my experiences moving here.

What is with the castle obsession?

I wish I knew. No really, it just happened and now this is my life.

I was never a girl obsessed with princesses or fairytales and during my studies, I sucked at archaeology so much. Now I find myself visiting castles, palaces, ruins of palaces anywhere I can. My first castle was in Italy. It was quite old so the inside was mainly bare, but I could walk along the grounds and even upon the castle wall. It felt magical. I was just so impressed with the sheer impact a castle makes on a landscape or town, and that people built these with their hands is mindblowing to me. I love exploring their changed purpose throughout time and how that reflects upon a place.

What is your favorite part of travel?

Food! I really need to step up my food game on my blog and social media. Most people might not realize how much I love food as I almost never feature it in my writing. When I know I will be traveling to someplace new I try to dig around to find out what the local dishes are and where is the best place to try them. Sometimes it becomes a bit more random, and we will drive until we find some small restaurant in the middle of nowhere, where they don’t even have a menu.

I am passionate about local food. I try to grow some of my own and trade with others when possible. I love trying local dishes, family recipes, learning about why certain ingredients were used over others. How the history of a place influenced its cuisine and how the local people feel about their local dishes. There is something truly special there. (Yes I have those gears moving, always trying to figure out a way to share these ideas in the most sincere and appetizing way possible.)

 

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What is on your travel bucket list?

I don’t really have a list written down of all the things I’d love to do but, of course, there are highlights. Lately, I have been obsessed with Patagonia, that would be a dream to explore those landscapes. Alternatively, I have had it in my mind that driving the west coast from Mexico to Alaska is on my big to-do list, with a mandatory stop at Mt. Zion National Park.

Where is your favorite place to travel in Europe?

My most dreaded question of all time. I think everywhere has something special and whenever I sit down and try to think about the answer it gets even harder. It depends on the time of year, how much time you have, what are your interests. If I had to narrow it down to a country I would say Italy, and not even for the big cities, but rather for the small towns, hidden alleyways, and tiny restaurants that were carved into the side of a mountain. It can be quite difficult to navigate Italy outside the cities, but when you do, you will be rewarded.

Verona Italy

Verona is the perfect stepping stone to a more intimate experience in Italy. Read about my time wandering the streets and trying local delicacies.

How do you afford to travel?

Well, I don’t travel full time so that is a lot cheaper, and most often I travel to places close to me, so once again, cheaper. So far in 2018 I haven’t actually flown anywhere other than back to Slovenia from the US. Basically, I prioritize travel, that is where I spend my money because it is something I value. You don’t have to fly to a big city thousands of miles away to explore beautiful things. Often times we will just drive out early morning to a new place, spend the day there, and go home. Otherwise, we save money via using AirBnB.

So I travel cheap and I travel local (although it is cheating since I am not a local), but where does my money come from? Freelancing! You can actually hire me for an absurd range of tasks. I have been freelancing online since 2012 and haven’t looked back.

Social Media

I admit that I am not as active as I want to be on social media but I do keep my Twitter and Instagram the most up to date. My Pinterest boards are over-organized a bit, but they can be great guides for planning your next trip or for a little inspiration.

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Instagram | @wanderinghelene

Twitter | @wanderinghelene

YouTube | My Channel

Facebook | Wandering Helene

Pinterest |My Boards

 

Thank you!

If you made it this far into my About Me page, thank you! I hope that it was a bit interesting and maybe useful. If you are interested in working with me, head over to my Work With Me page (coming very soon!), and I am currently seeking out local collaborators. Whether it is just taking photos, shooting a video together, swapping guest posts, shoot me a message and let’s chat!

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