If you love travel, you have likely seen the lovely Samantha Brown of the Travel Channel on one of her many globe trotting adventures. Since her adventures started she has seen many changes and faced new challenges as she has become a modern mom of twins. I had a chance at the Bay Area Travel and Adventure Show to sit down and chat with Samantha about what has changed now that she is a mom and how she faces those challenges. She also shares with us some tips for going solo and for all our foodies out there, just what her favorite dishes are too! Hear what the expert “Mom Traveler” has to say!
Modern Mom Traveler Samantha Brown
When it comes to traveling with her now 2 year old twins, it’s game on. She and her husband have not let having children change their travel lifestyle. Traveling with kids does indeed present the fears and stress of getting to where you are going without major hiccups because lets face it… kids are unpredictable and require you to lead the way with patience.
Samantha’s best tips for you is to plan ahead and get to the airport early as not to boost the stress level. Remember that the airport in itself is an adventure on it’s own and the more relaxed you are, the more likely they will enjoy the experience as well.
When it comes to getting the flow down from check-in to security, Samantha recommends doing a full “rehearsal” at home with all the luggage in tow, planning who is carrying what and what to do when you get to security so the kids know what to expect to avoid unnecessary fears.
After doing this once or twice, your children become pros and before long will be guiding you through the airport as if on a scavenger hunt!
As for top family friendly destinations… Samantha loves the busy city life. There are so many parks, playgrounds, museums and free activities typically in the city that a family will never get bored. Not to mention that kids LOVE hotels and are many times just as happy to stay in and play and swim.
I also asked her about being a woman today and traveling solo. Recently a friend of mine who traveled on her own for the first time described it as “empowering”. I would say that I have to agree and wholeheartedly Samantha does too. While it may be overwhelming and scary at first, as you lead your own way, you open yourself up to new experiences and meeting new people.
She states that she has noticed that in many areas, when you make the gesture to start a conversation with a question or look like you are in need of assistance, people become beyond helpful and even invite you into conversations, invite you to dine and even into their homes.
Her tips to women is to number one always keep safety in mind. Know the area you are traveling to and the customs and roles of women in the area and respect them, follow them as not to raise any suspicion or unwanted attention. Use your common sense judgement and always be wary of others who may start a conversation with you, it may be purely innocent, but use your sixth safety sense and keep a healthy suspicion. If you are the initiator of conversation, you can feel a bit safer an in control of your situation.
It may surprise you to know that Samantha was one in your shoes. It wasn’t her dream to travel and it in fact scared her at the start. She shares with us that she was studying musical theater when she went to an audition to be a show host. She didn’t really know what she was in for, but when she was offered the one year job, she took it. When she started she shared the same fear as we all do when starting to travel the world. 15 years later, she is still hosting the show and sharing with us not only beautiful destinations but her words of wisdom on growing as a traveler convincing us that you CAN travel. If she can do it, you can do it.
Now because we are big time foodies here at Daily Dish Magazine, I had to ask her about her favorite foodie destinations. At the top of the list is South East Asia. Malaysia in particular which is a blend of Asian, Indian and African street food at extremely low prices. Specialties that have been cooked traditionally as families for years available for you to enjoy “penny cash cheap” $3-4 almost any time of day from a food cart that is so accessible on the streets. You are able to snack all day from street vendors and experience a vast variety.
When Samantha isn’t on the road, she does enjoy cooking in her own home as well. She describes her “signature dish” as soups. She loves soups inspired from her world wide travels such as a Ribollita inspired by Italy. She collects recipes as she travels and loves to recreate them at home.
At the end of the day, what makes Samantha Brown so special is that all of us modern moms out there can relate and are inspired by her adventures. She truly is a down to earth, real mom and it shows through. I am so thrilled at the chance to sit and talk with her and hope to one day reach and inspire others as she does as well!