Travel addict, iPhone photographer, Balkan connoisseur and Master of Europe. Welcome to my travel life.
Hi, thanks for stopping by and wondering who is behind this hot mess of a website…it’s me, Larissa, aka “The Blonde Gypsy”. The moniker was mostly inspired by my grandmother who was the ultimate free spirit/performer/life of the party and taught me that the greatest adventures in life are usually unplanned – kind of like this blog.
Though I never aspired to be a writer, I started storytelling online many years ago anyway to document my travels for myself and keep my parents and friends informed on what I was doing just like a majority of the other bloggers out there. After some pretty wild escapades into some pretty obscure destinations you wouldn’t expect to find me rocking up to solo and landing myself in unique situations with all kinds of colorful characters (see: Ukraine, Moldova, Transnistria, Romania, Chernobyl, the Baltics, and the deepest depths of the Balkans), this blog evolved into a space for me to write about places that not much had been written about before and show that you don’t have to be as “crazy” or “brave” to travel to them as you might think, especially alone. I also like to write about places that have been written about a million times in ways never written before, talk to strangers, drink local spirits with locals and sing karaoke…a lot.
I am fortunate to have traveled my whole life, but don’t expect to find too much “practical” information here like what to pack for a week in Paris or a breakdown of travel costs for a month through Southeast Asia. I’m just a girl who decided to make traveling a priority in her life and have always invested more in experiences abroad than anything else. If anything, I hope what you can find on here is a good time and inspiration to explore outside of the box as much as possible – and to not only travel to countries, but to connect with them.
If anything, I hope what you can find on here is a good time and inspiration to explore outside of the box as much as possible – and to not only travel to countries, but to connect with them.
After a good ten year run of living abroad in places like England (London) where I worked at Vivienne Westwood, Sweden (Malmö) where I completed a Master of Arts in European Studies at Lund University, Ukraine (Odessa) where I just partied under the guise of a magazine internship, and Kosovo (Prishtina) where I started working in tourism development and traveled around the entire Balkan region like it was nobody’s business, I’ve recently resettled back where I was born and raised in sunny California.
As much as I miss the travel rock star lifestyle of being on the road all the time, I’m super content at the moment not living out of a suitcase, but instead next to my family and the beach where I get to watch the sunset every single day over the Pacific. At the same time, I will always be completely unpredictable and will most probably continue making drastic life decisions (or crazy travel plans) in an hour or less, so watch this space.
This is the world through my eyes, hope you do enjoy ❤