For many people, the idea of packing up and moving to a new country is no more than a semi-terrifying daydream. Natalia is not one of those people. A Russian native, she’s made some huge life changes in the past few years that have led her far outside her comfort zone. I’m excited to share a bit of her story with you here!
Connect with Natalia:
Tell us about yourself?
My name is Natalia and I’m Russian, born and brought up in St.Petersburg, Russia. I moved to New Delhi, India almost 3 years ago where I’m currently running a travel company.
Why do you travel?
Living in St.Petersburg, I was quite close to Europe. With valid Schenghen visa in my passport it was pretty easy to go to Europe for a weekend, which I used to do. Back there, I used to travel mostly solo and that time travelling meant an escape for me. I simply wanted to run away from routine (office-home-office) and weather (there is nothing called sun and warm weather in St.Petersburg. Most of the time it’s windy, cold and grey). After moving to India, I hadn’t traveled abroad for almost two years as settling things down took me a lot of time. I kept going to Russia though.
Right now, living in India, I dont travel that often anymore. After all, India is quite far from Europe and it’s a big country. But every time I travel since the time I moved I don’t want to run or escape anymore. Nowadays, whenever I travel with my husband (I don’t travel solo anymore) I want to bring some excitement, I want to surprise him and I want to see him smiling continiously. Knowing that I might be the reason behind it is one of the best things in the world. For example, when we went to Croatia I booked him a suprise flight over Kornati National park. Recently in Prague, I booked him a visit to the beer spa. Every time we travel, I always do my research and I really enjoy the process and, obviously, the end result!
How do you balance work and travel?
Luckily, in Russia we have a lot of state holidays which we know in advance so one can plan trips or city-breaks accordingly. Unlike Russia, India doesn’t have too many state holidays so right now whenever I need to travel, I apply for my vacation leave or inform my boss and colleagues in advance.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learned from your travels?
My biggest trip was (and it still going on), obviously, moving to India. In time, when I realised how closed I was and how my mind was shut, I just couldn’t believe it. I realised that all those trips I’ve taken over years have not taught me anything. I learnt how to talk to strangers, I learnt to try new food, I actually learnt that there whole world out there! I literally stepped out of my comfort zone. Every time I travel back home I hear that I’ve grown up and Ive changed a lot – however, I’m still learning and changing. Although, it mights sound very common – but that’s how it is.
Share one of your favorite travel memories.
I recently got married to the most amazing man in this world (for me :)) in my dream destination – in Santorini 🙂
If you could share one travel tip with other women, what would it be?
Like they say in India: “There is always a way out!” And it can be anything – a way out of situation or even maybe a trouble. Or, at very least – out of the country 🙂 Go out, explore, don’t be afraid and open your mind (sorry, more than just one tip!)
THANKS FOR READING NATALIA’S STORY!
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