Holidays with Sarah Von Bargen

amazon forest

One of Sarah’s most memorable trips was to the Amazon Forest.

1.    Tell us about the very first solo trip you remember taking.

My first really big trip was to Steinheim, Germany when I was 18.  I was part of an exchange program and I stayed with the family of a lovely girl that my family had hosted the previous winter.  I had so much fun riding a bike through the countryside and eating brown bread with all those seeds.  It was also the first time I ever went to Ikea, which was a rite of passage in and of itself 😉

2.    What was your most memorable trip?

One of my most memorable was when I went to the Amazon rainforest at 22.  I was in Brazil teaching English and I decided that it would ridiculous to be in the same country as sloths and not see them in person.  So I booked a trip, navigated three airports with my spotty Portuguese, and spent a week at Ariau Towers.  It was just about as amazing and you’d expect.

3.    What do you like most about travelling?

I love seeing new things, meeting new people, trying new foods.  Time seems to expand once I’m out of my routine – each day seems like a week when I’m someplace new!

4.    What do you hate most about travelling?

I can get frustrated with the day-to-day logistics that take up a lot of time.  How do we get to the train station? Are our reservations confirmed?  Do we need to print out our tickets?  Where can we do that?  But I find when I stay in the same place for 2-3 weeks, I can really cut down on all the boring logistical stuff.

5.    How would you spend your perfect day on holiday or on a trip?

I like a good mix of work, play, socializing, and alone time.  I’d probably get up around 7 in my own little apartment in Santorini, go for a run, shower, work for a few hours, head to the beach and meet up with friends, come home and nap, and then head out for a late dinner and dancing with my people.

6.    Tell us one thing that happened to you on a trip that you will never forget.

While I was in Thailand, I spent two weeks teaching English to sex workers in a little border town.  In order to meet them and invite them to my class, I spent a week frequenting the backrooms of bars and hotels, saying hello and talking to them about our curriculum.  It was completely, completely surreal.

7.    Where would you most like to travel next? Why?

I’m working on some big project this summer, so I’m limiting myself to time at the lake and little road-trips to St. Louis and Chicago.  In November I’m going to Mexico for a couple of weeks to celebrate Day of The Dead and I’m still deciding on my winter trip!


Read other Going Places articles here.


Sarah Von Bargen is a professional blogger, writer, and internet awesome-i-fier.  When she’s not traveling, she’s writing, having adventures, or eating cheese.  You can follow along on Facebook or Twitter.