Mature Travelling: Where food, travel and culture meet
“It seems that the more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be. The more I become aware of, the more I realize how relatively little I know of it, how many places I have still to go, how much more there is to learn.” Anthony Bourdain
Hi, we are Faith and Alan and we are housesitters and Faith is a travel writer and we are exploring Europe. Covering the best of travel in Europe with a focus on Generation Jones, Boomers, Gen X, and Empty Nesters and the over-50 crowd. We share tips, travel inspiration, food tourism and food culture and markets, culture, art, history and slow travel.
As a couple, we have lived in many places around Europe we were both born in Ireland so we have the luxury of an Irish passport. We grew up in Canada as immigrants with our parents and between us, we have lived in Canada, Ireland, England – London, and various counties, France, and Spain. We have also been fortunate enough to have slow-travelled and spent months in countries such as Cyprus, Turkey, Malta, Egypt, Italy, and areas of the UK such as Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.
If you are looking for travelling inspiration, learning about food culture and traditions, exploring off-the-beaten-path sites, and those fabulous tourist hot spots we write about them all. We are not travel snobs and we won’t turn down a hop-on hop-off bus tour or pretend we won’t visit a tourist trap. We want to see it all and eat all the food and experience all the local culture has to offer.
That’s what I write about. It’s all here, the good, the bad and the ugly. Join us on our ass-end boomer tour of Europe and our quest to find a permanent retirement home.
What are mature travellers? “Mature” is defined by the travel industry as persons aged 50 to 80. And they control 80 per cent of the developed world’s discretionary income. This age group puts a high priority on travelling and tends to be in good health.
Faith, 63 (almost) and refusing to be invisible
Yep, ageing sucks totally and I refuse to be invisible, quiet and boring. Luckily ageing has its advantages you can do whatever you actually want for a change and don’t have to put up with any crap. I have spent a lifetime working with community-based initiatives (including historic sites & venues, theatre, farmer’s markets, and community economic development) with a special interest in helping people start businesses.
I travel with auto-immune conditions which means I have to be careful not to exhaust myself and I need to find places that are accessible. In other words no 600-step staircases or places that require miles and miles to walk before you can see anything.
Housesitting is the best thing for a traveller like me. It allows us to stay in places longer so we are not cramming in 10 things in one day. We get to explore areas that other tourists don’t have time for. We also get to meet the locals and become part of a community.
Alan, 63 who has at any given time more shoes than Faith does
It’s true Alan is far more obsessive about shoes than I am but that’s because I have crappy feet and can’t wear any beautiful shoes anymore. So Alan is a guitar head and totally wishes he could have brought his 4 guitars and amps with us on this carry-on luggage journey. Not to mention his Armani jacket (a thrift store find of his) and his fancy suit. Alan drags the luggage around, carries my computer, takes photos for the blog and is working on learning how to edit videos. He’s not a planner I do that…sigh…he cooks a mean fry-up breakfast and his baking is addictive – those pretzels WOW!
We got our first house-sitting gig in Mexico in 2015 and we haven’t looked back. Our second house-sitting “job” was in Ireland – which since we were both born in Ireland was a brilliant chance for us to visit the “homeland”.
We have also house-sat in Spain, Canada, Yorkshire, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Mexico, Berkshire, Blackpool and Cyprus (have a read of homeowners from hell for that one). We will continue to house sit for as long as humanly possible. Currently, we are housesitting in France and will be here exploring as much as we can. We will have to find a permanent base though because these days the medications are threatening to overwhelm the carry-on and I am having trouble fitting in the clothes I need.
So we want to keep travelling (on a Post Office pension no less), and learn more about living in Europe and Ireland. Exploring the beautiful landscapes and cities of the EU and providing you our readers with a ton (and I mean a ton) of facts, beautiful pictures, and some of the most amazing food ever and inspiring you to do the same thing.
You can see Faith’s writing work here:
- Guest Writer for House Sitting Magazine
- Travel Guide contributor for Earth’s Attractions
- Legacy Arts & Paragon Road – The power of giving
- Guest Writer for Headstuff an Irish online magazine – International Women’s Day
- Guest Writer Tip my Tip a travel magazine
- Check out our latest interview in the Wall Street Journal – Traveling the World Rent Free
- You can even hear us on Radio Ulster – BBC Belfast talking about our house-sitting travels
If you like what you see here please feel free to contact us – Faith can literally write anything so if you need a great freelance content writer or social media marketing get in touch!
Want to get in touch with me? You can shoot me an email [email protected]
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Feel free to comment on a blog post and if you have any questions I will try to help out.