What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been
We’re Andy Strote and Marlene Bauer, a couple based in Toronto, Canada travelling as we please. Now that we’re post-full-time work, we can take our time to travel more slowly. At the Earth Trippers, we can enjoy each region or city more deeply and report on it back to you.
Why This Site?
Over the years we’ve travelled regularly, and even if we were going for just a couple of weeks, we spent a lot of time planning ahead. When our days were numbered – two weeks goes by fast – we weren’t going to stand in line for hours waiting for anything, so we made sure we had reservations, tickets or passes before we got there. Planning helped us avoid the usual tourist traps for eating and shopping.
At the same time, we made friends around the world, which meant we got local information that doesn’t show up in guide books.
Soon we were sharing this and giving tips to friends, putting them in touch with some of our contacts so they could make the most of their trips too. And that lead us to this site.
We hope that we can help you have the best travel experiences, learn from insiders the same as we did and get your money’s worth for whatever you’re doing.
Who is This Site For?
The short answer would be “people like us”, other Earth Trippers. That includes anyone who seeks out cultural experiences, and enjoys food, wine, art, photography, live music and literature. Oh, and walking. We have walked many, many, many miles on our travels. You tend see more at that speed. Although we are now in our 60s, we find that age really doesn’t matter as much as attitude. Attitude is everything.
We like to think that what we do is “common sense” travel. So, no, it’s not “super luxury travel” (you can find the Ritz Hotel in Paris on your own), but it’s also not “counting every dime” either.
For accommodation, we’ve enjoyed well-priced, comfortable hotels (the Hotel Artemide in Rome is wonderful). We’ve rented a houseboat on an Amsterdam canal and a stone cottage in Muscle Shoals, Alabama on Airbnb, a Berlin loft and a Squamish, B.C. condo on VRBO, and an RV in Vancouver for a road trip through the Canadian Rockies.
We’ve eaten at little hole-in-the-wall places in Paris (recommended by one of the world’s leading food writers) right up to Michelin-starred restaurants throughout Europe. So, it’s everything from first class to local hideaway dive bars.
Over the years, we’ve also travelled thousands of miles to see art exhibits and attend concerts. At this stage in our lives, it’s more about experiences than stuff. We have enough stuff, thank you.
The Earth Trippers Are Not Country Counters
To date, most of our travel has been in North America, Mexico, the Caribbean, Europe and India. We have southeast Asia on our list and we’ll get there in due time. At some point, we’ll also do an around-the-world trip. We see little value in spending a couple of days in a country just to add it to our list.
A Personal Earth Trippers History For the Curious
For many years, Andy worked in advertising as a copywriter, creative director and strategist. Along the way he helped found two companies, both successful. Marlene’s background focused on corporate interior design and project management. We have one son, Alex, who lives and works in British Columbia where he can indulge his passions for snowboarding, hiking and rock climbing.