Travel Blogger Carmen Dominicci Highlights the Most Beautiful Places She’s Been
When she closes her eyes, Carmen Dominicci can instantly revisit all the places she has traveled. She can bring back the colorful spices of that market in Morocco, the softness of the sand dunes in Dubai, the roar of the streets of India, the sweet taste of baklava from Santorini, Greece, and the neon pink sky lights of the aurora borealis in Iceland.
After a successful career as a TV anchor for networks like Univision and Telemundo, the Emmy winner launched the travel blog Trotamundos [or globetrotter] almost three years ago. “When you travel often, you think you've seen it all, but there is always so much more to discover,” says the Puerto Rican journalist, 52, who has visited over 40 countries. But travel blogging isn't as easy as it looks.
Her subscribers and social media followers often write to tell her she has their dream job, but she's running a business. And “no business is profitable in the first few years. This is something that's very competitive and takes a lot of work and time,” she admits. “Having a blog is like having your own magazine, you have to run the entire operation, publish regularly, find content that is interesting to your users, develop a list of subscribers, edit photos, program social media posts, coordinate your next trips, negotiate with various travel companies and tourism bureaus.”
When she thinks of throwing in the towel because of frustrating logistics, she remembers the infinite shares and comments she gets on her blog posts from her subscribers, who feel like they sneak into her suitcase and vicariously travel with her to these distant and exotic worlds. “People are very grateful,” she says. “Sometimes they tell me: ‘Thanks because I can't travel due to financial hardship or because I'm taking care of an elderly relative or my immigration status won't allow me to leave the country.' That's what gives me fuel.”
Her most recent trip was to Vietnam, where she was taken aback by the startling beauty of Halong Bay, which she had seen in movies, and crossed it off her bucket list. “Vietnam was a great surprise,” she says of the Asian country that people tend to instantly associate with the Vietnam War after being exposed to war images for decades. “Its people have evolved and turned the page,” she says of how the country has healed. “They want to become modernized and get back the time lost in the war.” She will now think of the flavor of Vietnamese Pho soup and its beautiful beaches — rather than any gruesome footage — when anyone mentions the country.
Other memories that make her smile are the sunsets of Santorini's Oia overlooking the Aegean sea, the subterranean cities of Cappadocia, Turkey, the magical vibe of the ancient city of Petra in Jordan and the monumental glaciers of Iceland.
Her travel tip section is one of the most popular. There she tells you how to travel on a budget and make the most of each trip. “I never say where I'm going next. I'm a little superstitious about that,” she admits, but she drops hints about her next destination on social media: “You better pack something warm in case it gets cold but also take a bikini because you never know,” she may tease.
Dominicci says she often travels alone, although her son, Giuliano, 29, has accompanied her on some adventures. So who takes her breathtaking photos? “You can't limit yourself from traveling because you don't have someone to go with you. When I travel alone, I have to juggle a lot of things,” says the stunning brunette, who asks friendly couples to take her photos when she can't manage it alone by using her tripod and camera's automatic shooter. Traveling alone doesn't intimidate Dominicci, who as a reporter navigated high-risk situations, she says. “There is a big movement, called solo female travelers, of women who travel alone,“ says Dominicci of groups of female strangers who agree to travel together to common destinations.
She also sees a lot of older travelers discovering new places with their grandkids and stresses that you shouldn't wait for retirement to travel the world, as you don't know whether you'll have the health or savings to travel in the golden years. “You can't postpone fulfilling your dreams indefinitely, because you never know your own expiration date,” she emphasizes. Although she travels almost every month to feed her blog, she always goes back home to Miami to recharge. “I have my cat, my dog, my plants,” she says. ”There comes a point in every trip when I want to return. It doesn‘t matter how fabulous a time I'm having or how luxurious the place is, you miss your own bed, the warmth of your house, your loved ones.”