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The First Greek Travel Festival. Be there!

We are so proud to make such a post and the reason is more than obvious.

The first Travel Festival will take place in Greece next April with lots of inspirational Greek travellers, Greek stories from all around the globe, Greek travel products, Greek travel companies & Greek mentality.

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#TravelEating by Georgia

New Year, New Project, New Travel Pictures!

@TravelEatingByGeorgia is our new Instagram account but most important the next publication for this year. A tasteful blend of perpetual travel lifestyle and local food culture and a creative way to communicate all our culinary experiences from all around the world.

Having explained before the phrenitis of social media and their ephemeral power, we are aiming to use Instagram clearly as a sharing & engagement tool rather than a show-off machine with daily posts & thousands (paid) followers.

So, the next big thing is TRAVELEATING, our first travel cook book with local recipes as well as recipes for the camping that we will keep us busy for a while. Plus, we will contribute our knowledge, passion and yummy experiences to the vast community of travellers and food lovers 😉

Pre-orders in the form of crowdfunding will open soon. In the meantime, check our van-made travel recipes as well as local food pictures at @TravelEatingByGeorgia (no need to follow, JUST CHECK the pics!) and stay in touch 😉

Thank you all for being part of this trip.

Georgia & Nikos

 

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The Traveliving Series: The Miseni Retreat (Tanzania)

Everything started from our donation of pencils, rubbers and sharpeners for the village of Saadani that is primarily sponsored and supported by SANA, one of the siblings of Miseni Retreat family.

Costas, Bakari, Ally, Mzee Sefu, Mama Tuma opened their arms and hosted us for more than 1,5 month in the spring of 2013.

If there is one country that we honestly loved for its diversity in our African leg, this is Tanzania. According to the stats, the Swahili culture spreads from the coast of Zanzibar Archipelago deep to DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo), Burundi & Uganda. For us, the Swahili culture is what makes Tanzania unique and we were fortunate enough to experience this at its full extent thanks to the family of Miseni Retreat.

SANA, Miseni Retreat, Saadani Lodges & the vilages of Gongo & Saadani are all under the same vision (and provision) of Costas Coucoulis, a charismatic philanthropist who was born and lives in Africa the last 40+ years and is extremely aware of the conservation of African nature.

We had the privilege to work with Costas, Bakari & Ally on the Maisha Safari Camp project for a while. However, our trip was “stronger” at that time and we gave up sooner than expected. In the meantime, we spent some time with Mzee Sefu and his wife, Mama Tuma and we had the chance to see what Miseni Retreat is about. These 12 days at Miseni Hill are one of the highlights of our trip so far and is also documented in our book as well.

Miseni Hill is a sacred hill for the locals and you can only walk there barefoot. The vibes of the energy are strong and you need to spend some time there in order to relax and enjoy the surroundings. The wildlife is abundant and the adjacent Saadani National Park is the only coastal NP in Africa where you can literally see elephants swim in the ocean. Plus, if you are lucky and you visit the right season, you can see dolphins in the day and lions in the night!

Miseni Retreat is located on the south edge of the Zaraninge Forest and the distance from downtown Dar es Salaam is only 125 kms through Bagamoyo.

When we were there, the Retreat was a newborn baby. Recently, we followed the news, checked Facebook & talked with some friends who are actually there and we found out that Miseni Retreat eventually opened up its doors to accommodate the first guests.

Miseni Retreat is also featured in our CHECK-INS list as an exceptional place that we have spent time during our long RTW tour and we are so happy to see that it grew up that fast.

Their moto is “Live in agreement with nature“. It couldn’t be more true & authentic.

Why dont you take a chance to experience by yourself? We would more than glad to hear back that a Pin Project friend visited Tanzania and said hello -or even better Habari za asubuhi- in our African friends.

 

From the bottom of our hearts, ASANTE SANA (=Thank you so much) for teaching us that life is simple with little things.

Have a look for reservations & more pics @ http://www.kijanicollection.com/ & Miseni Retreat at Facebook.

 


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The Traveliving Series: Akis Temperidis

What we love when talking about our trips is talking about others. Its so vain to talk about yourself all the time.. People get bored, don’t they?

Akis Temperidis is a professional photographer & journalist who specializes in car industry but what makes Akis an exceptional friend is his passion about travel adventures around the world.

Screen Shot 2017-08-13 at 19.46.52Akis along with his wife Vula did a RTW trip in 3,5 years from 2007 to 2010 in a Land Rover Discovery and they are the first Greek overlanders to accomplish such a mission under the name TheWorldOffRoad. To be really honest, we didn’t follow their stories when they were travelling. We knew though that a Greek couple wanders around the world and we first got in contact after they finished their trip and settled down in the jungle of Tanzania.

They provided us with a bunch of useful information, advice and local insight that only a world traveller knows and since then we are in contact.

When the Pin Project started in April 2012, Vula was about to deliver their first daughter. Today, Anastasia is 6 years old (same age with the Pin Project) and the guys are setting off AGAIN. What an inspiration to see them travelling again, this time with their daughter on board!!!

Courage, strength, inspiration, charm, self-confidence are some of the values that this brilliant couple carries deep inside and made them an invaluable source of motivation when we were getting prepared for our RTW trip.

Last thing, Akis wrote a foreword for TRAVELIVING and we are so blessed for having such an awesome contribution & support for our book.

 

IMG_2802“In his own prologue, Nikos will “serve” you an array of reasons in an attempt to convince you not reading his book. This is peculiar for a writer in his first work but showcases the overall philosophy of the guy, which is visible -even tangible- in every single page of this book.

What I realised while reading this “Romantic & Practical Guide” is that Nikos doesn’t want to buy our praise, he doesn’t write for our applause. He hates selling himself for money, glory or social following and he doesn’t even feel comfortable with the idea of selling a self-made book to support his ongoing lifestyle – Traveliving. A term that is probably introduced by this book for a first time and describes it all.

Writing books to make a traveliving is a great and decent idea, by the way. And this one is accomplished remarkably well for a young traveller who is not -and not intended to be- a professional writer.

I will not try to convince you buying this book, providing all the good reasons, followed by exclamation marks. It would be considered like a payback for accepting the honor to forward it. So, no advertisement for Nikos’ work, just a few words to describe my feelings while reading this. Plus, the taste in my mouth after I finished it.”

Read more in our book.

You can learn more about Akis adventures at: http://www.temperidis.com, http://www.theworldoffroad.com & https://www.facebook.com/theworldoffroad.


 

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The Traveliving Series: How To (self-) publish your first travel book

First of all, we have to make this clear: the HOW-TO guides is not our best. It might sounds contradictory -or even off-putting- but we are writing this piece of information in order to help and “enlighten” other travellers who are thinking to write their first book, primarily, by having an accumulated experience of  5 years of travelling and 9 months as self-publishers.

To begin with, publishing a book is one of the easiest things in the world. This statement is a combination of positive thinking, past experience as well as a true fact. Do not listen to what the “experts” say and start working your travel writing project TODAY! However, there some things that you must take into consideration which are divided into two stages: the before starting & after finishing your travel book.

Before starting, it means that you have some decent travel experience along with some nice pictures to show. Of course, this is totally unrelated to the way you are travelling (car or motorbike or bicycle or backpack does not really matter), the length of your travels and the number of countries you have visited. You just need some interesting content to inspire you and of course inspire others. Plus talent and writing skills! Remember that you are a traveller, neither a professional author nor a photographer. This applies to the vast majority of seasonal or long term travellers who really want to write a book (a travel narrative or a practical guide) with their experiences, not professional travel writers & photographers whose job is fundamentally travel-related.

IMG_2798After finishing your project and assuming that it went through serious cover design & scrutinous context editing and proofreading, you have two options to make it available to your target audience. Self-publish it or find a publishing house to do it for you. The former is a lonely journey that you have to take along with some risk and capital investment. You need to pay everything out of your pocket (editors, graphic designers, printing store, to name a few) as well as organize every little detail and learn how the whole system works. On the other hand, you have full control of your asset. It means that you plan and implement your own marketing & promotion campaign (presentations, give-aways, public speeches, etc.), you know exactly your sales figures as well as your available stock and finally, all profits end up directly into your pocket.

If you choose to go for a publishing house, be prepared to send 100 (at least) applications, proposal & drafts and wait for their reply (not everybody gets back!). Most of them claim that they are looking for a book with a long-shelf life and obviously, this is hard to say for a new book. At least, they have more experience than us! In the best case scenario that a publisher will be interested, then you can consider it as a little success for your project that involves less stress but also lower revenues. In most cases, they do everything that is needed to bring your piece of art into life, so you can see it one day on the book stores’ shelves. The real catch, in this case, is that the publishing house will rarely tell you the exact number of books that they printed (we know at least one case that they said to the traveller they printed 1.000 copies but instead they printed and eventually sold 2.000). According to these figures, they will give to you your final share (which will barely be over 10% of the retail price), so they prefer not to tell you the whole truth. Assuming that your book is sold for 20 EUR (or USD) and the publisher throws into the market 2.000 copies, you can expect to get from 2.000 to 4.000 EUR/USD maximum. It is definitely not a bad figure but you have to remember that you must deal with an honest publisher to get these money. Besides that, do not expect from your publisher to make any investment on marketing. They already paid for the printing costs which means that you have to take over. Travels around the country (also overseas), press releases, public speeches & presentations must be organised primarily by you if you want to make people familiar with your book and boost your sales.

Both options have lovers & haters, pros & cons and it is a decision you have to take before starting writing. After all, having a big adventure around the world is as easy as it sounds and thousands of people are doing so. Secondly, create a decent reading is also feasible. Even if you have a nice story to tell but not the talent to write it, a more intellectual than you friend or even a professional editor, will help you make it happen.

However, if there is a difficult or even really hard to achieve goal in this type of project, is the publishing of your book and its growth in terms of publicity and of course sales. Why?

  • Too much competition
  • Demanding readers
  • Too much FREE stuff on-line
  • Different cultural background
  • Need a proven and highly rated social media track record (No Facebook, Instagram & Twitter -like us- means very low sales!)
  • Different market orientation/ diversity
  • Media world is a mess and you need to know the right people to guide you through

Here is a real life example:

placeitRecently, we self-published our first travel book and now it is available as a paperback as well as an eBook. The creation of the book took us about 4 months (since August 2016) and the editing took another 4 months. In April 2017, we self-published it as an eBook. This way, we managed to raise about 450 EUR out of nothing (publishing an eBook is easy, free and a great way to market yourself).

Having a momentum, we decided to raise money through a very popular crowd-funding platform. So, in June 2017, we launched our campaign in order to basically invite people to pre-order our book and so get the necessary funds for the printing. After a partially successful campaign, about 40 people believed in our project and generously contributed. This way, we managed to raise around 1200 EUR (net amount after taxes, fees and other charges). (If we were more open to the social media, our target of 3.000 EUR would be way more easier to be achieved but this is something that has been already discussed in some Traveliving Series articles like The Social Media Phrenitis, Decisions, Decisions, Decisions, etc.)

After all, the printing and binding did cost 2.150 EUR, so we paid 500 EUR out of our pocket for a potential 14.700 EUR NET PROFIT (we printed 700 copies and we sell them for 21 EUR each).

Having said that, think very thoroughly how you want to carry on and bring your little travel writing project into life. Collective thinking, passion for what we are doing and a great desire to share all our knowledge and past experience makes us your best friend. We would love to hear back & provide the future travel writer with advice, information and insight.

 

Information about TRAVELIVING, our first travel book, and how you can order it online, can be found here: https://thepinproject.eu/traveliving-a-romantic-practical-guide/

 

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