Twippers of the Week: Sharon and Steve from Midlife Nomads.

Current city: We’re currently based in our home town of Perth, Western Australia.

Age: Steve is 52 and Sharon is 50

Total countries visited: Steve has traveled to 28 countries and Sharon has traveled to 27.

What makes you interesting: We’re not afraid to take some chances when we travel and quite often without a set plan, we end up in some amazing places.  For example, we were in Mexico and wanted to visit The Copper Canyon, an area not really recommended by the official authorities as a “safe” region.  We bumped into a seasoned traveler in a bar one night in La Paz and all he said to us as he departed was “You NEED to visit The Copper Canyon” and the glint in his eyes said it all.  We researched how, when, who etc. and we ended up spending an amazing 2 weeks there being passed from family to family up and down the train line through the Canyon.  An amazing experience.

What brands do you love: JBL – Our portable WIFI speaker has travelled the world with us and is still going strong. Victorinox Swiss Army Knife – A reliable tool of many uses. Fujifilm – Steve uses a XT-1 and in our opinion is the perfect traveling camera. Canon – I’ve been a Canon user forever, but I’m thinking about a switch to mirrorless in the future, just not sure if it will still be a Canon.  I’m currently using a Canon 5D MKIII. Black Wolf Backpacks – 2.5 years continuous use and still in one piece although a little on the worn side. Under Armour – ColdGear® clothing is AWESOME!

Most magical place on earth: Austria and Switzerland. It would be hard to separate these two.  The dramatic mountains that envelope you as you pass through be it by car, bus or train. Truly magical!

What is the best part about having a travel partner: Having someone to share life and travel experiences with.  We have been together for 32 years and married for 28 of those, so I think we are aware of our strengths and weaknesses although we are still discovering new things about each other like my non-negotiable, mortal fear of Bats was something Steve discovered in a Cenote in Mexico.

What is your favorite mode of transportation when you travel: Depends who you ask.  Steve’s would be boat, he has a real love for the ocean. Mine however, would be our own vehicle, be it car, motorhome, motorbike. Why? Because of the freedom to stop for that amazing photo op whenever we want to.

What does “Travel” mean to you: Travel removes you from your daily routine, everything is new and exciting and you have new experiences all the time.  Sometimes these experiences take you out of your comfort zone and you are suddenly on a steep learning curve.  So if we could encompass all of this into one word we would probably say spiritual.

What is your best and worst travel memory:

Best: There are many, but cruising The Bahamas Islands aboard the schooner The Liberty Clipper for seven days with 22 strangers, would have to be a great memory.  We are very grateful the 22 strangers are still friends.

Worst: Wrecking my ankle by falling down some stairs in the Castle Belltower in Cesky Krumlov just four days before attempting to surprise our daughter on Mt Titlis, Switzerland (who we hadn’t seen for 13 months) for her 23rd Birthday.  I was pretty much useless so everything fell on Steve’s shoulders.  We did it…..just!  Very thankful for the Orthopaedic Doctors of Austria.

Do you have any recommendations to help battle jet lag: Don’t take long flights if you can help it.  We have always tried to do short legs.  If it’s unavoidable then drink plenty of water, not alcohol, before during and after your flight. Try and sleep as best you can, get some noise cancelling ear phones or ear plugs.

Next travel destination: We’d like to know that too. We’re in the throws of planning our next trip and whilst we have seen so much of the world already, choosing where has become more difficult as we realize how precious our vacations are and making them count. House of Prayer Bukit Rhema or more commonly known as The Chicken Church is pretty high on Steve’s list though.  Now might be a good time for that solo trip, somewhere with beaches and cocktails sounds more like my style!