Welcome to Moment Sketchers

Hello! My name is Candace, and I’m a sketch artist with a passion for helping you connect with the world through art. Pull out your sketchbook and watercolors and find your favorite view — I’m glad you’re here!

“I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.”

― Jorge Luis Borges

It’s been a rather excellent week for books around here—not least because I’m currently housesitting for dear friends who are also artists and avid art book collectors.

Every morning I have had the pleasure of waking up early, getting the coffee maker brewing, and then raiding my friends’ shelves for that day’s reading material. I recently shared a photo on Instagram of the illustrated travelogues and graphic memoirs I have been devouring (I couldn’t even put down Lucy Knisley’s An Age of License long enough yesterday to pour myself a second cup of coffee…), and I’m especially excited to share more about these books on the blog soon.

Illustrated travelogues

The tower of inspiration currently atop my dining table.

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But amidst the many graphic-memoir-reading-marathons that have defined this week for me, there’s one more new book I’m celebrating today—The Lonely Planet Travel Anthology: True stories from the world’s best writers.

Every year Lonely Planet publishes a literary anthology of travel stories, edited by my dear friend and writing mentor Don George. While past titles have often revolved around a central theme, be it The Kindness of Strangers, An Innocent Abroad, or By the Seat of My Pants, this year’s anthology is broader in its focus—as Don writes in his introduction, he simply asked writers to draw on “a travel experience that had exerted a particularly profound and lasting influence on their lives.”

The anthology was just released last week, and I couldn’t be more honored or thrilled to have a story in it—especially as it’s about my first journey to Norway’s Lofoten Islands. The book also contains stories from many of my own writing heroes—including Pico Iyer, Ann Patchett, and Rebecca Dinerstein—so it’s deeply humbling to see my name next to theirs in the table of contents.

Lonely Planet Travel Anthology

The first surreal moment of glimpsing my story in the collection…

Travel sketch Norway

…and my first sketch of the magical place that inspired it.

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And now…for a giveaway!

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, which we celebrated in the U.S. yesterday, it only feels right to express my gratitude for being part of this collection one way—by giving away a copy to you all here, signed by the book’s editor himself, Don George.

If you would like to enter the giveaway, all you need to do is:

1. Leave a comment below, saying where one of your own favorite travel experiences took place.

2. I’ll choose a winner at random tomorrow morning at 11am PST, only as I’m flying back to Uruguay this weekend and want to make sure it’s in the mail before I leave.

3. I finally want to mention I’ll be happy to ship to anywhere in the world, so if you’re reading this from outside the U.S., please don’t hesitate to enter.

I can’t wait to share the book with one of you soon, but first—I’ve got another Lucy Knisley travelogue waiting for me…

Lonely Planet Travel Anthology

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  • Pauline Susanto

    Wow – Congratulations on being published in the Lonely Planet Travel Anthology – what an achievement, Candace! That’s a hard question. I have SO MANY amazing travel experiences. If I have to choose just one, I think it would have to be the from the Camino (like you could expect a different answer from me) Our group of walkers all checked in to the same albergue in Los Arcos. Come dinner time, we decided to go to a tiny bar in front of the cathedral. We ended up taking every single seats and keeping the bartenders busy the entire night – it was like our own private party in the middle of Spain. I loved every moment that night and I’m always in awe of the connections you can make despite language barriers and cultural differences.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words and Thanksgiving wishes here, Pauline!! And thank you especially for sharing such a beautiful moment from your time on the Camino with us. I love the spirit of spontaneity and serendipity that seems to live on that trail, and the way it brings you together with fellow pilgrims with such a beautiful sense of ease. I’m so thrilled you had such an enriching and inspiring time on the Way…and here’s hoping we can both make it back to the Camino again one day soon 🙂

  • Pauline Susanto

    Also, HAPPY THANKSGIVING, dear friend!! I hope your day is filled with lots of turkey and a full dose of gratitude 🙂

  • 35jupiterdrive

    lots of truly good travel experiences.
    best was probably Tokyo. it was a trip that gave me what travel often does, a wider, more interesting world.

    • I love how you described your time in Tokyo here–thank you for sharing that with us!

  • suzan

    Victoria BC. Magical

    • Having spent three months on Salt Spring Island, I so agree with you, Suzan–that corner of the world truly is magic 🙂

  • I’m not angling for a copy, because I still haven’t finished reading Don George’s book which you kindly gifted to me, so I don’t deserve it.


    • THANK YOU SO MUCH, MY FRIEND, and thank you for all the wonderful all-caps excitement 🙂 I have a feeling there will be lots more excitement to come soon!

  • jenvald

    So awesome you’re included in the anthology! I’d have to say Lima, Peru — the city is so often overlooked and the trip I took last year with my younger brother was amazing. Thanks!

    • Miriam

      Hello! I just wanted to say, being from Lima, that I’m very, very happy that you enjoyed your trip there. 🙂

    • Thank you so much, Jen! And thank you for sharing about your time in Peru with us–I’ve gotten to travel with my younger sister a few times, so I love that you got to share that journey with your brother…there’s truly something special about traveling with family, isn’t there?

  • Anwar

    One of my favorites was in Petra, being there among locals and the first tourist to enter for the day.

    One of my favorite recent ones was in the Danakil one of those places that just seems to be a bit out of this world and so different than the “normal”. It is easy as a frequent traveler to become jaded as places blend together so seeing something truly unique and meeting many amazing characters (both local and foreign) contributed to it being so memorable.

    • Thank you so much for sharing these moments with us, Anwar. I still remember reading about your time at Petra a couple of years ago, and the connections you made there with locals–and I especially enjoyed reading about your recent visit to Danakil. Ethiopia is very high on the list of places I’d love to make it to soon, so thank you for bringing one corner of the country to life for me.

  • Joanne Percy

    The Greek island of Crete. It was the perfect combination of a magical destination, fresh food and experiences and the coming together of new friends. Simple yet Life changing.

    • Those “simple yet life changing” moments are always my favorite experiences from a journey as well, Joanne, so I love that your time on Crete held many of them for you.

  • Happy Thanksgiving! I would have to say Dhaka Bangladesh- the people were so friendly and curious that I can’t look back on that trip without smiling!!

    • I love this, Kristine! There’s nothing more wonderful than a journey that keeps you smiling long after you’ve left the place 🙂

  • Kathe Byrne

    Congrats and my faves are Morocco esp Essouiria and Portugal.

    • Thanks so much, Kathe! And I vividly remember the photos you shared from your time in Morocco and Portugal, so I love that they are now some of your favorite places 🙂

  • Cheryl Kesling

    I lived in Germany for three years and loved the beautiful countryside and the wonderful festive people, but one of my favor places is Taos, New Mexico. I toured the area this past June with a writing retreat group. I had been to Taos several times before but never really stopped to think, see, feel or take in the smells of the high desert. I drank in and wrapped the soft blanket of Georgia O’Keeffe’s world around my being. Spiritual and magical to say the least.

    • “I drank in and wrapped the soft blanket of Georgia O’Keeffe’s world around my being.” What a gorgeous phrase and description, Cheryl–thank you so much for sharing that, and for taking us with you to the high desert. I can’t wait to visit it myself one day.

  • ltg

    Paris! I had to go to the US a few months after we got married for a long stay for work. My husband stayed in our home country. We met in Paris at the turn of the millennium. We had to be together, you see, because whatever you’re doing during the new year’s eve, you’ll be doing it for that year. We wanted to be together for the next millenium. We spent two weeks in Paris, stayed in a hostel. We had little money, so we walked and walked in freezing weather. It was awful for a vacation, but it was pure magic for us. I loved that my husband played along with the weird superstituion. I will never forget that vacation.

    • I love those journeys that might seem not quite ideal to other people, but to you are “pure magic”–that’s such a perfect way to put it. I also loved reading about your New Year’s Eve belief…I’ll be sure to keep that in mind at the end of this year! 🙂

  • Maria Grinda

    I would love to have a copy of that! 💚 I think Ladakh, India is a place I never forget, magic Mountains, monasteries, Lung-tas everywhere and the most beautiful smiles I have ever seen and felt. Buen viaje a Uruguay!!

    • “…the most beautiful smiles I have ever seen and felt.” Thank you for sharing such a beautiful image with us, Maria. I’d love to make it to Ladakh one day, but until then, thank you for taking me there through your own memories!

  • Miriam

    First, congratulations! So many places, so many great experiences! I enjoyed our trip to the Yorkshire Dales. Cute towns, great hiking, beautiful landscape, great food, good pints of beer and cider too!

    • Your time in the Yorkshire Dales sounds just perfect, Miriam! I could so go for one of those crisp pints of cider right about now, too 🙂

  • James Getty

    Witten annen

  • Susanna

    Botswana ❤️😊

  • Ruba

    Congratulations! Istanbul spoke to me in ways I didn’t expect, with its majestic mosques, lively bazaars, and the flowing Bosphorus.

    • Thank you so much, Ruba! And I too fell in love with Istanbul…with the vivid sensory details that greet you on every corner, and especially with the beautiful presence of the Bosphorus. I love that the city had the same effect on you 🙂

  • Lynette Salas

    Mendoza, Argentina!

    • I love that, Lynette! Having spent some time in Buenos Aires recently, I can only imagine how fun it must be to visit other regions of the country 🙂

  • Joanna Grygieńć

    Congratulations on being published in The Lonely Planet Travel Anthology! That’s huge! As for the best travel experience, it was a trip to Mexico several years ago. My friend and me walked the bridge of Rio Grande on the border of the US and Mexico, and travelled by buses and coaches through small villages starting in Nuevo Laredo through Saltillo, Matehuala, Zacatecas, most amazing Real De Catorce, Morelia, Guanajuato, Mexico DF, Puebla and Oaxaca. The day we visited pyramides in Teotihuacan was my birthday and I never forget standing on pyramides of the Moon and the Sun, and making my wishes to travel the world. It seems like my wishes have come true as I managed to visit many countries and live abroad too. Would love to read about your experience in Lofoten as I studied, worked and lived in Tromsø for the last seven years. Have a great time in Uruguay!!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words here, Joanna, and especially for sharing so many fun details about your journey through Mexico a few years ago. I can only imagine how moving it must have been to stand atop the pyramids and make such a wish, and I love that it’s continued to come true for you since. And how incredible to hear you’ve lived and worked in Tromsø for so long!! I can’t wait to make it back to the far north of Norway one day, and I’ll be sure to let you know when I do 🙂 I hope you continue to love your time in that magical corner of the world!

      • Joanna Grygieńć

        Thank you Candace and good luck with your travels, writing and sketching!

  • Debbie Shaw

    The Sacred Valley, Peru

  • Victoria Hannah

    Huge congratulations for the Lonely Planet publication, that is massive kudos! What question, I have so many magic places I have been to but the one that comes to me immediately is Cape Town and Bloemfontein where I worked for a week with cheetahs and baby lions. Magical! Beautiful cats, stunning scenery and a fabulous continent where you feel as though you have ‘come home’. Looking forward to more of your writings and sketches from Uruguay Candace.

    • I loved reading about your time in South Africa, Victoria–especially about how it feels like a place “where you feel as though you have ‘come home.” Thank you for sharing that with us, and for your kind words as well!

  • Kelsey

    Looks great 🙂 One of my favorite memories was in Bled, Slovenia riding around on a moped with my husband 🙂

    • That sounds like so much fun, Kelsey, and like one of those moments you won’t soon forget 🙂 Thank you for sharing it with us!

  • Jennie Cobb

    My most inspirational trip was to Sri Lanka. The country is beautiful, but the people were even more impactful with their genuine warmth and optimism.

  • Jenny H

    One of my favorite experiences is horse-back riding in Mongolia. Loved the landscape, the people and animals! 🙂

    • As someone who can’t wait to get to Mongolia one day, I loved reading about this moment, Jenny 🙂

  • Felicia Lasmana

    Dharamsala, India with its Little Lhasa. Beautiful place and good people indeed. Plus you can see The Himalayas! One of the best time in my life so far 🙂

    • I couldn’t agree more, Felicia! I loved my time in Dharamsala as well–it has such a beautiful spirit and atmosphere, doesn’t it?

      • Felicia Lasmana

        Yes, indeed. I love to go back again some time later. Anyhow India is way to big as well and each place have their own stories .

        • “Each place have their own stories” – that’s a beautiful way to put it, Felicia. I hope you’ll have the chance to keep experiencing India’s many stories again soon 🙂

  • Marianna

    In 1986 our Fiat Ritmo was travelling through Greece, fueled by my father’s love for classic history and my mother’s enthusiasm for beauty and nature. That old car of us broke twice, was towed, repaired and towed again, and didn’t manage to bring us to Mycenae in time for a visit. The archeological site was already closed and the keeper was going home. When the man noticed my father’s delusion,
    he gave him a lemon as a present “for his little daughter”. To me, such a gift represent hospitality, friendship and the value of little things.

    • Marianna, I can’t tell you how much I loved your story–especially when the man gifts your father the lemon for you 🙂 I too place such value on these little moments of connection and kindness, so this moment really resonated with me.

      • Marianna

        Thank you so much for your reply! I wish you many of these little moments.. Keep on drawing! It’s a pleasure to see your works!

        • I wish you many of them as well, Marianna! Thank you very much for your kind words 🙂

  • Syowoe

    Congratulations on your exciting news of being published in Lonely Planet’s literary edition for 2016. In 2013, on a trip through Thailand and Cambodia, I ended it in Phnom Penh and decided to go on a 1/2 day cycling excursion with Grasshopper Adventures. It meant arriving at the bike shop and gathering with a small group, getting a designated bike and helmet before heading off on a busy street right in the middle of the city which, at first, seemed very dangerous. Our guide was a young Cambodian woman who was really enthusiastic and we took off, traffic all around, which was a little scary and quite exhilarating. Luckily the ride to the ferry was very short (no more than 15 minutes) and once on the ferry we made our way across the Mekong (?) to what are known as the Silk Islands. It was so great to be on a bike, and to learn that a very rural existence was a mere ferry ride (10-15 minutes) away from the bustle of Phnom Penh. I loved the feeling of riding down an empty dirt laneway, no traffic on these islands, and as I passed, little children would run out from their huts and yell “Hi” or “Hello” to us in English and we’d yell back. It was such a happy experience. Afterwards, we went to a silk farm, had a delicious fruit feast, also go to go to another place with a temple and really unique wooden carvings that is quite ancient. I felt like it was the S.E. Asian version of cycling a Southern Gulf Island in B.C., a place near and dear to my heart. We rounded it off with a feast at a local spot that, of course, our Cambodian guide knew would be really decent. A great day. A lasting memory.

    • Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful memory, Syowoe. While I loved reading about your time in Southeast Asia, especially as I’ve spent some time there as well, what I loved even more was how you connected it to the Southern Gulf islands in British Columbia. I also lived on Salt Spring Island for three months a couple of years ago, so it was wonderful to hear that region is dear to your heart, too 🙂

  • Treava

    Congratulations Candace! I’m not surprised as your writing is so eloquent. I just love your illustrations too.
    My favourite time was when like yourself, I was travelling, drawing and painting in my sketchbook and doing photography. I was living in Eden in a small village in Lazio, Italy. It was a healing, happy time for me. I also just had a wonderful and very special
    experience this past summer seeing Polar Bears, Caribou and snorkelling with Beluga Whales. It was a dream come true.
    Thank you Candace for your beautiful, insightful AND very inspirational work. I too, believe in serendipity.

    • “It was a healing, happy time for me.” This is such a beautiful way to encapsulate a journey, Treava, so thank you so much for sharing that with us. And glimpsing whales in the wild never ceases to fill me with wonder, so I can only imagine how magical it was to snorkel with them. Thank you again, and for your kind words as well!

  • Nan Judson

    I have many favorite places in the world, including sitting in a comfy chair at home reading travelogues. The trip that has stayed with me the most was a trip to Bhutan. Such an amazing place. I was there in January one year, and was one of a few tourists in the entire country.

    • It’s wonderful to hear you’ve had the chance to travel through Bhutan, Nan–I’d love to make it there one day!

  • Sunny Christian

    I was 19, friend Joellen was 18, drove her dad’s pickup with camper from northern California up to Montana, stayed with friends who lived on a pig farm, drove thru Glacier National Park in to Canada, up to Calgary, over to Banff and Jasper and down, down, down to Vancouver, over to Vancouver Island, across the island and eventually back home after a month. What a trip!!!

    • This certainly sounds like an incredible trip, Sunny! And having spent three months on Salt Spring Island (just next door to Vancouver Island), I’m thrilled to hear your journey ended there…it’s such a special corner of the world, isn’t it? Thanks so much for sharing this 🙂

  • Julie Reuter

    One of my favorite travel experiences was in Paris. I took my nieces there in 2010 when they were both teenagers. It was their first trip outside the US and I was so happy to share my favorite city with them. We did a lot of the typical touristy stuff. And we also shopped a lot, because, teenagers. One of the best memories, though, was finding a beautiful formal gown that the youngest loved in a quaint little shop. So we purchased it and she wore it to her senior prom. No other girl in her school was able to say her prom dress came from Paris!

    • This is such a great story, Julie! And how special for you to have that time with your nieces…thank you for sharing it with us 🙂

  • Julie Pesano

    Fantastic news! Congratulations on another wonderfully deserved publication in Don George’s edited collection, no less! I just signed up for his Intensive travel writing course at Book Passage in January. Can’t wait! Favorite travel experience? I was just belly laughing with a friend over our 2013 November in Edinburgh, Scotland where we met the kindest people on the planet. One business gent, Malcolm, was working for Scottish Independence and gave us an inspiring political history over Whisky tasting, taught us the local Scotch Gaelic dialect, and showed us a cracking fun pub crawl culminating with the best hole-in-the wall Fish and Chips joint in a neighborhood colloquially known as the pubic triangle (you heard me!) We still keep in touch with Malcolm, sharing the highs and lows of our country’s politics and reminding each other how interconnected the world really is.

    • Julie, it’s so wonderful to hear from you here! And especially to read about such a fun and memorable time experiencing Scotland 🙂 I’m also thrilled to hear you’ll be taking Don’s intensive course this winter–I can’t wait to hear how it goes!

  • Kim

    Congratulations on being published among your travel writing heroes, that’s so exciting! 🙂 One of my favorite travel experiences took place on Rapa Nui/Easter Island, where I was able to wander among the moai, ponder the story of the island, and enjoy an amazing tropical climate, fascinating living culture, and some of the friendliest people I’ve met in my travels. 🙂

    • Kim! I was just telling a friend recently how much I’d love to get to Easter Island one day, and then you leave this wonderful comment which basically just cemented my desire to visit the island 🙂 Thank you for that, and for sharing about your time there!

  • Mayoor Bhandari S

    My most profound travel experience took place in the deserts of rajasthan on a winter night.surrounded by wind turbines .driving along the narrow road , I suddenly got a view of the starry night sky . I have never seen a sky so starry. Amidst that narrow road and vast area of just sand, I saw God as the nature .

    • Thank you so much for sharing this moment with us, Mayoor–and having been to the Thar desert in Rajasthan several times, I understand exactly what you mean. There’s an otherworldly sense of peace and wonder in that region, isn’t there?

      • Mayoor Bhandari S

        Definitely…. of all the places I have travelled in India , rajasthan is one place I always long to visit and get lost in its vast emptiness ….

        • I love how you described the “vast emptiness” of Rajasthan, Mayoor–and I hope you’ll have the chance to get back there again soon!

  • Andrew Wray

    Hi Candace… congratulations on being published by such a prestigious company. Very exciting. My most memorable travel experience would have to be the two years I spent in a very remote jungle village in Papua New Guinea. I lived with tribal people while helping them try to establish their tiny single-blade sawmill project. Home was a bush hut. Cooking was over an open fire in the middle of the living room, the smoke filling the space kept the bugs from eating the leaf roof above. But, with walls and floors of split black-palm with gaps big enough to stick a finger through it was unsuccessful at keeping the hordes of mosquitos at bay. They created havoc for my lower legs which became a swollen mess as I scratched and itched relentlessly. Food was some variation of swamp fish, sago grubs, banana, coconut, eel, cassowary, wallaby, hornbill, wild boar and various other jungle foods, all depending on the season. Always there was sago, it was consumed at every meal. I would eat with one hand the other constantly waving back and forth over my plate to keep the flies off.

    I could write for a while on my experiences in PNG.

    After leaving PNG I was the wandering backpacking traveler for the next five months as I made my way home slowly to Canada. In Tibet, which had just opened up to foreigners, I met an Australian lady. That was November 1982. Eight months later we were married. This year we celebrated our thirtieth anniversary.

    I have been following your blog for some time. I love you art work and would love to draw and paint as you do. Before you I was originally inspired by Mairi Hedderwick’s ‘Highland Journey’ (see https://www.amazon.com/Highland-Journey-Sketching-Retracing-Victorian/dp/0862414504).

    Candace… do keep up the great work. It is a lot of fun to follow you.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words here, Andrew, but thank you even more for sharing so many evocative details from your two years in Papau New Guinea…if you could write for a while about it, I could certainly keep reading about it for much longer 🙂 Thank you as well for sharing Mairi Hedderwick’s work with me–I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t come across her yet, but her books look beautiful and I can’t wait to try and check them out very soon. Thank you again, and I so hope you’ll keep writing about your time in PNG!

      • Andrew Wray

        Good to hear from you Candace and this sounds like a challenge. I might just take you up on the idea of writing more on my time in Papua New Guinea. I have the makings of a short article started. Cheers 🙂

        • I’m thrilled to hear that, Andrew 🙂 And please be sure to share any articles or stories you write with me, as I’d love to share them as well!

  • Kara

    It’s hard to pick just one favorite because each of the travels brings such different memories/experiences! But since it is getting cold in the northeast I will say Iceland. My friend and I went exploring on some trails that definitely only the locals used. The trails led us to these amazing hot springs. It was a river of them so we picked a bend and waded in. We had a great conversation and it was nice to escape the chilly air with some hot springs! Congratulations on being published! Love your art and way of storytelling! Cant wait to hear about your next adventure!

    • Thank you for your kind words here, Kara, and for sharing this moment from Iceland with us…from the quiet local trails to the river of hot springs, everything about the scene sounds incredible, so I’m so glad you and your friend had the chance to experience it!

      • Kara

        Thank you for responding! I love traveling and I’m a designer so your blogs are so inspiring to read! The thing about travel that I love is the connections I make with people. Either the ones I’m with, the people I meet on the journey or the people I share it with later on. Just saw that you are creating a geography of connection piece and I think it is so great of you!

        • I’m honored to hear my blog can be of some inspiration to you, Kara! And I couldn’t agree more about new connections being the greatest reward of a journey. As you saw on the map I’ve been creating, it was such a thrill to find so many stories shared here last week were about the connections people made in their own travels, so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to write more about that 🙂 Can’t wait to share the finished map with you here tomorrow!

  • Amy

    My favorite was traveling the northern coast of Ireland in September. We visited a sleepy coastal town and stumbled across a grandfather teaching his grandson to fish, with rolling green hills to the right in the distance and a beautiful, open seascape to the left and beyond. It was like a little slice of living artwork from the Heavens.

    • “It was like a little slice of living artwork from the Heavens.” What an absolutely beautiful moment, Amy–thank you for sharing it with us.

  • manalika

    My favourite travel experience was on the overnight train from Zurich to Amsterdam this summer. I was leaning out the window in the corridor and a boy came up and joined me. We got talking and I asked him if he would like to play chess, as I always carry a pocket chess set with me wherever I go. He said yes and so we settled at the end of the carriage on the floor and played chess for the better part of the night! I taught him a new version of chess my sister and I invented called anti chess. I learnt so much about Switzerland from him and we talked about everything Swiss – Swiss cheese, Roger Federer, the Bernina Pass. Next morning he asked for my name just so he could give me credit when he taught anti chess to all his friends. We wished each other the best of luck and parted ways – I don’t know anything about him, except that he made one mundane train journey through Europe very memorable for me!

    Both Zurich and Amsterdam were beautiful to me, but I feel on any journey it’s the people that make the trip magical.

    • This is just the best story, Manalika–and I could not agree more with what you wrote here: “I feel on any journey it’s the people that make the trip magical.” These serendipitous connections we make with others on a journey are always the moments that stay with me the strongest afterwards, so thank you for sharing your own story of such an encounter 🙂

  • Shelley

    Hi Candace, as you already know I adore your talent. Thank you for doing an amazing job for my blog site, and congratulations on all your achievements. I have been traveling for the past couple of months through Thailand and Bali and even though Thailand is wonderfully beautiful, I am currently on Lembongan Island, Bali and have been captivated by the people, it’s beauty and diversity. I found this heaven by chance and will share my experience with the rest of the world. I hope you get to this island and sketch it!
    Cheers from Bali,
    Shelley Pittman

    • Thank you so much, Shelley! And I love that you’re currently on Lembongan…while I haven’t made it there myself yet, I once spent a week on Nusa Penida just next door and absolutely fell in love with the island. Have a wonderful time there, and I hope your journeys through Asia continue to be rewarding and enriching!

  • Bethany N. Bella

    Congrats on the published piece, Candace! Can’t wait to read! My *favorite* travel experience (so far!) took place on a ferry ride back from Sausalito to San Francisco’s main port. A friend and I rented bikes to ride across the Golden Gate Bridge (ahh!! so cool!) to then bus to Muir Woods for the day. Between all the lines and all of the travel shenanigans of the afternoon, we boarded the ferry with our bikes with less than an hour before we had to get them back into port. We ended up arriving (read: sprinting) at the port shop, to deliver our bikes, with 14 minutes to spare! We laughed about our dumb luck the whole BART way back to Berkeley. Such an amazing, serendipitous moment of travel that I relish, even now looking back on it months later.

    • Thank you so much, Bethany! And thank you for sharing such a fun, joy-filled moment with us here. I’ve taken the ferry between Sausalito and San Francisco many times, and completely understand why that experience is now one of your favorites/ There’s just something about seeing the city, bridge, and surrounding hills from the water–and I can only imagine how a race against time would have made that journey even more thrilling 🙂 I love it, and am so glad you found such a sense of home and belonging in the Bay Area!

  • Genevieve

    Hello Candace, congrats on the publication! And thank you for your beautiful blog.
    One of my favourite travel moments arose from disappointment. I had made my way to Iskenderun, Turkey late last winter, following rumours of the possibility of passage to Israel via boat. No boat, so I decided to head back north. I had 5 hours to fill on my last day in town and there was this one view that had been on my mind since I had arrived. I make my way to the pier and settle in to sketch the waterfront and mountainous backdrop.
    I’m getting into the groove, soaking in the sun, weeding through the details, and at some point between outlining the view in pencil and picking up my pen to start inking, I am surrounded by wide eyes, curious smiles, and Turkish chatter. A group of kids had snuck up and wanted to see what I was doing.
    I smile back, apologize for not knowing what they are saying, and hand over my stack of finished, painted postcards as a way to engage without words. They love the one with the pelican from Izmir. I get an idea. I point at my pen, then at them, miming drawing in the air, and get a round of enthusiastic nods and wider smiles.
    I dig deep into my pack for extra paper, the parents have drawn closer at this point, questions of where I’m from, am I a student? Nope, tourist. One word sentences back and forth, their English better than my Turkish. Out comes the paper, I hand around pens, and we’re huddled around my bench sketching away.
    At some point drawing turns into a language lesson, I learn the words for bird (kuş) and foot (ayak), and I am being called abla (sister – I love this Turkish custom). Drawings are signed and gifted to me, cheeks are kissed, I thank the parents for stopping, grateful for the connection, disappointment at not finding the boat forgotten.

    • Genevieve–I can’t thank you enough for sharing this memory here…and I also can’t tell you how much it resonated with so many of my own favorite experiences in the world. From people being drawn around you as soon as you open your sketchbook, to giving children their own pieces of paper to draw on, to being asked if I’m a student, so many of the moments you wrote about have happened to me as well, so your story struck such a chord with me. And most of all, I also so relate to the way a place can transform our disappointment into connection–I’m so glad you left Iskenderun with such a powerful moment in your journey, and I love that it continues to stay with you.

  • Michelle

    By far my favorite was Christmas market hopping along the Rhine by boat, foot, train, and car two years ago where I got to spend the night in a castle and indulge my inner princess.

    • Well that sounds like an altogether wonderful travel memory, Michelle 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing it!

  • Aimee

    One of my absolute favorite travel moments was hiking out to the little known peninsula in Reykjavik called Grotta. Being mildly remote as it is, it seemed so fitting that it was a bird sanctuary. I too found sanctuary in its golden fields of hay and in the shadow of the magnificent lighthouse that plays guardian angel to the birds. I’ll never forget it.

    • This is such a beautiful memory, Aimee–thank you so much for sharing it here. “I too found sanctuary in its golden fields of hay” is such a gorgeous phrase…don’t you love it how the universe gifts us those moments on a journey? 🙂

  • Thomas Terstappen

    Hi Candace, one of my best travelling moments was sitting in Roar’s Kirchen, drinking a fresh brewed coffee and making fire in this old https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c92cc0614474d9d2fa53db27911e691706c37afe1f8d4d2150ccf7f7012a20a1.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0ff65d7af4ddebf58dc1b758db13fb5c33ca9eff50f4b3c24ea961f48a348e33.jpg oven

    • Hello, Thomas! I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to hear from you here–thank you so much for saying hello, and especially for including those photos 🙂 For me as well, the time I spent in Roar’s cozy, fire-warmed kitchen will always be some of my best moments in the world. I’m so grateful my path crossed with your and Paula’s there, and I hope you’ve both been very well since!

  • Gemma

    Hi Candace, my favourite travel experience was snow mobile riding in Iceland. It was my first time away in 7 years, and my first real introduction to anything adventure based. We zipped along a glacier in a pure white out, so it felt like travelling through a damp marshmallow! It was amazing though and still sticks with me today 🙂

    • What an incredible experience, Gemma…thanks so much for sharing it with us here! 🙂

  • Devika Agarwal

    Hi Candace, it is always heart-warming to read your posts. Congratulations on making such beautiful art & letting us live vicariously through your blog! Given how my father dislikes traveling, I myself have traveled very less. My most memorable travel experience was a visit to the Dudhwa National Park in North India when I was a kid.It was a trip which I took with my mother, brother & sister & we had the best time ever, feeding bread to deer & pursuing the trail of a rhinoceros on an elephant safari. That was the closest I came to adventure.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words here, Devika, and for sharing such a wonderful travel memory with us! “Pursuing the trail of a rhinoceros” sounds like such a thrilling adventure, and I love that you got to share it with your family 🙂

  • Candace, thanks so much for the chance to win 🙂 One of my most impressive travel experiences – as in, impressive to me – was sitting outside St. Paul’s Cathedral in London on my first trip to the city. I actually wrote about it, because it made such a strong memory: http://www.valisemag.com/st-pauls-me/. St. Paul’s is still one of my favorite buildings in the world, and sitting and staring at it is a “favorite past time” for each of my trips to London.

    • I love the moment you described, Valerie, especially how you wrote about it here: “I never forget that first moment and place where the world stood still, my eyes climbed skyward, and I found inner peace in the center of a noisy city.” ‘Where the world stood still’ is such a beautiful phrase, and I’ll be seeking that stillness and centeredness for myself even more now.

      • Thank you so much for taking the time to read, Candace!

  • Gayla

    What a great honor for you to be featured in this new book. Congratulations! Travel is such a wonderful opportunity to connect with people and one of my most amazing experiences was meeting a family in the village of Cassis in the south of France. My husband and I struck up a conversation with a woman and her young daughter at the train station, joined them and more of their family for coffee and patisserie at their home, stayed for drinks of the local liqueur and talk of family, genealogy, and local history, then returned the next day for a personal tour of the hillside neighborhood. It was such a lovely time and we treasure the experience and lasting friendship.

    • I adore this story, Gayla–thank you so much for sharing it! Those serendipitous encounters with strangers always feel nothing short of miraculous to me, so I loved reading about your own connection in Cassis.

      • Gayla

        Thank you and you’re welcome 🙂 I look forward to seeing more of your travel illustrations; they’re all so very inspiring!!

  • Maria Smeirat

    My most memorable travel experience was visiting Italy for the first time Alone, it was the first time to travel at all, finally my Italian adventure would begin, i was so nervous but once i landed and got to my hotel i knew everything would be fine, i had spent 16 days going around Italy, trying new things, new food, eating lot of gelatos, savoring all the art and history around me, meeting new people even trying my new acquired Italian, which turned out to be not too bad at all, i could go along, it is something i won’t forget all my life.

    • Thank you so much for sharing this memory with us, Maria. I’m so glad you had such a positive experience on your first solo journey in the world–I’ll never cease to be amazed by the way that traveling alone can embolden us with a sense of courage and confidence we didn’t know we had.

  • Corinne Vail

    Candace, I love this. My most memorable travel experience lately was to Tallinn, Estonia…but aren’t they all good? I especially loved the people!

    • They are indeed all good, Corinne 🙂 but I love that you said Tallinn…I still remember visiting it at the start of my very first journey in Europe, and the sense of wonder and magic I felt in the city–I’m so glad you loved it, too!

  • JerryJanuszewski

    On a bus between Buncrana and Letterkenny, Ireland an unexpected revery took me to another place and time: https://recoverytalks.wordpress.com/2015/11/07/the-need-to-read/.

    • I love this story, Jerry–especially these lines: “The thrill of paying attention coincided with the joy of discovery; the delight of finding meaning and value where I previously thought there was none.” Thank you for sharing it!

      • JerryJanuszewski

        Thank you, Candace. Keep up the good work!

  • Meg

    I’ll always think fondly of visiting the small town in Ireland where my grandmother’s family is from. We met up with the town historian who took us under his wing, spending the day introducing us to everyone from the butcher to the post office staff and showing us all the little places my great grandmother likely spent her time as a small child.

    • This is such a wonderful story, Meg–and having chased my own family’s roots in the Czech Republic, I really understand how moving that kind of experience is. I’m so glad you had the chance to take that journey!

  • Lydia Pflieger

    One of my favorite travel experiences was in Ostia Antica, Rome. It was serene, beautiful, and teeming with ancient history. I felt like I was a part of something magical. Can’t wait to go back!

    • “I felt like I was a part of something magical.” That’s such a beautiful line, Lydia…thank you for sharing that memory with us!

  • Aurora

    Amazing news! Congratulations!
    The list of amazing travel experiences is so long… it could be trekking in the mountains of Nepal, it could be traveling just about anywhere in India, solo, on the trains, or it could be wandering the markets in South America! I cannot wait to read this anthology. And read more of your travels in Uruguay!

    • Thank you, Aurora! And I love that our favorite experiences in the world are so parallel, especially traveling alone on the Indian rails–there’s just nothing else like it anywhere, is there? 🙂

  • Hope I am not too late for the contest – I was hiking in the Saguaro National Park near Tucson and had no wifi. After a year without any nature hikes this was indeed my best recent travel experience, as was the wild camping in the beautiful Sonoran Desert!

    • Thanks so much for sharing that experience, Brittany! I’d so love to make it to that corner of the US one day as well 🙂

  • Rhonda Wiley-Jones

    My favorite spot in the world is a field of lavender in southern France. The scent draws me in; the buzzing bees surprise me by their laborious work in pollinating the field. The view of blue rows from a distance is one of the most magical sights possible. Oh, to return! Oh, to be able to capture it in sketches like you do when you travel. Maybe some day!

    • Rhonda, thank you so much for bringing that scene to life for me so evocatively…you took me straight to that lavender field, and now I can’t wait to visit there in real life one day as well 🙂

  • Akhila Prasad

    So far the only place that really took away my breath was the first glimpse of Taj Mahal, Agra, India!

    • I couldn’t agree more, Akhila! Seeing the Taj for the first time brought me to tears.

  • Sudipta Mahto

    May be I m late to post but yet .My best has been my first solo travel that was to the coastal hamlet of gokarna .This was a place where i learnt that strangers can be trusted too .

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