Interviews

Interview with Dame Traveler Andrea of Green and Turquoise

Meet Andrea Affinati, creator of the gorgeous travel blog Green And Turquoise! 

Tell us a little bit about yourself!
My name is Andrea Affinati, I am an Italian girl currently living in Rome. I have a huge passion for science, chemistry specifically, travels, photography and languages. I have a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering and now I’m studying for a master’s degree, but I hope that my future job will involve also a lot of travel.

When and how did you fall in love with travel?
I have loved traveling ever since I can remember, it’s a passion that I inherited from my parents. I made my first trip when I was only 6 months! Since then we never stopped, planning at least 3 trips for year. When I turned 18 I started traveling by myself, with my friends or my boyfriend. So I guess I never really “felt in love” with travel, it’s something that has always
been part of my life.

Where have you traveled to thus far?
I cannot count the places I have been to, because there are so many, but I can list the places I’ve seen since I turned 18, so only trips I made with a full awareness of what I was doing: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and New York in North America; Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires in South America; Paris, Nice, Cannes, Montecarlo, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Dubrovnik and Mostar in Europe; Istanbul, Dubai and Abu Dhabi in Asia.

We know this is a tough question but where is your favorite place in the whole wide world? That place that just makes your heart flutter the moment you hear it’s name.
It is hard to choose, but I’d say that my favorite place in the whole world is Rio de Janeiro, but not only for the place itself. I have a dual citizenship: I was born in Italy and my father is Italian, but since my mother is from Rio de Janeiro I have also Brazilian passport. I love Rio because part of my family lives there and so the whole city is filled with memories, but besides the emotional attachment I must say it is still one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen.

 If you could pick up and go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go? 1,2,3 quick!
Japan! My next goal is to visit Tokyo and Kyoto.

What inspires you most when you travel?
It’s a combination of things.

I get inspired by architecture because it is the marriage of art and science, it can represents the culture, environment and experience of a community, the power and the identity of a nation. I get inspired by architecture because it shows more than anything the greatness of man’s imagination. Anyway, nothing can compete with the beauty of nature, and many of the experiences that I loved the most involve spectacular sunsets, beautiful landscapes and outdoor adventures. Every now and then while I’m around I happen to stare at people. There are faces that for some reason are extremely eloquent, as if they were able to tell a story.

The truth is that I can not identify with a single type of traveler, because I love the experience of traveling at 360 degrees. So what inspires me? I think the only answer I can give is the world.

How has a life of travel changed you?
I think traveling made me confident and open minded.

I feel confident in doing things that stretch my comfort zone as I have learned I am more capable than I ever thought. Just as traveling is humbling, it is also empowering.

I’m open minded because is essential for growth. I’ve been blessed to have had stereotype after stereotype shattered throughout my travels. Most importantly, I’ve recognized that just because a culture does something differently, it doesn’t make its people backward, but more interesting!

What has been your most memorable travel moment thus far?
I loved the whole experience of United Arab Emirates, because it was so exciting and full of contrasts: in only a week I saw the most amazing view of my life from the Burj Khalifa Dubai, the tallest structure in the world; I embraced culture, spirituality and tradition in the gorgeous Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi; I found myself lying on the ground in the middle of desert, watching a gorgeous sunset on huge sand dunes. It is a destination that I absolutely recommend.

How do you pack your bags before you go on an adventure?
I am definitely an organized person, probably too much! I plan my trips in every detail, a few days before departure I start scouting my wardrobe in order to decide which outfit could be the best for each planned activity and then I complete everything with accessories. The day before departure I pack-up: I usually bring one hand luggage that contains the first two outfits and essential things (beauty products and reflex camera) and a big luggage with the rest of my stuff.

Do you have any travel beauty tips?
Probably the only thing I hate about traveling is the way my skin turns when I do it. However, over time I have learned a few tricks that work for me. For example, during airplane flights I don’t wear make-up and I always use tons of moisturizing cream. I usually choose night flights so that I can sleep the whole time and arrive at my destination fresh and rested.

What is your travel style?
Definitely highly scheduled. I become so much excited during my trips that I need to know I have the time to see and experience everything the place has to offer. I want to learn the culture, visit museums and enjoy art without haste, explore nature with calm, have time to meet new people, relax and enjoy food. I also like to read a lot of reviews before choosing hotels and restaurants. Recently I decided to make my travels more challenging leaving at least the half of the evenings unscheduled, in order to add a little bit of spontaneity to my experiences.

Do you have a blog? If so, what is it about and when did you start it?
Yes I’ve started a blog over at Green and Turquoise. I write posts about the things I’ve seen, learned and felt during my travels and everything that can help and inspire people. Of course I am happy if someone finds my articles useful and helpful, but my goal is to share a state of mind, to push people to embrace curiosity and interest in the world and to turn tourists into travelers.

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