This interview features romantic explorers Jenn and Jack from WhoNeedsMaps.com - an inspirational long distance couple. Let's face it, long distance relationships can be very challenging - so how are they making it work?
Jenn says they have used travel to save their relationship. She explains,"Jack is from Australia and I am from America and we have been together for 6 years going back and forth, traveling the world to make this relationship work.
Long distance relationships seem scary but if you really want it to work, you can make it work. Long distance relationships can really bring you to some magical places, with creating some amazing memories.
Try everything at least once. Shake things up. It’s no fun to keep traveling to the same place, doing the same activities, every single time. Doing something new not only pushes for new memories and adventures, but as a couple you feel a sense of accomplishment of facing your fears and trying something new.
Also, from our experience, after travelling non stop for 24 hours everyday for 4 months, things get a bit, uh, annoying. So to keep the romance alive (after weeks of not shaving, food poisoning, insane sweat, and many flues), we try to cross off activities of our bucket list, and every so often treat ourselves to that couple massage or hot springs or wine and cheese for dinner. Slumming it may not be the most romantic, so doing activities that either relaxes us or allows us to see one another conquer something we would never normally do, really helps keep the romance alive."
I was intrigued and wanted to know more about their travel love story...
Jack and Jenn in Croatia - "Every adventure provides happiness, laughter and new memories."
How did you meet?
"I was studying abroad in Melbourne, Australia and one of my friends was throwing a party. These two very handsome men, one being Jack, knocked at the door with some pink mixed drinks, dressed in a very Australian manner (a singlet T, short shorts and long bangs I could die for). I (and everyone else) actually thought the two were dating each other. I mean they looked like a beautiful couple and were inseparable.
So I thought, there goes my shot with this handsome man. Besides, I was there to study abroad, not to look for my soul mate. Next morning, we had a marketing class together and we started chatting (and I found out he was straight) so I bought the marketing book for class and posted a note on his door saying, 'I got the book, it's expensive so don't buy one. Let's study together!' And the rest was history!"
Ha! Smart move Jenn! Tell us, what’s been the most romantic location you’ve visited together? "We go for more adventure things. Seeing him carry heavy stuff, push me to face my fears, take cooking classes with me, get down and dirty to explore new places, playing with monkeys. That’s romantic to me. So in that case, Vietnam!"
Jack and Jenn in Indonesia - "I love this guy, he's so handsome, isn't he?"
What was the most romantic activity you did there?
"Canyoning in Da Lat. We repelled down waterfalls, slid down some natural slides, went bouldering. There was something very sexy and fun doing an activity that shows off their muscle, their sense of adventure, their sense of accomplishment, and their smile after they have faced their fears."
Love the way you think Jenn! Please tell us - what would you rate as your most romantic lunch/dining spot?
"We are not one really for romantic date spots, but I think our most romantic lunch was when we did a cooking class in Hoi An along the river. We shopped at the local markets for fresh produce, cooked 4 amazing meals for each other, and sipped a beer in thehot sun. Tasty and fun."
What would you rate as the best gifts you've given each other?
"We value experiences over material goods. So every gift we get each other is some trip. This year, I took Jack to Big Sur for his birthday and surprised him with a wine and cheese basket for sunset over the Big Sur vistas. For my birthday, Jack took me to the Grand Canyon and we flew a helicopter through the canyon with a celebratory champagne glass at the bottom. Both trips were so different, but easily the best gifts we’ve given each other.."
Jack and Jenn at the Grand Canyon - "Actually the best gift you could have given her was a lifetime of adventures" ~ Lewis Carrol
Where can other travelling couples read more about your adventures?