Episode 15: Travel Talk with Ray Blakney

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In episode 15 of the Erica James Travel Show, I am sitting down with Ray Blakney to talk about his travel life and journey.

Ray was born in Cebu City, Philippines. He was raised in Instanbul, Turkey until he was 15 years old and then moved to the United States to finish high school and attend college.

He later joined the Peace Corp, where he met his wife and now lives in Mexico.

With living in a few countries throughout his life plus his travel journey, Ray definitely has some interesting travel stories to tell.

[4:21] Ray discusses why he joined the Peace Corp and what is the Peace Corp.

[6:34] With so many family members living around the globe, Ray shares the locations of his well rounded family.

[7:30] Before his adult life, Ray had already visited 50 countries as child due to his parents’ business.

[9:15] Camping, or better yet Glamping, at the Great Wall of China was an experience that will always be memorable to Ray especially since he had a pretty interesting encounter with some women and water.

[11:50] Ray shares how he started back traveling after taking a break for adulting and what inspired him to get out and start traveling after 5 years of no international travel.

[13:51] A near death experience in The Sahara Desert makes an interesting story in Ray’s life. Jimmy the Camel gives Ray more than he can handle.

[16:20] In Nara, Japan, Ray had another encounter with an animal—a herd that are normally tamed got very upset with him because he broke the #1 rule that we were taught in elementary school—bring enough for everyone!

[18:40] We talk about visiting Germany and how the experience of being with family makes for a different kind of vacation when you are not doing touristy things.

[20:10] Favorite vacation spot is Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo (pronounced SEE-wha-ta-NAY-ho and often shortened to Zihua)

[23:16] Best travel tip is to take 1 day to relax while you are on vacation

[24:20] Ray shares is preference between an all-inclusive resort vs vacation villas/homes. He speaks of the downside of an all-inclusive from his point of view.

[25:15] We discuss the benefits of vacationing in a villa/home.

[26:56] Why a “rest vacation” is important to incorporate into your life and how it can benefit your life. Plan your rest more effectively than you plan your work.

[31:39] Ray talks about speaking Spanish and how learning this language can help you communicate with others on 2 continents and gives you a different experience when you travel.

[36:34] Ray share his travel inspiration for the listeners.

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4 thoughts on “Episode 15: Travel Talk with Ray Blakney

  • Pamela Phillips

    Definitely enjoyed this podcast. Love the term relaxing vacation! He did a great job too explaining why he likes villa/house rentals over all inclusive resorts. When we were in the DR 2 years ago on Carnival cruise line, a few of us ventured to a local beach and our driver only could speak Spanish. I was like we have to get more fluent in Spanish when we travel. I also need spanish for my job at the children’s hospital too. I am going to check out Ray’s podcast to start learning Spanish. Thanks!

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