I’ve spent the last few months in two minds about whether to go through with this year’s edition of the sexiest female travelers of the year. Sure, every year attracts feedback to some extent that the very idea of this post objectifies women, but in the climate of current campaigns like #Metoo, there is a high likelihood that these voices would intensify.
But ultimately, sexualizing women has never been what this series is about. Despite an admittedly click bait title, this series is about promoting the idea that beauty is a diverse term that describes every size, shape, age and color; that it doesn’t matter whether you are Caucasian, African, Hispanic, or Asian when it comes to being beautiful.
This series is about highlighting inspiring, confident, and strong women, who re-define the traditional notion of “sexy” through their passion for exploring the world and their adventurous souls.
The incredible women we are highlighting this year are not models; they’re role models. They may not be the most dolled up, but are certainly the most authentic: self sufficient women who challenge, encourage and inspire us to see, do and be more.
With that in mind, I give you …
The Sexiest Female Travelers of 2018
Did you miss last year’s 100 page magazine? Featuring over 150 travelers, with full page photos and great travel features, you can now download ‘The Sexiest Travelers of 2017’ for free!! Warning: Contains nudity.
Born in Mauritius before immigrating to Australia, Simla is the founder of Hands on Journeys, a tour company dedicated to empowerment tourism, which combines travel with sustainable community projects to benefit both locals and travelers alike.
A brain aneurysm in 2007 left her in a 42 day coma, fighting for life. When she woke up she knew that her life needed to be different, the world needed to be explored and that the luck she felt from recovering deserved to be paid forward to others less fortunate.
As she discovered countless countries and gave-back through various community projects, she knew that her nine years of experience in the travel industry with impact was her calling and Hands on Journeys was born.
Simla didn’t want to create just another tour company; she wanted to create journeys that transported travellers to the heart of a destination.
Amélie is not from an adventurous, well travelled or wealthy background. She’s a country girl from Canada who took the plane for the first time at 21, when she escaped to Cuba with her mom and sister to commemorate her father’s passing.
With that trip, a whole new world – literally – of possibilities and hidden paradises suddenly opened up to. She dined on spicy black beans, sweet guavas and strong espresso where Hemingway once sat in a cloud of cigar smoke, and was forever hooked.
A few months later, she got rid of all her belongings, set herself a goal to become fluent in English, and, “shit scared of the great unknown”, set off westward with a backpack and an excited feeling in her tummy. She’s been traveling ever since, and now lives in Berlin, blogging about travel, conscious lifestyle & yoga.
Kristin is a luxury travel blogger who loves to create fun and engaging content to share on social media. Feeling stuck in her career as a social worker, in 2014 she and partner Shadi decided to create a video recap of a recent trip to show their friends and family.
Within 24 hours of posting their video online, the hotel they had stayed at during their trip reached out to them to ask if they could create paid content. It was that moment that they both decided to work as hard as they could to turn their video reviews into a full time opportunity.
In the four years since, Kristen and Shadi have quit their full time jobs to become full time travel reviewers in the all-inclusive luxury niche. With beautiful photos and incredible video from resorts in exotic locales, one of their recent Youtube videos has hit 1 million views!
Anna is a vibrant solo backpacker who has been exploring the globe full time for the last 7.5 years. She loves Couchsurfing, chocolate and would rather be caught being completely outrageous than totally boring.
Not only can you catch her rappelling from cliffs in Israel, on safari in Tanzania or eating strange food in Japan, she is also a talented photographer who shares beautiful shots of her adventures for the rest of us to enjoy.
In her early days, Vanessa was an extreme budget traveler out of necessity and travelled Europe on $35 a day. To this day she carries a flame for free museums and farmers’ market fare.
Her obsession with packing light is a more recent development and her first suitcase featured such generous proportions she could fit inside it! She was named a top 100 Travel Influencer by the Barack Obama White House in 2014.
Never exactly the world’s bravest soul, she still begins her journeys not entirely convinced on the merits of being adventurous, but that hasn’t stopped her from sailing to the Aran Islands, running a marathon in Paris, working on Malawian fish farms, and exploring global cultural nuances through nacho consumption.
Jema is a gypsy-soul who loves burpees and hates tan lines. It’s a lucky coincidence that her minimalist travel website – Half the Clothes – also hints at her preference for wearing her birthday suit at all times. She’d love to hear about your favorite, top-secret skinny-dipping spot!
She also loves connecting with fellow free-spirited life hackers, so don’t be afraid to send her an email. Although she has almost died eight times – including being struck by lightning – she promises she’s clinging tightly to her 9th life… you’re in no danger!
She’s on a mission to get the whole world to start flying for free, so you might have to listen to her rave about travel hacking. She promises to let you buy a beer afterward, though. An anthropologist recently postulated her wanderlust is the fault of her photographic memory. If he’s right, she’s stuck this way… but she’s not too sad about it!
Sophie is a twenty-four-year-old with a healthy disregard for the impossible. When she’s not running into sub-freezing waters in Antarctica (above), she is a scholar, an emerging artist and the published author of two books.
She is a child of the ocean, and always felt a deep affinity with nature growing up. Entering the ocean, she always experienced an overwhelming sensation of coming home.
Australian born, she is currently a Provost’s Scholar at the University of Oxford in the UK studying ecofeminism in modernist verse. Through her writing and art she aims to raise awareness for environmental issues like climate change, and make the science behind such issues easily understood.
Isabel draws energy from being outdoors. 24 and from Singapore, she believes there is nothing more fulfilling than being unplugged. An explorer at heart, the world is her playground. Take her to a beach or up a mountain any day!
She was on an international exchange in Europe from January to June 2015, and that was the impetus which led her to set up her blog.
During her travels, she had to peruse different websites in search of her next travel idea while researching about a country’s cultures and routes, and it wasn’t an easy task. She always wished there was someone experienced, honest and reliable who could tell her things she wished she knew before stepping foot into a foreign land.
After calling New York City home for nearly seven years Lola developed an urgent necessity to become a true citizen of the world and moved to Madrid, Spain in September 2015.
This compulsive wanderlust percolated throughout her life. Growing up in an international Uruguayan-American family exposed Lola to travel from a young age. She has had a passport since birth and made many childhood visits to South America.
Passionate about sustainable travel, Lola seeks out ethical experiences that benefit local communities. She has explored 54 countries to date, and travels to develop her own worldview and understanding of the globe’s many cultures.
Courtney is a thirty-something-year-old travel, foodie and lifestyle blogger for The World In Four Days. In addition to being a jet setter, she is also a wound care nurse and mommy to the cutest little eight-year-old on earth!
She started her travel adventures in college after she landed what she thought was the most awesome job of her life. Working for a major airline as a customer service agent.
She took the job with visions of free travel and jet-setting all over the world but instead found herself working long hours and spending more time on standby lists than actually traveling.
She walked away after a year, though after leaving the airline business she discovered two things: (1) Travel can be expensive if not planned correctly; and (2) It’s nearly impossible to take frequent extended trips when you only have a week or two of vacation time.
Erin is now paving the way with her new lifestyle, food and travel brand Explore With Erin. Her passion and expertise in social media, coupled with a Marketing and Public Relations degree, positions her perfectly as a teacher, mentor, and social media strategist.
Erin’s love of blogging has rocketed her into the spotlight with features on primetime TV, national newspapers and as a professional speaker at conferences such as the New York Times Travel Show, Women In Travel Summit and Problogger.
Erin, and her two children, Mia and Caius recently finished a 5-year nomadic journey chronicled on Travel With Bender. Now as she attempts to find the balance between slotting back into “normal” home life and her passion for travel, she invites you along for the ride on Explore With Erin.
Amanda an Aussie girl who grew up on a remote farm (think using a generator for power and playing with baby kangaroos), went off to university to study journalism, moved to London and worked at the BBC, and spent as much time as possible travelling through Europe and beyond.
Today she is doing radio segments and writing pieces for newspapers and magazines, but these days her focus is on travel. She shares tales and travel tips from around the world, to give you the inspiration and the information you need to go out and have some amazing adventures of your own.
A lifelong adventurer and surfer, and Time Magazine’s Female Indiana Jones, Alison travels the world filming environmental and cultural phenomena, sharing it through her blog, photo, and film series Alison’s Adventures.
With a mission to educate through entertainment, Alison’s series inspires millions across the globe through her storytelling and humor that captivates audiences of all ages.
She has survived Discovery Channel’s Naked and Afraid, and creates comedic short videos about serious global issues. Above photo by Perrin James.
Cathy Salvador Mendoza
Cathy is a 29-year-old, full time online English teacher who loves traveling and beach bumming. She loves writing; a passion that developed as a kid, and grew deeper as she continued to scribble thoughts about travel, love, relationships, and life well into adulthood.
Escapesanddiaries is a personal blog about travel stories, inspirations and adventures as well life in general. She writes with the hope to inspire others to make their own amazing stories and chase happiness, craziness, and positivity in life!
Oliwia studied literature and journalism, specifically as it deals with the promotion of culture. She travels the world whenever she can, and in her free time shares her passions online.
While she writes about her travels, her true passion is photography. She fell in love with this form of expression probably during one of the beautiful sunrises or sunsets somewhere at the end of the world, but after some time she began to appreciate the intricate beauty of the people she meets in her path and decided to focus on them.
Sometimes she travels alone to get lost in the crowd; to be able to feel the atmosphere of the place and try to get to know it a little better. Other times she’s happy to join group trips to climb mountain peaks, go through wet caves or admire the underwater world.
Reshma is an avid dreamer, a bibliophile, a hopeless travel addict, a passionate writer, and a girl who gulps down large mugs of coffee many times a day (yes, caffeine helps!)
She dreams of traveling to as many places as life can takes her, and loves to wander on the roads less traveled. She is not a big fan of regular touristy places, instead loves to explore the unusual places. She prefers traveling on a shoestring budget and loves going solo whenever possible.
Five years ago, Stephanie moved to New York with her husband Andrew. They launched Life, Tailored and Thread Therapy as a way to showcase every amazing brand they discovered.
Her mantra was inspired by Maya Angelou’s quote, “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
She focuses on brands that evoke a feeling, are built to last, and provide an authentic experience that will create memories that last a lifetime.
Hazel is a millennial who does not know exactly what she wants in life. She still hasn’t found the cure to the itch of traveling, trying new things, and dreaming things – big and small.
She used to blog/keep online journals when she was younger and recently decided to give it another try. Her site ‘A Pinch of Haze‘ is a dump for her travels, feelings, life journey, dreams and illusions, and whatever it is that she can think of.
Addicted to coffee, a beach lover and crazy about cats, Natalie is a Brazilian journalist that in 2014 left home to travel the world. So far, her passport collects over 40 stamps, but the memories she has are countless.
In her 30’s, this nomadic girl proves that is never too late to follow your travel dreams and rock on Instagram with hot bikini shots.
From paradise beaches in Thailand, passing by the cosmopolitan Istanbul, hiking through the Sahara Desert, and arriving at sunny Barcelona, Natalie knows how to travel deep, discovering the beauty of every culture and place.
Oneika is a serial expat and travel junkie in her early thirties who has travelled to over 80 countries on 6 continents. Originally from Canada, she has lived and worked in France, Mexico, London UK, and currently live in Hong Kong.
Oneika is a high school teacher by trade, but a traveller at heart, and is proof that you can balance a career with long-term travel.
Anne is an American who realized life is short, the world is big, and the value of travel too great to wait another day. So when it came time for her honeymoon, she and partner Mike decided to quit their jobs and embark on a trip around the world.
They left on January 22, 2012 and have been traveling ever since. Their honeymoon has been recognized by travel heavy weights such as Lonely Planet as “The World’s Longest Honeymoon”!
Using Anne’s background as a magazine editor and Mike’s as a digital media strategist and photographer, they started a couples travel blog to share their journey and inspire more people to follow their travel dreams.
She is now a National Geographic author, with their new book Ultimate Journeys for Two: Extraordinary Destinations on Every Continent.
Amanda’s corporate job consumes most of her days, but she is determined to make the most of her time outside the office. She and husband Brian work hard so they can afford the luxuries of eating well and traveling often!
She has vowed that regardless of her career status, she will always make time to travel. Rest assured she doesn’t let any of her precious vacation days go to waste! While fairly conservative in her daily lives, she’s a risk taker when she travels.
She’s always up for trying new adventures as well as tasting different cuisines and libations. If she hasn’t heard of something on a menu, she orders it. If she hasn’t experienced an activity, she books it!
Stef caught the travel bug early on, thanks to her my parents, and in particular, thanks to her dad’s job. Because of his career, they moved every couple of years growing up, so — all before the age of eighteen — she could boast having lived in Germany, Greece, Israel, South Korea, Arizona and Hawaii.
As a young adult, she knew that she wanted to travel more than anything else. But she had no idea how. She could hardly afford a ticket to the next state, much less an around-the-world ticket. After college she opted for ship life, and what was meant to be just a few months working on a cruise ship sea turned into seven years!
During her time at sea Stef was able to visit 70-plus countries on six continents. And sail around the world. Five times!
Sandy is a wife and mother of 3, born in Canberra but having lived in Brisbane for 25 years. She is a self-confessed travel addict with an insatiable curiosity for the world we live in. Her husband sometimes says if there’s a train leaving for hell she would probably get on it!
She had a great childhood exploring many nooks and crannies around Australia. Now, with a family of her own, she feels it important to expose her kids not just to the amazing country we live in but to the fascinating countries and cultures around the world.
There are squillions of travel blogs written by beautiful young things around the globe but few seem to cater to the needs and interests of people with a bit of grey hair and perhaps a few hot flushes. Hers does just that!
Valerie J. Wilson
Valerie Joy Wilson is a solo-female traveler, travel journalist, host, photographer, explorer and entrepreneur who has been a travel enthusiast and experience junkie from a young age.
Born and raised at the foot of the Adirondack Mountains in Saratoga Springs, New York, Valerie spent her summers at Camp Chingachgook where she found her sense of adventure and discovered her love for the outdoors by participating in canoeing, snorkeling, sailing, hiking and waterskiing.
Growing up, Valerie excelled in a number of extreme sports and activities, including martial arts and skiing. She attributes her audacity and eagerness to explore the world on her own to the discipline and sense of confidence that these activities introduced to her at such a young age.
Megan is a digital nomad from North America. Until she boarded a plane for South Korea in 2013, she was living a life in a cubicle, climbing ladders by day, Netflix and wine binging at night.
Always watching NatGeo’s Amazing Planet, she knew there must be more out there. Netflix was literally showing her that there was more!
Since giving up her life in North America to begin a journey which pushes her of her comfort zone, Megan has trekked with the Black Hmong in Northern Vietnam, chased down waterfalls through the back country of Laos, embraced our inner hippies working on an island in Cambodia for two months and so much more.
Danasia Fantastic founded TheUrbanRealist in early spring 2013; a popular lifestyle website for Millennial women seeking the best in travel, culture, design and lifestyle.
Having lived in Philadelphia, Brooklyn and Miami prior to settling in Atlanta, Danasia’s interest in major city culture inspired her to create something that encapsulated the energy she felt.
She has been featured in The New York Times Fashion & Style section, ELLE Magazine, POPSUGAR, USAToday, Atlanta Magazine, and Hypepotamus. She is also a contributing writer for The Travel Channel and HGTV.
Sharon is a normal Australian married mum of three. What isn’t so normal is that she was able to build an online business that enabled them to become digital nomads.
Sharon’s passion is travel, and she has visited over 90 countries, most recently having returned from North Korea earlier in the year. She decided in late 2013 that she was going to make an online income, and achieved this by mid 2014.
She shares her insights and expertise with others via Digitalnomadwannabe; a site that shows you just how possible it is to go from dreaming of working online to making it happen, and helps you make it happen too.
Jess was born in the United States and at the age of 10 was sent on exchange to Mexico City for a year. She didn’t speak any Spanish and was so scared at first, but quickly learned the language and grew a passion for learning about different cultures.
Since then she has visited over 25 countries and enjoyed backpacking, volunteering, and studying abroad! She always thought this crazy travel life would end when she settled down with a family, but couldn’t be more excited that isn’t the case!
She continues to travel around the world with her husband Rod and two beautiful kids.
Linda Malys Yore
Linda is not your typical 66 year old woman; she is always on the run! Whether it is on the run to the store, on the run to the airport, or on an actual run, she is a passionate athlete, traveler, vegan, who also happens to be 66 years old.
She is a passionate advocate that life only get’s better after 60 and there are so many fun and fulfilling things you can do later in life! Whether you are an older adult or just want to learn how to feel this fabulous as you age, she encourages you to follow along with her life and travels via Lindaontherun.com.
Linda has traveled to all 50 US states, through 10 countries, and 7 Canadian provinces. She completed her first Marathon at age 63 and first Triathalon at age 64. She is not on any medications of any kind and people are often shocked to hear her age!
Lauren is a freelance writer and journalist who is passionate about the written word and telling stories. Her work has appeared in both Australian and international publications including News.com.au, Cosmopolitan, VICE, The CEO Magazine, and NT News.
Lauren has a particular interested in writing about women’s issues, sex and relationships, and personal essays. She is currently the editor of Adventuress Mag, an online travel guide for women travelling solo across the globe.
Lauren studied a B. Communication in Journalism/B. Arts at the University of Canberra and has worked fulltime as both a print and online journalist, and communications professional. She has a true passion for traveling and believes you can never have enough glitter.
Gwen has always wanted to experience adventure. But at 17 years of age things weren’t going the way she thought they would. She decided she wasn’t going to go to university and was told by many people that she was making a huge mistake.
She set herself a few goals, one of which was to step foot on all seven continents before turning 27; her job as an international flight attendant has certainly helped in achieving it!
Gwen is a big believer in doing what you love and what makes you happy. When she picks a holiday she always chooses adventure. At age 23, 4 years ahead of her goal, she stepped foot upon on her final continent, Antarctica.
Alicia-Rae is a freelance writer based in Vancouver, British Columbia. She has a passion for travel, and while completing her Bachelor of Journalism she spent a year abroad studying music and fashion journalism in the UK.
Of her recent time in Antarctica she says: “Nothing could have prepared us for what we experienced. The absolute solitude, yes, but even more so the strange and wonderful world that takes over on an expedition cruise to the Antarctic—all between the busy moments on the zodiac ice cruises, penguin sightings and whale blows.
It’s hard to imagine there’s anything else but the deep blues and glaring whites; the sleeplessness and monumentality of it all. This place, untouched by mankind for the most part, yet still so impacted by our actions.”
Andra graduated Law from Bucharest University. She has a serious weakness for children – as a matter of fact, she used to teach them Physics and Science with Lego models. That sort of dream job where you get to play Lego all day long!
In 2016 she and partner Vlad both left their jobs and traveled for almost one year around Asia and New Zealand. It was the best experience they’ve ever had, and they returned in 2017 with a much calmer and joyful attitude towards life.
After the year abroad she returned to her more serious life – practicing law in the Intellectual Property (the only law area suitable with her unmeasurable energy) department of Romania’s largest law firm.
She could easily spend an entire day in a park reading a book. Their trips to Asia introduced her to the world of Yoga, which she now rigorously practices. She is the chatty half of the team, in a cloudland most of the time, and the greatest National Geographic fan of all times.
Victoria rejects the idea that humans are born to “pay bills and die” and is a proud entrepreneur with a wanderlust spirit. After being let go from her job during a 3-month trip abroad, Victoria said goodbye to her short stint with conventional employment and hello to living a life she truly loves.
After being told she was too short, too heavy, and didn’t have the right look to “make it” as a model, Victoria set out to defy society’s ideals of what modeling is and created her own niche industry.
She blends her first love, travel, with modeling and has gone on to create a viral photo project and travel blog, work with couture designers, and model in 19 countries in 2016.
Glo believes that there is an unequivocal education to travel, and has adopted a mission in life to encourage others to become curious about the world, and ultimately, make them want to jump out of their seat and hop on the next flight out to anywhere!
She booked a one-way ticket to Europe after graduating college in 2013, and over 60+ countries across 6 continents later, she is still nowhere near having figured out her 5-year plan.
As of July 2015, she took the leap of making her travel blog her full-time job, so now officially lives out of a suitcase. Some might call that homeless (her mother, mainly), but she’s now embracing every corner of the world as her home.
Sexiest Destination: Indonesia
Photo credit: bubusbubus
One destination most travelers had in common this year was Indonesia, so we are awarding the archipelago the title of sexiest destination! And not only because you’re more likely to bump into attractive people, but because the country’s 18,000 unspoiled islands are just as stunning as the above listed women!
See the best of Indonesia on a sailing adventure with Nowboat.com; until recently, planning an Indonesia cruise required a fair bit of forward planning, as many local operators don’t have a website. But Nowboat is an all in one seafaring platform that lists over 900 trusted local operators and connects them with travelers at 0% commission.
Indonesia is one of the top countries featured on the platform, with over 160 yacht charters and adventures available – check out some of their sexy adventures! Click here.
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