Meeting Karolina Valeikaite and her boyfriend Marco Coppola, two total strangers, was one of the reasons I decided to invest into becoming a travel blogger. Hearing about out their story on how they managed to quit their jobs, give up their security and start traveling the world – something I always dreamt of doing.
Karolina was super friendly after I approached her on Instagram and invited me to meet her and Marco on the beautiful island of Koh Rong in Cambodia. I spent the day with her, wandering around the island and discovered that this beautiful soul is a cozy city called Vilnius in Lithuania. You can see that Karolina loves photography when you look at her Instagram profile, but little did I know that she studied it at Middlesex University in London, far from where she grew up. Her very first job was for a Lithuanian fashion magazine when she was only 17 years old. It gave her experience and taught her some very important aspects of the business of photography and the media industry. I also learned that she used to work for two of the most inventive photographers in fashion, Mert & Marcus.
But because Karolina loved feeling alive and the freedom traveling gives her, she wanted to travel. She loves the idea of constantly moving, experiencing new things, meeting people from different cultures, eating different food and collecting stories. While working at a restaurant in London, she met her boyfriend, Marco Coppola, which came at the perfect time as they both shared the same love for traveling and exploring the world.
Together, they set out to Morocco and Southeast Asia and decided and after traveling to Cambodia, to work for a resort in Koh Rong, possibly the most beautiful island I have personally ever seen.
I recently touched base with Karolina again and she told me that they are currently traveling from Kampot Cambodia to Vietnam and hope to also see the Philippines and Indonesia this year.
When I asked Karolina what lessons traveling taught her, she said that it changed the way she looked at material things. “I used to collect everything and anything. Traveling taught me to be happy with the bare minimum.”
Karolina and Marco’s consider Marrakesh (Morocco), Ngapali beach, Old Bagan (Myanmar) as one of their top 3 travel destinations. “It is very difficult to highlight just a few places because every city we’ve visited gave us something to remember. Marrakesh is beautiful in its architecture, just as many people I love their architecture, décor, and style that comes with the city. Ngapali beach was beautiful. Tropical palm trees, white sand, crystal clear water, local forgotten villages. Old Bagan was breathtaking for temples and possibility to explore and discover the culture and history of this city.”
Karolina shared some travel tips with me:
- Best items to travel with: Camera, laptop, drone, map and comfortable shoes.
- Best travel app- Google Translate
- Best Photo editing app- Lightroom
- Tips to take travel pics- study your environment, don’t rush. If in need, come back in the same place for that perfect shot. Know your technology, what are you using and why, but most importantly, be patient.
No one knows for certain how much impact they have on the lives of other people. Often times we have no clue… Meeting Karolina and Marco taught me so much about bravery, pointing out my heart’s desire for showing me that I should pursue my dream of traveling more and living a true and meaningful, minimalistic life.