I promised to explain why I'm calling this forum "Latitude 21." Although the literal meaning refers to the geographic lines parallel to the equator, I chose the name for the feelings it inspires in me. The simultaneous relaxation and excitement I feel when I step off a crowded, chilly airplane into the lovely warm air of Hawaii. The thrill I get when I'm out snorkeling and spot a green sea turtle. The sense adventure while hiking to the top of a waterfall or ziplining over a canopy of trees (at least I hope I'd feel that way on a zipline; I haven't experienced it personally ... not YET, anyway. Stay tuned for a future post once I'm brave enough to give it a try).
The tropics extend from roughly 23°26′ north of the equator to 23°26′ south. At or very near 21°N latitude, you find the islands of Molokai and Maui; Puerto Vallarta; Cancun; Isla Mujeres; the Bahamas; and the Turks and Caicos islands. On the other side of the equator, 21°S latitude passes through the state of Queensland in Australia; the Great Barrier Reef; the Cook Islands; and French Polynesia (not to mention some extraordinary places in Asia, South America, and Africa).
Welcome to the first entry of my first blog, "Latitude 21." The above quote pretty much sums up my inspiration for beginning these posts. I'm finally following through on my desire to share comments and helpful tips (at least I HOPE they're helpful) - with people seeking extraordinary travels. It takes courage to express yourself in any setting, but putting your thoughts in writing and sharing them with the world is truly a daring adventure for me. The internet - for all its ability to connect us - is not always a kind place. But I'm digging deep to be brave and together, we'll see what happens. My goal is to inspire people to travel more and explore this beautiful world of ours; if I receive some criticism along the way, I guess that comes with the territory. So, bring it on, trolls! Not really. Please show kindness and respect, even when you disagree. Anything less will not be tolerated.
You may be able to guess why I'm calling the blog "Latitude 21," or perhaps not. Either way, I will return later today or early tomorrow with the background on the name. Thank you for joining me on this adventure in progress.
I'm a professional travel consultant and the owner of ILLUMINATION VACATIONS, a boutique travel agency in Davis, CA. It is a full-service agency, but I specialize in trips to the Hawaiian islands, and all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean.