Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.
Name: Halle Eavelyn
Occupation: Travel writer, spiritual tour leader
Hometown: Washington, DC
Residence: All over the world! Spirit Quest Tours is based in Las Vegas.
College: University of MD, College Park
College major: Theatre
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Short bio: Halle Eavelyn is the co-founder of Spirit Quest Tours, an author and travel writer.
An expert on travel, Halle has been interviewed by Time Magazine, USA Today, Good Morning America, Wealth TV and many others about her spiritual travel experiences and the tours she leads all over the world. She has spoken all over the country as well, from institutes such as Vanderbilt University and Goucher College, to bookstores like Barnes & Noble and Awakenings. When she is not traveling, Halle writes and edits. She is the author of the acclaimed spiritual travel memoir, Red Goddess Rising, and blogs regularly for The Huffington Post, Spirit Quest Tours, JetSet Extra, We Said Go Travel, and SelfGrowth.com, among others.
Languages spoken: English, some German, and I speak Italian, French, and Spanish Menu, which means I can order in a restaurant but that’s it.
How many countries have you been to? I’m only up to the 40s.
How many continents have you been to? Every one but Antarctica!
Earliest travel memory: Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria when I was about 7. The tour guide liked me and let me sit on King Ludwig’s throne.
Favorite American city: New Orleans. The minute I got there it bumped San Francisco from its lofty perch in my heart.
Favorite international city: London. I practically grew up there in the summers, and it is my other beloved childhood home.
Least favorite country: No such thing.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Israel. Or Germany. They can super-suck in both places.
Favorite World Heritage Site: The Great Pyramid. Inside the King’s Chamber. (Part of the site: Memphis and its Necropolis—the Pyramid Fields from Giza to Dahshur).
Favorite airline: Probably Singapore or Emirates, but it definitely depends on class. Alaska for domestic. HANDS-DOWN!
Aisle or window: Window. But bring an extra blanket!!
Favorite airport lounge: Tokyo-Narita.
Favorite U.S. airport: Sea-Tac—gorgeous!!
Favorite international airport: Schiphol!! Boy, do they make it easy to spend the day in Amsterdam, even if you never leave the airport!
Favorite hotel: Kimpton Hotels domestically; Oberoi Hotels internationally.
Favorite cruise line: Sonesta (my first).
Favorite travel credit card: Delta AmEx!!
Favorite island: Kauai.
Favorite beach: Kauai’s North shore.
Favorite fancy restaurant: Masa’s in San Francisco and La Ferme de Moulin in Southern France.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: In Houston, TX, Taqueria La Jalisciense. In Ubud, Bali, the incomparable Atman Café. In Honolulu, believe it or not, Chinatown Express in the Ala Moana food court. Better now than even I remember as a teen.
Favorite bar: El Coyote in LA. Ask for Mo. He’s been there forever and his margaritas will make you cry.
Favorite fruit: Balinese passionfruit.
Favorite food: Escargot. Not from a can. In France.
Least favorite food: No such thing.
Craziest thing you’ve eaten: Probably all the bugs. Crickets, scorpions (on toast!), ants, etc. Americans would maybe say brains (sweetbreads) but in Europe that’s normal.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): In the air, lots of sparkling water, punctuated by the occasional Bloody Mary. On the ground, the best drink I ever had was a Sky Juice (a concoction of rum, coconut, milk, and lemon) in the Bahamas.
Favorite travel movie(s): Casablanca. Passage to India. The Titanic. Eat Pray Love (visuals ONLY, don’t get me started on how Ryan Murphy’s direction ruined the story).
Favorite travel show(s): Everything Anthony Bourdain is in, anything Michael Palin is in.
Favorite travel book(s): “A Thousand Nights in Venice,” “Italian Days,” Julia Child’s biography, “Eat Pray Love.”
Right now I am reading: Ram Dass, “A Journey of Awakening,” and “A Course in Miracles,” and my old journals.
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Johnny Jet!! Afar, World Hum.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! Jetset Extra, Afar.com, Spirit Quest Tours.
5 things you bring on a plane: Fuzzy socks, eye mask, earplugs, headphones, serious hand lotion/lip balm.
What do you always seem to forget? Where I left the SIM card for the country I am going to.
What do you like least about travel? Waiting for flights in crowded airports, including when the business class lounges are packed!
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport duty-free store? Chanel lip gloss!
Favorite travel app(s): Kayak, all the airplane sites, Passbook saving my boarding passes!
Most embarrassing travel moment: Taking an Ambien to sleep on the plane (my first one) and then being such a somnambulist the next day in Amsterdam I fell asleep literally over 100 times!! And the most embarrassing part of that was getting onto my connecting flight the next evening, asking for tea so I could stay awake, and then falling asleep again and spilling hot tea all over my jeans.
Worst travel moment: Getting kicked out of the secured section at Changi at 11 pm. Had to layover on a hard bench in a brightly lit room with lots of noise and a 3 am check-in. Longest night of my life.
What’s your dream destination: Right now it’s Fiji!
Favorite travel charity: Animal rescue in Bali—BARC!!
Best travel tip: If you can’t afford both, stay at the best place you possibly can and skimp on meals. Some of the best meals I’ve ever eaten on the road were in rustic restaurants or from street vendors. You can find amazing food everywhere. Oh, and if you travel for a living, ProVigil is your friend—just for a few days, but it’s the ultimate cure for East-West jetlag.
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