Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

Couple's Coordinates

M&H Staff

Michael Gallagher and Alexandra Carson do not take their dreams lightly. Infact, they don't stay dreams for long - they quickly materialize and end up on Instagram with 17,000 likes (all stimulated by pure envy, I may add). They follow their curiousities, they explore, and they conquer.

Michael and Alexandra accomplished what 99% of twenty-somethings only wished they could achieve: they quit their jobs and bought one-way tickets to Europe. Creating a blog called Couples Coordinates to follow their fantasy-like escapades, the duo flew to the other side of the pond with their luggage, a little over $7,000 in their bank account, and their love for each other.

After seven months of travel and exploration into the unknown, they are back home in sunny California.

Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

Michael summed up their trip magnificently the day they returned:

From stuffing our faces full of pizza and gelato in Italy to slurping soup in Tokyo. From tanning and riding ATVs in Greece to covering our shoulders and legs to enter temples in Bali. From swimming under waterfalls in Croatia to swimming under waterfalls in Bali. From wine tasting in the South of France to playing water polo with local kids in the sea outside the castle walls of Dubrovnik, Croatia. From driving the entire tiny coast of Bosnia in a bus, to spending 30 hours in Singapore. From 4 months in Italy and a month in France to 2 months in Bali made possible by a quick layover in Qatar. 

We made it to EDC UK just outside of London, Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, and Amsterdam Music Festival. We partied in beach bars on Mykonos and speakeasies in Rome. We surfed in Bali, toured the Vatican and Saint Peter's Basilica in Vatican City and even made it to a rooftop pool party and checked out some casinos in Monaco. 

@alexandra_carson and I have been traveling the world indefinitely and have been doing everything in our power to live as spontaneously and in the moment as possible. Ever since we bought our one-way flights to Italy we have been packing our days full of as much adventure as one could manage. 

With a summary that comprehensive, there's no need for another introduction. M&H Magazine was lucky enough to get the inside details on their trip from Michael of Couples Coordinates.

Grab your camelback, pack your favorite duffel, and let's hop on the adventure train with Couples Coordinates!

Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

What was your favorite place to visit? 

This is a tough one…almost like picking a favorite child.  I call Florence, Italy my second home, so in regard to cities, I have to go with Florence.  However, if I had to pick one place to go back to, burn my passport, and never leave, I would likely pick Positano, Italy.  Or Bali….see, this is too hard. 

What was the most exciting adventure you embarked on? 

I would have to say our 7 month globetrotting journey in and of itself was the most epic adventure.  My girlfriend and I bought a one-way flight to Italy and had absolutely no idea what would transpire the following week, let alone 7 months later.  We literally had almost no plans other than the fact that we wanted to travel indefinitely.  We ended up living in Florence, Italy for 4 months, became locals in Nice, France for a month, moved to Bali for 2 months, and visited a total of 13 countries over a period of 7 months. Hands down the best experience of my life.

Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

What advice do you have for young, aspiring travelers? 

Nike probably coined the best phrase/motto when they decided to go with “Just Do It!”  Seriously though…JUST GO!  Our society has evolved to a point where the status quo is:  go to school for 12 years, go to college, graduate, get a job you hate, work said job until you can’t do it anymore (generally within 3 years), try for another job, buy you first luxury vehicle, realize you can’t afford said luxury vehicle, sell said luxury vehicle, get married, have kids, buy a mini van, work for 30 more years, retire, and then finally try to travel.  Oh and most importantly, pray to God the money you saved in your IRA over your 40 years work life is enough to not only fund your travels but also to live on until you die (at which age you have no idea).  

Instead, flip this idea on it’s head.  JUST GO!  Take a gap year.  Take a job abroad.  Go while you’re young, impressionable, broke, and able-bodied. 

What was your favorite hotel you stayed in? 

Finally, a question I have a definitive answer to:  Four Seasons Jimbaran.  I’ll let the pictures (on our blog) speak for themselves. 

What was your favorite restaurant? 

Acqua al 2 in Florence, Italy

What are some essentials to pack? 

  • Protein bars:  Because airplane food sucks
  • Deodorant and a change of clothes in your carry on:  Because your bag will inevitably get lost at some point
  • Water (I generally bring at least 1 liter for every 2 hours on a plane):  Because the 200 ml cup they give you on an airplane is gone before the stewardess is serving the next row
  • Headphones:  Because nothing is worse than listening to a baby scream and cry with a lovely melody of an airplane engine to complement it 
  • External battery pack:  Because your phone will die while you travel

Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

What did you learn about yourself during the trip? 

Life, without purpose, is futile.  Of course, I was busy at work on the blog and was doing some freelance and contract work, but many days I felt like I had zero responsibility.  Some days this was incredible.  Some days would be spent just laying on a beach in Greece while others were spent surfing for hours in Bali and others spent walking the streets of a new city in search of the best local food.  But at the end of the day, even when living in this capacity, life without goals and purpose, is futile.  As humans we inherently want to accomplish things…always set goals.  Always strive for greatness.  Always help people.

I can do anything.  To be fair, a lot of what I learned on this journey were things I truly already believed about myself, but were simply reaffirmed.  Travel teaches you lessons that no book can.  Travel enables you to be a better person.  Travel enables you to achieve any goal you’ve set.

Less so about myself, and more about the world.  Everyone is the same.  Every place is the same.  Everyone needs and wants the same things, we just have tastes that deviate a bit from one another’s.  Everyone wants to be loved.  Everyone wants to enjoy good food and drinks with their friends.  Everyone wants to find his or her purpose in life and live it out. 

What is your favorite life quote?

"So, stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles.  Instead, climb more mountains, eat more ice cream, go barefoot more often, swim more rivers, watch more sunsets, laugh more, cry less. Life must be lived as we go along.  The station will come soon enough." – Robert Hastings’ The Station

Milk and Honey interviews travel couple on Europe vacation tips!

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