From Istanbul to Ljubljana – blogger Wandering Aisha finds Slovenia a perfect space for a conscious lifestyle
I first came across Wandering Aisha’s beautiful and very poetic blog diaries about her adventures in Slovenia when she shared them in Slovenia Travel Forum on Facebook, which I administrate. Naturally, I wanted to know more about this young blogger, now also vlogger, and above all a big Slovenia fan!
Who is Wandering Aisha and how did she end up in Slovenia?
I came to Slovenia from İstanbul to improve my English and literally fell in love with the country. It felt so right to be here. I decided to continue with my studies at the Faculty of Sports in Slovenia and to learn the Slovene language.
I am a nature lover and a very curious girl, who has a great excitement of seeing the world and learning about different cultures and new languages.
How are you progressing with learning the Slovenian language so far?
I have been speaking Slovene for a almost three years now. I attended an intensive language course at the Centre for Slovene Language as a Second and Foreign Language. At the end of the course, I got the B2 level certificate. My knowledge was on the paper, but I kept learning the language every day from my friends here and I am still learning.
I found the course very helpful to understand the logic behind the language, but I strongly recommend the people who would like to learn Slovene to spend time with Slovenes and enjoy this process.
Where in Slovenia do you live, how do you find it living there, what else do you do besides studying and blogging?
I live in Ljubljana, the capital city of Slovenia where I feel at home. It’s very convenient to live in Ljubljana because it’s green and sporty, clean and arty.
As a big sports lover I have everything I need here in terms of nature. Besides doing my first year of physical education studies at the Faculty of Sports, I work as a water aerobics instructor. From time to time I work at the Ljubljana farmer’s market selling bread. I am also writing about my travels and Slovene culture for a Turkish magazine.
“Ljubljana is a small city, but a place to many events and home to many foreigners. So I find this city very sociable, friendly and liberal.”
When and why did you become a travel blogger?
I started to keep a diary in English as a way of improving the language. As I progressed, I really enjoyed doing it and kept writing an online diary. I took beautiful pictures and wrote about my life in Slovenia, my first solo trip adventures, traveling in Slovenia etc.
The diaries were so natural and also informative with all the beautiful pictures. It seemed almost like a proper blog. Then I decided to publish them.
I am a wanderer so I like to share my experiences and also to connect with people. I like to inspire and encourage people to travel, to learn about different cultures and also learn different languages.
Recently I started making small videos of my life in Slovenia. The main idea of my vlogs is to showcase Slovenia’s culture and the beautiful places I am exploring and experiencing. I want people to feel as if they are traveling with me.
“I am really passionate about traveling in Slovenia and learning more about its history and culture. Through my vlogs I would like to bring people along through my journey.”
How do you choose topics for your Wandering Aisha blog?
There are different topics on my blog:
Aisha’s Diaries: Where I post my personal writings.
Mountain Diaries: About my hiking adventures.
Fairytale Path in Slovenia: About my trips in Slovenia.
Traveling, Sports and Food: About my interests in general.
My blog is about my experiences. The topics are determined by my life. I like to write about things which are informative, learning about Slovene culture, history, lifestyle on the way. First I learn, then I write about it.
Do you have any favorite places in Slovenia?
Zelenci natural reserve was the first place I visited in Slovenia after I moved here. It has a special charm for me.
When you start traveling in Slovenia, you realize that it has a lot to see more than you would expect. Slovenia offers too many hiking destinations which I really like. Golica, Velika Planina, Prisojnik are among my favourite hiking destinations.
Among my favourite cities in Slovenia are Škofja Loka, Piran, Celje, Ptuj and Kranj.
“I adore hiking in the beautiful mountains of Slovenia , as well as adrenaline sports. I will write about this unique experience in Slovenia. ”
How do you describe Slovenia to your friends back home or people who have never been here?
Slovenia is a really unique country with a high quality of life. It offers the right living space and a conscious lifestyle. A country where you feel safe and peaceful, very organized and lively as well.
Do you know and/or follow any other travel blogs here, what’s your view about them etc.
Actually, when I first came to Slovenia, I found an English course and my English teacher there was Ian Middleton who is a travel photographer and writer. I like his writings and photographs. He often writes about Slovenia (but not only about Slovenia) and takes really capturing pictures.
After I started learning Slovene, I found Anna In Slovenia page very helpful, informative and inspirational.
I met Helene Jelenc, who is also an expat with a great passion for blogging about Slovenia. I find her Wandering Helene page very organized and informative as well.
Any final thoughts on Slovenia or travel blogging in general, maybe?
I see my blog as my journey diary and I want to share my experiences as a person who explores and learns. I would like to reach people who are curious, adventurous and eager to learn.
Interview by Mari Podhrasky (@mari_podhrasky) / Twitter