Les Toiles Studio: So nice to meet and talk to you two! Your travel blog is full of good energy and encourages to discoveries even if these are only a few kilometres away from home. Can you give us a small intro into how Luna Guide to Travel has started?
Ashely: I began traveling solo with Luna when she was just 5 weeks old. So as any new mom, I searched the internet to try to find tips or other families traveling with their kids and there wasn’t any I could relate too (most were flying first class, nannies, or backpackers). That’s when Luna Guide to Travel was created – we wanted to share our everyday experiences to try to take the stress out of traveling and inspire others, especially other mothers and parents.
Les Toiles Studio: What is the best part about travelling with your mum, Luna?
Luna: The airplane. I know we are going on an adventure together. I like the hotels, especially ones with a pool.
Les Toiles Studio: What is the best part about travelling with your child, Ashely? What makes it special and what are the challenges?
Ashely: We grow together and bond together in our experiences. I’m not saying you can’t do that in your hometown, but it def has a whole new aspect to it when you are cut off from technology and in a new unknown country. The most challenging is often adjusting – figuring out the food, streets, cultures, often being tired – but a nap on the beach tends to fix that right away.
Les Toiles Studio: Can you tell us about your best travel experience so far? Why is this one so special?
Ashley: It’s impossible to say just one- but we recently went to Sri Lanka and it was one of the most cultural, safe, easy, mind blowing places we’ve ever traveled too. We visited temples, jungles, waterfalls, tea plantations, went on a safari, and surfed. I mean where else can you do that?
Luna: My favorite is Brazil. I really liked the dog Pepita, in Trancoso. The people were really nice and there were wild horses, we took lots of boats, and I got to see real Indians. We had a really nice pool.
Les Toiles Studio: How does travelling change people? And what are the most precious things you both have learnt during your travels?
Ashley & Luna: Travel helps you to understand people, builds confidence, teaches you to adapt, your palette grows, you can literally sleep anywhere, you physically touch, see and smell the world around you so you learn through experience.
However, the most precious thing of all we’ve learned is patience. There’s always a problem, nothing ever goes as planned – and 99% of the time out of your hands – so patience tends to be a good option.
Les Toiles Studio: We often face drama moments, moans and tiredness is kicking in when travelling with kids. What would be your advice to others travelling with kids on how to keep positive in the hardest moments? What compromises do people have to make when travelling with children?
Ashley & Luna: There’s no reason to stress out when you’re traveling, because it only transfers onto the kids. I know parents fear the airplane rides the most, and often what others think of them when they board. My advice is to “ignore people”, by all means you want to have polite, drama free children, but when it arrives don’t add to the stress by worrying about what others think. Try to stay calm and diffuse the situation with your child – shit happens and everyone was once a child too, maybe you’ll even get lucky enough to have a stranger lend a hand.
Les Toiles Studio: Spring is finally here and summer is approaching fast, and many wonder how to start spending their weekends out in nature without going too far. Can you recommend a one-day trip from Lausanne to a must-see spot in the canton?
Ashley & Luna: There’s so much you can do! The Jura & 3 lakes region is full of adventures, from canoe treasure hunts, wild west trains, medieval towns, the Latenium in Neuchatel is our favorite museum with ruins from 15,000 years ago!
Gruyere, you have the Disney like village, cheese, chocolate museum where you can make your own chocolate with the kids and the Bains de Gruyere.
I also love Northern Italy for families, you can stay in an Agriturismo (farm houses turned into boutique like hotels) you can stay for less than 100.- a night, drive less than 2-3 hours, you could visit the Egyptian Museum in Torino, the world’s largest market, and all while experiencing life on a farm.
Les Toiles Studio: We all know that many people wish to travel, but can’t afford it, or don’t know how to travel and not to spend too much. What are the best tips you guys can share with our readers on travelling on a budget?
Ashley: Yes, unfortunately we need money to travel, bummer. But with the will, there’s always a way:
-It’s cutting out certain luxuries at home (online shopping habits, i.e.)
-Credit cards where you collect miles (also COOP points)
-Stay in an Airbnb instead of hotels
-Booking your flights in advance is an obvious – however setting up alerts on google to know when the price drops
-Travel outside of heavy touristic seasons changes the budget tremendously
-Contact hotels directly you find on Booking.com, i.e. and ask to book with them directly, as they pay a high booking fee that can in turn be savings in your pocket.
Les Toiles Studio: What is your dream travel destination at the moment? Where are you planning to go next, and why?
Ashley & Luna: We don’t really know Africa, just northern Africa. It feels like a piece of my soul is missing and of course Luna spotted the Giraffe Hotel in Kenya, so I’ve been trying to book there for 2 years! However I think South Africa and Namibia will be our next great adventure! I’ve talked with a lot of friends and they told me it could be a great introduction into Africa – then our plan is to go to Ethiopia where Luna’s Grandmother was born and Great-Grandmother once lived.
Ashley and Luna worn matchy-matchy dresses by the Lausanne based fashion designer & boutique Adori. We would like to thank Anna the heart & the soul of Adori for providing our travellers with these springy matching dresses that Luna and her mum worn during our adventure in the Park de Hermitage Lausanne.