the select guest
MEET | KRISTY ELLIS
Featured 8.7-8.13.17 | I didn't really travel until I was in my 30s and I've always had a real admiration for those adventurers out there who spent time in their early adult lives taking on the world. And this is why I'm obsessed with Kristy Ellis. We met in Cartagena, where she now lives and runs her tour company (but really, it's so much more), and within moments I was mesmerized. Kristy grew up in Australia with a world globe on her desk and in a family that traveled. A lot. She'd never lived overseas, though (mostly due to a guy — you know the deal), but once she got rid of him, she headed out. And what a trip she took: six months across South America with the idea that after a pit stop in California for a wedding, she'd find a place to live. China? Maybe. Turkey? Sure, that could work, too. But then she hit Cartagena, and that was it: true love. So without a job, a place to live or the ability to speak Spanish, she stopped and started a life that includes a thriving business, an incredible group of friends and the ability to continue to travel the globe. So here's what I'm telling you: Kristy Ellis is cool AF. Welcome to Kristy's week.
I never take my pineapple off — it has special meaning for me. It's a symbol of hospitality, a symbol of my home Australian state of Queensland (we even have a giant pineapple!), its kitsch and tropical, and also represents the local saying piña para la niña (pineapple for the little girl) embodying my personal philosophy of living with a childlike wonder for the world and everything in it.Read More
The colors in old town and Getsemani will hit you immediately. The magic of the city is intoxicating, and it definitely cast its spell on me the very first day. You will take a billion photos and all will be amazing.Read More
Although I'll stray from time to time, I try to make beauty decisions consciously. Being aware of ingredients and packaging and the ethical commitments of the companies behind each product. I make a lot of homemade masks and cleansers using oats and honey and my roommate is always coming home to find me with food on my face, literally.Read More
When I travel, one of the main ways I connect with the local culture is through food. The ingredients, cooking methods, eating rituals, eating spaces, all reveal so much about the collective identity of a place. So when I arrived to Cartagena five years ago and found an absence of any food-related tourism, I was propelled on a course that has seen me create street food tours, market tours, cooking classes, rum tastings, coffee tastings and all the other food experiences I was looking for when I first touched down.Read More
Colombia is one of the top five most unequal countries on the planet — the divide between the haves and have-nots is staggering, and overwhelmingly it is the afro and indigenous communities of Colombia that suffer most. I would like to highlight FEM (Fundacion por la Educacion Multidimensional), a non-profit organization operating in Cartagena that works to empower indigenous and afro communities to create a better future by supporting sustainable development projects.Read More