Christen Russo

How did you get involved in travel?

"My first extended travel experience was as an interchange student in Budapest, Hungary at the age of 13. I lived with a wonderful family who understood my hunger for the full human experience; for exploring cultures other than my own, even if only slightly different. When I went back to visit a few years later, we hopped in the car and bopped around Europe with the goal of exposing myself to its many flavors. Since, I've volunteered in Costa Rica, studied in France, and vacationed in nearly a dozen countries and just as many US states, all with that same 'student of life' spirit as my guide. "

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"On the last day of our honeymoon in Costa Rica, my husband and I boarded an arranged bus from Envision Festival in Uvita to the airport. We spent the first couple of hours of the 5-hour ride napping, enjoying a rare treat: air conditioning. When our eyes cracked open about 2 hours later, we realized we had been in stand-still traffic for nearly the entire time and that our ride had been halted by locals protesting an abandoned construction project in their hometown (which was totally justified). Since it was a peaceful protest, the police couldn't interfere, so our option was to wait an estimated 6 hours for them to clear out — and miss our flight home — or ditch the bus, walk across the picket line, and catch a cab for the remaining 4.5-ish hour trip to the airport.

And, that's exactly what we did. With zero cash on hand and framepacks on our backs, we teamed up with some fellow travelers to split the cost of the trip. We squeezed in a tiny (this time not-air-conditioned) cab and took off with our only stop along the way being to drop by an ATM so we could pay our driver. It was an entirely amusing and laughter-filled experience, an attitude which we insisted boded well for our married life ahead!"

Featured trips & expertise

Best Time To Visit Sri Lanka

In Sri Lanka, warmth and good weather can be found year-round on the different parts of the island. Thanks to the country’s relatively small size, a getaway spent chasing pockets of favorable weather can be a great way to see the entire island’s many highlights. Below, we've put together a guide for planning when to visit each region of Sri Lanka.

Arenal Volcano
Unique Ways To Experience Costa Rica

Costa Rica's most common outdoor destinations are so sought-after for a reason: they truly are beautiful landmarks. But, for every popular attraction, there are plenty of lesser-known must-sees that'll treat open-minded explorers to an incredibly fulfilling and memorable adventure.

When is the Best Time of Year to Visit Costa Rica?

Anyone seeking a diverse travel experience should put Costa Rica at the top of their list. Coastal panoramas and lush jungle scenes, mountainous destinations and quiet villages all offer authentic settings to explore.