active 2 hours ago

Lilly LeClair

Hello:) I'm a freelance writer, travel planner, and photographer originally from Northern Michigan. My first paid gig was through Oyster.com -- a start-up travel site, now owned by TripAdvisor, who sent me to photograph and review hotels in the U.S., Caribbean, Central America, South Pacific, and South Asia. Since 2011, I've covered 500+ properties around the world.

During this time, I worked for Jetsetter.com's Personal Travel Planning team to customize honeymoons and family vacations for members of the site. Among other projects related to travel, I've helped open a restaurant in Chicago and a hotel in Brooklyn so food, wine, and hospitality are high on the list of things that make me smile.

How did you get involved in travel?

"I saved up funds and took my first round-the-word trip in 2006 -- a three-month budget adventure through Australia, Asia and Europe. To stay in touch with friends and family, I started a blog and became hooked on travel writing and photography. A few years later, I moved to London to attend journalism school and (no surprise) stuck to the travel industry. During the course, I completed internships with the London Times Travel Desk and the New York Times Frugal Traveler, which led to my first job out of college. From then on it's been all about travel and hospitality. "

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"After a journey of two trains, three planes, and a boat to get to the Maldives to review hotels for six weeks, I pulled out my camera to take the first photo when a double rainbow appeared in the Indian Ocean. I cried."

Featured trips & expertise

The pretty port city of Ålesund shines at dusk.

Western Norway Fjord Road Trip - 8 Days

Get ready to hit the open road on this self-drive adventure down Norway's stunning west coast. Starting in Bergen, you'll hike, bike, and take one of the world's steepest train rides through the country's villages, mountains, and fjords. Top off your well-rounded trip in charming Ålesund, a fairytale city renowned for its Art Nouveau architecture.

A small harbor in the village of Solvorn.

Western Norway's Hidden Gems Road Trip - 5 Days

History buffs and nature lovers can check off two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, peaceful villages, and dramatic vistas on this self-drive tour through Western Norway. Start off with a local tour of Bergen, a former Hanseatic League trading post with colorful wooden houses on the old wharf. From here, drive north and explore Norway's two biggest fjords: Nordfjord and Sognefjord. Finish the adventure with a ferry ride across the Lusterfjord to a UNESCO-listed stave church built in the 12th century. History aside, this trip offers plenty of amazing scenery, a world-class glacier museum, and even guided hikes -- all while staying in some of Norway's best family-run hotels.

The historic Bryggen district along Bergen's picturesque wharf.

Oslo to Bergen Fjord Adventure - 5 Days

This five-day jaunt covers a great deal of Nordic ground, visiting the country's two largest cities and its longest and deepest fjord. Start off in Europe's fastest growing capital before taking a scenic train and ferry to the fjord-side village of Balestrand. Continue north to Fjærland for glacier views and an award-winning museum before getting on another boat -- this time to Bergen, a historic wharf city and home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Spend your last day with a local guide who will show you the best of Bergen and its seven surrounding mountains.

The Sognefjord, nicknamed King of the Fjords.

Explore Bergen, Fjords & Waterfalls - 5 Days

This picturesque five-day itinerary hits key summer spots using various means of transportation for a true Nordic adventure. You'll start off in your home base of Bergen, the country's 2nd largest city (complete with a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and explore the streets and surrounding mountains on your own and with a local guide. From here, take a boat ride to rushing waterfalls, and then a train trip -- one of the most scenic in the world -- to the village of Flåm. Jump on an evening ferry through the longest fjord in Norway before heading back to Bergen for one last night on the town.

Cartagena & the Caribbean Coast - 10 Days

Experience stunning highlights along Colombia's northern coast in this active 10-day adventure. You'll soak in the romance and colonial history of Cartagena's Old Town, hike in Tayrona National Park, 4x4 through remote jungles, wander majestic sand dunes, visit indigenous cultures, and go birdwatching in Minca at sunrise. Circle back to Cartagena and end the trip with a relaxing beach day in the Rosario Islands.

Street scene in Cartagena.

Bogotá, Caño Cristales & Cartagena - 9 Days

Sandwiched between Colombia’s mountainous capital and its romantic inner-walled city on the northern coast, this scenic 9-day journey highlights one of South America's most beloved ecological gems: Caño Cristales. After completing this two-day river adventure, you’ll fly back to Bogotá to visit the salt mines before heading north to Cartagena. Here, you'll have two days to explore the sites, culminating with a speedboat ride to the Rosario Islands.