1. Guana Island, British Virgin Islands, Winter 2014-15
2. Dordogne, France, Summer 2014
3. Argentina & Patagonia, March 2015
4. Médoc, France, August 2014
5. Santa Barbara, California, November 2014
Condé Nast Traveler’s Creative Director Yolanda Edwards is inspired by her own travels with her husband, the photographer Matthew Hranek, and their daughter Clara. They never go anywhere without each other. “I think we are our best versions of ourselves when we travel,” says Edwards. “Well, at least I am! I don’t worry so much about life at home, and I let go of most of my controlling tendencies (OK, my husband would disagree with this). We meet people and have open conversations that are powerful, or simple, but always moving. I want Clara to be exposed to this side of life whenever possible!” Exploring the world with your favorite travel companion — if ever there was a better gift from mother to daughter, and vice versa, we can’t think of it. Above, just a few of their most memorable trips, described in Edwards’ own words below.
- 1. Guana Island, British Virgin Islands, Winter 2014-15
We discovered magical Guana in the British Virgin Islands this winter. It’s so small and intimate you get to know everyone within the first hour (but if you want to steal away and have privacy, it’s easy enough to do). Super old-school vibe — cocktail hour every night at 6:30, communal dining at breakfast and lunch, and the best collection of guest books I’ve ever seen. You have amazing views out over Tortola, the nearest island, the wild nature (it has the largest concentration of flora and fauna in the Caribbean), beaches and the sea. It’s a place you go to unwind fast, do nothing but sit on the beach, swim, read, hike and reconnect.
- 2. Dordogne, France, Summer 2014
Last summer we rented a house in the Dordogne with friends — a house that belongs to the Commarque family (they’ve been in the area for over 800 years!) — and played at being locals for a week. Since there are markets every day in the local towns, we would do a morning shop, and then spend the day poking around in small villages, and then lounging at the pool before starting to cook up a feast for dinner. (Well, actually, that would be my husband who was doing all the work.) You can rent this house via chateaudelabourlie.com.
- 3. Argentina & Patagonia, March 2015
Our most recent trip we went to Argentina, where we spent time in Buenos Aires, at an estancia that gives polo lessons, and then flew to Patagonia. Watching Clara ride a horse with confidence, and seeing her beam with pride when she caught (and, yes, released) an elusive trout… nothing better. I have to say to all the moms out there desperate for a spring break idea that won’t be sold out and impossible… consider Argentina. The flight is overnight and long enough that you can actually sleep… and it’s just an hour time difference from the East Coast, so there’s no jet lag.
- 4. Médoc, France, August 2014
We fell in love with the Médoc region when we were visiting our friend the cookbook author and blogger Mimi Thorisson, her brilliant photographer husband Oddur Thorisson, and their family this summer. It’s so gorgeous there — from the empty, beautiful beaches to the vineyards, that we bought a house there! Since Clara is an only child, she loves to jump right in to a huge family… and we love getting to eat like kings every night at the Thorissons’.
- 5. Santa Barbara, California, November 2014
Our dear friends live in the Carpinteria area, and we visit them as much as we can. They have twins Clara’s age so it’s a no-brainer. We take long walks on the beach every night, and I can’t stop taking sunset pictures. We also go crazy for the farmers’ market there, and the fantastic Mexican food. Our favorite is Rose Café for huevos rancheros. But there’s no more magical place than dinner at the San Ysidro Ranch. Sitting outside underneath the jasmine blossoms… it just doesn’t get better than that.