On every 10th of the month I like to re-cap last month and discuss what's to come in the following month. April was a unique month for Kenton de Jong Travel. Instead of writing about specific locations I chose more general locations like Japan or Canada. I also compared two travel companies, Contiki and G Adventures, and looked at pricing differences, locations available and my experiences with both. I discussed religion and money-making, and I had the incredible opportunity to interview Saskatchewan's official blogger, the Saskatchewanderer.
I also formally announced what my "secret project" for the past few months has been. Although severely delayed (sorry!), my article about my hometown of Regina has gained unprecedented attention and I had no choice but to reveal it. The reason for the reveal was because Regina Tourism caught wind of what I was doing, and told me they would love to feature my article on their blog. Apparently their blogger is a fan of mine, and has been following me for some time. This is such an incredible opportunity for me, and I'm really excited and thankful for it! It will officially be launched the week of May 18th.
Last month I started an ad campaign on my site, using ads from AdClickMedia and Spoutable. While I had my second best month in pageviews ever, I only made a little over $3. Having just over 2,000 views, I felt the ads weren't being justified. I am considering other advertising alternatives, however, and may begin selling cheap adspace this month. The way I look at it, I can make more money selling 5 adspaces for $1 a month and make more than I made with my AdClickMedia/Spoutable combination. We'll see what happens though.
I've also started thinking about starting up a newsletter. I understand people are busy throughout the week and don't always have time to read my articles, so I am thinking about sending one every two weeks, showcasing my most recent articles. That way even if you're busy, come Saturday you will get an email reminding you about all the interesting things I talked about. This might work out, it might not. I'll give it a shot for a few months and if it seems popular, I'll keep it going.
With a variety of different articles on my blog (journal entries, travel tips, tour agency reviews, Top 10 write-ups, religious discussions, interviews, etc.), I'm thinking of doing a survey on my blog to see what my readers are most interested in. Your feedback is really important to me, and I really value it. I'll probably start that up this week and have it go for a month or so. Keep an eye out for that, and be sure to participate! I want to hear from you!
I have a few blogs lined up for this month as well. I want to write one about the sights in Hong Kong, one about St. Petersburg, one about Kyoto and one about managing traveling the world while in love. I have so much material that it's going to be difficult to write just one article!
So, another successful month past, and another busy one ahead!
Thank you again for your support in following my blog. This has been an incredibly journey so far. Even after 6 months I'm still really enjoying it, and I hope you are too!
Until next time, keep on traveling!
And, as always, a big thank you to my sweetheart Jessica Nuttall for proof reading a countless number of my articles. I couldn't do any of this without you. I love you.
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Long before I started my blog, many, many years ago, I visited Innsbruck, Austria. I was on a Contiki trip through Europe and visited a plethora of locations such as Rome, Paris, Amsterdam, Venice, Lucerne and Innsbruck, just to name a few. It was an incredible experience and one that I think was a transformative moment in my life.
Off the record (or, on the record now, I guess), of all the places I visited, the only one I didn't like was Innsbruck. I couldn't get into it. We visited it in late March, so the weather wasn't the best. The trees didn't have any leaves on them, the grass was brown, and everything had a post-winter grey look to it. After visiting Munich and spending the night in St. Goar, my mind wasn't thinking about Innsbruck at all. Instead, I was more excited to go to Venice the next day, and the Vatican the day after that. My time in Innsbruck was uneventful, and all I wanted was to get back on the road.
That was in 2011, and now it's 2018. Has my opinion on Innsbruck changed? I would say yes. I'm more mature now and if I went back, I would better appreciate what I was seeing. As I've gotten older, I've been less impressed by the massive buildings and more enthralled by the history that created them.
When it comes to Saskatchewan, your next adventure can be around any corner. As you venture off the main highways, signage is scarce and directions such as "if you've passed the gate with the buffalo skulls, you've gone too far" are all too common. Communities grow smaller, people grow warmer and the list of things on your Saskatchewan Bucket List seems to only get longer.
My adventure to Leader started a few months ago when Christine over at Cruisin' Christine shared a list of Leader bus tours on Facebook. Some of the tours were in June, but one was in September. The September tour caught my eye because it was a two-day tour and I had to ask myself what we would do for two days in Leader. Leader has a three digit population, so I was perplexed on what the tour would comprise.
I was so perplexed that I decided contacted Leader Tourism and booked the tour to find out.
Imagine the bustling streets of New York, then times it by ten. Add a dash of Chinese culture, a wallop of nature and half dozen fish balls that don’t actually contain any fish, and you have the beautiful city that is Hong Kong.
At 7.2 million people, Hong Kong is a dynamic city with an incredible history, towering skyscrapers and a unique mix of English and Chinese that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. While Hong Kong has existed for a millennium, it was officially founded in 1842 to solidify a truce between Great Britain and the Qing dynasty of China during the First Opium War. A decade after the British took control of Hong Kong, the Black Death swept into China, killing hundreds of thousands of people. It would remain part of Hong Kong’s life for a century.
During World War II, Hong Kong was captured by the Japanese. For three years and eight months the British-Chinese culture of the city was destroyed, replaced with Japanese text, language and art. The booming city of 1.6 million people was slashed to only 600,000. Japanese occupation was incredibly harsh for the Hongkongese, being the darkest part of their history. Japan ceased occupation on August 6th, 1945, in response to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. For forty-two more years, Hong Kong was controlled by the British, with the reunification between Hong Kong and mainland China finally occurring in 1997.