Images by Dalene and Peter Heck via hecktictravels.com
In 2009, having overcome personal tragedies, Canadian couple Dalene and Peter Heck did what many dream of doing – they quit their jobs, sold their house and set out to explore the world.
Since then, the couple have traveled to over 40 countries: Morocco, Peru, Croatia, Malta, Finland, Guatemala, Jordan and Turkey, to name but a few, and have no intentions of stopping.
So how do they afford it? The pair have been house-sitting their way around the world for four years. This has allowed them to greatly reduce their costs. Aside from this, Dalene and Peter run a blog called “hecktictravels.com”. They have also published a book about house-sitting entitled “How to Become a House-Sitter and See the World”.
In an interview with Dalene Heck she spoke of one of their most recent escapades: “Our venture to Greenland was our most adventurous and “off the beaten path” destination to date. We completed an eight day kayaking/camping excursion up the east coast, covering over 96 kilometers. It was one of the most rewarding travel experiences we’ve ever had,” said Dalene.
The two self-proclaimed nomads recently stopped off in Ireland: “We were just in Ireland for a conference on travel blogging, and also to spend some more time in a country that we love. We last visited for the summer of 2010, taking care of a house for a friend in County Meath. We saw a lot of the country during those two months, and we knew we had to come back.”
“Just a few hours in the country reminded us exactly why we wanted to return – because of the incredibly friendly people. We always feel well taken care of and this visit was no different. We loved every minute of it,” said Dalene.
Don’t be fooled, this lifestyle is not easy. “Most of us nomadic-types work very hard at a number of different things in order to make this lifestyle sustainable.”
Between them, the couple share a host of skills that they utilize to “put food on the table”. Dalene is a writer, event planner, social media consultant, teacher and videographer. Peter is a professional photographer and teacher.
“This has all been a long time in the works, and anyone who thinks they can start a blog and simply travel the world for free is sadly mistaken,” they write on their blog.
Like everything in life travelling has its ups and downs, fatigue and frustration can creep in at times says Dalene. However, those moments “are few in comparison to how much we absolutely love our lifestyle”.
Whether you’ve got wanderlust in your blood or you simply wish to get away from it all, there has never been a better time.
“I do think that people should just travel more. There is so much to be learned by visiting a new corner of the world – not just about how others live, but to learn more about ourselves.”