We had the good fortune of connecting with Hanna Ashcraft and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Hanna, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
Here’s the thing, I never know. There have been many, many times that I think about sidelining my progress and getting a regular 9-to-5 job. And a typical job wouldn’t be a bad path either. Then I wake up the following day, begin writing my next blog post, and remember how much I love every aspect of the thing I’ve created.

Growing a travel blog is not easy or fast. Who knew travel blogging required so much marketing? SEO? Design? I sure didn’t, but I’ve had a ball trying out new strategies without having to run it by various supervisors. I get to be myself, talk and think about travel 24/7, and decide which direction I want my business to go next. For this freedom, I am trading stability.

Right now, I am happy to be on the journey where I learn, grow, and take on challenges each day, despite having a little instability. I’ve developed an entirely new skill set and an entire portfolio that I’m proud of and can utilize if all goes pear-shaped. But at the same time, I’m seeing the results of my actions and having mini-wins each year. Deep down, I know that if I keep going, thoughtfully adjusting, and trying new strategies, I can guarantee I will be successful.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
At a previous job, my supervisor once said to me, “You’re just not a very good writer, are you? You should use spell-check.” This feedback came after I left a typo or misspelling on an invitation to proofread. Shocked at the moment, I now look back and laugh because I am building a business and brand on my writing.

I created my blog because I had trouble finding reliable sources that gave details on exciting yet moderately adventurous activities to do abroad. What I can DO at a destination is why I travel. With the feedback from my supervisor, I didn’t try to be the *best* writer but instead focused on providing helpful information. Over time, I’ve become more confident in my writing and voice while giving helpful information.

Now, you can see my relatable tone and detailed information in every blog post, which translates to my social media (check out my micro-blog captions on Instagram!). I want women to feel confident when booking an adventurous activity because they read my blog post or use my travel resources.

My desire to be helpful has expanded beyond activity-based blog posts because there are so many elements to a trip! Here are three other ways that Moderately Adventurous is providing more than just destination information:

(1) First, I’ve developed travel planning resources, like a trip planning template document, to keep your planning organized. I am also slowly releasing an email accountability series, which walks you step-by-step through planning a trip with all of my tips for researching and booking each item.

(2) Or perhaps you want to try adventurous activities but do not know anyone else who is interested. Recently, I’ve partnered with group tour operators to go on and review their tours. I typically hop on a public tour, so anyone can join me! Or they can read about the experience once it’s up on the website.

(3) Finally, last year, I started reviewing hiking and travel-related products. You can expect all the helpful details that typically provide in an activity post to be in my product review posts.

Over the years, I’ve realized the value of being honest with who I am. This answer seems simple, yet it’s so easy to get sucked into a comparison game or listen to advice/feedback that isn’t true (like that supervisor). However, when I’m writing about things I love, the words flow. When I focus on what I’m excited about, the challenges don’t seem too big. When I focus on what I’m doing and my mini-wins, I feel great about my progress. We are each on our own paths that, by nature, will never be the same as someone else’s. And to be on my path, creating and developing the Moderately Adventurous Travel Blog, I am grateful.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Santa Barbara is a beautiful place to visit at almost any time of year. I love showing people around this darling town with a variety of outdoor activities!

Exciting Activities:
– Sunset Sailing Cruise with SB Sailing for a chance to see dolphins and a panoramic view of Santa Barbara.
– Rent a Buggie or Tandem bike to ride down Cabrillo Avenue; don’t forget to take photos at the Rainbow Archway.
– Climb the tower of the Santa Barbara Courthouse for a fantastic 360-degree view.
– Purchase a high-tea to-go from Andersen’s Danish Bakery and take it to the rose garden, which is across the street of the Santa Barbara Mission.
– Head to the mountains for a hike or climb the steps at Santa Barbara City College, which has a beautiful view over the harbor.
– Go wine tasting in the Funk Zone or book a wine tour to head to vineyards in the Santa Ynez Valley.
– Head out to Channel Islands National Park for a nature-filled day.
– Depending on the friend, we also have lovely Museums, such as the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Natural History Museum, and Botanic Garden.

– Lizard’s Mouth is a very short hike to fantastic views of the entire coastline.
– The Gaviota Wind Caves are a drive out of Santa Barbara but very cool to check out.
Finally, my favorite Montecito hike is the McMenemy Trail to the bench or make it a loop for more exercise.

Eating: I’m vegetarian, so all of these places have great veggie options.
– For Breakfast: Lilac Patisserie, Caje, or Scarlett Begonia
– For Lunch: The Daisy, Fala Bar, or Savoy
– For Dinner: Mesa Verde, Olivers, or Empty Bowl Noodle Bar
– For Coffee: Lighthouse, Caje, Dune, or Santa Barbara Roasting Company

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Moderately Adventurous, my business, would not exist without my friend Rebecca Murphy. After a couple of trips with her, I got the idea to start a travel blog that encourages women to try adventurous travel. Then, with her excitement and ability to not hold back, we started the blog on a random Saturday evening in 2016. From there, I ran with it. But I’m not sure it would exist without her. Thank you, Rebecca!

Website: https://moderatelyadventurous.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/moderatelyadventurous/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/hannaashcraft/

Other: TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@moderatelyadventurous Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/moderatelyadventurous/_created/

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutSocal is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.