Julia Ashwood lives, breathes and blogs the heartfelt belief that travel doesn't have to stop once you start a family. Her lustworthy travel site, The Vista, inspires a tribe of followers with go-to guides and impossibly photogenic moments, all curated to help other itchy-footed families create their own adventurous memories.
Here, she shares her world of wonderlust and where to next...
Scrolling through your website The Vista, we can’t help but get a little dreamy about far-off destinations. It's such a beautiful source of family-friendly travel inspiration, how did the concept for The Vista come about?
Many moons ago, perhaps six years now, I attended a lunch in Sydney with a group of creative women, most of whom I had never met before. I got chatting with one lady in particular about travel and told her I was flying out to Bali the next day. She mentioned she had a great list of all the wonderful places to go, see, eat and do. When she pulled the printed word doc from her bag, I recognised it was something I had actually written long before: a guide I had shared with my nearest and dearest via email. I took this as a sign and that’s where The Vista began!
What has been the most surprising outcome from creating The Vista?
How much I have had to learn and teach myself with pure persistence.
You’re mumma to the gorgeous Delilah Bee, and soon to welcome a new baby to the family. What’s the plan for travel and adventure when your new bub arrives?
We hope to travel just as much. Every child is so different, yet DeeDee is a great traveller so we hope the next little addition is too!
What has been the most child-friendly destination you have visited with Delilah Bee so far?
Kauai, Hawaii. We visited there when she was six months old. Plenty of lovely beaches, canyons and jungle tracks to walk and explore. Plus, you can pop through Honolulu on the way home for a bit of fun!
What advice can you give to families thinking about travelling with little ones?
Start them early! Have them get used to cars, planes and trains as much as you can. Plus, you must remember that they pick up on your vibes, so when travel times yet tough try to remain positive and light. Travelling with kids is hard work and organisation is really key. Gone are the days when you can fly by the seat of your pants with a backpack! That’s why we created our kid-friendly guides – to help as much as we can.
Which destination do you dream of most but are yet to visit?
Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about Vietnam – mostly because I have been addicted to phở this pregnancy!
If you were to re-visit one place just for the food, where would that be?
JAPAN! We just returned home from there and the food was fantastic. Ramen, miso, sashimi, curries, ice-creams! Even the rice tastes great there.
Most sacred destination visited and why?
Perhaps the Joshua Tree desert in California, back in 2008 (a lifetime ago before kids). My girlfriends and I had some very ‘interesting’ experiences out there… Mostly due to the fact that we had also just spent a week at Burning Man Festival ;)
Out of all the places you’ve journeyed to, what do you love most about returning home to Byron Bay?
Hands down, the beaches! We always joke about it, but we travel the whole world to find them just like the ones we have at home.
You juggle running your own business around being a mum, what’s your approach to balancing the two?
Meditation, strong coffee plus a great supportive partner and Mum!
How has motherhood changed you?
It’s certainly taught me to not sweat the small stuff. Everything gets a new perspective once you bring a little human into the world.
For you, what’s the part of motherhood that you hold most dear?
Laughing, dancing a joking together – the little heart-warming moments you just want to bottle.
What’s your approach to beauty and self-nurture, and what do you hope to teach DeeDee about becoming a woman?
My mum always said things like, “You have the rest of your life to wear make-up." But now when we catch up she says, “So where is your lipstick?” Haha.
Navigating as a young woman in this social media world is going to have its interesting moments. I hope I can be a guide to help DeeDee with self-confidence and loving herself, through thick and thin.
For our own curiosity, and as an on-going source of inspiration, can you humour us with the first thing that comes to mind for each the below?
Currently I am:
I’m dreaming of frozen margaritas most days...
Gnocchi, DeeDee’s favourite
My baby's birth! (Plus the next big Vista Guide and exciting collabs)
The Babe Rainbow
European summers. To be honest, at 31 weeks pregnant I would like to be doing a little more dreaming, that’s for sure!
Wrap dresses in every colour. The only thing that fits right now!
Almost French by Sarah Turnbull and emails mostly!
Our new baby's giggle
Delilah hold he or she
he or she
Portugal with my husband Matty, he has not been to Europe yet.