Of course on my social media accounts, you’ll only find beautiful photos of the seemingly fun times and beautiful landscapes while I’m traveling. However, I have to admit there’s always a lot more going on behind the scenes. Things that I don’t necessarily know how to convey to people who repeatedly tell me how envious they are of my travels. So here’s my attempt to relay some of what was really going on behind some of my Instagram posts:



I took this photo in Vietnam, approximately 4 minutes before I tripped and twisted my ankle, while tumbling down the street like a rubber ball.


Speaking of twisting my ankles, here’s another one where I did just that momentarily after snapping this photo at the Inari Taisha Shrine in Kyoto, Japan.

I had the world’s worst anxiety when I first got to Vietnam. Yes, it’s possible (at least for me!) to be in a setting like the one above and still be crawling out of my skin with anxiousness. I got a lot of texts after posting this from friends saying how jealous they were and how they wish they could be on this beach. If they’d only known!
 This was taken at the Robot Restaurant in Tokyo, Japan, which is a dinner show that is just ridiculous, colorful and makes no sense. Very Japanese. It seemed I was the only solo traveler there and was dubbed the girl who had nothing better to do than to take pictures for all of the other parties in attendance. Being the only one solo normally doesn’t bother me that much, but this night I was half enjoying the insanity of the show, half waiting for the moment I could get the hell out of there. I never told anyone that, though.
I had to wait in quite a long line to get this photo in Bangkok, Thailand (of course the angle makes it look as if I’m just wandering the temple alone contemplating the Universe). There was a group of men behind me who were being extremely pushy and inappropriate, especially considering the setting – something that certainly doesn’t come across in this pic. Oh, and it was also 3598475938475 degrees, and I had a case of “Traveler’s Stomach”, which I meant I was trying my best not to keel over and pass out while waiting in line.

Don’t get me started on the Marina Bay Sands.

Then, of course they’re not all bad:

This was on my first night in Tokyo, a place I’d wanted to visit for so long and I’d finally made the decision to travel there solo for the first time. In anticipation for the trip, I’d envisioned every worst case scenario and was most nervous about my arrival. But after arriving and having everything go so smoothly, this was probably one of the happiest moments of my entire life.
The above was in Sedona, Arizona – a place I hold very dear to my heart. I consider Sedona one of the most peaceful places on Earth, and I enjoyed every single second there. This was taken from the Chapel of the Holy Cross.
I thoroughly enjoyed exploring Portugal’s Algarve coast with my friend Heather from Milan Confessions. It was truly one of the best trips I’ve ever taken, and in excellent company. After visiting, Portugal quickly rose to one of my favorite European destinations. Although the water was actually much colder than it looks here.

The impromptu night I spend in London with nothing but the clothes on my back was the first time I’d really spent the night somewhere alone and, eventually, what led me to feel confident enough to consider taking my first solo trip. It didn’t hurt that London is, and forever will be, one of my favorite cities.


One more thing….there’s a lot more going on behind a lot of the photos on Instagram, literally and physically as well. Take for instance,  the Astronomical Clock in Prague:


The Astronomical Clock is the oldest of it’s kind still in operation, and it tolls once an hour with a little show from it’s dancing figurines. It’s definitely something to see in Prague, but don’t just take it from me. Judge by the crowds:
The Golden Pavilion (Kinkaku-ji) in Kyoto, Japan is lined in Gold leaf and is completely breathtaking:
But you don’t often see this vantage point on Instagram:



Then, of course, there was enough material that I wrote an entirely separate post about what was going on behind the scenes at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel Infinity Pool in Singapore.




I think it’s safe to say there are both positive and negative things that are happening behind the scenes of any given social media post, and the important thing to remember is that there is always more to the story – I don’t care what anyone says. So next time you’re perusing someone’s Instagram account, try to keep that in mind before jealousy starts creeping in. Don’t compare yourself to someone else’s highlight reel.

To see more photos/backstories, give me a follow on Instagram (@seegstravels)!

I know there’s probably a lot better Instagram backstories out there than the ones I’ve described! I’d love to hear some in the comments below or tag me on Instagram :)