Romie Robertson, a Harvard University graduate, loves to travel with purpose. Robertson thrives when she can find culture and history in her travel destination. Her Instagram page, Roaming with Romie, is full of thoughtful writings and sensible advice when it comes to travel.

Robertson’s blog, Roaming with the Robertson, goes into even more detail on the places she stays, restaurants she frequents and activities she does while traveling. Robertson isn’t afraid to talk about things like passport privilege on her page and the effects of over-tourism. Although, her favorite subject is history.

TN: When did you start traveling?

Romie: I started traveling when I was 6 months old that was when I got my first passport. I traveled a lot as a child because I have family in Germany. I actually have a brother and sister who live in Germany, and were raised there. So, I would always go there, every summer, me and my Mom.

When I became a teenager, I started going back to Europe a lot. I’ve been traveling frequently since I was like 17. I’ve kind of just kept going since. I would explore, mainly Western Europe. The older I got the more excited I got about traveling to other parts of the world.

Romie Robertson

TN: Would you travel to Germany now?

Romie: I would like that, sure. I mean, people are always like, ‘oh, Europe is so typical.’ I mean, I don’t think any place is typical, every place is unique in it’s own right. I still enjoy it.

The last time I went to Europe was in 2019. I just kind of hopped around to different countries. I went to Scandinavian countries, and every time I’m in Europe of course I go to Germany to go see my family.

I love history, I’m a big history freak. I think the thing that is so cool about Western Europe is that they have so many sites that preserve history very well. And, that’s something I really appreciate. The reason it was preserved so well because these countries went out and colonized other lands and nations. Not so much that the colonization didn’t happen in Europe, but not on the same scale as other parts of the world. Because of that, these countries were able to preserve a lot of these historical structures and places. It’s cool to be able to go see all of that hundreds of centuries later.

TN: What is your favorite destination?

Romie: I don’t have one still. I haven’t seen enough of the world to have a favorite destination because there are many parts of the world I haven’t even touched. I haven’t been to Africa except to Morocco. I haven’t been to Australia or the middle East. I’ve only been to parts of China and parts of Thailand. So, I would have to say I am limited in that area. My favorite destination so far has been Hawaii.

Interview with Romie Robertson
Romie Robertson

TN: Which islands did you visit in Hawaii?

Romie: I did Oahu, the Big Island and Maui. I would love to go back one day and do Kauai and some of the smaller islands.

TN: So, which island was your favorite?

Romie: Ah, that’s another hard one. It was a close, close tie between Maui and the Big Island. I think Maui is just a tiny bit more of a fav, but the big island was absolutely amazing. I enjoyed going to parts of Hawaii where there wasn’t a lot of tourism, taking in the environment, taking in the community. On each island, we went around the entire island.

Everything about Hawaii to me, the natural real splendor, is just mind blowing. The way the language and the culture are preserved, it’s just incredible. It actually feels like you’re not even on earth anymore. I used to dream of Hawaii. I got there and it was even better than I’d dreamed.

TN: So, you just took a trip to Tulum. What was the indigenous culture of the Yucatan like?

Romie: I enjoyed it, there wasn’t a ton of indigenous culture where I went. The reason why is that Tulum is such a huge tourist hotspot. In reality, there weren’t many indigenous people living there in the first place.

Even the Mexicans who live and work in the area, I learned, aren’t even from the area. They come in from surrounding towns and villages and they move there for work.

What I found interesting in the culture was the ruins and any type of Mayan relics that were still able to be salvaged through centuries of time and development.

The first time I went to Cancun, I did a day trip to the Tulum ruins, which shows the lives of the Indigenous people.. I just think it’s so incredible that all the Mayan ruins are right there on the Yucatan peninsula and they are right there for all of us to see and enjoy.

Romie Robertson

TN: What advice do you have for people who are wanting to immerse themselves in the culture and history while traveling?

Romie: Do your research beforehand. It helps you understand how you will perceive the space/place you’re going. Everywhere I go I try to do some research before I get there. And, when I’m there I’ll learn something interesting and I’ll think, I want to learn more about that. So, I’ll come home and learn more about what I just experienced.

Do a walking tour, I book through sites like Airbnb. I try to get the host to be a local, or at least from the country or region. They can really speak to the place you are visiting. You can learn a lot through the locals instead of just staying with your friends and going to the touristy restaurants.

Also, when you’re doing the research, be aware of where your information is coming from. Especially if it’s something critical, I really like to use Reddit because it’s really sensible. They aren’t concerned with engagement, likes or follows.

TN: Bucket list travel destinations 2022

Romie: South Africa. Japan, I’m trying to go ALL over the country. I want to take the bullet train and go all over Japan. I want to go to Guatemala. I’ve been pulled to Guatemala for a while. Alaska, Singapore, Iceland. I do want to go to Russia, obviously not now. But sometime when it’s safe.