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About Travels of Adam

Learn how a trip to Iceland changed my life and why I quit my job as a graphic designer to travel around the world

Who is Adam Groffman?

Adam Groffman - Travels of Adam

In a few words, I’m a hipster travel blogger & one-time graphic designer. In 2010 I quit my job as a book designer in Boston, MA and set off on a trip around the world.

Over the course of 15 months I visited more than a handful of countries from Morocco to Israel, India to Vietnam. (Read my reasons for wanting to travel around the world)

Why did I set off on my trip around the world? Well, it all started with a short weekend trip to Reykjavik, Iceland in 2009…

Travels of Adam - Blog

How Iceland changed my life

hipsters in iceland

In September 2009, I visited Reykjavik, Iceland with a good friend. We were only there for a 3-day weekend, but during that time, we met so many interesting people and fellow travelers that it inspired me to make up my own life plan.

I’ve been lucky enough to travel and study abroad throughout my life, and I see no reason why that should end with a full-time 9-5 job.

I started working two weeks before I had even graduated from university. Without any transition period between school and “real-life,” I spent most of my early 20s busy making a career and being responsible.

It wasn’t until I met people my same age from all over the world (doing very different things than what I was doing) that I was inspired to take some action.

It just seemed unfair to think they had all these amazing stories to tell, and here I was, beginning to feel more and more complacent in my generally comfortable life.

It was on my IcelandAir flight back from Reykjavik to Boston that I realized there’s no reason to stop traveling. I could make something work somehow whether through my job or on my own. In seat 19F, I wrote up a list of questions:

  • Could I travel & not work?
  • Where would I go?
  • How much would it cost?
  • Would I be able to live like that?
  • What would I learn/do?
  • When would I go?

I didn’t have all the answers (actually, I had none at that moment), but I knew they were questions I would be able to answer. Honestly, I’m surprised at how easy it was to make the decision to pick up and leave Boston without answering a single one of those questions.

Where is Adam today?

Travels of Adam

As my round-the world travels wound down (read how I spent $20,000 in over 15 months), I made a difficult decision: do I return to America and look for a job there? Or do I try my luck one more time and pursue my dream of living in Europe. I took a chance in the summer of 2011 and moved to Berlin, Germany.

When I first moved to Berlin after my trip around the world, I worked in a few different tech start-ups before ultimately going 100% freelance. Like many other Millennials, I’ve pieced together a career from my experience in design, marketing, tourism and writing.

Living in New York City

In early 2018, I moved to New York City. And while early in my time living in NYC, I was still regularly traveling around Europe and the rest of the world. But with the Covid pandemic, this blog and my life as a full-time traveler took some abrupt changes.

It wasn’t the easiest adjustment, but after years of full-time travel, I opted to re-enter the corporate & startup world with a full-time job, albeit one that allows me plenty of time to travel and experience new things.

In New York City, you’ll find me out and about trying new restaurants & bars, checking out the museums & galleries, exploring my favorite neighborhoods, and just generally trying to enjoy life and have fun—living in the moment and experiencing as much as I can from this exciting city.

How do I fund my travels?

My travels are funded a number of different ways. You’ll find banner advertisements across the site and, in the past, I work directly with tourism destinations and brands.

You’ll find that disclosed in the posts as well as within my media kit. Some links throughout the site are affiliate links, meaning that if you do book a hotel or service, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Today, I fund my travels primarily with my savings from working full-time in the publishing industry. I’ve always been a bit of a picky traveler—only interested in spending my time and money in those places I’m most interested in.

So that’s why all the hotels and restaurants I’ve reviewed on this site are ones that I personally have chosen—and if a press or PR contact has provided a discount, you’ll find that disclosed prominently within the article. If you ever have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

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  1. I come from a very strange place where maybe you can’t even think of putting your one foot outside your own house without telling your Parents & I am so amazed and so shocked to see that Life becomes so Beautiful after what you really wanna do , you just do it just simply by doing it Its Just like Fire in the Rain, very Romantic and very Courageous, I wish I could do it too,Dear Adam,I just wish you that you have all the happiness and all the Love in this World AMEEN
    Just Love,Peace & Respect
    Senorita Sonia

  2. James says:


  3. Tony Reed says:


    I’ve only just stumbled upon your site, but am already impressed! I do relate to your sudden (seamless) transition to work life from college. I graduated college in three years (at age 20, actually) and immediately jumped into “real life.” I’ve always wished I’d taken time to enjoy life a bit more, but then again, as you show, there’s no time like today!

    Take care,

    P.S. You’re handsome, smart, and seemingly nice… So, if you’re ever in Orlando, let me know! :)

  4. Tammy Lau says:

    There’s always something happened that will changed one’s life. That’s why I always tell people go out and explore cus you never know what you will get in return. Good job and happy travel:)


  5. Greta Anderson says:

    Travelling with an open-mind and open-heart can never be overestimated. You’re doing it all right. <3 and cheers, Greta

  6. Melissa says:

    Hi Adam!

    I was just browsing the web one day and I went on to your webiste. It’s so awesome! It has accelerated my want to travel around the world. Although I am still 16, your website is very informative and it’s really good! Also, it has also inspired me in many ways.


  7. Molly says:

    I can chime in here as well that I think your story is really inspirational and kudos to you for chasing after your dream, plus having the fortitude to stick it out and make it a success.

    Makes me want to read more of what you have to say, as you are a very admirable person. Cheers :)

  8. kareem says:

    I want to do the same , but the point here how could you earn enough money for your travels?

  9. Tommy says:

    Hello Adam,
    I love your travel site–it is inspiring. Someday, Lien and I will travel a bit of the world: 1) Vietnam; 2) Ireland; 3) Heidelberg, Germany. Would you like to meet up with us in Heidelberg when we go? I know a great place for dinner near the old part of town in the shadow of the beautifully crumbling medieval castle above the Neckar River. Your site brings back good memories. Thanks

  10. Laty Xayavong says:

    I love it how a trip to Iceland changed your life. It sure did change my life of travels. Went there last Nov with a friend for a 9 day adventure. We didnt know nothing about Iceland. Everyone asked why we were going. Only reason was because it was only 543USD roundtrip to go!!

    However, I would always go to Thailand and SE for the last 7 years for a 5-8 month holiday – especially I’am from Thailand (born there and raised in the States – went back for the first time in 2006 to volunteer in Khao Lak) but going to Iceland has open my eyes to travel to a place of “unknown” for me.

    I’am wanting to know how are you living the life in Berlin? I would love to find some kind of work there and live aboard. Can you help me out? Suggest where I should start…

    Thanks again!! I hope to hear from you soon ^^*

  11. Edward Lemos says:

    Hey Adam, what´s up?
    My name is Edward. I´m from Brazil and I´m currently living here in
    southern Brazil. I´ve lived in Utah and a short while in Boston area too.
    I also like to travel, but I haven´t done much traveling later.
    Well, I like to support travelers, specially if they´re coming here to my area.
    If visiting Brazil or south america interest ya, feel free to contact me.
    I´ll do what I can to help.
    Good luck bye.

  12. Holly says:

    Hi Adam,

    I love that you made an effort to define hipster. That’s no easy task and Berlin definitely seems like a hipster city!

    My husband and I are friends with Lillie Marshall in Boston and mentioned you as a fun travel blogger who lives in Berlin! We’re actually in Berlin for the next two months and would love to meet up some time over drinks or dinner to meet you and hang out! We figure that a friend of Lillie’s is almost certainly someone we’d like!

    It looks like you MIGHT be visiting the US right now, but otherwise let me know if you’re free sometime!


  13. Hello Adam

    thanks sharing your stories. i see you travel a lot of places and i like how you manage things in traveling alone.

  14. Hi Adam,

    Nice travel blog. hugs from Indonesia.


  15. Jo says:

    hey Adam, thanks for stopping by! I love your blog and will visit more often. I’m also impressed by your story. You’re living your dream – that’s the way to go!

  16. Justin says:

    Thanks for dropping by my blog. Great story, and amazing photos. Looking forward to the updates mate!

  17. Elliot B. says:

    Just happened across your blog and I must say I love it. I’m currently trying to figure out some of my own RTW travel plans so I love the experiences and tips you have shared. Looking forward to everything that you write.

  18. Natalie Kim says:


    It is TRAVEL-BABYLON in Europe. Especially Lisboa.
    If you ever plan to visit Vienna/Austria and I m here ( since I m a travel-o-holic myself)


  19. Steve Dobson says:

    Having had the pleasure of meeting Adam in Berlin, I can say that he’s a ‘blast’ in real life too. I love the blog. I love his enthusiasm. Traveling the world to seek out cool stuff is THE STORY. It takes guts. It takes courage. And Adam is living the life.
    Go Adam !

  20. Francesca says:

    Adam..Im so happy I met you! are inspiring and make me feel like I should and i MUST pursue my dreams!! Thanks for what you are writing, the way you do it and for taking time…to answer my many msg and emails!! Francesca

  21. Ron says:


    You are an inspiration – and motivation for me to get my old fanny on the road. I am 66, and will get myself to western Europe in the not too distant future. From there will begin my adventure to drink up and savour the various cultures of the world. My heritage is Italy and Ireland. Italy is where I think I want to base. I admire your bravery in setting out into the unknown. You’re living the life, and I wish for you only more of the same.

    Be well,

  22. Hey Adam,

    We love your blog – it’s very interesting and diverse and we see you have experienced a lot on your travels! We would love it if you could also check out our blog (see link) where we talk about gay travel, accommodation, fashion and other hot topics too. We’d also recommend you even try and book some accommodation through us next time you travel for a new and different experience. :)

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

  23. Hey man I’ve just started my long term travels. I had a goal since I was 22 to retire by the age of 30, and I turned 30 nearly 2 weeks ago ! I made it ! I quit my job and I’m now in Thailand, travelling and working hard on my blog, and then after a while here I will head to Iceland as well ! I can’t wait ! It sounds like it’s going to be a real different kind of place.

  24. Mustang sue says:

    Hi Adam, aunt sue here ! I loved reading the blogs so far and will try. To get to each of your highlights as time allows ! My new iPad is easier to use with Stevens help of course! Happy birthday happy thanksgiving happy Chanukah mer ry Xmas and happy. New. Year!!!!!

  25. Hi Adam

    I really like your blog, there are a lot of great stories with amazing pictures.


  26. shanna says:

    Looks like you still need to explore South America! Come visit!

    –Shanna, a Peace Corps volunteer in Colombia

  27. Ania says:

    Awsome blog. I lived in 3 countries so far (and worked) and i am happy. I saw, met, spoke, did..lots of thing and people. I remember that i had a job for Unicef *field foundraiser, and i had the chance to visit the whole Ireland with them.

    Keep up the amazing work.

  28. Gulong says:

    You are my hero. I want to travel more, too.

    My owners also respect that you quit your job and traveled the world. And they desperately want to make it in Berlin, too. Rock on!

    • Adam says:

      Hahaha you’re a wombat?! Cute. I still have a stuffed animal wombat from my trip around the world years ago. He just hangs out in my bedroom these days ;)

  29. Leah says:

    Hey Adam!! I really loved your blogs and I have already followed and subscribed too! Wish you would also visit Asia and especially Philippines :) God Bless to you! And have a safe trip everytime..

    • Adam says:

      Thank you Leah! I’ve heard great things about the Philippines and hope to travel around that part of the world more in the future. Happy travels!

  30. MightyTravels says:

    Iceland and esp. Reykjavik is really cool. I’d love to come back soon!

  31. adam amir says:

    Fellow Adam!
    Dope blog, planning a trip to berlin, its good to see articles about it. Inspiring stuff man, keep it up!

    Cheers and Prost!


  32. Brad Bernard says:

    Hey Adam, this is a great blog. Such a fresh and unique perspective on travel blogging, and you are totally hilarious! Love it.

  33. Mark says:

    Hi Adam, really a great blog, congratulations.
    Did you visit Barcelona in your 15-months journey? i think you would like it.
    Thanks for share your experiences with us

  34. Luis says:

    Really awesome.. thanks for sharing

  35. Erik says:

    Hi Adam,
    Really interesting blog, thanks for share it with us

  36. Corrie says:

    Hi Adam,

    We are a family who has been living in Europe for 6 months. So far we have had to hop in and out of the Schengen every 90 days, but it is our goal to go up to Berlin for my husband to apply for a freelance visa. He does software development and is working online for a company back in the States. My question is, do you know if it is possible that I am our two daughters (ages 5 and 2) would be allowed to stay under his freelance visa? I am assuming we would still have to have our own visas and I am not sure what we would qualify for. I could try for a student visa, but there is still the question of if that would cover the girls staying in Germany as well? Thanks so much for all of the information that you posted!

  37. Jovica says:

    In the city of Berlin that was my first love, I’d love to see him again and enjoy, and to podsetm of my youth.

  38. Shawn says:

    Cheers to you Adam, I hope I can follow in your footsteps in the coming months, great blog as well!


  39. Marc says:

    Hi Adam, congrats for your blog!

    Any visit to Spain in next future?

    looking forward to hear about your new destination…


    • Adam says:

      I try to visit Spain at least once a year :)

      • Marc says:

        So, let’s see next time in Barcelona! :-)

      • Kofi Adoko says:

        You go to Spain “once a year.” Could you elaborate on that? I’m actually in the process of planning to move to Barcelona. I’m currently living in New York and I’m basically bored with the options. I speak Spanish as I lived and worked in Bogotá, Colombia for a number of years. I loved it. Barcelona will be my initiation to EU. I’d most definitely like to visit Berlin, but seeing a single digit lower than 3 in Farenheit slows my motivation.

        • Adam says:

          Hahah Kofi, yeah that winter weather scares a lot of people away from northern destinations — but for me, it’s all about the quality of life and while I love warm weather, it’s not a must for me 100% of the time. I do love to visit Spain so I always find myself going as often as I can!

  40. Milan says:

    Hi Adam, really cool your blog, congrats!


  41. Nancy Reid says:

    You’re going to love Chicago! Hope you get a chance to try some great Polish food.

  42. sevilla says:

    Great job Adam, looking for seeing you in Seville!

  43. Elly says:

    Hi Adam,

    Great blog, I’m just searching some travel info about Belgium & just discovered this blog, it’s good to know travel can change people’s life or job.

    I’ll travel Belgium few months later, any good travel place recommended?


  44. Elaine says:

    Hi Adam,

    What do you look for in a city when you decide to go there? I personally love museums and coffee shops.

    Great Blog!

    • Adam says:

      Good museums or art galleries are definitely important – as well as decent cafés and cool bars. I usually start by looking up the neighborhood which seems to have more than a few record stores as that’s usually a good way to then pinpoint where to find other cool things.

  45. Fon says:

    Your blog and your life’s experience are very interesting. I really enjoy reading your blog. and I miss Iceland so much!

    • Adam says:

      Aw thank you Fon! I miss Iceland, too – really need to return for another visit and see if it lives up to the memory…

  46. JB & Renee says:

    I like your story Adam. Like you, I’m a graphic/web designer ill-suited to a 9 to 5 existence. I’ve been fortunate to carve out a decent freelance career that allows me to work remotely, but even that doesn’t seem enough anymore. My wife and I want to live a life of perennial travel, to experience true freedom for as long as we’re able and I think we’re right on the cusp. Thanks for sharing your story. :)

  47. Nadia says:

    Hi Adam
    I read your posts and I really enjoyed . I like to see around the world.
    I wish the best for you :)

  48. Matt says:

    Hi Adam, its Matt…again,lol. I live here in Vermont and just wanted to add that it must have taken a ton of courage to begin this voyage in travel and not only that but learning about yourself and others as well..Its a big world out there but also can be pretty confining at times.. I would love to talk with you over a beer or two, three haha (no worries, not trying to be scary) but I’ve always enjoyed learning from others, especially when they’ve traveled to distant lands.. you seem really cool so travel on and we’ll read on..haha..Cheers Adam.. :)

  49. Caedron says:

    I’m 18 and living in Minnesota (USA) – on the brink of forgoing a comfortable, boring life working my way up the financial ladder and wanting to travel instead. Your blog is one of things that makes me believe it’s possible for me to live in Berlin, support myself with hard work, and live a fascinating life of travel and art. Thank you so much. Any advice for a virgin traveler?

    • Adam says:

      Hey Caedron! There’s definitely a lot of hard work (and time!) that goes into this. Depending upon what it is that you want to do, there are probably some decent opportunities out there. Berlin, for me, has been very important and has allowed me to accomplish a lot. It can be easy to get lost in the city, but with some strong willpower, dedication and a bit of a safety net, it’s a great place to be to create something of your own.

      And, for some travel advice: don’t be afraid to take some risks, try new things and just get out there and DO IT. Helpful if you have a plan and backup plans, but you’ve got to start somewhere…

  50. Anneka says:

    Hi Adam!
    Just came across your blog today (currently whiling away time in Laos, with a very sick boyfriend..)
    I think your blog is really great, I can really relate to it a lot. I started out as an expat, and now I am backpacking. You might say I’m a bit of a hipster too..
    I’ve been blogging for a while and have always been a bit nervous about social media marketing for some reason. However, your blog has really inspired me to take things forward a bit! Thanks for the great posts.
    Best wishes,

  51. Hielke says:

    Hi Adam, congrats for your site!
    seeing you in Amsterdam

  52. kali says:

    Go Adam!!

  53. Ray Concepcion says:

    Cool blog. Good Berlin info. Heading out there in May.

  54. Megan says:

    Adam- you are an inspiration! I just stumbled across your blog while planning a trip to Barcelona and I have spent hours reading through your various city guides. I also love that you have Columbus, OH (I went to college there and and you captured some great places, so I know to trust your European advice :)

    I’m not sure that I’ll ever quit my job and travel full-time, but I work to travel, for sure.

    All the best!

  55. eM says:

    No wonder Iceland is such an inspiration. We were there last month and all I can think about is our next trip there.

  56. Vinod says:

    The travel blog is excellent. Got some tips for my upcoming solo trip to Berlin. Good Stuff !!!

  57. Lambert says:

    Hi Adam

    I haven’t read yet most of your blogs but this one is really inspiring. I wish I could also write a blog, about myself, with the right amount of emotions like this – courageous and full of dreams.

    Thank you.
    Lambert (Philippines)

  58. Chrissy says:

    It’s a little bit scary…I am about to graduate from university in a couple months and I am currently deciding between Boston for after (where I’ve always dreamed of living) or something crazier….my outlook was changed this past semester after a semester studying and traveling throughout Europe and the place that struck me the most was GERMANY; Berlin, Hamburg, Dresden, all of it. I’m dreaming a little of say bye to family and friends for a couple of years and living there. It’s crazy to come across this blog where you were faced with a similar decision and chose Germany! Honestly inspiring. Thank you for making me feel a connection in our similar decisions!

  59. Edward says:

    My wife & I are going to visit Berlin for the 1sT time in june 2017. Excited about your blog. We subscribe to a French blog that we have used with success We love art, food, charm & romance. Would love your recommendations were to stay.
    Found a beautiful looking apartment near the Berlin mall. Would you look for other areas based on our dream area. Looking forward to keep in contact with you as we plan our trip.

    • Adam says:

      Hi Edward – sounds like you’re on the right track for your Berlin holiday. Have a great time – tons of tips here on my site!

  60. Hi Adam, just wanted to say that your site looks amazing! So well done and some great content. I hope our new blog can be anywhere near as good someday. Keep travelling!

  61. amanda bright says:

    I have read a couple blogs of yours and I love that you have travelled so much! Thank you for sharing. My mom has never been out of the USA so I’m taking her to Thailand luxury is always a wonderful thing but I’m more interested in showing her culture. Bathing Elephants and playing with tigers exploring the floating cities. My questions are, Should we stay in hostels along the way? How much should we expect to spend for two weeks? And where should we fly into?

  62. Courtney Haas says:

    Hi Adam – I love that you have found a way to follow your dreams and your blog is very inspiring. I teach school and travel every free moment so I am now looking at Christmas break. I have a trip to Prague scheduled for the 27th – new years but would like to arrive early and maybe see another city first and then take a train to Prague. I have been looking at Berlin, Vienna, Dresden and Munich… any thoughts? Which might be the best to spend Christmas Eve/Day? I am worried if we aren’t in a larger city, everything will be closed. I would also like to see snow if possible!

    • Adam says:

      Hi Courtney! Sounds like an amazing trip. Prague in December is really magical :) I think most European cities pretty much shut down for Christmas. I know Berlin gets very quite on Christmas eve and Christmas day, and I assume that’s much the same for your other options. Hotels generally have something on offer for tourists in town, though, so sometimes that can be a nice way to spend the day if you’re traveling.

  63. Annie says:

    My partner & I are planning to go to Jerusalem & Jordon April – May 2018. I read your Travel Blog & saw you have been to both. A couple of questions:
    – From what Ive been reading, it appears we can still travel from Jerusalem to Jordan/Amman by following your 5 Easy Steps & taking Bus 961 or 966 & Taxi. Unless you know something I have not read we will follow your Fab Steps!
    – We live in San Francisco CA area & was wondering if you had any thought as to whether we would benefit in any way by Flying into Tel Aviv OR Amman? We have decided on SF to Tel Aviv because there seems to be more Flights. Any Thoughts?
    – Any Airline you would Recommend?
    – Places to stay in Jerusalem & Jordon?
    – Also we are 2 Woman, Any Suggestions?

    Thanks for Any Suggestions You may have!

    • Paul says:



      What is that for a weird left-wing p.c. lingo?

      Either it’s your husband, boyfriend. Or girlfriend?
      Whatever… But “partner” sounds like you two are working for some law company.

    • Adam says:

      Hi Annie! Thanks for reaching out. As far as I know, the connections between Israel and Jordan remain the same – but can be helpful to double-check on the ground when you’re there :)

      There are benefits to flying first to each city, so maybe just go with the one that’s going to be cheaper. No matter what, you’re going to have a tough time with security because that’s just how it is when entering Israel (whether by air or land). Bt I’d personally probably start the trip by flying to TLV.

      Lots of hotel recommendations for Jerusalem – please check out my city guide to Jerusalem here. In Amman, I’ve only ever stayed in pretty boring/non-descript chain hotels (but do check out Books@Cafe when you’re in Amman!). Hope that’s helpful to start :)

  64. Ria W. says:

    Hi Adam: I really admire your having found a way to finance your current lifestyle! Would you believe that I came across your blog as part of a homework assignment of “Blogging and Podcasting for Beginners” via Ed2Go? Really enjoy your posts!

    • Adam says:

      Hi Ria – Thank you! And wow – that’s cool! Every now and then I find some of my writing and reports have been featured in university courses or discussions! Thanks for letting me know and good luck with your studies (and, hopefully—travels!).

  65. Aaron Parker says:

    Thanks for everything

  66. Heidi Liou says:

    Hi Adam,
    First, wow. Thank you for writing and being so honest.
    Second, I stumbled across your blog from googling ‘share my top reflections’ because my 3 year NYC anniversary is coming up and I’m currently writing a reflection email to send to friends/supporters.
    Third, I am so inspire and have a plan to do what you’ve done. I live in Manhattan and would love to meet up with you in person over a weekend to pick your brain. My 9-5, but more like 9-7 job, steals all of my energy during the week.
    Even 30 min of your time.. I would be eternally grateful!

  67. This blog is amazing. Everything from the concept to the design. Very inspiring especially for a blogger like myself.

  68. Azzi says:

    Great nice to see you Adam! You always come with new things.

  69. Tiffany says:

    Hi Adam, I found your blog because of your post of what it’s like to live in Brooklyn. It was very insightful. I’m also a freelancer who lives overseas and I’m in the process of starting a blog. It’s inspiring to read your story. I hope you enjoy the summer!

    • Adam says:

      Thanks Tiffany! Glad to hear it was helpful and interesting. Good luck with the launch of your blog! Reach out anytime :)

  70. Hey Adam! We actually found you through an article you wrote on 14 Reasons to Love Texas. We couldn’t agree more! We love our state and how diverse it is. It is so great you’ve made a career traveling! We are entrepreneurs ourselves and have a candle company specializing in Texas city scents. We also have a passion for foster care and our business gives back to nonprofit organizations.

    • Adam says:

      Hi Cody & Sundi! Thanks so much – that’s really sweet! Texas will always have a special place in my life and I always love going back home there. That’s great to hear about your local business – it’s great to see you so passionate about it and I’ll definitely check out your site :)