by Michelle Michalak August 30, 2017

The internet has an awesome way of connecting people.  

Thanks to Instagram, I stumbled across Chelsea and her family, and couldn't help but feel inspired by their story of raising a family, while continuing to explore the world.  

Tell us a brief bio about your family...How many of you are there? 

We are both from Orange County, CA. We got married and moved to Hawaii to finish college and surf. Mike majored in Biology and Chelsea majored in International Business. We took advantage of inner island flights while in Hawaii for $20/each at the time and saw all Hawaiian islands on a tight budget.

We realized then how beautiful this world is and wanted to venture outside of the USA and see more. We moved to San Diego 9 years ago and have two kids, Coral and Reef. We like to take them on most of our vacations, which are primarily beach and surf focused.

Your Instagram Name is "Family Beach Travel" do feel those are the 3 key ingredients to life? why or why not?

Familybeachtravel are three words which we feel are the key ingredients to life and enjoying it to the fullest. Not only is it a direct representation of what we do, but those three words separately are what brings us the greatest happiness and joy in life. Going for a surf to start your day or taking a walk on the beach after along day are simple things that keep you passionate about life and being active.

What's been your favorite travel destination been so far? Why?

We have loved every single place we have been, but we would go with Jamaica as our favorite travel destination. We stayed at a good resort that included free babysitting for the groms. We looked up off the beaten path places to visit. We trespassed. We went to places tourists don't go to.

We hung out with the locals and asked them where to go and didn't read tourist books. We surfed a perfect a frame with no one in the water all week. We did things in a totally different way than 99% of tourists do and it was a radical experience.

Mike is a huge James Bond fan, and James Bond was created, written and filmed in Jamaica. Watching Bond gave him a desire to go to exotic locales across the world. So it kind of came back full circle to Jamaica.

What's the #1 destination on your bucketlist? #1 adventure on bucketlist?

Bucket list location and adventure...probably Tierra Del Fuego. Also, discovering the coastline of African continent. We like unchartered territory.  Activity: probably living in a van and traveling the Gold Coast of Australia.

What was your first impression upon receiving a Slyde Gromboard?

We were stoked to get a Slyde Gromboard. I took my daughter out and tried to figure out how to keep her above water and the Slyde Gromboard helped me glide, which allowed me to keep my face above water, which in turn allowed my daughter to keep her cool! I think we both would have sunk without it.

What about traveling inspires you most?

Seeing how other people live and the beautiful coastlines in remote places are what inspire us the most. We love dropping off clothes, shoes, boards, hats etc. for the locals wherever we go. We realize how blessed we are to live in the USA and how these people live in such incredibly beautiful places, but often times struggle to make ends meet.

It's inspiring to see beautiful beaches, beaches and culture all intertwined. Our next trip is to Haiti and we are getting funds and goods to drop off for the Haitian people. We get to go to a place that a) very few tourists go to b) surf and hang out at remote tropical beaches and c) get to donate a bunch of things that we don't need or use any more to help out others who have much less than us, and in some cases, literally nothing.

Where are  your GoTo source for travel tips?

We don't really have a specific go to source for travel tips. We have a certain way that we like to travel. We do it on the cheap. We explore constantly. We like meeting locals. We just agree on what we want to get out of our traveling and we make it happen. We do reach out to both friends and strangers, when we go to remote places, for advice and we take what we like and leave behind what we don't want to do.

How has traveling helped influence your kids? Please give an example of a cool discovery or lesson one of them learned while on a trip.

Traveling has had a profound effect on our kids. My daughter talks about how she loves Jamaica, Fiji, Hawaii, South Africa, Germany, Mexico, and she just turned 3! She will learn how most people live around the world and hopefully it will instill in her gratitude and she won't be high maintenance.

Mike speaks to the kids in only Spanish, so it's really cool to see how they're bilingual and when we go to Spanish speaking countries, they get what's going on around them. Traveling around the world and embracing other cultures, foods, lifestyles is a great way to open young minds and teach them diversity and hopefully, an appreciation for nature.

Coral learned how to weave in Fiji, she made a fan and a purse with a local Fijian. She learned, that is how people in Fiji do things and that they don't have a lot of money to buy things like we do. She still plays with her woven crafts almost daily in her room.

Slyde Family Adventures: Featuring Chelsea of Family Beach Travels

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Michelle Michalak
Michelle Michalak

Michelle's diploma reads BA Psychology with a minor in English, and her license plate reads #CaliforniaDreaming4Life. She begin her career in the NYC fashion industry working with fashion and internet pioneer, However, due the constant "nagging" of her entrepreneurial spirit, her crush on surfing, and hardcore love for the ocean, she chosen to call San Diego home for the past 10 years. On the west coast she 's chased waves & enlightenment working alongside "Gurus" in the online marketing & personal development industries. It in May 2012 she found her true Zen & Stoke, and joined the Slyde Handboards Team.

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