Lost & Found Marrakech LUXURY Starts December 2018. Come join us!

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It's been a long time, I know.

But I'm just gonna skip past the fact that it's now JUNE of 2018 & you haven't heard a peep from me since October of 2017 because...well what can really make up for being away for so long?? I launched an AWESOME website redesign at the beginning of the year & to be honest, things have kind of taken off since. 
Personally. 
Professionally. 
Emotionally. 
Spiritually. 


Growth in ways I never saw coming--some more challenging than others--but I'm in a good place, y'all. GOOD. And now it's time to do more of what I love....but this time in a new way.

Marrakech. Luxury. Winter 2018.

After spending the entire month of April in Marrakech hosting TWO SOLD OUT retreats, I came back home more determined than ever to create new, transformative travel experiences for women. The world continues to whisper my name & it's become clear that immersive travel is in my bones, so I've felt increasingly determined to put more DAYKA into the work that I produce for the world (because there can never be enough Dayka, right??).

So this year I started by launching my very own, custom Intention Bracelets.

And as promised, I'm launching another Marrakech retreat to close out 2018--but this time it's a luxury version. Because--while I still love the components that make up my other Marrakech retreat--sometimes it's just nice to luxuriate for awhile. Matter of fact, we all NEED & DESERVE that.  Yesterday I released all of the details to the folks on my email list FIRST but now I'm making it available to everyone. And with only 6 LIMITED SPOTS available (2 were SNAPPED UP yesterday!), I wouldn't delay if you plan on going 'cause I won't be doing another Marrakech retreat until the end of 2019!

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So here's the deal: 

This new retreat is a totally different experience from what I've create before. This time I've added TWO MORE DAYS to the itinerary in an effort to really give us time to soak in everything that Marrakech has to offer. We'll be staying in a beautiful, chic riad right in the center of the bustling Medina complete with 24 hour concierge, single occupancy rooms with private baths & all of the extras we Westerners love! We'll take day trips to venture outside of Marrakech to explore new parts of Morocco & we'll hop in a vintage sidecar to experience the city from an entirely new perspective. And of course--most importantly--we'll talk & connect. A lot. You'll have an opportunity to create the individual experience  your soul is craving--whether that means making an appointment to visit the hammam (spa) conveniently located in our riad, exploring the souks with a new friend or simply spending the day relaxing--while also experiencing the best parts of group travel. This is truly the best of both worlds!!
 

The December 4-11, 2018 retreat includes: 

  • 8 days/7 nights accommodation in a chic & luxurious, traditional Moroccan riad right in the heart of the thriving Medina ("old city"). Single occupancy rooms with private bath featuring iPod docking stations, satellite TVs, DVD players & a safe for personal effects. 
  • 24-hour on-site concierge
  • Personal trip photographer to capture our experiences & conversations!
  • Round trip transfer to & from RAK (Marrakech airport).
  • Daily breakfast featuring customary North African selections including tea, coffee, fresh breads, honey, jams, yoghurt & specialty Moroccan dishes.
  • 3-course "Welcome Dinner" upon arrival, made from fresh, local & seasonal ingredients. 
  • Custom, off-the-beaten path, individual city tours in a vintage, bespoke sidecar highlighting both the city & desert landscape of Marrakech. 
  • Full day trip to experience Morocco's seaside culture in the historic port city of Essaouira. Featuring guided walking tour + visits to an argan oil cooperative & UNESCO historic center.
  • Guided food tour of the Medina highlighting the Moroccan culinary experience + Islamic history. You'll eat your fill of regional specialties & traditional spices while working your way through areas of the massive Medina that you'd never find on your own!
  • 3 course "Departure Dinner" to close our our trip.

TOTAL INVESTMENT= $4531.72 (not including airfare)


Your $4531.72 payment can be paid in full up front, or you may opt for the following payment plan:

DEPOSIT June 15, 2018: $1050.00
Payment #2 July 15, 2018: $696.34
Payment #3 Aug. 15, 2018: $696.34
Payment #4 Sept. 15, 2018: $696.34
Payment #5 Oct. 15, 2018: $696.34
Payment #6 Nov. 15, 2018: $696.34

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This trip is for the women who are looking to really immerse themselves in a destination versus those who just want to check all of the tourist traps off of their list. The ones who may have settled for watching Anthony Bourdain from the comfort of their couch but went to sleep with dreams of following in his footsteps & seeing the world. It's for women who believe in creating tribes & having the kind of honest, transparent conversations that forge deeper connections. For women who aren't afraid to get out of their comfort zone & try something new but more importantly, the kinda women who aren't afraid to do the personal work to BECOME someone new. We'll talk about work & worthiness & relationships & self care & food & every other random thing under the sun. And there will also probably be a fair amount of cursing too, so if that offends you, you probably shouldn't come. 

Come to think about it.....if you're not interested in opening yourself up to new people, don't come. 
If you're high maintenance, require a lot of hand-holding and/or are scared to be around new people, new foods & new experiences, don't come. 
If you need to be connected to wifi all of the time and can't live without HBO & the Real Housewives of Sioux Falls.....please don't come. 
By all means travel.....just maybe not with me, lol!

As I love to say, Marrakech is unlike anything you've seen before but don't take my word for it....come find out yourself. There are only 6 SPACES REMAINING & if history is a good indicator, this trip will sell out FAST!  Click the link to reserve your space with a FULL PAYMENT or here to pay the DEPOSIT to hold your spot. And if you have any questions, just reply to this email for the fastest response. 

In the meantime, thank you for continuing to follow my journey & support my products & read my words & engage with me as I endeavor to live my best life in this world. Your support means more than I can articulate!

And if the pull of an exciting travel experience is calling your name, I hope to see you in Marrakech this December! 

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LOST & FOUND MARRAKECH 2018--ARE YOU THE ONE??

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It's that time again. 

Lost & Found Marrakech 2018 technically launched last week but before I could make the initial announcement to my email subscribers last Friday, MY FIRST TRIP WAS ALMOST SOLD--meaning there was just one space left. And by the time my email landed in everyone's inbox at 6am, that last spot had been taken overnight!

So my initial retreat is now FULLY BOOKED & CLOSED. JUST LIKE THAT. But don't cry--there's still good news. 

I got so much interest from that email that I'm actually launching A SECOND RETREAT from April 10-15, 2018.And once again, there's only one space left. 

Could it be for you? Are you the one??

I created Lost & Found Marrakech to not only be a pause & reset for other independent, adventurous, like-minded women with a love for travel but....to also hold space for them to connect back to themselves. For you to connect back to yourself. To experience what I consider to be the best part of solo travel--they joy if immersing yourself in a totally new environment & letting go of who you think you are, to learn more about who you can become.

And what better place to do that then halfway around the world, in Africa??

I first traveled to Marrakech last year & my experience in that ancient city was beyond anything I could articulate--the landscape, the architecture, the history, the culture, the people the food....oh, the food. I came back smitten & so did the 6 women who attended that first retreat. Here's what one of them had to say:

My biggest concern about investing in the Lost & Found Marrakech experience was traveling by myself to a destination when I wasn't close to the other participants. I wasn't sure if my personality would fit in & if I'd feel alone & bored throughout my stay. Instead, the moment I met the other women on the trip we connected as if we'd known each other for years! I honestly made lifelong friends on this trip and we shared & connected like family. Totally unexpected bonus!

You can read more about that trip here.

The April 10-15, 2018 retreat includes:

  • 5 nights/6 days accommodation in a traditional Moroccan riad
  • Daily breakfast featuring tea, fresh breads, eggs, honey, jams, yoghurt & specialty Moroccan dishes
  • Welcome Dinner upon arrival made from fresh, local & seasonal ingredients
  • Private, hands-on cooking class with Moroccan women where we’ll learn the secrets to preparing traditional Moroccan dishes. Lunch included.
  • Half day ATV tour of Lake Takerkoust, Agafay desert + traditional tea in a Berber village
  • Guided, sit-down gourmet food & riad tour showcasing regional specialties, traditional spices, & beautiful riads you’d never see on your own
  • Round trip transfer to & from RAK (Marrakech airport)

Total investment $1699 (not including airfare)

The Details

Your $1699 investment can be paid up front, in one payment, or divided into 5 payments:

November 5, 2017: $550 deposit due

2nd payment due December 5th 2017: $287.50

3rd payment due January 5th 2018: $287.50

4th payment due February 5th 2018: $287.50

5th payment due March 5th 2018: $287.50

Here's how to know if this is right for you!

You're an:adventurous woman who loves to explore new cultures & welcomes the opportunity to learn about new lands, languages & ways of life. Someone who enjoys trying new foods. A woman who enjoys pushing the boundaries of her own comfort zone & values EXPERIENCES above THINGS. A woman who doesn't need to depend on a tour guide & relishes charting her own path...but also enjoys having a community forged by deeper connections. If you're someone who doesn't take herself too seriously, loves to laugh, is easy-going & enjoys meeting new people, then you're the type of woman I'm looking for.And you're gonna love this trip. 

This trip is not right for the:High maintenance women. Picky eaters. Women who can't bare to be unplugged from WIFI. Those who expect to be hand-held, managed, catered to, are afraid to be by themselves, don't like to walk or get annoyed around non-English speakers. If you have a Type A personality, are over dramatic (you KNOW if this is you), or expect a very Western experience akin to staying in a traditional hotel...this isn't the trip for you! 

So if you're reading this & thinking, "I'm the one she's waiting for!", just send me an email to daykarobinson@gmail.com & we'll get you signed up! 

Marrakech is unlike anything you've seen before but don't take my word for it...come see for yourself. 

**Please note that due to the logistics involved with planning a trip like this, all deposits & installment payments are non refundable. It is highly encouraged that you get travel insurance which will protect your investment in the unlikely event you need to cancel.**

JOIN ME!! LOST & FOUND MARRAKECH 2017!!

I LOVE to experience the world. To not just see it, but to feel it, live it & collide with it. To go to new places and be surprised & amazed by things I didn't even know existed. To feel the freedom that comes with walking away from everything that anchors me to my daily life.

And that's exactly what happened during my trip to Marrakech. From the moment I stepped off the plane I was in love...so much so that I decided the whole thing again and bring you along with me. To help you experience my unique method of Slow Travel that encourages you to dive in not solely as a tourist & consumer in a foreign land but as a traveler & storyteller engaged in the next chapter of your own life. I'm here to help you create an authentic experience all your own.

Hands down, my best international trip to date--quite healing. Dayka definitely knows how to create an experience and it's worth every penny. I loved that each day wasn't jam packed with activities, that there was a good balance between relaxation time & things that required my energy.

I was blessed to have an amazing group of women from a cross-section of experiences join me for my inaugural trip! We connected in ways & across boundaries that don't always happen when you start "adulting" & get so immersed in everyday life that you don't feel you have the luxury to just drop everything & connect. But when you're overseas & in a totally new environment?? It's what this kind of trip is made for. There were married women & single women. Women with kids & women without. High level entrepreneurs & home schoolers. A professor & a Personal Chef. I couldn't have asked for a better group!

My biggest concern about investing in the Lost & Found Marrakech experience was traveling by myself to a destination where I wasn't really close to anyone. I wasn't sure if my personality would fit and if I'd feel alone and bored throughout my stay. Instead, the moment I met the other individuals who were on the trip, we connected as if we've known each other for years! I honestly made life long friends on this trip and we shared and connected like family. Totally unexpected bonus.

This year I've made a few changes to the trip as a means of designing an experience that really gets to the heart of what I want to create: Connection & Community. It's about more than just seeing a new country/continent & great photo ops--it's an opportunity to reconnect to yourself & what really matters by unplugging from the world and remembering who you were before you started to accumulate so much extra stuff in your life. To form a new community with a few women you can't even imagine meeting just yet.

What I've designed is a creative & culturally immersive travel experience for: Rest. Adventure. Conversation. Food. Reflection. Solitude. Flow. Perspective Shifts. Art. And an opportunity to remember who you were before you became everything they (family, friends, job, kids, partner) wanted you to be. To get back to her.

I'd highly recommend any travel experience curated by Dayka! It was evident that she was in her element and left no stone unturned for the comfort and exposure of her guests. The added surprises and mementos were the icing on the cake!

You know those mind blowing conversations you stumble upon where everyone just vibes off one another & people are being vulnerable and honest and theres's so much magic in the air that you can feel it??

Well that's exactly what this is--a magical opportunity for you to become more of yourself.

So if you want to come to Marrakech to create magic--to unplug, shed your skin, reconnect with yourself, put your hands to work & create the kind of memories that leave a mark on your soul--then I want you to come with me. Yes, I want to help you "grow" your passport stamps but more importantly, I'm here to help you, "grow" you.

I've extended this year's trip by a few days & also added in some really cool activities to help you experience Morocco in ways that can only happen on the continent, like private, hands-on cooking lessons, a riad tour and seeing Marrakech from 2,000 feet in the air. We'll spend time together talking as a group about how to create the life you really want to live, how to identify your core values & we'll explore what it means to live in personal integrity & alignment, both at home & at work. I'm even going to teach you my sacred method for creating a personal piece of art that will allow you to visually document the most important experiences of your life (and if you follow me on IG you know what I mean!).

But don't worry--there will still be ample time for you to explore on your own, at your own pace. We'll also laugh a lot. Sleep a lot. Develop our own little private jokes. Shop the souks & explore the city. If you've never been to Marrakech let me warn you now--it's everything the pictures show it to be....& more.

This is designed to be an intimate experience and as such, space is limited to 6 interesting, quirky & engaging women. Last year I sold out in less than 48 hours. So if you know this is the right thing for you, don't delay. 

Here's how to know if this is right for you! If you are an: adventurous woman who loves to explore new cultures & welcomes the opportunity to learn about new lands, languages & ways of life. Someone who enjoys trying new foods. A woman who enjoys pushing the boundaries of her own comfort zone & values EXPERIENCES above THINGS. A woman who doesn't need to depend on a travel guide & who enjoys being by herself...but also enjoys the community that's forged by deeper connections. Someone who doesn't take herself too seriously, loves to laugh & enjoys meeting new people, then you will love this trip.

This trip is not right for: High maintenance women. Picky eaters. Women who can't bare to be unplugged from WIFI. Those who expect to be hand-held, are afraid to be alone, don't like to walk, or get annoyed around non-English speakers. If you have a Type-A personality, are overly dramatic (and you KNOW if you are!!), or expect a very Western experience akin to staying in a traditional hotel, please don't come with me...you won't have a good time on this kind of trip.

So if this sounds like something you want to be a part of, join me for Lost & Found Marrakech 2017. It's like nothing you've ever experienced before. 

October 10-17, 2017

  • 8 days/7 nights accommodation in a beautiful traditional Moroccan riad with modern styling (double occupancy & private bath)
  • Daily breakfast featuring tea, fresh breads, eggs, honey, jams, yoghurt & specialty Moroccan dishes
  • From-scratch Welcome Dinner upon arrival made from fresh, local & seasonal ingredients
  • Sunrise hot air balloon ride over Marrakech highlighting desert landscapes & traditional Berber villages
  • Private, hands-on cooking class with Moroccan women where we'll learn the secrets to preparing traditional Moroccan dishes. Lunch included. 
  • Half day ATV tour of Lake Takerkoust, Agafay desert + traditional tea in a Berber village
  • Guided, sit-down gourmet food & riad tour showcasing regional specialties, traditional spices, & beautiful riads you'd never see on your own 
  • Round trip transfer to & from RAK (Marrakech airport)
  •  Welcome gift bag filled with goodies! 

Total Investment= $2715 (not including airfare)

The Details

Your $2715 investment can be paid up front, in one payment, or divided into 7 payments:

March 7, 2017: $515 deposit due

 Second payment due April 7th 2017: $366.67 

Third payment due May 7th 2017: $366.67

Fourth payment due June 7th 2017: $366.67

Fifth payment due July 7th 2017: $366.67

Sixth payment due August 7th 2017: $366.67

Seventh payment due September 7th 2017: $366.67

**Please note that due to the logistics involved with planning a trip like this, all deposits & installment payments are NON-REFUNDABLE. It is highly encouraged that you get travel insurance which will protect your investment in the unlikely event you need to cancel.**

Lost & Found Marrakech 2017 FULL PAYMENT $2715.00
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Lost & Found Marrakech 2017 DEPOSIT PAYMENT $515.00
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As the trip gets closer you’ll receive a guide each month detailing helpful hints, airfare hacks, and FAQs on what to expect while in Marrakech including weather, dress code, safety, Islamic customs/traditions, etc. Have questions?? Feel free to send me an email at dayka@daykarobinsondesigns.com. Hope to see you in Marrakech!!! 

3 WEEKS IN MARRAKECH, LISBON & MADRID.

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2 different continents. 3 different countries. 3.5 weeks.

That's a lot mind blowing experiences to process in a relatively short amount of time.

It's taken me awhile to really put this trip into words (well, words long enough for a blogpost) because there are layers & layers & layers of magical experiences & a-ha moments that happened during my time abroad. The Cliff Notes version?This was one of the best trips of my life. 

When you take a trip like this it's never just about what happens once you arrive--at least not for me. It's not about how many great things there were to buy in the Medina of Marrakech or scoping the famous paintings at the Prado museum in Madrid (I didn't go!), or seeing the ancient Moorish castles outside of Lisbon. Instead, the memories that endure are marked by unexpected moments....like what it feels like to be on an airplane where the flight crew addresses the cabin in multiple languages--none of which are your native tongue--so you never quite have a handle on exactly what's going on.Or the traditional Moroccan Gnawa troupehired for a private performance that ended their set by playing Bob Marley's "Redemption Song"....in Arabic. Or your first night in Madrid when you learned that in Spanish you say "Queremos la cuenta" meaning "We want the check" instead of "Can we have the check?", which is what you'd say in English.  And then there's what happens when you get back home and realize that while everything is technically the same....nothing FEELS the same anymore. Somewhere between navigating the souks in Marrakech & going on dates in Madrid, you had your entire life recalibrated. It's not until you get back home that it really hits you....you're not the same person who left.

2 different continents. 3 different countries. 3.5 weeks.You'd be surprised at how much can change in that time. 

This trip is getting it's own dedicated podcast episode next week but in the meantime, here's the basics of what you should know:

#1:Lost & Found Marrakech, the trip I curated & launched back in April of this year, was AWESOME. The group of women who booked this trip was the perfect fit and I said more than a few times on Instagram that I thought we fit together like puzzle pieces, each with our own personalities & experiences--curves & edges--that integrated well. We were able to learn from one another, there were connections made in ways that I couldn't have anticipated, and there was a cross-section of perspectives, experiences, and geographical locations represented which meant that each woman brought something unique to the table.

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Some were married and/or had kids, some weren't. Some women were frequent international travelers and others weren't. Every one seemed genuinely interested in each other & in making connections which was one of my main goals for this trip...and it made me proud to know that I'd attracted such a group. There were some who didn't want to spend all of their time in the old city (Medina) so they went to spas, new restaurants in Gueliz (new city), booked day trips to waterfalls and took advantage of the stunning Marrakech hotels by spending afternoons relaxing by the pool. Then there were others (like myself) who were content to explore the vastness of the Medina, eat/drink their weight in tea & local cuisine, visit ancient historical sites and scour the souks for the best textiles & spices that Morocco had to offer.And you know what?It was all good.

There was no ONE right way to do this trip, because my goal was for each woman to create what she wanted.I don't believe in setting strict itineraries prior to arrival. As I love to say, making plans is fine but I've found it much more gratifying to be open to what each destination is WANTING to show you about itself....and it never tells you its secrets until you get there.  My only "requirements" were to be open to the experience and to always remember that we were Americans in Morocco....and not the other way around (<<--this is SUPER important). In preparation for our trip, each month I created a 6-8 page guide with travel advice & tips on what to expect in Marrakech & one of the things I kept reiterating was that, as the curator, I am here to provide the vehicle but it is up to YOU to create the experience that you wish to have in Marrakech. I'm here to hold space for you as you create YOUR OWN story. And create their own stories, they did.

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One of the most extraordinary experiences was when we went ATV'ing for half a day in the desert surrounding Marrakech. OMG. Absolutely perfect temperature.Not a single cloud in the sky.Navigating through wide open spaces & not a spec of civilization around for miles and miles.Saying that it was spectacular, breathtaking, and/or magnificent wouldn't be an overexaggeration. Something special happened that day, and it was one of those things you don't even know you NEED to experience...until you experience it. Riding that bike I kept thinkingto myself,

Remember this moment: You are in Africa. With 7 other women. Riding a 4 wheeler. In the middle of the desert. On a SCHOOL DAY. THIS is what it means to be FREE.  

Collecting these moments is what I live for.

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Marrakech itself is an INCREDIBLE city and it's a place to which I'll absolutely return again & again...to the point that I'd love to spend an extended amount of time there. The culture, the food, the people, the history, the language, the lifestyle--it was literally like experiencing another world. And traveling there as a member of several demographics--a solo female traveler, a single Black woman, and even with a group of single American women--I felt INCREDIBLY safe. And this is from someone who is VERY mindful about her safety, both stateside AND abroad. I'm so glad that all of my internet research didn't deter me from designing this trip because if I'd believed what I read on several blogs & YouTube videos--that men were aggressive, that it was unsafe and/or unwelcoming to solo women--I would've missed out on the trip of a lifetime.Here's the truth:I didn't have one single negative interaction while in Morocco...but I imagine that's also because I made myself VERY aware of the culture before I left. I knew how to dress respectfully. I learned a few Arabic words (like, a FEW). I knew not to stare (without sunglasses on) or be chatty with men I didn't know (as we're accustomed to doing in the US). So I found the men to be curious....but charming and mostly respectful. We got called "Obama" a few times (which happened to me before in Turkey), or "Fish & Chips" and "Rasta" (always directed towards specific women in the group) but there was never a time when any of us felt unsafe. Ever. And as they love to point out, according to the Global Peace Index you're actually safer in Morocco (#91) than you are in the US (#103) so that puts things in perspective, too. ;-)

So if you're wondering if you should go to Marrakech?My advice is to GO. Do your research & respect the culture, but by all means GO.  If you love to experience different cultures & traditions, don't mind a LOT of walking, aren't a picky eater, want to experience a different way of life and don't expect every country you visit to be like the US, then you'll have a fabulous time.

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#2: Lisbon is breathtaking. You'll need to bring your walking shoes & probably humble your ego a bit--before those steep streets & hilly neighborhoods do it FOR you--but it's a beautiful city RIGHT on the Atlantic Ocean with a wonderfully interesting language, the freshest fish you'll ever eat, and stunning architecture. There's something about that city that I still can't quite put my finger on (in a good way!), but I loved wandering the neighborhoods & squares alone as a solo traveler, hopping off & on the historical #28 tram, stopping by for daily chats with my favorite shopkeeper, visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Sintra, finding my favorite local places to eat and just making my way throughout this city for 5 days. It's the perfect weekend trip from Madrid (1 hour flight!) and is definitely worth a visit if you ever find yourself in that neck of the woods. Also, Portugal is #5 on the GPI. FIVE. 

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#3: Madrid.Ohhh Madrid. This city is so beautiful and is (thankfully!) home to some of the finest men God has ever created! (Don't believe me? Gloria even ranked them #6 on her list of 10 countries with the hottest men in the world.) I must've said it about 40 times during my 2 visits there (my route: Marrakech, Madrid, Lisbon, then back to Madrid), but Madrid reminds me so much of NYC, just a much cleaner, much more relaxed version. Energetically, the people are much more easy going--no one feels like they're grinding or hustling their way through life, which I love. They live by a totally different lifestyle than what we're accustomed to here....all about enjoying life & taking your time for meals and conversations. Spain has it's own culture & language (both Catalan, which is NOT Spanish, and Castillian Spainish are spoken) and while it's more Western than Morocco (duh), you'll get an instant wake up call when you open your mouth to have a convo & find that no one around you speaks English. Or you run to the grocery store to grab some juice & snacks for the house and find that they're closed from 1pm-4pm every day for siesta. Or when you learn the hard way that dinner doesn't start until 9pm. ¡Bienvienidos a España!

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Of every country I visited,I probably learned the most about myself in Madrid. That city made me think A LOT about the importance of language and the meaning/socialization of culture and patriotic elitism.I thought about my Blackness (hard not to the way people, particularly older folks, will STARE at you) and what it means to have your identity rooted in being Black in America.I thought a lot about where I am in my life, what I want moving forward and what I need to continue to expand. Being there made me realize that I'm supposed to be bilingual--almost like somewhere deep down, there's a genetic memory of me knowing Spanish fluently.My mouth surely wanted to say things that my brain doesn't yet know, so I took that as a sign. I loved the fact that having my language stripped away meant a heightened sense of awareness about what was going on around me....but that it also gave me the ability to totally zone out and focus on my thoughts (easy to do when you don't understand 70% of what's happening around you). I loved texting men in Spanish (thanks, Tinder!). And I found myself paying attention to so many things I'd typically overlook back home, which made me realize just HOW MUCH the familiarity with my daily routine causes me to miss out on the little things. 

Trying to navigate a country in a language with which you're not fluent is the most uncomfortable, vulnerable feeling ever.

And even with that being said...I fell in love with Spain.

I loved it so much that even before I made it back to the States, I'd already made the decision to move to Spain next year. I loved it so much that 2 days after getting back to Atlanta I started in a 6 week Spanish intensive to improve my competency (using the Graded Reader method, which I LOVE). And I loved it so much that 3 weeks after getting homefrom this whirlwind trip I booked my ticket back to Spain for April 2017. Because when you know, you just know. And because time waits for no woman. Not even me.

So off to Spain I go! 

And there you have it--a snippet of my experiences from 3.5 weeks in Marrakech, Lisbon & Madrid. I'll cover the rest in my next podcast but hopefully this starts to answer the question I hear so often these days, "Tell me about your trip!!". If you have a specific question you'd like to answer in the podcast just leave a comment below or drop me an email.

Adiós amigos!

I'M CANCELING CUBA. HERE'S WHY.

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Sometimes you don't realize you've done the wrong thing until after you've already done it. When that happens you're essentially left with 2 choices: try to make the "wrong thing" be the "right thing", or just acknowledge the misstep, pivot and get back going in the right direction.

I think you already know which camp I fall into, so here's the thing:

I'm canceling the trip to Cuba.

Yes, the very trip that I diligently worked to curate for weeks & weeks (and weeks)...the one I launched JUST 3 days ago.

Saturday night I was lying across the sofa reading this fantastic book when I came across a sentence that made me pause for a moment and I realized:

I don't actually WANT to take a group to Cuba (at least not right now). 

Here's why:

It deviates from what I really love most about seeing the world: having the freedom to figure the plan out as I go. THAT is really one of my strengths and it's the thing that always impacts me the most when I travel--finding joy in the unexpected quiet spaces. The best moments have always come when Ijust let the trip dictate the plan instead of trying to plan the trip.  

I read that short sentence on Saturday & then I heard my God-voice ask, "Are you taking these people to Cuba because you really WANT to have this experience with them or because you're trying to BENEFIT from them going?"And in an instant I knew the honest answer was more about the benefits than my wants. Yikes.

I've had my heart set on Cuba for so long that I totally plowed through the fact that having to keep a tight schedule with 10 people actually does NOT sound like EASE to me. Or enjoyment. Or excitement. It sounds like work, force and "efforting" which is totally antithetical to how I believe my work should feel in this world.

I momentarily got caught up in making this new opportunity happen instead of allowing it to happen. And even though it occurred to me afffffffter all of the months of planning and afffffter I announced it (ugh).....I knew I needed to recalibrate.

So I'm going to Cuba...but I'm gonna go alone. At least this time. There will be other trips for sure--India, Vietnam, Greece, Thailand & Egypt are all on the list--but they will be more like what I've planned for Marrakech: a curated group of women traveling together based around engagement, relaxation, community, empowerment & finding oneself in the world. And those trips will feel easy, exciting and enjoyable. They'll be in the flow. 

There's been a ton of interest in this trip so I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. I believe that when you know better you do better and the best way I can honor you in designing these one-of-a-kind experiences....is to first honor myself.So that's what I'm gonna do. 

I'm not gonna lie--I wish I'd realized this before I invested so much time putting it all together, but I know this will all serve me in someway down the line. I'd rather tell the truth than ignore my intuition that has clearly whispered, "Girl, you know this ain't right."

Thanks for understanding.

START 2017 OFF WITH A BANG--LET'S GO TO CUBA!

Dayka-Robinson-Designs-Cuba-2017.png

I'm doing it again, this time in CUBA.

After selling out of my first trip so quickly, I started thinking about other places I'd really like to explore and of course, Cuba was first on the list. With President Obama's historic visit opening up Cuba in a way that Americans haven't seen in over 50 years, it was one of the first places I wanted to explore in the new year and....I'm inviting you to come along.

Cuba is going to be an adventure. Because of the embargo--and the fact that so much of the country isn't connected to the world wide web--going to Cuba is literally like stepping back into time....and you can't begin to imagine the amount of planning that's gone into this trip for that very reason! Travel to Cuba has been approved under any one of 12 reasons established by the US government and while tourism hasn't been approved, People to People visits are. What exactly does this mean??It means that we'll be there meeting Cuban people and learning about the history, culture and spirit of Cuba, not just lounging on the beach and drinking mojitos all day. This (lounging all day) is actually prohibited by US law but even if it weren't you wouldn't find that kind of itinerary on one of my trips because that's not how I PERSONALLY travel. I believe in immersing oneself in foreign lands, so that's exactly what this trip is designed to do!

Here's the plan: We'll spend 5 nights & 6 days in a private villa in Havana with a pool, gym & even on-site massages! We'll spend 2 days learning about the history of old & new Havana with one of Cuba's best kept secrets and you'll participate in a private, one-on-one salsa class to learn about movement with a few of Havana's best dancers. Want to know where the idea for those old school Las Vegas shows originated?? We're gonna see it first hand. We'll follow that up by exploring the traditions of the African spiritual experience in Cuba and will wrap up our trip by venturing out of the city to explore a UNESCO World Heritage Site on horseback with local farmers. Oh--and did I mention we'll have a photographer on-hand to document it all?? Yup, there's that part, too. Music, food, spirit & more, we'll be experiencing Cuba the only way I know how--authentically. 

Here's what's included:

  • 5 nights/6 days accommodations
  • Roundtrip airport transfers
  • Daily Breakfast + 1 dinner
  • In-depth historic & cultural tours of both Old Havana & New Havana
  • Private lessons exploring the traditions of Afro-Cuban spirituality
  • One-on-one salsa dancing class exploring the movement of Cuba
  • Tour of UNESCO World Heritage sites in Viñales with local farmers
  • Ticket to a world renown cabaret & music club in the heart of Havana
  • Travel photographer to document our days & nights
  • Conversation & connection with a group of like-minded & adventurous women
  • Total cost: $2780

What's NOT included:

  • Airfare
  • Cuban visa
  • Spending money

How to know if this adventure is right for you:

This trip is for women who crave exotic adventure & new world experiences. This is a chance to see a new part of the world, but more importantly, it's a chance to see YOURSELF through the eyes of the world. I call these experiences "Lost & Found" because it speaks to the heart of my beliefs around the purpose of travel--I believe we should intentionally travel to get lost (emotionally, spiritually, and even physically) so we can find/uncover new parts of ourselves in different & meaningful ways. Hence, Lost & Found Experiences. 

This trip is for women who value collecting experiences–meeting new people, trying new foods, being unplugged from wifi–over collectingthings. Because here's the real deal--Cuba is a place where you HAVE to be unplugged. There's no infrastructure for you to watch the latest episode of Queen Sugar from your smartphone or Snapchat every part of your experience...that technology just doesn't exist there quite yet. So this means you'll need to be focused on being right where you are, with the women who are investing in this trip right along with you. If you want to see new lands AND forge meaningful new connections with women who may otherwise never cross your path, this trip for you.

If you:Don't mind spending time alone. Are comfortable around people who might not always speak your same language. Fancy yourself an explorer. Love to try new foods. Appreciate an opportunity to fully unplug from the world. Have a fun personality. Enjoy making deep connections with like-minded women. Are looking for a way to experience more of the good life in 2017.

Then I wanna see you in Cuba.

If you:Know that you're a high maintenance traveler. Don't take well to being in a foreign country. Are focused on making every day a fashion show. Don't feel comfortable connecting with women whom you don't already know. Expect every country you visit to be JUST like the United States. Need to know the specifics about the kind of cars you'll ride in. Want every single hour of every single day to be meticulously planned out. Expect people you encounter to speak English and want to experience every country as you would in America then.....this trip isn't for you. Being honest about your needs is the best way to get EXACTLY what you want and while there's nothing particularly wrong with these things, I will be honest and say that you this just isn't the trip for you. You won't enjoy my style of travel and that wouldn't make me (or you) happy!

There are only 8 spaces available, so when you know that it's right....act quickly. The last trip I curated sold out in only 48 hours. 

The Details:

Your $2780 investment is divided into 4 payments:

September 29: 1st payment due $695

October 29: 2nd payment due $695

November 29: 3rd payment due $695

December 22: 4th payment due $695

PAY IN FULL: $2780

PAY DEPOSIT: $695

As the trip gets closer you’ll receive customguides detailing helpful hints and FAQs on what to expect while in Cuba as well as access to a private Facebook Page where all of the travelers can connect prior to the trip. Have questions? Feel free to send me an email at: dayka@daykarobinsondesigns.com.

Hope to see you in Cuba! 

*Due to the nature & scheduling of this trip, payments are nonrefundable though purchasing travel insurance should cover your investment in the unexpected event of a cancellation*

LET'S TRAVEL TOGETHER--JOIN ME IN MOROCCO!

Dayka Robinson Designs Marrakech Morocco Adventure 2016 Mosque

Each time I share my travels I get text messages, Facebook comments & DM's from those of you who are interested in journeying along on my international adventures (what I refer to on Instagram as a Daykation). Once I started traveling solo I never imagined venturing out with a group but your comments really made me start thinking about what organizing a trip would look like for me. What it could look like. How I could keep the essence of my beloved planned-but-unplanned adventures and yet make it possible for others to travel along with me and create some unique experiences of their own. And in all of my thinking (months and months of thinking--just ask my friends), I've come up with something that I think is pretty cool...a bit of the best of both worlds. An opportunity to create your own amazing travel stories, push the limits of your comfort zone and meet other like-minded women in the process. Sounds pretty dope, right? I thought so too.

Dayka Robinson Designs Marrakech Morocco Adventure 2016 Couscous

So you've asked....I've answered! Join me in Marrakech, Morocco for an unforgettable week long adventure. Imagine spending your days & nights exploring the rich culture of Marrakech--tasting your way through history, exploring the crafts & spices of its famous souks and touring the stunning architecture & rich traditions that have made Marrakech a cultural & religious center for over 900 years. Space limited to 5 interesting, hilarious, quirky & engaging women only!

When: October 11-16, 2016

What's Included: 

  • 5 night/6 day accommodations in a beautiful, traditionally-styled Moroccan Riad (with Wifi)
  • Daily breakfast featuring customary North African selections
  • Specially crafted welcome dinner upon arrival and farewell dinner upon departure
  • Half day ATV tour exploring the surrounding Marrakech dessert & traditional tea in a Berber village
  • Guided food tour showcasing regional specialties & spices
  • Roundtrip airport transfer to & from RAK (Marrakech Menara Airport)

Total cost: $1280 (not including airfare)

Dayka Robinson Designs Marrakech Morocco Adventure 2016 Souk

How to know if this adventure is right for you:

If you've followed me for any length of time (or at least enough to follow some of my adventures here, here, and here) you know that I'm obsessed with traveling the world. My personal Daykation style of travel is a mix of carefully curated excursions...combined with my unique ability to leave room open for life to happen. This means that I plan a few activities...but also look for opportunities to experience each destination in a way that could never be planned ahead of time. Like when I met a taxi driver in Istanbul who brought me to a local restaurant high in the hills above the Golden Horn for traditional Chai tea. Or when I got lost in Paris, stumbled upon a perfect cafe and decided to stop & stuff my face with a table packed full of rich & decadent desserts (YOLO!). I believe that solo travel is some of the most important travel you can ever do...but I also understand that not everyone is comfortable being all the way out there in the world alone. So my unique & personally crafted experience gives you the best of both worlds.

This trip is for women who crave exotic adventure & new world experiences. Who enjoy being immersed in new cultures & traditions and learning about life from a different perspective. Women who enjoy pushing the boundaries of their own comfort zone and value collecting experiences--meeting new people, trying new foods, being unplugged from wifi--over collecting things. This trip is planned to give you the opportunity to participate in some really cool outings...while also giving you ample time to have a solo afternoon at the hammam , visit a museum or explore the city alone. This is for women who don't need a travel guide to have a good time (you know what I mean--the kind with the logo-stitched baseball cap, sturdy backpack & raised flag in the air to make sure you don't get lost) and enjoy being by themselves but wouldn't mind a few partners--fellow travelers who are looking for an opportunity to connect with other souls and share their lives. If your heart is beating fast while reading this...then this adventure IS for you. And I wanna see you in Morocco.

Model Release - No

The Details:

The $1280 investment is divided into 4 payments:

May 24th 2016: $410 non-refundable deposit due  

Second Payment due June 24th 2016: $290 

Third Payment due July 24th 2016: $290

Fourth & Final Payment due August 24th 2016: $290

As the trip gets closer you'll receive a guide detailing helpful hints and FAQs on what to expect while in Marrakech including weather, dress code, safety, Islamic customs/traditions, etc. I'll also schedule an opportunity for us to jump on a call & connect as a group before we arrive.  Have questions? Feel free to send me an email at dayka@daykarobinsondesigns.com.

Hope to see you in Morocco! 

Dayka Robinson Designs Join Me in Morocco October 2016

ALL ABOUT BALI...AND I'M LAUNCHING A PODCAST!

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I'm back....and with exciting news!

But before I get to that, let me start with what you REALLY wanna know. Bali was indeed a trip for the memory vault. It stretched me in so many ways (different from my trip to Istanbul) and so much of what I learned will benefit me not only as I continue to travel more & more, but as I take increasingly broader steps in life. It was different than I expected: the flight was no joke (OMG, my feet swelled so bad on the flight over/flight back, yikes), the weather was H.O.T and the wifi was spotty but I met some incredibly inspiring souls, had some of the most deep & insightful conversations, saw a really beautiful (really beautiful) man for about 15 minutes ANNNDD got to experience an extended layover in Seoul, Korea (Omg, I still can't believe that I WENT TO BALI!!!). There were so many lessons & stories (plus a few attitude adjustments for me!) and though I tried to share a good amount through my Instagram & Facebook pages, it was impossible to get it all out so......I'm launching a podcast!!!

Dayka Robinson's Powercast Logo
Dayka Robinson's Powercast Logo

It's called The Powercast with Dayka Robinson and is all about claiming your power + lessons on love, life entrepreneurship and beyond. This has been something I've wanted to do for awhile & my trip to Bali set up the perfect opportunity to launch with the telling of some of my stories and experiences there. The first episode is all about my Lessons From Bali and is perfect for anyone who wants to know more about my experiences on the island during my 2.5 week vacation and the powerful lessons I learned from traveling solo to Indonesia. And if you just wanna know more about how I think in general, this will give you some insight. Hearing people talk about their experiences is so different than reading about them so I hope you'll enjoy this new format--it's going live tomorrow! 

So in lieu of a long blogpost and in preparation for the podcast, here are a few pics & stories from my travels...

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-10
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-10

It took me 28.5 hours of flying time to get to Bali--and that doesn't include my airport layover time! Atl to Washington DC, DC to NYC, NYC to LAX, LAX to Sydney, Sydney to Denpasar, Bali. Sound crazy? You're right...but then again, so was the price of my roundtrip airline ticket! You'll have to listen to my podcast to find exactly how much I paid (jaw-dropping)!

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-4
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-4
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Sticky Rice 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Sticky Rice 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud 2016 Paradise
Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud 2016 Paradise
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-11
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-11

Stacie, the friend I was linked with by my beloved college roommate. We immediately had a connection & hit it off like old girlfriends (and we talked about this podcast, too. Hey Stacie!)! I would've been perfectly fine on my own, but I'm SO GLAD I was able to meet a great friend and have someone on the same path

to break bread with during my trip. A welcomed surprise indeed!

Dayka Robinson Indonesia Bali Ubud Solo International Travel Black Woman 2016 Fruit Salad
Dayka Robinson Indonesia Bali Ubud Solo International Travel Black Woman 2016 Fruit Salad

Breakfast with fruit salad EVERY morning!

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Daily Offering Balinese 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Daily Offering Balinese 2016

The Balinese put out offerings with incense twice a day (maybe more?) so you see these on the ground everywhere you go--homes, restaurants, retail shops, temples, etc. It's considered extremely disrespectful to step on one so in addition to maneuvering through the crowded sidewalk traffic and watching out for motorbike & cars (especially when I'm accustomed to the other side of the road), you have to watch where you step, too! Still, I loved the signs of daily devotion everywhere I went.

Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Paradise Room 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Paradise Room 2016

There are 3 places for guests to rent at this residence and I stayed in 2 of them (Click here to see this AirBNB listing and here to see the 1 bedroom). The breakfast was delish (and so filling), the infinity pool was gorg (deeper than most you'll find on the island) and the owners dropped me off wherever I wanted to go in town which easily saved about $10 USD each day ($5 going, $5 back). Ooh. And they also, they made these soyabean patties for breakfast that were so yum...I'll be on the lookout for those here. $30/night for this little gem (plus tasty local treats restocked each day!). 

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Moneky Forrest 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Moneky Forrest 2016

The infamous Monkey Forrest. Do you follow me on Instagram?? If not, you'll want to head over to hear the background (and see the pics!) from this story. One & done for me!

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Nyepi 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Nyepi 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Indonesia Solo Travel Black Woman 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Indonesia Solo Travel Black Woman 2016

A pic from the 3rd place I stayed (see my Air BNB accommodation here). Breakfast every morning on this patio overlooking the rice paddies & a wonderful candlelight lunch/dinner on Nyepi 2016. Loved this place!

Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Baliense Temple Ubud 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Baliense Temple Ubud 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali 2016-1
Dayka Robinson Bali 2016-1

I found the most wonderful place to stay when I first made it to the island. When I'm searching for places on Air BNB I tend to save a ton of places to my wish list and then pay attention to the ones that keep drawing me in. There was a reason that this one kept coming up for me...it ended up being the perfect place to start my journey. (See more here) 

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Dr. Melva Green 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Dr. Melva Green 2016

Dr. Melva Green from A&E's Hoarders. She's a friend of a friend and lives in Bali part time so we were able to link up during my time on the island as well. Kismet!

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud 2016-2
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud 2016-2
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Ogoh Ogoh parade Nyepi 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Ogoh Ogoh parade Nyepi 2016

Ogoh Ogoh preparations for Nyepi Day 2016...

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-2
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-2

The site of the famous Luwak coffee "plantation". I'm not a coffee drinker, but the taste is supposed to be incredible and get this....it'smade from the poo-poo of the Luwak, which is acat-like animal. Sounds crazy but people always make the long trek to taste this coffee. It's also the most expensive coffee in the world. Doo Doo.Coffee.Yum. Down your throat. Expensive. (that sums up this paragraph)

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Incheon Seoul Korea 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Incheon Seoul Korea 2016

Seoul, Korea--my layover that was long enough to take in some tours!

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-3
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-3

My first time EVER in a waterfall. I wanted to strip down to my birthday suit and frolic with my man in the water but I don't have a man....and it was NOT the place to be naked, so none of those dreams happened. This spot was great but OMG, that climb back up the mountain was no joke. I thought I was gonna have an asthma attack....and I don't even have asthma.

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-6
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-6
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-5
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-5

I love going to the international grocery stores and seeing the different foods that are on the shelf. Lays is apparently sleeping on us in the US because they have a MILLION flavors of potato chips that they don't have here. Salmon Teriyaki! Grilled Paprika Chicken! Nori Seaweed! I'm not a Lay's potato chip person but I had to try the Salmon Teriyaki and it wasn't bad (tasted a bit like seaweed paper to me).

Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-8
Dayka Robinson Bali Solo Travel Ubud 2016-8

My kismet connection from Big Lots!

Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Incheon Seoul Korea-2 2016
Dayka Robinson Bali Black Woman Solo International Black Woman Travel Ubud Incheon Seoul Korea-2 2016

More from Seoul, Korea.

Are you familiar with Air BNB? If not, you should be. It's one of my favorite sites to use for booking my accommodations when I travel...even in the US! Leave your email in the comments if you'd like me to send you an invite--you'll be glad you checked it out!