The Bridges and Balloons Manifesto

Flying at the Salt Flats, Bolivia

Steve laughed at me when I said I was writing a Bridges and Balloons manifesto. “Since when did we get political?” he said. But my understanding of manifesto is different.

According to the dictionary:

man·i·fes·to [man-uh-fes-toh] a public declaration of intentions, opinions, objectives, or motives, as one issued by a government, sovereign, organisation or movement.

‘Movement’ is described as as “an abundance of events or incidents”. Yes, I know that’s not the movement they were referring to, but I’m taking it. Bridges and Balloons is full of events and incidents, and it’s also a little organisation of Steve and I, so here’s our manifesto.


  • 1. Bridges and Balloons exists first and foremost because we haven’t yet found a way to become Magnetic Zeroes. If you don’t know what we’re referring to, you need to watch this. Rest assured, we are learning the ukulele so may yet be in with a chance.


  • 2. It also exists because we decided that mixing work and travel was the life for us. We left our lives in London – including a beautiful home, excellent jobs and wonderful friends and family – and took our careers on the road. We blog about where that choice has taken us.


  • 3. We belong to the tribe of digital nomads. As well as blogging, we have other online occupations. Steve is a director at Planetary Collective and is currently working on the company’s first feature-length documentary. He’s also a programmer. Victoria is a freelance writer and is soon to launch The Vegetarian Travel Guide.


  • 4. We are hybrid travellers. We mix long-term apartment rentals with bouts of flashpacking and couchsurfing. The emphasis is always on quality and value. We stay in comfortable, cosy hostels, quirky hotels, eco-lodges and beautiful apartments. We can either scrimp or splash out when it’s worth it.


  • 5. The people we meet are one of our favourite things about travelling. It’s why we couchsurf and use sites like AirBnB. We interview these people for our series If I had a Superpower.


  • 6. Our blog posts fall into a few different categories. We share tips on how we travel and live as digital nomads. We post photo essays of beautiful places we visit and include some practical info on how we did it. And we write thoughts from along the way – or ‘think pieces’ as we like to call them (we’re not being douches – honest – we’re just quoting the very excellent Almost Famous).


  • 7. We believe strongly in following your dreams and living the life you want to rather than the life you think you should. That doesn’t mean we think everyone should travel – it’s up to every individual what they choose – but if you have a dream then you should try and make it happen. It takes courage, but it’s worth it.


  • 8. We hope Bridges and Balloons helps and inspires those who want to, to travel or become digital nomads. We’re always happy to give advice to those who want it.


  • 9. We are a couple that can’t stay put. There’s so much to learn and see on this planet and we get antsy when stuck in one place. It’s this wanderlust and desire to learn and explore that fuels our travels.


  • 10. Bridges and Balloons is named after a song by one of our favourite musicians Joanna Newsom. The first line is “We sailed away on a winter’s day with fate as malleable as clay”. A fitting epigram for our journey, we think.


Victoria and Steve looking for whales

So there it is, the Bridges and Balloons manifesto. Even Steve likes it now.

19 thoughts on “The Bridges and Balloons Manifesto”

  1. I love this… Your blog is so inspiring and I am excited to follow your journey, and your new vegetarian site! You are authentic and joyful, and I wish you both every happiness xxx

  2. Hi guys. Ive only recently come across your blog and so far Im loving it! I love this post – I love hearing about other ‘digital nomads’ and how or why they chose this life.

    My hubby and I are like you – We gave up everything for a life on the road. It was the best decision we ever made. Not that we really had a choice – The universe decided this is where we were meant to be.

    Thanks for telling your story. It inspires us and helps us to believe a life of permanent travel IS possible if its something you really want!

    Thanks guys – Keep up the great posts 🙂

    • Hi Nicole. Thanks for all the kind words. It’s great to hear you like the blog. Good luck with all your travels and congratulations on following your dream. Keep in touch, Victoria

  3. I also just recently found you and love your inspiring sight. I like #9 of the manifesto – even when I’m traveling I get antsy to move on to a new place after about three weeks (there’s no time to tarry!), but tend to stay for a month – three. I like what Suitcase Stories – Nicole said about the universe deciding for them…I feel this is what happened to me – the U said “it’s time to go out into the world” and so I went. It’s wonderful to meet other traveling spirits in the blogging world that get that. best to you,

  4. Ah, Victoria, this is brilliant! I loved your talk the other day at Hubud and I loved meeting you on Friday for dinner. You and Steve are such a lovely couple and I can’t wait to share your stories! About to email you now actually… Cheers, Krista

  5. Hmmm, I never thought about writing a manifesto, but must admit I LOVED reading yours and the wheels are a turning about ideas for one of my own. I look forward to sitting a spell and reading through your site.

  6. Hi – I absolutely love your Blog and Ethos – very inspiring and illuminating, look forward to seeing your Documentary too. Kind regards Kristian

    ps – I would be honoured if you could take a look at the new blog I have been working on –

  7. Hi – I absolutely love your Blog and Ethos – very inspiring and illuminating, look forward to seeing your Documentary too. Kind regards Kristian

    ps – I would be honoured if you could take a look at the new blog I have been working on –

  8. I only just came across Bridges and Balloons and I just want to let you know…I love it!

    From the design to your words, it’s really beautiful and I really enjoyed reading through your manifesto, particularly after working in Politics for several years – if only politicians would take note and lighten up a bit.

    My partner and I will be setting off this summer to follow in the footsteps of so many digital nomads and your blog makes us all the more excited.

    • Hi Lisa. It makes me so happy to read your message. I’m so delighted to know you like the blog and that’s wonderful you’re off to be a digital nomad too. It’s wonderful to explore. Good luck with it all 🙂 And thanks for reading along.


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