Meet our girl, who we seem to always be living vicariously through, Eryn Krouse. We became friends with Eryn back in 2016 and have been stoked to have her as a part of the crew ever since. She is hands down one of the sweetest, most down to earth people and has been such a rad gal to work with as she has experience both as a model and photographer and is down for any adventure. We are stoked to give you guys a little inside look at who she is, what she’s up to, some travel tips and tricks for this current season & just an overall a really inspiring look at someone who has a passion for travel, her family and the world around her.
Oh & if her answers aren’t just sweet enough, scroll through some of the amazing imagery captured on her most recent trip to Tahiti, by her good friend + Lia Turiano.
To start out, let’s break the ice a bit! What’s something many may not know about you?
Something that not many people know about me, is that I played violin since I was 4 years old and was actually trying to be a professional violinist until around high school. I come from a classical music background (my dad is a music professor at UCLA and a composer).
What is one of the most different or weirdest food you’ve ever eaten?
I personally don’t think this is particularly weird, but I like to eat "natto gohan" (rice with fermented soy beans) pretty regularly. It’s a classic Japanese dish, but many non-Japanese people think it’s gross from the smell, consistency, and taste. I personally love it because my mom is Japanese and I grew up with it.
Where are you from & where do you currently call home?
I grew up in northern Los Angeles County in a suburban town called West Hills, about 30 minutes inland from Malibu. I’ve been in this weird limbo stage ever since I graduated from UCSB a couple years ago where I’ve been living at home whenever I’m not traveling. It’s been nice to have a place to keep all of my stuff and to not have to pay rent, but I think later this year it’s finally time to move out for good, and I’m leaning towards north county San Diego as my new home base. I’m also considering moving to Japan for a bit with my mom, so we’ll see how it goes.
If someone told you, what you’d be doing / traveling / living life the way you are now, what would you tell them!
I think I’d be in total disbelief, but I’d be very, very happy. I was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley where life feels like you’re in a little protected bubble and not many people leave it or have crazy international adventures. I’m beyond grateful that I’ve been able to travel the world freely and have all kinds of experiences that I used to dream about when I was younger, and to meet people from all different cultures and ways of life. And I absolutely love what I do now ( in terms of content creation/social media/modeling) because it just opens so many doors for me and allows me total freedom and control in my work schedule, and I love the creative aspect of it as well.
Let's first talk about travel pre-covid. How often were you going somewhere?
Ever since I graduated from UCSB, I told myself that I would go crazy with travel and go everywhere that I’ve ever wanted to go to. Up until covid, I was doing just that- traveling around Indonesia, Egypt, Jordan, Sri Lanka, Oceania/Pacific Islands, Japan, the Caribbean, and so many other places. In January of this year, I went on a trip to Fiji, Samoa, and New Zealand with my boyfriend, and I actually ended up breaking my heel jumping off a waterfall in Samoa (I DON’T RECOMMEND). We continued on to New Zealand with me on crutches, and then when I got home I just rested for a couple months. Obviously, a lot of my travel plans got cancelled due to my injury (I was supposed to go to the Philippines and Japan). And then when I just started to recover and start walking again, covid started so I was basically sedentary since early February, which was rough.
What is something you can’t travel without?
As a notorious over packer, this is a very difficult question for me. But probably a camera because I love to document my adventures and that’s how I make money when I travel.
Worst travel experience, we know it’s not all rainbows!
A little while back, I traveled to Bocas del Toro, Panama and was meeting a group of friends there. Unfortunately, my flight from Miami to Panama City got delayed, causing me to miss my flight from Panama City to Bocas del Toro. I landed at night, and frantically looked up other methods of transportation to get to my destination and ended up finding an overnight bus that took 10 hours. I was exhausted, traveling alone, and couldn’t speak any Spanish, but so many friendly locals pointed me in the right direction and helped me with each step to get to Bocas del Toro. I remember journaling on the bus writing how I don’t know where I was and I don’t know how it’s going to turn out, but that I hope I’ll be okay. It was a very stressful night that required two bus transfers, a taxi, and two boat water taxis, but I eventually made it and was so happy to be there. Looking back on this experience, I’m just very grateful for all the people who helped me out that night.
Favorite place you’ve been to so far?
Oooh this is very hard, so I’ll just name some of my favorite places: Sri Lanka (incredible longboarding waves, rich history, beautiful sight-seeing, Ayurvedic spa retreats). Namotu Island, Fiji (a surfer’s paradise). Maldives (an ocean lover’s dream)
Japan because my family lives there and I love to visit them and explore my mom’s home country.
What place is on the top of your bucket list?
I really want to see more of Europe, so many top destinations from there are the UK, Spanish Islands (Ibiza, Mallorca), and Italy. Additionally, I’d love to surf in Siargao Island in the Philippines, watch the Northern Lights in Finland and Iceland, scuba dive in Raja Ampat… the list goes on and on and on.
Tropical Location or Heading mountains?
Tropical locations ALWAYS.
Snow or Sunshine?
Sunshine. Although I do enjoy a week (maximum) in the snow every once in a while.
What kind of travel do you enjoy? Pack light and make it quick or get settled in a new place for a few months?
Most of my travel is work related, so it usually involves packing heavy (camera gear, surfboards, bikinis/outfits/products to shoot for brands) and making it quick- haha. But my ideal travel experience is when I get settled in a new place for a longer time so I can really get a feel of the place.
Okay, so you’ve now travelled during this covid time. What are the extra precautions you are taking / how does packing look different!
To go to Tahiti, I was required to get a COVID test 72 hours before my departure time. Once I had a negative test result, I had to present it upon check-in and of course during the whole process I wore a mask and washed my hands/sanitized surfaces regularly. It’s really weird and nice to have the airports so uncrowded, and I was able to get an entire row to myself on the plane to and from Tahiti. Once arriving in Tahiti, I was given a self-administered covid test to do on myself 4 days into my trip. To be safe, I wore a mask in all public spaces and practiced physical distancing, but when I was out in the ocean or on a quiet beach, I was really able to enjoy myself and forget all about covid.
So you went to TAHITI (p.s we are so jealous & need to get there), had you been before? What made this trip so magical.
I’ve actually been to Mo’orea once before about 6 years ago, but that first time I went, I barely left the resort I was staying in. This time around, my friend Lia and I rented a car in Papeete, took it on the ferry to Mo’orea, and drove around the whole island multiple times. We did a lot of exploring and sight-seeing, and what makes French Polynesia so magical is that the people are so friendly and hospitable and the views and beaches can’t be beat. We even got to swim with humpback whales which has been on my bucket list for a long time.
Give us the inside scoop, any fun little spot you went to or grabbed a snack from etc. that we shouldn’t miss if we go… I mean when we do!
Definitely check out the stingray/shark lagoon- it’s so much fun to have the stingrays swim all over you. And if you go during the right season, try to swim with a humpback whale (or two). If you really want to splurge, I’d recommend staying in an overwater villa. I stayed at the Sofitel Mo’orea and WOW. Being able to jump into the water from your villa into the most incredible reef to snorkel around was just paradise. I’d also highly recommend checking out Teahupoo on Tahiti. I didn’t surf it, but being out on a jet ski in the channel and watching the surfers get barreled was an incredible experience. Also, eat your fair share of poisson cru (one of my favorite dishes of all time). It’s basically raw tuna mixed with coconut milk, lime, cucumber, and tomatoes- a Polynesian version of ceviche and it is divine.
How was travelling / your time there even in the midst of this time?
I loved my time there- Lia and I were actually so close to extending our trip, but I had some work lined up for me in Los Angeles that I couldn’t miss out on. It’s just so nice to have a change of scenery and to be in a place that speaks a different language. (I got to take advantage of my 5 years of French studies while in French Polynesia). Swimming around in crystal clear water every day definitely does wonders for your mental and physical well-being.
What SB things did ya take with ya!
SPF 70 spray- I love this because it’s easy to apply and makes my skin look really glow-y. Mineral face sunscreen for those long days out on the boat. Aloe Vera to hydrate and cool my skin down after a day at the beach. Mineral lip balm to keep my lips protected. 3-in-1 leave in conditioning spray to help with dry and salty hair.
When you’re just home, what can we find ya doing?
Lifeguarding in Malibu, surfing all up and down the coast of Southern California, doing yoga, making yummy smoothies and Buddha bowls at home, laying out on a beach soaking up the sun reading a book with my favorite Sun Bum products in my beach bag!
Last but not least, who inspired you to see the world, travel and get out of your comfort zone! Or do you think it was just somethin’ in you!
My mom is an avid traveler as well, and her adventurous free spirit has definitely influenced me to get out of my comfort zone. I loved hearing her stories and seeing photos from her travels around the world, from all over Africa, Antarctica, South America, Asia, and more. She’s been my travel companion for a lot of trips recently as well, which is so much fun to be able to spend quality time together and share incredible experiences. Traveling definitely woke up something in me and I just can’t get enough of it.
Thanks Eryn, for your time catching up with us. We loved all the insight you gave, and have added a few things to our bucket list after some major inspiration from your recent travels. Talks soon.