The Life Traveller - About Me
The Life Traveller - About Me
about me

The Life Traveller - About Me - Manon


How wonderful that we have crossed paths.
My name is Manon Valesca Maria. I'm Dutch with a drop of Indonesian blood. The Life Traveller is established in 2014. I had this vision of creating an online relaxing place for positivity, spirituality, inspiration and mindfulness. A space where you can take a deep breath from the long way you have come. The Life Traveller is a meeting point, where other inspiring travel companions share their experiences. You can get some ‘take-away’ inspiration for the continuation of your journey and personal help is offered to get going, when it’s unclear which direction to go. I also share some of my daily adventures. Motherhood is a huge part of that. The Life Traveller travels light and follows the light on its journey into eternity. Have a magical trip. Thank you for stopping by. Feel free to follow my trace!


I have had work experience for more than sixteen years in the field of Dutch magazines as a fashion, beauty & health director, image coordinator, editor, stylist and text writer. Beside motherhood, the most important role of my life, my days are filled with charity work and sharing light. Feeling good and sowing the seeds of love are my main goals. Beside that I combine writing for magazines with this blog. I am also the creator of Naramatisho, a Kenyan handicraft label. Additionally, I have a healing and coaching practice for awareness and personal growth. I support other travel companions as a life coach through aura reading, chakra balancing, healing techniques and coaching. Everyone deserves to be happy.

I'm a very blessed mother of a wonderful rainbow family. I'm married to a brave, supportive Dutch sun warrior, Michel, and mama moon to a beautiful African sonshine, Micah, and a sweet Welsh corgi dog named Vos (Fox in Dutch). We have been living in Kenya and are now dividing time between Kenya and our home in Amsterdam.

I live simply and am down-to-earth and spiritual all-in-one. And I like seeing the extraordinary in the ordinary. Travelling is in my blood. I love exploring the world, hiking in nature, walking barefoot, yoga, meditation, dancing and music, watching Indie and art house movies, having fun with friends and preparing pure, organic vegan dishes..and capturing moments in a picture. I get inspired by nature, animals, the sun, the moon, the stars and trees. I collect stones, gemstones, feathers and Native American Kachina dolls..and positive thoughts.


If you have a question, feel free to email me.

In need of personal guidance? The Life Traveller offers personal help to get going, when it's unclear which direction to go (sessions can take place by email or skype).

For a personal consult or questions, send an email to:

The Life Traveller likes to share life travel experiences. For bookings for seminars, presentations and workshops send an email to

Note: most of the content of this blog is copyright and owned by The Life Traveller, unless mentioned otherwise. You may not take content or images from this site without written permission.

The Life Traveller - Back Home
back home

inspiration - lovin’ this

The African Heritage House

Take a look around in one of the most inspiring houses on the planet: The African Heritage House, based near Nairobi, Kenya.

I first learned about this dream place a while ago, while discovering it in one of my books about Africa. Without knowing I have been copying this style for years (LOL)!

You can imagine my joy when I heard it was open to visitors. I mean, entering legally is more decent than climbing fences…

Shall we?

For more information click here



the home of tok and hirome kise

Our home used to be a lot more minimalistic but the more I travel through life and the world, the more it becomes a collector of wonderful stories.

This is the beautiful home of Tok and Hiromi Kise where they live with their daughter Hina. It is such a beautiful, creative and earthy place. It accommodates a workshop, store that sells their furniture and their home.

Would love to add some of their items to my story one day. Whenever I will travel to Osaka I definitely will.

Images: the kinfolk home



jacques henri lartigue


Jacques Henri Lartigue was a renowned French photographer and painter who began taking photographs in 1904, at the age of seven. He was known for his photographs of automobile races, planes, Parisian fashion female models but his breathtaking color photography is less well known.

Lartigue was one of those souls who was able to hold on to his childlike freshness, curiosity and wonder throughout his entire life. The secret to youth. Photography was a way to escape his own contemporary time, so that his images have a limitlessly modern character.

This stunning series contains several photographs of his third wife Florette Ormea.

gisèle d’ailly van waterschoot van der gracht


It will be three years ago this month since Dutch artist Gisèle d’Ailly van Waterschoot van der Gracht passed away at the age of 100 (1912 – 2013). She had lived such a fascinating life.

As a child living in the USA she played with Punka-Indian friends, eccentric uncles and aunts dominated everyday life at the Austrian family castle, she made numerous paint glass windows for churches, ships, and monasteries. She provided shelter to Jewish Germans during WWII, befriended great artists and writers like Max Beckmann, Adriaan Roland Holst, and Aldous Huxley. For years she lived and worked in Greece, but returned to her canal house in Amsterdam. She found herself wondered by this world. The key to youth and creativity. Take a look in her beautiful, inspiring studio.

This story was featured in the book of freunde von freunden: Friends. And on their website. Pictures: Jordi Huisman.

baobab collection

Fair news! For its new Limited Edition Spring Summer 2017 collection, Baobab Collection, consisting of the breathtaking smelling candles and diffusers, continues its work in Madagascar with an amazing collection inspired by the ancient Mikea tribe.

The brand collaborated with the women of the Malagasy coop for the creation of  the stunning new items, made entirely of crocheted raffia (loooovveee!).

The Mikea tribe has been forced to settle, as it is no longer able to inhabit the forests it once called home, now being exploited for rosewood.

The beautiful tribe is the oldest one of Madagascar, from the dry Mikea forest, just north of Tulear. Many scientists have speculated that they have inhabited this region for over 4000 years, although the exact figure is still undetermined. They are originally nomadic hunter- gatherers who have lived in harmony with a forest that has no natural water source. They are the only aboriginal tribe that lives in such extreme conditions. The secret of their survival has been traced back to the Baboho, a root that stores large amounts of water and sugar, pronounced “Baboo.”

The Mikeas have always lived in the forest, in keeping with their ancient traditions. Today, there are only about 10 Mikeas who still live in the forest. The others have been forced out and are now subject to extreme poverty. They are caught between a natural habitat that no longer supplies enough food, and a Malagasy population that doesn’t accept their presence in their villages.

Baobab will be donating a part of the sales to the Mikea people, in the hope that this collection will shine light on their dire situation.

Photographer Serge Anton captured the workers and tribe in a beautiful series of pictures.

For more information visit baobabcollection

home tour: the fremantle home

I love this authentic Australian Fremantle home of Adrian and Fran Welke. A unique, multifunctional space, housed with a 1500-square-metre factory in an industrial area in Western Australia. The lovely decor is inspiring and worldly and makes me wanna buy a ticket to my mother’s birth country, Indonesia.

Take a look around!

To see the whole house tour visit The Design Files.

Stylist: Jo Carmichael Photographer: Jody D’Arcy.

living with plants

In Kenya we have been living outside; even at night the sea breeze from the Indian Ocean blew through our bedroom, which has no glass windows. We could hear the palms wave while their shadows performed a magical dance on the walls.

Once in Amsterdam, one thing was clear: we wanted to create an oasis in the house. We had quite some plants already, but some appeared so happy in their accommodation that we let them stay there. Slowly we created a new haven; this time not filled in an African garden with monkeys, bush babies and parrots, but within four old Amsterdam walls.

The plants mainly come from organic farmers, markets or we find them on the street. We also have been receiving green ‘donations’ from people who want to dispose their plant.

We do not have green fingers, although the winter does require some extra care; additional humidification and being careful with the heating system is a must to keep our green friends happy. What we also do: lots of singing and providing good vibrations. Furthermore, it is live and let live.

For those who love plants as well or do not like to take care of them: looking inside houses that are full of green somehow always does the trick.

Three inspiring books that I love, that full of exquisite interiors filled with green friends:

Indoor Green: Living With Plants by Bree Claffy and photographed by Lauren Bamford.

House of Plants: Living Succulents, Air Plants and Cacti by Rose Ray en Caro Langton. Photographed by Erika Raxworthy and illustrated by Alicia Galer. (picture cover in this post: by Haarkon)

Urban Jungle Book by Igor Josifovic en Judith de Graaff. Photographed by Lina Skukauskė and illustrated by Saar Manche.

inside two vintage lover’s family home

Midweek’s cosy home moment!

You can feel the difference between something that’s made by hand or has had several owners and something that’s disposable right away. The first two have a totally different energy; they have a spirit and most likely a very personal story.

Needless to say why I love this Venice Beach (California) family home, owned by two vintage lovers.

Images: by Max Wanger for Freunde von Freunden