By Alyce Collins
THIS COUPLE from Peterborough who grew up alongside each other for TWENTY years without speaking bumped into one another after their respective trips to Australia and swiftly fell in love have since become insta-famous and created their own travel marketing business since travelling the world together.
Travel bloggers and influencers, Charlie Pauly (27) and Lauren Cliffe (24), originally from Peterborough, have left behind their lives in the UK to see as much of the world as possible, travelled 13,000 airmiles and netted over 90K Instagram followers in the process.
Charlie grew up in a boxing gym and spent most of his life in the gym or training for his next competition. At the age of 20, Charlie flew out to Australia for an intended three months, however his love for travel and Australia made him decide not to sign a professional boxing contract back in the UK, preferring to stay out there for longer.
Although the pair both grew up in the same town, they had never spoken until crossing paths back in the UK when they both returned after their extended breaks and found mutual interest in their love for travel.
The pair met up numerous times and built up a strong connection which transformed into a loving relationship. A short six months after initially meeting, Charlie and Lauren travelled to India to begin their extensive journey across the world together.
“It’s funny, we were both on separate solo travel trips and bumped into each other in our local shopping centre,” Charlie and Lauren explained.
“We knew of each other but had never spoken before. We started talking about travel and arranged to hang out, and sure enough, one date led to another.
“Our personalities, morals and values are identical. Within a couple of weeks, it was undeniable that we wouldn’t be leaving the UK without each other.
“So, we started saving together, set up our clothing brand and got back out on the road.
“We worked part-time with children in care on eight pound an hour, working fifteen-hour shifts and running the clothing brand from home.
“We set up the clothing brand called ‘Wanderers & Warriors’ in our bedroom, and it grew through Instagram marketing. We were able to sell over thirty packages a week around the world.
“We had the choice of taking it on full-time or travelling again, so we chose the latter and turned the Instagram from a clothing brand to a travel page.
“Our first trip together was to India, which really tested our personalities, our patience and our relationship – but we came out of it with an unbreakable bond.
“We are both out to experience everything, the good, the bad and the ugly.
“Our base right now is Bali, we’ve spent the last six months there setting up and settling in. It’s such a beautiful place full of culture and delicious food. It’s a good base for us to hop in and out of for travel purposes.
“We’re slow travellers, we like to dedicate at least a month to each country to visit because we want to see as much as possible.
“The majority of the time we’re living out of backpacks. We’re minimalists, but it’s a lifestyle and it allows us to do what we do.”
Charlie and Lauren visited eight countries last year, and they intend to visit a total of ten this year, including spending the winter in Europe.
The couple’s favourite destination so far has been the Philippines, thanks to its breath-taking scenery, and the most eye-opening location was the slums in Mumbai due to the incredibly welcoming people.
Early on in their journey, the pair wanted to begin their own project, deciding to create a clothing line called Wonderers and Warriors that they could watch flourish. After designing logos to print onto tops and hoodies, they began spreading the message and distributing them via Instagram.
“Instagram has basically created a career for us,” added Charlie and Lauren.
“It allowed us to sustain our lifestyle of travel thanks to opportunities presented to us. It connected us with people and allowed us to inspire others.
“Most of all it’s given us a purpose because it makes us want to get out of bed at 5am to catch the perfect sunrise shot. We’re passionate about sharing these experiences with the world.
“We just embrace everything, from being carted around on press tours to sleeping in a single bunk on overnight trains.
“It’s all exciting and it’s all an experience. We now have over 90,000 loyal followers.
“We hope to show people that travel is accessible to everyone and much easier than you think. If you work hard and love what you do, then anything is possible.
“Travelling has taught us to stay humble, the world is a huge place and travel will teach you some invaluable lessons.
“If you have the opportunity to travel, then pack your bags and go and explore. See the world through another perspective and use the experience to grow as a person.”