Ericotrips is an award-winning travel blog by Lagos-based avid storyteller and traveler Eromonsele Emmanuel.
What do you seek to achieve through sharing your travel adventures, art gallery reviews, and other tourist sites in Nigeria?
At the core, I want to educate my blog readers at home and abroad about travel and tourism in Nigeria. I share everything about my trips including vehicle hiccups, interactions with people, and funny bits. Through these unique stories, I hope to convince my fellow Nigerians that tourism, particularly art and culture tourism, happens right in our backyard.
Let’s talk about being a local tourist in Nigeria, in your opinion do you think visiting these sites is affordable to locals?
Absolutely! I mean, unless your itinerary includes stopovers at expensive restaurants, top-tier hotels/resorts, or pricey group tours everything is pretty much within reach. Being a local tourist in Nigeria can be affordable when you play your cards correctly as I’ll be explaining shortly…You see, if I was planning a trip to a faraway city in eastern Nigeria from Lagos which is in the south-eastern part of the country, I could save bulky costs by lodging at a friend’s place or traveling by road.
Again, I’ve always been an advocate for art, historic and cultural tourism across Nigeria because even though local tourists expect entry fees to such locations to be on the high side, the reverse is usually the case. In Nigeria, like many countries in the world, tourist attractions have fixed rates for locals which are quite affordable. I think the problem now is rejigging a culture of maintenance of such attractions and improving domestic tourism within the country.
I do not think, price tags have ever been the issue.
What things do you carry when you are going on one of your trips?
For short-term trips like art musings in Lagos, I take nothing except my phone and some cash but for long-distance, I make sure to include my power adapters, towel, slippers, clothing, and a book.
Take us through your step-by-step creative process from ideation to uploading a blog post.
- Finding Ideas to Write About.
- Being Inquisitive and Researching.
- Structure, Content Writing, and Development.
- Proofreading and Backlinks.
- Image and GIF Surfing.
- Designing Pins for Pinterest.
- Making Transfers to WP Editor.
- Tinny Bit of SEO and Scheduling.
- Re-editing, Checking Out Previews, and Re-editing Again.
- And Finally, Spreading the Word!
Which part of your creative process is your favorite and why?
I love researching my content idea because it’s always fun to dig deeper than the surface. In many cases, this may mean watching a dozen YouTube videos about a certain destination; asking people questions both online and offline, and reading a bunch of articles on my newfound subject.
What would you say has been your biggest challenge and biggest gain from starting and running your blog?
The biggest challenge is being consistent because sometimes, life happens and I need a healthy break. Again, promoting on social media channels is quite chaotic. For the big gain, I’ll say it’s attention. I love when people reach out to me to solve their travel problems, collaborate on blog posts, or pitch business opportunities.
Which of your blog post was so popular and what do you think made it so appealing?
In July of 2019, I did a collaborative blog post with my friend, Favour and in the article, she spoke about her visit to Oniru Private Beach – a popular beach in the coastal city of Lagos. As for what made it so appealing, I wouldn’t know because, at the time of writing, I hardly knew a thing about SEO but if I was to take a wild guess, I’d say maybe, just maybe readers enjoy hearing from a different voice on my blog occasionally.
In fact, after the profound success of Favour’s post, I made sure to do more collaborative blog posts with friends, family, and bloggers in-and-out of my niche.
What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting your kind of blog?
When I first punched the keys on Ericotrips, I started the blog as a hobby and my “past-self” wouldn’t even imagine winning an Afrobloggers award for tourism and culture a couple of years down the line.
So, I’d say pick a niche you’re interested in regardless of how stupid it sounds… no idea is too dumb and from my blogging experience, I can confidently say that there’ll always be someone out there who’s going to need your blog posts.
Another thing new-wave bloggers must know is everything takes a while. Trust the process, always. Don’t stay glued to stats, number of shares, or number of subscribers.
Finally, and this is specifically for bloggers in the travel niche. The thing is the travel niche is ambiguously difficult and you’ll need to narrow it down to more basic niches like family travel, solo travel, backpacking, art, or culture travel. I believe it’s way easier when you do.
Which 3 blogs do you often visit for inspiration
- Travel with a Pen. Run by Amarachi Ekekwe H. who is also a Nigerian travel blogger, I draw a lot of inspiration from Amarachi’s style of travel writing.
- . Unique Times. For daily doses of self improvement tips and motivation, I make sure to read Cindy Georgakas’s blog every week.
- Banter Republic. Gottfried through his dark humour and wittiness teaches his blog readers how to tackle the challenges of adulthood.
Which other 3 places would you like to visit in the world?
- Ghana. Of course! To settle the jollof rice dispute once and for all. I’d also love to try out other local culinary dishes, listen to Ghanaian highlife, and visit touristy sites like the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park. I feel like visiting Ghana would definitely improve my Africanness, if that’s even a thing!
- Cape Verde. One time, I attended a travel seminar that had delegates from Cape Verde promoting tourism to the country. I’ll love to explore the melting pot of Portuguese and African cultures someday.
- Greece. The thing about Greece is I’ve always been a fan of Greek mythology. Ha! The gods of Olympus are calling out to me. So, the first place I’ll be touring is the Temple of Athens thereafter, a trip to the white clad neighbourhoods of Santorini would be a perfect closure and a dream come true.
How would you like to be remembered?
Ahem, I’ll like to be remembered as a curious traveler and content creator who enjoyed his visits to art galleries the most. Yep! That’s it.