Tested Gear Guide: Goal Zero’s Switch 10 Multi Tool Kit

Solar kit

We wouldn’t be able to bring you so many wonderful photos and videos if it weren’t for our Goal Zero solar gear. Thanks to goal zero, we’re able to head out for self-supported adventures. With their solar panels and power-packs, we re-charge our camera batteries, laptops, ipads, head-lamps, go pro cameras, gps devices, and phones.

But it’s not just when we are entirely off the grid that we need their gear. It could be on a bus, plane, car, small hike or anywhere in-between when your GoPro or phone battery dies.

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Enter the Switch 10 Multi-tool kit. You get a solar panel, fan, micro usb, usb flash0light head, and of course, the power keeper, the Switch 10.

To begin with, you can charge it before leaving the house via usb– and then, after using up the power, you can always recharge it using the Nomad 7 Solar panel. It takes about 4 hours to charge it from the sun on your Nomad 7 panel and likewise 4 hours from USB charging.

What can you charge with one Switch 10? Your smart phone once. It will do 25% of your tablet. 2x GoPros (or similar POV camera) and about 8hrs of flashlight time.

Now the new Multi 10 has a few features that it’s predecessor didn’t have. It has a tiny led flash-light built into it–which can be very practical in lots of situations. It also has a battery power gage that tells you how much juice you’ve got left on the device.

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Then you have the different heads: 1. a little but powerful fan
2. a micro usb charging head
3. a regular usb charing head
4. a flashlight head.

It is extremely reasonably priced at $119.99 — I thought it was going to be a good 50% more. Well done!

Check-out this video we took where we run through Goal Zero’s new Switch 10 Multi Tool.

Location: Peyto Lake, Banff, Alberta, Canada

Watch our video review at the bottom!

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Here’s the low-down on it from Goal Zero’s Website:
More than a phone charger, more than a flashlight; the only all-in-one power solution for your pack. Quick charge phones, POV cameras, and other USB-powered gear, than switch on a flashlight for bright light anywhere, or a fan to cool off. It’s solar-ready and features a replacement, rechargeable battery that powers up from any USB.

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Replaceable Lithium Ion Battery Replaceable (3,000mAh/11Wh) lightweight, high power density battery. Instant-on technology for easy, plug-and-play power. LED battery level indicator and pass-through capability.
Quick Charge USB Port Intelligent Charging for any USB-powered device. (1.5A Output) Delivers smart power without overcharging or discharging.
Device Specific Cables Micro USB tangle-free charging for phones and tablets. Certified cables for efficient charging.
Solar Ready Built-in charging tip. No extra cable to lose. Charge up in 4 hours from any USB port – in 4 hours of full sun from the Nomad 7 Solar Panel
Switch Flashlight (160 Lumens) Wide angle to pinpoint for lighting up the trail or piercing the darkness. High power for maximum light, low power for extended runtimes.
Switch Fan Lightweight, quiet, breezy. Attachable fan for a personal cooling system wherever you go.

Features:
Recharge by: USB, Solar Panel
Power Output: USB
Ideal for: Phones, Switch Tools
Capacity: 11Wh, 3000mAh
Weight: 4 oz (113 g)
Kit Includes: Micro Tip, Flashlight, Fan, Switch 10, Nomad 7 Solar Panel

Video Review of the Multi Switch 10 Kit

Tested Gear Guide: Julbo Wave

Reviewer :The Expeditioners Roberto
Gear: Julbo Wave Sunglasses

It’s not often that a pair of shades lasts more than 3 months with us. And it’s not because we’re careless. It’s because sunglasses are one of those items that you can practically use every single day (depending on where you live.) But this frequent use, like anything else, is what usually causes there to be a high probability that you will lose them, scratch them, or break them.

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If you’re an outdoor adventurer, then that probability is even higher. Which is why Bella and I literally go through about 7 lost/broken/sunken pairs of sunnies per year. In the past year, we drove over a pair that had fallen in the snow, lost 4 to kiteboarding, one got scratched so badly that their un-usable (while crawling through a section of caves 1km into the earth that were 3 feet tall and 70 feet long,) and another also got bent out of whack somehow.

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So it’s with great surprise that I still have my Julbo Wave sunglasses after 5 months. And there’s a key factor why… they float.

When we’re kiting, the crashes can be pretty superb– and for a few moments you don’t know what is up, left or right. Most sunglasses don’t float– so if they came off your face, then Poseidon’s got a new look. Thanks to me, he has a new collection now.

With the Wave shades– they float perfectly. My solution to keep them from ripping off my face (when possible) was to put one of those touristy floaty bands. Both for keeping them on my face and for greater visibility after a crash. And trust me– these Julbos are so comfortable that you don’t want to lose them!

With many of the glasses I lost, the band just ripped off the end of the arms. In the case of Julbo’s Waves, I can tie the band to the arm tips, which kept it from tearing off like the others. The strap they supply is great for kayaking and calmer water sports, but tended to snap off with my kiting wipe-outs. Luckily, the wave’s arms have holes through which you can tie the strap nice and tight.

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Even if your strap does come off, with the Waves, after the confusion of a crash settles, you can easily spot them floating. Now it isn’t just the floating factor that made these one of my faves, it’s the incredible polarized lenses coupled with fantastic full eye-protection. When you do lots of water and snow sports, the sun is reflecting on the water or snow from beneath you- usually squeezing under your glasses and hurting your eyes. But with these, they cup your eyes just perfectly– so that no sun squeezes through, and so that I don’t get water into my eyes that’s kicking up from my board.

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Another neat factor I like is the drainage/venting holes, so that when you do take a dunking and come out–the water just drains out nicely. They give great air circulation while still protecting you. Must have been a water athlete that designed these! Here’s a few pics of mine in use!

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But what if you’re biking or doing a sport where you have way too much humidity and you nee extreme air circulation? Then you just snap off a section and suddenly they’ve got all the ventilation you could ask for. Transformer cool.

If you want to get yourself a pair, you can input ‘The Expeditioners’ as a promo code and get 10% off ANY Julbo shades!
Link to purchase: www.julbo-canada.ca

Website: www.julbo-canada.ca
Test Locations: Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico | Yellowstone National Park, USA | Whistler, B.C. Canada
Price: $130
Available in 5 color combos.

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HOLBOX | THE EXPEDITIONERS | DESTINATIONS | TRAVEL GUIDE TO THE WORLD

HOLBOX | THE EXPEDITIONERS | DESTINATIONS | Travel Guide to the World
By. The Expeditioners Roberto
Photos and videos by Roberto & Bella

WHERE: Holbox, Quinta Roo, Mexico

WHAT WE DID: Kiteboard. Kiteboard. and some more kiteboarding. The scuba diving and whale shark season is coming up though.

WHERE WE STAYED: Holbox is an un-discovered destination. Many locals say it is like Playa del Carmen 30 years ago. A tiny island with some 2000 inhabitants, the roads are made of sand, people walk around barefoot, with a bike, or they take a golf cart (which is what most locals have.) A big part of the island is protected land, and the beach is stunning. Fresh fruit is extremely inexpensive, and a freshly squeezed orange juice will only put you back a couple of bucks!

We arrived to a new and wonderful hotel (La Casa del Viento) owned by a super personable Fernando. Only a block away from the beach, and a couple of blocks from town, it’s perfect for the kiteboarder and beach comber alike.

Casa del Viento: http://casadelvientoholbox.com/

OTHER THINGS TO DO:
1. Kiteboarding – there are three different areas you can kite in Holbox : Punta Mosquito (which is accessible with Holbox’s kiteboarding school’s boat) then there is Las Nubes, which is accessible by bike or golf cart, or walking- -and finally the sand-bar, which is for experienced riders only as it is off-shore kiting out in the middle of the sea. There was a place which we loved to kite called Punta Coco, but apparently it is now forbidden there.
2. Whale Shark Tours are big here during the spring and summer months. The whale sharks congregate not too far off, making it an ideal launch point.
3. Beach walking and reading.
4. Sea-Kayaking
5. Paddle Boarding with Holbox Kiteboarding (for the non windy days)
6. Scuba Diving is also only during the summer months. The water here can be churned with a lot of sand as it is where the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean meet.

HOW TO GET HERE: Fly to Cancun. From Toronto, New York and the likes, a ticket is only $500US round-trip. Then you catch a bus/taxi to Chuiquila, and then a ferry to Holbox which runs hourly.

It has only been a few months since Bella and I got into kiteboarding/ kitesurfing – but we’re totally addicted to it. With frequency and stronger winds we’ve become better and better kiters. In Turks and Caicos we were able to improve significantly because of the shallow waters where we were learning. But add deep water to the mix, and it is a whole different story. Your kite will be pulling you down-wind while your board is up wind from you. Like a sail boat, you then have to body drag away from your board to zig zag back up wind to it. This can be quite intimidating at the beginning, but here in Holbox we’ve learned to be in a lot of deep water conditions, lose our board, and get back to our kite.

Yesterday was the first time that Bella and I launched from a boat. This requires preparing your lines and gear in advance–and making sure they don’t tangle–as it is tricky to fix your lines from boat. You also have to be able to kite upwind to get back to the boat, as it is off-shore kiting (yes, worse case scenario the boat will get you.) It was extremely exciting, and we had some gusts of wind the were super powerful. Happily, this just meant we got to jump higher!

Check-out the photos and videos below that Bella and I took here in Holbox.CTK_6960

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THE EXPEDITIONERS MAGAZINE LAUNCHES

The most frequent question that we receive from fans is: How do you do it? How do you make this lifestyle possible? How can you afford to travel so much? Can anyone do it?

The succinct answer to those queries is: By being super creative and flexible. By breaking norms, asking for things, and inspiring others. It’s not as expensive as you imagine and yes, anyone can do it–even you.

Why don’t I write here the full answers? How we began? How we approach sponsors? How we pay for daily life? And the stories of making it happen? Because one of the ways in which we’re working to continue making this concept possible is by keeping the answers to things as such in our magazine: The Expeditioners Magazine.

We’ve also kept the best of personal stories of adventure, gear reviews, destination guides and much more off of our blog and social media. But you can find it all in the coolest adventure magazine you’ve ever read– and at the same time, keep the content flowing!

We sell one issue for $7.99 and the subscription for 5 issues for $29.99.

You have various options for getting it:

1. Download “The Expeditioners Magazine” from the itunes app store. Then go to your newsstand and click on the magazine and choose to download one issue or the subscription.

Link on Itunes App Store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-expeditioners-magazine/id749088955?ls=1&mt=8&fb_source=message

2. If you have a Kindle device, you can go to the Amazon App store and download The Expeditioners Magazine App :
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HNX1UMY

3. If you have a desktop computer, you can pay through PAYPAL and then receive a code to access and read The Expeditioners Magazine on our website. Link here: http://theexpeditioners.com/store/subscribe-to-the-expeditioners-magazine/

To all those who have already purchased our magazine–thank you for your amazing support–it means a lot to us! over 1000 The Expeditioners Magazine App downloads on itunes already! Thank you also to all those who contributed on our amazing fundraising campaign–you are amazing!

Below is the video from our fundraising campaign! THANK YOU! We did it!

The Expeditioners Magazine Issue 1

Lady Evelyne Smoothwater Provincial Park, Ontario, CANADA | THE EXPEDITIONERS | DESTINATIONS | Travel guide to the world.

Lady Evelyne Smoothwater Provincial Park, Ontario , CANADA | THE EXPEDITIONERS | Destinations | Travel Guide to the World By.
Photos by The Expeditioners Roberto & Bella
Writing by Roberto

WHERE: Lady Evelyne Smoothwater Provincial Park, Canada Situated
Located in the heart of the Temagami region and centre of a 2400km interconnected canoeing network, thousands of years old
A spectacular wilderness park that has a beautiful rugged topography, crystal clear lakes and rivers galore.
The Lady Evelyn River is the centerpiece of the park, surrounded by some of the highest points in Ontario, with stands of towering pine and numerous waterfalls
The park forms the headwaters for a number of rivers in the Temagami area and is connected to four waterway parks
The park protects some of Temagami’s famous old growth White and Red pine ecosystems– which are blissful to camp around. This is indeed a canoe-camper’s paradise!

WHEN WE WENT: We were there this past end of July/ Beginning of Aug. We received our gorgeous Bluewater canoe from our amazing sponsor’s (Impex Kayaks,Scott Canoes and Bluewater Canoes) warehouse in New Liskeard, Ontario- and proceeded to head out for some canoe camping on Smoothwater Lake.

WHAT WE DID: We canoe camped for a week, searching little inlets, enjoying beach campsites, and as always, photographing everything! The bugs weren’t too bad at all and the landscape was phenomenal.

WHERE WE STAYED: All canoe campers know that packing up for a multi-day paddling adventure can be a toilsome task. Luckily, We had the Edgewater Motel and campground that sponsored us for over a week in New Liskeard. A delightful place to stay on the shore of Temiskaming Lake, the jovial banter from the owners is warming indeed. Take a stroll along the water to watch perfect orange sunsets. We stayed here both before our canoe camping adventure, as well as after! The shower and bed was delightful after being out in Lady Evelyne Smoothwater Provincial Park
Learn More about the Edgewater Motel and Campground at http://www.edgewatermotel.ca/

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE PARK: Experience the rugged terrain marked by clear lakes and rushing rivers. Hike the Ishpatina Ridge or Maple Mountain and marvel at the stunning panoramas of the landscape below. Photograph the plentiful wildlife and explore the many deep lakes and fast flowing streams that are ideal for Lake and Brook trout. Learn about the parks significant geological, biological and cultural features that are unique to one of North America’s premier canoeing destinations.

OTHER THINGS TO DO:
1. Canoe Camping – Lady Evelyne RIver, the Makobe River, Smoothwater to Scarecrow Lake
2. Canoe Day Trips
3. Fishing: ngling is primarily for Brook trout and Lake trout in many of the lakes and streams in the park. Sucker Gut Lake contains warm-water species such as Walleye and Small-mouth bass. Ontario provincial fishing regulations apply.
4. Swimming: There are endless opportunities in the backcountry for swimming including both shallow and deeper water entries along rocky headlands.
5. Birding
6. Boating
7. Hiking: Maple Mountain Trail: 3.2km or Ishpatina Ridge Trail: 3.2 km
8. You can also take a quick hike up Devil’s Rock (just a few km’s from Edgwater Motel) and get some amazing views of Temiscaming Lake

OPERATING DATES:
Camping Dates
April 26, 2013 to October 27, 2013
Opening and Closing (Day Use)

April 26, 2013 to October 27, 2013

GETTING HERE: Easy Drive from Montreal, Toronto or Ottawa

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Jasper, Alberta, CANADA | THE EXPEDITIONERS | DESTINATIONS | Travel Guide to the World

Jasper, Alberta, CANADA | THE EXPEDITIONERS | DESTINATIONS | Travel Guide to the World
By. The Expeditioners Roberto
Photos and time-laspe by Roberto & Bella

WHERE: Jasper, Alberta, Canada

WHEN WE WENT: Bella and I experienced the Jasper area twice this year. Our first pass through was the first week of October. The second was again for a week in mid-November.

WHAT WE DID: We went hiking along the trails behind the Jasper town. We bouldered at their municipal wall. We went for a few 2km swim sessions. We sea-kayaked on Maligne Lake. We walked the whole town, several times. We used it as a base for a winter trekking trip. We hiked through knee deep powder. Around stunning Waterfalss and hoarfrost. Until finally, at Berg Lake we experienced a magical night by a glacier..with stunning Northern Lights above. We stayed up all night staring at the sparkling sky. (See the timelapse we took below!)

WHERE WE STAYED: The Whistler’s Inn – Centrally located–just across the street from the train station and in the heart of it all. A lively bar downstairs with plenty of friendly locals. Elk grazing almost every evening in the parc across the street. Super comfortable rooms with ample space. Rooftop jaccuzi. And an uber kind and attentive staff!
Website: www.whistlersinn.com

OTHER THINGS TO DO:
1. Check out Maligne Canyon & Maligne Lake
2. Visit the Athabasca Falls
3. Explore the Columbia Icefield
4. Take the Jasper Tramway to the top of Mount WHistler
5. Mountain Biking what some call the best trails in the world.
6. Ski at Marmot Bason
7. Hike the Bald Hills
8. Of Golf at the Jasper Golf Course…if you;re so inclined:)

HOW TO GET HERE:
A. Drive from Calgary: 5 hours (some of the most stunningly beautiful driving you have ever seen..trust me–we’ve dona lot of driving all over the world, and this drive is the most stunning .. ever! | Drive from Edmonton: 3 Hours and 45min

Jasper National Park is situated 370 kilometers (192 mi) west of Edmonton, 404 kilometers (256 mi) northwest of Calgary and 805 km (500 mi) northeast of Vancouver.

If you don’t have a car, you can take the Jasper Shuttle bus from Edmonton, Banff, Calgary and Lake Louise. Check out: www.jasperadventurecentre.com/shuttle-bus.html

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Kayaking Maligne

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Diving Africa Part 4/10

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Concrete stairs lead down to the water where our boat was moored. A jovial Senegalese local played a rythmic beat on his tam-tam– luring us to our boat like the Pied Piper. It was an early afternoon dive, and so would be a 1-tank dive. Located only a few kilometers from shore, the Madeleine Islands sit a quick boat ride away from Dakar’s coastline. Mamadou (our dive master) kept the tap of jokes flowing as our little skiff made it’s way amongst fishing boats to the islands. A couple from France were delighted to get reacquainted with our dive-master–as they had dove with him 20 years earlier.

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The water temp hovered around 16 degrees Celcius. I donned my 3/2 Oceanic Pioneer wetsuit, and added an extra layer of Lavacore to keep from getting chilled– Bella did likewise. I hesitated with donning a hoodie, but after plunging my hand into the water realized it was a must to wear.

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Before we knew it we were already at the island. The boatman dropped anchor. We prepped our cameras, and back-flipped into the frigid waters of the North Atlantic Ocean.

Manta Dive Watch

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The water was murky and green. And the current was strong. We dove along the submerged part of of the island– spotting sea-slugs and little rays. Visibility was less than 10′. We dove down to 60′ where it was a little clearer– hoping there would be less current. Yet there just seemed to be more. Bella and I glanced at each other and made the signal to head-back.

We’ve learned not to push ourselves too much on a dive in questionable conditions. For indeed, there is always the next dive.

Quick Tip: The Aeris Jetpack is a WING BC with integrated weights– giving you great mobility and freedom on your dive. Use the detachable bag on your dive boat to keep the stuff you don;t need for your dive: sunglasses, sunscreen, micro-towel, Dfog, etc..

Gear Guide:
Aeris Jetpack BC’s
Aeris Ion AT600 First Stage & ION LT Second Stage
Aeris Manta Dive Watch
Aeris Velocity Fins (Bella)
Aeris Accel Fins (Roberto)
Aeris Ai300 Computers
Oceanic Pioneer Wetsuit
Oceanic Pioneer Mask
Lavacore Pants & Short Sleeve Shirts
Ikelite Camera Housing w/ Pro-2800 LED Video Lights
Ikelite Coolpix Camera Housing

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Diving Africa Part 3/10

DIVING AFRICA
Post 3/10

The streets of Dakar, Senegal were hustling and bustling when we arrived. Vendors hawked their wares. Cars honked without purpose, and people filled every empty space. Not exactly the backdrop I imagined for scuba-diving, but hey..you never know.

The dive shop–named Oceanium was easy enough to find, and was located around an open bar/cafe area, overlooking the Atlantic. We got introduced to our dive-master Mamadou- a tall fellow with a ready smile- who marveled at the quantity of gear that we pulled out of our Jetpacks.

Conversation flowed and we got to spend some time explaining our kit to him and sipped some coffee that would wake-up a 12 year old dead horse. The vibe was like that of most dive-shops, relaxed–but ebbing with an excitement… an excitement to dive.

We detached our bags from the BC’s and prepped-our kit for what was to be our first dive in Africa.

Gear Guide: AERIS Jetpack BC is adjustable to all sizes. From the back, to the shoulder straps to the waist strap–it all adjusts. I’m 6’1 and Bella is 5’4. And the Jetpack fits us both. It was nice not to have to rummage through my checked-luggage for dive gear. Everything was snug in my Jetpack bag section…even my Accel fins!

Find part 1 and 2 at www.theexpeditioners.com

Sponsored by Aeris, Oceanic Worldwide, Lavacore Int’l, Ikelite Underwater Systems

Attaching Jetpack

The Engines

Dive day

Bella Canoe Campsite Review

The province of Quebec is a mecca for canoe-campers. It’s simple, la belle province has over 1 million lakes. And that makes for a lot of canoe routes. There are two types of areas ideal for some paddling multi-night detachment. You’ve got Provincial Parks and Faunique Reserves. Both are fantastic.

For Canoe-Camping within a decent range from Montreal (2-4 hours), I suggest: La Verendrye Faunique Reserve, Papineau-Labelle Faunique Reserve and Mont-Tremblant Provincial Park.

Each lake has a campsite or campsites–that’s relative to the size of the lake. Most sites are not within shouting distance/ what I love most, not even visible from the next site. Truth be told, the deeper you get into the reserve or park, the less likely someone is to have one of the other sites anyways.

The wilderness campsites are marked by a tent symbol and a canoe in a yellow triangle. The fact that the signs are reflective makes them easy to spot from a distance in low or no light by simply turning your head-light on. The sites have a fire pit, a few tent sites, a loo that consists of a up-turned bucket with a hole or a proper outhouse with a white seat and sometimes a grill– and of course, as they are for canoe campers, are only accessible by water.

The cost of these campsites is included in your daily park fee– about $9 per person, per day.

Here is a campsite review by Bella of what a typical campsite looks like.

Sponsored by Scott & Bluewater Canoes
www.scottcanoe.com & www.bluewatercanoes.com

Diving Africa Part 1/10

The Expeditioners
DIVING AFRICA
Post 1/10

Africa. My 7th continent. It was going to be a big trip. Criss-crossing the continent, exploring, photographing, scuba diving. A big trip with a lot of flights.

We would first visit Bella’s family in Senegal (two flights,) then fly through Mali and onto Ethiopia where we would catch a night’s sleep.. before catching another flight to Johannesburg where we would then proceed to drive 600km to Kruger Park. After exploring the park we’d fly to Cape Town and drive to Hermanus to go Shark Cage Diving, and another flight to Johannesburg, and then another one onto Vilankulo, Mozambique for some scuba diving….yup, then another flight back to Johannesburg, then another back to Ethipioa (sleep there a night,) then onto Mali–then to Dakar, Senegal again and after two days a flight to New York, and finally home- Montreal.

All in all 12 flights in 5 weeks.

We had to find the best way to take all of our scuba diving gear without getting dinged with overweight fees.

Solution: Dive company revolutionizes scuba travel market by making a travel BC that’s the perfect carry-on companion, and fits carry–on regulations and stowes nicely above your head or under your seat for your flight.: Appropriately named the AERIS Jetpack. It’s a BC. It’s a Bag. It’s a wing. Which we love. It’s sleek. And it makes you breakfast. But only on Tuesdays;)

#ExploreAfrica #Expeditioners #Aeris