5 Minutes With Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries

For McCool Travel’s 167th travel interview, I am pleased to present Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries Travel Media. Seeing these two wonderful women, anywhere in the world, results in instant smiles for me. It has taken awhile to get them to sit still a few minutes but I gently coerced them to finally do this interview after seeing them last week in New York City.
Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis bio: “Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis have been traveling together since 2007 when they decided to trade their possessions for a round-the-world plane ticket and a backpack. Now they own What Boundaries Travel Media, an active social media and content provider. They host three different web sites covering world travel destinations (WhatBoundariesTravel.com), unique Florida visits (FloridaSpectator.com), and health/wellness travel concerns (TheTravelPharmacist.com and Travel Health Talk). From food to culture to off-the-beaten path experiences, these girls love laughing and providing a positive experience for their readers.”

McCool Travel interview with Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries Travel Media.
Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis

Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries

C- Hopkinton, MA (known as the starting place of the Boston Marathon)
L- Rock Hill, SC
C- My iPhone- replaces books, maps, camera, video equipment, address book, notebooks..  wow, how did we ever travel in 2007 without one??
L- Priscilla, the purple stuffed octopus. She’s been with us since we started traveling in 2007 (Cheryl won her in a crane machine) and she may soon have her own children’s book series!

  1. My Mom (Lisa) lives on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, so we feel like we know it so well it’s like a second home…lots of food and fun!
  2. Florida Gulf Beaches…we’re fortunate to live close enough to to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world in Florida…Clearwater, St. Pete Beach, Indian Rocks…so we love spending time there.
  3. Grand Cayman Island… have you ever just found a place that felt like you belonged there? This is it for us…gorgeous island, snorkeling, diving…it’s all there!
McCool Travel interview with Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries Travel Media.
Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis

C- Being hopelessly lost in Greece, when a dapper older gentleman appeared as we were struggling to read our Greek map. Not only did he point us in the right direction, but insisted on taking us there with a smile and a spring in his step. When we turned to offer him a tip for his time, he’d disappeared as quickly as he’d arrived! We still fondly remember our Greek Angel.
L- Swimming with sea lions in the Galápagos Islands! I was nervous because we had to roll backwards from the inflatable raft into very chilly water – but as soon as the bubbles cleared…we were face-to-face with the most adorable and curious sea lions I’ve ever seen. They blew bubbles at our faces and played tag with each other…I was grinning so wide I almost lost my snorkel!
We love shopping at REI for outdoor gear that lasts. Columbia for shoes. And Orvis makes my favorite sweater that goes everywhere with me!

  1. C- Researching airfares through several sites to get the best deals. I often find partner airlines with very different prices for the same flight.  We have saved quite a bit of money in exchange for a little time researching.
  2. C- Finding a place to stay with a kitchen – an AirBnB vs a hotel. Not only can you explore the local supermarkets, but not having to eat out for every meal saves lots of $$.
  3. L- Housesitting! We traveled for two years almost exclusively housesitting and estimated well over $75,000 is savings had we spent money on hostels/ hotel rooms. It is hard to beat staying in a great home with a kitchen to save money. The added benefit of a kitty or dog to play with, just expands the experience.


  1. Talking to people. From the Uber driver on the way to airport to the tuk-tuk driver in Siam Reap, asking questions and engaging with people makes the experience richer. We always come away feeling a better connection.
  2. Exploring off the beaten path places. While we typically will visit the iconic spots, finding those hidden gems is always exciting. Wandering is something we do well!
  3. Finding local markets, pubs and parks – we love green spaces to sit and people-watch, markets to buy local novelties, and pubs to relax and rehash it all again.

Life is a daring adventure – or nothing.” — Helen Keller

McCool Travel interview with Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries Travel Media.
Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis. Photo credit: FuninFairfaxVA.com

C- Cheryl’s still browsing her history…and it’s ALL travel! That’s a good thing, right?
L- Hillsborough County and New York Public Library sites. Now I can download all the books I want/need to read on the road.
C and L- We rarely collect souvenirs because we either have to carry them or mail them home.  I do enjoy buying a postcard and writing a short note about our experience in that place. We then mail it from the local post office. We get the card, a stamp, and the postmark.  It is fun to get home later and read our “journal” of postcards.
C and L – a pizza slice out of the window of a shop. Even NYC has them for a $1! Yum!!
C- DigiDame – tech gadgets from Lois Whitman
L- Overdrive app to download every ebook the library owns! I’ve taken it as a personal challenge. And the InstantPot!
C- Lisa Chavis. No doubt if we hadn’t met, I would not be doing this amazing travel around the world, seeing and experiencing so many wonderful things.
L- So many likeminded travelers through conferences and trips. Having these friends helps bring a whole new and exciting dimension to life!
C- Since Lisa took my answer, I’ll pick Oprah Winfrey – another inspirational person who I’d love to have a long talk with.
L- Ellen Degeneres. We did see a live taping of one of her shows in CA, but I’d love to sit down and just chat with her for a few hours. She’s such an inspiration!

McCool Travel interview with Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries Travel Media.
Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis

Thank you so much, Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis, for sharing your travel inspiration and tips.
Follow What Boundaries on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and What Boundaries Travel.

McCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes travel interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Check out McCool Travel’s previous travel interviews. Previous 5 Minutes travel interview: Angel Castellanos.

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